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WKSU And ideastream To Study Joint Expansion

Two public media organizations in Northeast Ohio — ideastream and WKSU — will explore opportunities for growth and expansion after receiving a $100,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

The two organizations announced their intention to study growth and expansion, funded by the grant, in a joint press release Monday.

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

The release states WKSU and ideastream were chosen by CPB because they are strong organizations with innovative leadership, and they are willing to work together to grow public media service to the region. The need for expanded service, the release states, is evident by the loss of more than 60 percent of journalism jobs locally since the peak in 2004, creating information gaps.

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

With the funding, ideastream and WKSU intend to explore expanding local reporting and journalism resources; coordinate editorial efforts; expand and diversify geographic topical coverage of local and statewide issues, particularly in underserved communities; and foster future journalists through engagement with the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Kent State University.

“Providing insightful news and information about Northeast Ohio is a core service of both stations,” said ideastream CEO Kevin Martin in the joint release. “This grant represents an incredible opportunity to explore possibilities to expand our collective work and impact.” 

Martin said in an e-mail to ideastream staff the results of the study, and a plan for next steps, would be shared early next year.

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