$14.3 Million Pledged to ideastream’s Campaign for Community

For more information, contact:
Lisa Goss, Communications Specialist, 216.916.6134

October 30, 2015 (Cleveland, OH) – Today, ideastream launches the public phase of a $20.3 million campaign with $14.3 million pledged from individuals, corporations and foundations. The ideastream Campaign for Community asks for a community investment of $20.3 million to build capacity and provide a funding bridge to sustain an increased level of service far into the future.

Fueled by lead commitments including $2.1 million from Susie and Jack Turben, $1 million from Jean and Walter Kalberer, $1 million from The George Gund Foundation, $1 million from Westfield Insurance Foundation, and 100% participation from the Board of Trustees, ideastream will close the gap on the $20.3 million campaign goal throughout 2016.

Providing campaign leadership, ideastream Trustee Emerita Susie Turben notes that “The ideastream Board of Trustees adopted a strategic plan to respond to the community. The goal is to better serve the citizens of the region by doubling the investment in ideastream produced programs and services. The focus of this investment is in areas that have been identified by the residents of Northeast Ohio through The Listening Project, now in its 14th year: arts and culture; health information; education; community assets and challenges; and issues relating to the State of Ohio. The results are being achieved through effective partnerships, strategic investments in technology, development and marketing, and growing the financial base of the organization so as to sustain over time that increased level of service.” In addition to Susie and Jack Turben, campaign volunteer leadership includes Trustee Emeritus Bob Gries, Trustee Emerita Sondra Hardis, and Trustees Jean Kalberer, Kevin McMullen, Jon Outcalt, Cathy Pollard, Larry Pollock, Julie Raskind, Fred Stueber and Dan Walsh.

“Westfield is proud of the national recognition ideastream brings to Northeast Ohio for its unique model of public service media,” said Westfield Insurance President and CEO, Westfield Insurance Foundation Chairman, and ideastream Trustee Ed Largent. “Our latest pledge demonstrates Westfield’s commitment to keeping that momentum going.”

The ideastream Campaign for Community will enable an increase in the quality and quantity of ideastream programs and services that:

  • Explore and expose Arts and Culture.
  • Engage the region in important discussions about essential Community Assets and Challenges.
  • Foster understanding of Education and offer resources for educators, parents and students.
  • Provide important information about Health and Science.
  • Provide access to policies and procedures related to the discussion of politics in the State of Ohio.
  • Spotlight the region by sharing the rich history and resources of Northeast Ohio with the community, the nation and the world.
  • Establish “anytime, anywhere” access by aggregating ideastream and other community content into a robust digital archive for the community.


“With generous lead gifts in place, ideastream has begun to make investments,” said Jerry Wareham, ideastream’s President and Chief Executive Officer. The ideastream Campaign for Community is already making possible:

  • The integration of WCLV Classical 104.9 into ideastream and the transition of the station to a sustainable non-commercial radio model.
  • The integration of the online and in place community engagement program Civic Commons into ideastream.
  • The gift from Westfield Insurance Foundation is supporting the development of a unique family of companion radio/TV/web and community engagement efforts, including Ideas on WVIZ/PBS, The Sound of Ideas on 90.3 WCPN and Ideas Now 24/7 on the web, social media and mobile platforms.
  • Expanded news reports on 90.3 WCPN ideastream.
  • ideastream produced television specials spotlighting the region including Facing Forward: A Student’s Story, Enduring Trust: The History and Aspirations of The Cleveland Foundation, On the Ball: The Story of Webb C. Ball and the Railroad Watch and two Cleveland Orchestra in Performance specials. In addition, The Cunning Little Vixen and Violins of Hope documentaries have been produced and are scheduled to air in 2016.
  • The City Club of Cleveland and ideastream have developed a partnership to aggregate, catalogue, digitize and make available more than 100 City Club programs on broadcast, on the web, and on demand, well beyond the 50 Friday Forums as in years past on WVIZ/PBS, 90.3 WCPN and WCLV Classical 104.9.

The mission of ideastream is to strengthen our communities. ideastream pursues this mission as a multiple media public service organization by providing distinctive, thought-provoking programs and services that enlighten, inspire, educate and entertain.

ideastream is the consolidation of eight different programs and services that had previously been independently managed: WVIZ/PBS, with 4 channels of public TV service, and training for teachers and caregivers in the use of technology for education; 90.3 WCPN, Northeast Ohio’s NPR news and public affairs station; WCLV Classical 104.9; Civic Commons, a community engagement platform; management on behalf of Ohio’s public broadcasting stations of the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau and The Ohio Channel, a statewide public affairs television channel available by broadcast and on the web; management on behalf of a consortium of local K-12 school systems of NOTA (North Ohio Technology Association, a broadband interactive distance learning network for K-12 schools) and SMART (Science and Math Achievement Required for Tomorrow), a professional development program for teachers.

More information can be found at ideastream.org\campaign-for-community.

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