Northwest Public Radio Local Content and Services 2016 CPB Report

1. Describe your overall goals and approach to address identified community issues, needs, and interests through your station’s vital local services, such as multi platform long and short-form content, digital and in-person engagement, education services, community information, partnership support, and other activities, and audiences you reached or new audiences you engaged.

Northwest Public Radio continually seeks to present well-produced programs which stimulate thinking, encourage discovery and expand horizons. We continue to make strides in local and regional news reporting, most significantly by integrating student journalists into the newsroom. NWPR has also given attention to digital distribution of regional news via internet and mobile devices. News stories are produced with both broadcast and digital sensibilities, to take into account the changing ways our audience access our programming. In addition to its on-air broadcast, NWPR provides free access to content on digital and social media platforms, including our website, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and mobile apps.  Listeners are provided with channels to provide feedback on these platforms, and also through email and a toll-free phone line. NWPR provides a free online community calendar on its website, in which the public can advertise and also learn about arts and community events in the region. Northwest Public Radio continued to support the annual Murrow Symposium events produced by The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University.

2. Describe key initiatives and the variety of partners with whom you collaborated, including other public media outlets, community nonprofits, government agencies, educational institutions, the business community, teachers and parents, etc. This will illustrate the many ways you’re connected across the community and engaged with other important organizations in the area.

NWPR seeks to connect with communities across the region.  For more than a decade NWPR has been a member of the Northwest News Network, which shares news reports with other public media outlets across the region including KUOW, Oregon Public Broadcasting, KNKX, Boise State Radio, KLCC, Jefferson Public Radio and Spokane Public Radio.  NWPR has partnered with Clover Park Technical College in Tacoma to manage and program KVTI-FM, providing a vital NPR and Classical service in the South Puget Sound region. Similarly, NWPR has partnered with the Yakima School District to manage and program KYVT-FM to bring more local and national news to residents in central Washington.  In conjunction with The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University, NWPR provides learning experiences for students of journalism, media and communications.

3. What impact did your key initiatives and partnerships have in your community? Describe any known measurable impact, such as increased awareness, learning or understanding about particular issues. Describe indicators of success, such as connecting people to needed resources or strengthening conversational ties across diverse neighborhoods. Did a partner see an increase in requests for related resources? Please include direct feedback from a partner(s) or from a person(s) served.

Through its partnerships, NWPR continues to have measurable impact within the community. Our reporters were on the front lines as news warranted. Correspondent Anna King’s reports on Washington state wildfires kept listeners informed and up to date not only in the Pacific Northwest, but across the US  as her work was picked up for national distribution by NPR and the BBC.  She also led a major multimedia project “Daughters of Hanford,” which explored through journalism, photography and art, the role women played in the development of the Hanford Nuclear site. The project was on display at THE REACH interpretive center in Richland. Her work was lauded by journalism societies and other professional groups.  Courtney Flatt continued to break new ground in her environmental reporting, particularly about legacy pesticides in old orchards and how researchers using iPads and apps to help thin forests. Students and producers reported a growing number of online exclusive reports, serving the audience through stories posted and shared on the web and social media.  Illustrating the power of web reporting, Max Bartlett's story about honey bees reached more than 5,000 people from social media alone. NWPR reporters provided in-depth analysts of policy, along with breaking news and untold stories throughout the region. In addition to examples like the ones mentioned, Northwest Public Radio continues to be a primary resource for community information about arts and events through our online calendar and the weekly Friday Arts Preview broadcast. NWPR produced its first podcast series. "De-Composing" looked into the music of the region and how it was created. NWPR also provides daily information during inclement weather on school closures and delays for the region.

4. Please describe any efforts (e.g. programming, production, engagement activities) you have made to investigate and/or meet the needs of minority and other diverse audiences (including, but not limited to, new immigrants, people for whom English is a second language and illiterate adults) during Fiscal Year 2016, and any plans you have made to meet the needs of these audiences during Fiscal Year 2017. If you regularly broadcast in a language other than English, please note the language broadcast.

Northwest Public Radio continues its partnership with the Yakima Valley Community Foundation identify the need for bilingual reporting and necessary resources in central Washington. Last year, NWPR and its partners were awarded a Knight Foundation grant to hire journalists and develop a bilingual reporting team. The grant and initiative also includes resources to conduct community outreach to assess and ascertain topics of concern in the region for Latino and other potential audiences, and to develop online and mobile device tools to increase the reach and impact of the reporting. News reports and stories included topics such as rural politics, immigration, the apple industry and education funding.  Building on NWPR's Yakima-based, bilingual reporting, the station teamed up with Maria Hinojosa of Latino USA to co-produce an episode of her national show and gather with community members.  Hinojosa and NWPR's Rowan Moore Gerety traveled the Yakima Valley for nearly a week, gathering material for an episode of Latino USA on the cultural contact zone between Hispanics and Native Americans in central Washington  More than 500 people attended a NWPR sponsored talk by Maria Hinojosa.  Her presentation at Yakima's Capitol Theatre, "The Changing Face of America" explored the growing role of Hispanics in American society and the profound cultural changes that its bringing.  Students at Yakima's Eisenhower High School attended Maria Hinojosa's presentation.  As active attendees they asked questions and shred their thoughts. Northwest Public Radio's listening audience continues to grow, indicating the increased appeal of, and need for, its programming. Listener feedback has also guided program changes to be responsive to community needs. Our online audience also continues to grow rapidly, indicating the multiple ways the community is accessing the information and services we provide.

5. Please assess the impact that your CPB funding had on your ability to serve your community. What were you able to do with your grant that you wouldn't be able to do if you didn't receive it?

CPB funding through the Community Service Grant is critical for Northwest Public Radio to carry out its public service mission. As is the case with many stations that provide programming to large principally rural areas, NWPR operates on a tight budget.  Serving a vast geography, often times Northwest Public Radio is the only source available for information and emergency notification.  CPB funding assists the station’s ability to provide critical service.  CPB funding is especially important to locally produced news, music and other cultural programming efforts. Without CPB funding, NWPR would be significantly limited in presenting the diverse and responsive programming currently offered. As mentioned earlier, the impact of NWPR’s service and growth of the audience has been noteworthy, meaning the investment of CPB funds continues to have a significant reach to under-served audiences in the region.