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From the General Manager – February 2010

PUTTING THE PUBLIC IN PUBLIC MEDIA

One of the great things about public media is our ability to respond to community needs -- all while keeping you, our audiences, informed.

Last month in response to events in Haiti, Arizona Public Media (AZPM) kept you up to date with the latest breaking news. Reporter Robert Rappaport wrote of local efforts with his blog and news updates. Special programming like Hope for Haiti Now, brought you a live music performance by today’s top stars that raised millions for relief efforts on stations all across the country, including our PBS-HD Channel 6.

The President’s State of the Union was covered on all of AZPM’s platforms: radio, television, and online. PBS-HD broadcast President Obama’s first State of the Union address and the Republican response by newly inaugurated Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell. At 9 p.m. PBS World Channel 27.3 (Cox 83 and Comcast 203) aired an encore broadcast of the address and response. The event was also available live online at the “Live Events” section of the On Demand video page, and NPR's coverage of the address included a one-hour nationwide call-in hosted by Neal Conan and NPR's political junkie, Ken Rudin.

Arizona Public Media also brought to Tucson a live national radio performance of Garrison Keillor’s, A Prairie Home Companion. More than 6,000 people crowded into the TCC’s Arena to see Garrison and the local Chicano band iMas, legend of the accordion Joel Guzmán, accomplished singer and picker Dave Rawlings, and singer-songwriter Andra Suchy, who were his special guests. Also featured were The Royal Academy of Radio Actors; Tim Russell, Sue Scott, and Fred Newman, The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band, and the latest News from Lake Wobegon. Sue Scott, the female voice on the show, is a University of Arizona alumnus and spent time before the show in a workshop with UA students from the Drama Department.

In February, we have a number of terrific specials on our television and radio stations including Faces of America, a new four-part series on Channel 6, with Skip Gates who you may remember from last years’ African American Lives I & II. And our radio winter pledge campaign is underway. I hope you will consider all that AZPM does for our community and become a member or renew your membership today. It is your support that gives AZPM the resources necessary to respond to our community.

GM Letter,

About From the General Manager

Thoughts and Letters from Jack Gibson.