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From the General Manager entry


Arizona Public Media (AZPM) welcomes the New Year and the opportunity to serve our audiences with radio, television, and online programs that inspire life-long learning. Here in Southern Arizona and across the nation, learning starts with young children watching PBS Kids programs. PBS Kids has grown to be the number one educational brand in the nation and the undisputed leader in children’s programming1. Programs such as Sid the Science Kid, Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That, Sesame Street, and Arthur, incorporate curricula that cultivates overall academic growth and early critical thinking to enhance essential skills: STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), Literacy, and Social and Emotional Development. This coming year AZPM will focus on increasing awareness of the value of PBS Kids programming in Southern Arizona.

On the news front, AZPM continues to expand local news coverage on NPR 89.1, PBS 6 and online at One if the key topics in the months to come will be the 2014 election. AZPM will provide comprehensive coverage of the candidates, state and local propositions, voter stories, interactive maps, and campaign trail stories.

Our original TV and radio programs, Arizona Week, AZ Illustrated, and Arizona Spotlight, continue to evolve and offer stories relevant to our community. In December Lorraine Rivera, a highly-regarded television journalist, joined AZPM as producer and host of Arizona Week, replacing Michael Chihak, who is now AZPM’s News Director. Arizona Week celebrates its third anniversary on PBS 6 this month, and Lorraine and her guests will bring a fresh viewpoint to the public affairs conversation about state-wide issues. Visit Arizona Week for the latest stories and watch the program on Fridays at 8:30 p.m. and Sundays at 10:30 a.m. The program also airs in Phoenix on the KAET 8 World on Fridays at 7:30 p.m.

The revamped week-night news magazine program AZ Illustrated celebrates its second anniversary in February, and has become a key source of information about all facets of Nature, Science, Metro, and Politics. The hosts of the program are specialists in their respective fields and present timely and relevant stories about business, education, arts and culture, and issues and advances in health, science, and the environment. Watch AZ Illustrated week nights at 6:30 p.m. and visit AZ Illustrated online to catch up on stories you might have missed.

On February 12th, AZPM and the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona will present Community Interactive – Poverty: The Working Poor, the first of a series of engaging live events offering each of us an opportunity to hear and participate in a solution-driven conversation. This first event will be held at the Fox Theatre at 6:30 p.m. and will be moderated by Neal Conan, award-winning journalist, producer, and former host of NPR’s Talk of the Nation. Poverty: The Working Poor will feature a panel of educators, social service professionals, and others working every day to help people in need. Future Community Interactive live events will include topics related to education, the border, and the arts. These programs will be streamed live on and edited for future broadcast on WORLD and the UA Channel.

In addition to the original TV and radio series mentioned above, AZPM takes pride in the award-winning documentary specials that bring into focus various aspects of our community. In the works are several specials that will premiere this year:

Trauma Center, a special one-hour behind the scenes look at the University of Arizona Medical Center as the doctors, nurses and patients deal with the stark realities of life and death in the hospital’s Trauma Center.

Osiris Rex follows the ambitious mission to study a near-earth asteroid, grab a piece of it, and return the sample to earth in 2023. This first program captures the exciting moments of the University of Arizona’s directed mission from current design to preparation for the 2015 launch.

Wild! Raptors, a half-hour program that explores the intersection of raptors and humans in the wild, in the city, and in science.

January PBS 6 programming highlights include:

Downton Abbey, the Emmy® Award-winning Masterpiece Classic series. One of the most popular drama series on television world-wide, the much- anticipated Season Four premieres on Sunday, January 5th at 8 p.m. on PBS 6. Watch the Downton Abbey countdown clock on and visit here for sneak peak of Season Four video trailers.

• The return of Sherlock! Season Three premieres on Sundays at 9 p.m. starting January 19th with three thrilling episodes: “The Empty Hearse,” “The Sign of Three,” and “His Last Vow.”

• The popular Hollywood at Home film series on Saturday nights at 9 p.m. This month’s features include “The Birdcage” on January 4th, “The Unforgiven” on January 11th, “Some Like It Hot” on the 18th, and a double feature on the 25th, “Ten Little Indians” and “Hot Rock.”

On radio, Classical 90.5 will broadcast the Tucson Winter Chamber Music Festival on Sundays, hosted by James Reel, at 3 p.m. and Thursdays at 9 p.m. through January 16th. You can visit Extempore at and hear exclusive interviews of guest artists with Classical 90.5’s Ted Prichard.

Happy New Year! On behalf of all of us at AZPM, thank you for your viewership, listenership and continued support.

Jack Gibson

1Grunwald Study, 2009 Media and Technology Use and Trends Among K-12 and Pre-K Teachers

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About From the General Manager

Thoughts and Letters from Jack Gibson.