ideastream and WKSU Awarded Corporation for Public Broadcasting Grant to Explore Potential for Growth of Service in Northeast Ohio

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(August 31, 2020) — WKSU and ideastream have been awarded a $100,000 grant from The Corporation for Public Broadcasting to explore opportunities for growth and expansion of public media service in Northeast Ohio. Given the current media landscape, economic uncertainty and the growing gap in information access, ideastream and WKSU were selected as two strong stations with innovative leadership who are willing to work together to grow public media service to the region.

In the past two decades, technological and economic forces have had a major impact on the Northeast Ohio media environment. Since the peak in 2004, local journalism jobs in the region have declined by more than 60%. More than 100 newspapers in the region have shuttered over the past two decades and journalism jobs across the state have fallen by 58% since 2004, according to a recent report by Policy Matters Ohio.  

The grant will provide funding for research, analysis and recommendations on how the stations can best serve the community and expand service.

This grant will enable the exploration of how best to:

  • Expand local reporting and journalism resources for Northeast Ohio.  
  • Increase coordination of editorial efforts.
  • Expand and diversify geographic and topical coverage of local and statewide issues, particularly in underserved communities.  
  • Foster the next generation of journalists and ensure cultural diversity through engagement with Kent State University Journalism and Mass Communication School. 

“Revitalization of regional journalism is essential to the civic health of the region. This grant is recognition that WKSU and ideastream are well-positioned to lead the way in a critical service for our communities,” said Wendy Turner, WKSU’s General Manager.

Kevin Martin, President and CEO of ideastream added, “Providing insightful news and information about Northeast Ohio is a core service of both stations. This grant represents an incredible opportunity to explore possibilities to expand our collective work and impact. We look forward to sharing the results.” 

About ideastream
ideastream serves the people of Northeast Ohio as a trusted and dynamic multimedia source for illuminating the world around us. Publicly supported and locally owned, ideastream is indispensable and highly valued for its unique ability to strengthen our community. ideastream is the consolidation of WVIZ/PBS, with five channels of public television service (WVIZ/PBS-HD, WVIZ/PBS OHIO, WVIZ/PBS WORLD, WVIZ/PBS CREATE and WVIZ/PBS KIDS); 90.3 WCPN, Northeast Ohio’s NPR news and public affairs radio station; WCLV 104.9, Northeast Ohio’s classical music radio station; ideastream Education, with educational resources, services and the award-winning children’s series NewsDepth; and management of The Ohio Channel and the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau on behalf of all Ohio’s public broadcasting stations. For more information about ideastream’s rich legacy of innovation and credible content, visit ideastream.org.

About WKSU
WKSU is an award-winning NPR member station and service of Kent State University. Since 1950, WKSU has brought public radio to the Northeast Ohio community. Today, it is Ohio’s largest public radio service, broadcasting over its primary signal of 89.7. WKSU content can also be heard over WKRW 89.3 (Wooster), WKRJ 91.5 (Dover/New Philadelphia), WKSV 89.1 (Thompson), WNRK 90.7 (Norwalk), W239AZ 95.7 (Ashland) and W234CX 94.7 (Mansfield). WKSU content is also available online at www.wksu.org, through the mobile app and on smart speakers.

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MEDIA CONTACTS

ideastream:
Calle Andrus, Communications Specialist
216.916.6434
calle.andrus@ideastream.org 

WKSU:
Lindsay Kuntzman Hilewick, Fundraising and Communications Director
330.346.5635
kuntzman@wksu.org

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