2008 Public Radio Programming Conference

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Pre and Post-Conference Workshops:

PD Workshop, September 14 -16.

RRC's PPM Workshop, September 20, 1-5pm

Wednesday, September 17

10:00am -Noon – News/Talk Group
This year's meeting will be wholly devoted to sharing among PD's. Come and discuss your issues, initiatives and results in the world of News and Talk. - Moderator: Jeff Hansen - Program Director, KUOW, Seattle

11:00am- 1:00pm – Jazz Station Meeting
This annual gathering of Jazz stations and producers is always a lively and productive discussion. A unique opportunity to network and address the opportunities and challenges of jazz programming with your colleagues. Moderator: Thurston Briscoe - Program Director, WBGO, Newark

Noon – 2:00pm – Classical Music Station Meeting
This meeting is the opportunity for classical music stations to share what they’ve been doing over the past year and seek feedback from peers.  Moderators: Frank Dominguez - Program Director, WDAV, Davidson & Robin Gehl - Vice President of Programming, Cincinnati Public Radio.


Back by Popular Demand! The Arrival Lounge featuring “A Taste of California!” Start re-connecting with colleagues as you sample an array of California treats: provided by Public Radio International, National Public Radio and American Public Media.

4:00 – 5:00pm - Newcomers Session
The PRPD Conference might seem daunting if you’ve never attended, this is especially for first timers.  Fear not, we are a very friendly bunch (well—most of us).  To prove it, the Board of Directors will give you the long and short of what is going on and offer advice on how to get the most of your time here.  You’ll get to meet others attending for the first time too.  Free food!  Wacky contests!  Prizes that will confound the TSA when they check your luggage!

7:00 - 9:00pm - OPENING RECEPTION sponsored by KUSC, KPCC and KCRW- Les Deux, Hollywood
Our three host stations have planned a truly Hollywood opening evening at one of Hollywood's hottest nightspots, a short walk form the conference hotel.  Reconnect with your colleagues in "a plush experience of European lifestyle mixed with sexy decor welcoming LA's finest clientele" (in this case, us).  The stations will graciously provide hardy hors d'oevres, beer and wine plus a cash bar amid the "clean, black, swooping curves amid an overabundance of peach-tinted mirrors to evoke a feeling of luxury and glamor".An experience not to be missed!


Thursday, September 18

7:30 - 8:30am – Breakfast with APM

There are few phrases more important to public radio programmers than “audience engagement.”  Join American Public Media for breakfast as we talk to hosts, journalists and partner stations about Public Insight Journalism and the upcoming elections. Built on genuine partnership between news media and the public, PIJ combines public insight with the best principles of journalism. Find out how it’s transforming our newsrooms and those of other stations around the country.


9:00 – 10:30am - OPENING SESSION –  Writer/Producer Brian Grazer, Imagine Entertainment
    NPR's Kim Masters interviews one of Hollywood's top producers, Brian Grazer, partner with Ron Howard in Imagine Entertainment.  A multiple Emmy and Academy Award winner, Grazer will share his experiences over a more than 25 years of making movies and television programs and his vision of  the media future and how the forces in the entertainment industry are evolving.  

10:30-11:00AM - Morning Break: Caffienation Station with NPR

11:00 - 12:15pm: Breakouts

1) Expanding Public Radio to All Americans: Harder than we think? (Finding Voices We Don’t Know About)

Public radio needs more listeners and different listeners to remain competitive. How do we get them? The panelists at this session believe we have to change the lifeblood of public radio: who makes radio and what public radio sounds like. These pros practice what they preach by attracting talented African American, Latino and younger producers. How do they find this new talent? What standards do they have? How can stations adopt their practices and maintain the core sound of public radio? We'll listen to some of their work and challenge their vision.

•    Moderator: John Barth - Managing Director, PRX
•    Maxie Jackson - Senior Director Program Development, WNYC, New York
•    Julie Shapiro - Managing Director, Third Coast Audio Festival
•    Raul Ramirez - Executive Director for News and Public Affairs, KQED/ Latino Consortium

2) Making the Web and Air Work Better Together - Two New Approaches to Local Talk

Some public radio programs have become multi-platform beasts, living on-the-air, online and in places you never suspected. In this session we’ll hear about the experiences of two relatively new multi-platform shows, Think Out Loud from Oregon Public Broadcasting and Word of Mouth on New Hampshire Public Radio. Think Out Loud has taken a CPB-funded, research-based approach, while Word of Mouth takes a unique “Less is More” approach, seeking to create a production model for sustainable, affordable local programming that is not call-in and that can be duplicated at small market stations. What are these program teams doing to make compelling radio and compelling Web content happen on a daily basis? What’s different about this new world, and what turns out to be the same as it ever was?

•    Moderator: Sheryl Gasser - Talk Director, Wisconsin Public Radio
•    Morgan Holm - VP News and Information, Oregon Public Broadcasting
•    David Miller - Producer, Oregon Public Broadcasting
•    Abby Goldstein - Program Director, New Hampshire Public Radio
•    Andrew Walsh - Senior Producer, New Hampshire Public Radio

3) One Size Doesn't Fit All: On-Air Fundraising for Classical Music Programming

Fundraising strategies and tactics utilized for news-talk stations don't necessarily resonate with classical music listeners. What is meaningful for those classical listeners, and what will make them more likely to respond to fundraising appeals? Based on classical music research conducted by the PRPD, as well as CPRN research conducted in Los Angeles and Denver, you'll learn how listeners value and respond to classical music and how to shape your fundraising appeals to classical listeners' motivations.

•    Karla Walker - Program Director, KVOD/Colorado Public Radio
•    Robin Gehl - Vice President of Programming, WGUC, Cincinnati

4) Million Dollar Branding On A Nonprofit Budget

You don’t have a million dollar ad budget? So what! Creative marketing guru, Stephanie Ross, will give you the tools to create innovative strategic marketing plans that get results without wreaking havoc to the bottom line. Learn how you can hit the ground running to position and promote your station with techniques that are cost effective, deliver audience and most of all reinforce your station’s core message.

•    Stephanie Ross - CEO, Idea Ventures Inc., Los Angeles


12:30 - 1:45pm - NPR Power Lunch

Have your people talk to our people: All Things Considered hosts Melissa Block and Robert Siegel, and executive producer Chris Turpin.  While they tell it like it is, you can savor your LAvish repast before joining in.


2:00 – 3:30pm - The Changing Job of the PD– GENERAL SESSION

Ten years ago, PD’s could afford to manage and think like the program directors of a generation earlier. Like it or not, the job responsibilities of the public radio PD have changed. We are now managing in a very different environment. We are required to have more business savvy and to understand how our stations operate on the macro level. We are forced to think “multi-platform.” The technology we use has changed, our listeners’ relationship with various media is ever shifting, and our new employees (when we can find them) act and are motivated differently than our seasoned vets. These are some of the many things we must consider. This panel discussion will explore how our job has evolved. More importantly, the guests will underscore the basic leadership and management traits as well as the new thinking necessary for PDs to succeed in this new paradigm.

•    Moderator:  Bruce Warren - Assistant General Manager for Programming, WXPN, Philadelphia
•    Denise Oliver - President, Oliver Media
•    Bill Lueth - Program Director, KDFC, San Francisco
•    Todd Mundt - Director of New Media Strategies, Louisville Public Media


3:30 - 4:00pm - Afternoon Break: Break it Down with NPR

4:00 - 5:15pm: Breakouts

5) The NPR Listener Media Day

Observing media behavior for the whole day, and listening in-depth to people as they narrate their perceptions, experiences, and opinions can create a rich portrait of the role of public radio in our listeners’ lives, and lead to powerful new research questions. This session will include insights from two groundbreaking studies from NPR Research –an observational NPR Listener Media Day study from Ball State University and an ethnography of KUT Austin listeners. We look at questions such as: what media are people actually using, and for how long are they using it (rather than what they report)? What motivates the media choices people make? What does public radio mean to them?

•    Ben Robins - Research Manager, National Public Radio
•    Tara Susman-Peña - Research Manager, Special projects, National Public Radio

6) Making the Most with the Least - How radio stations with limited resources do the cutting edge

Think you are too under-resourced to be multiplatform or to have your station delve into the world of social networking?  Learn the basics, what other stations have tried, how to staff and train your station to respond to these opportunities and find out how stations of all formats are tackling the problem.  Learn how to prepare your staff so they can take advantage of low-cost, turnkey tools to improve the interactivity of your station service.  You’ll be tweeting your friends about it!

•    Moderator: Bruce Warren - Assistant General Manager for Programming, WXPN, Philadelphia
•    Ken Freedman - General Manager, WFMU, Jersey City
•    Mark Fuerst - President, Innovation4Media, Inc.
•    Leng Caloh - Convergence Editor, KPBS, San Diego

 7) The Morning Edition Air Check Project: A Pledge Refresher for Everyone - (with DEI)

Morning Edition accounts for half of all the pledge revenue a many public radio stations, so with help from NPR, DEI airchecked pledge drives for 24 large market stations and examined their ME pitching in relation to their listening and giving. This session reports on best practices for pledge with plenty of audio and some ideas worth stealing.

•    Scott Williams - Program Director, KJZZ/KBAQ, Phoenix
•    Jay Clayton - Individual Giving Coordinator, DEI
•    Jane Kelly - Senior Manager of On-Air Fundraising and Promotion, National Public Radio
•    John Sutton - President, John Sutton & Associates

8)  Midday Classical Project Application

Since January, the twelve partner stations in the PRPD Classical Music Testing Project have been applying the results we presented at last year’s conference to their midday music selection. We’ll talk about what they’ve done, what reaction they have received, and preliminary audience data results. There will be practical tips on applying what we now know about listeners’ preferences in midday classical music on radio, including samples from playlists, music selection polices, implementing scheduling software and much more.

•    Frank Dominguez - Program Director, WDAV, Davidson
•    John Silliman Dodge - Program Director, KBPS, Portland
•    Craig Cohen - Program Director, WITF, Harrisburg
•    Robin Gehl - Vice President of Programming, Cincinnati Public Radio
•    Peter Dominowski - Market Trends Research

 9) Case Studies In Format Focusing: New Triple-A Stations

Three public radio stations with long histories of eclectic and community-based programming have recently evolved into primarily Triple-A music stations. The stations are part of CPB’s station-renewal project that identifies public-radio outlets that were not reaching enough of their potential audience, yet had strong support from their licensees. This session looks at strategy and methods of change, lessons learned and early results.

•    Moderator:  Ken Mills, - Ken Mills Agency
•    Nico Leone - Program Director, KDHX, St. Louis
•    Dale Spear -Senior VP for Operations and COO, WMFE, Orlando (consulatnt to WUMB)
•    Ryan Tronier - Program Director, KRCL, Salt Lake City


5:30 - 6:30pm – CPB Talent Quest Meet and Greet Reception 

The search is over!  Meet the winners of thePublic Radio Talent Quest as they talk about their plans for launching public radio’s newest programs.  Join Majora Carter, Al Letson and Glynn Washington at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel’s Poolside Terrace (Hotel 5th floor).  Stop by for refreshments and a chat with the rising stars of public radio.  Hosted by CPB and Bruce Theriault, Senior Vice President, Radio.


6:30 - 7:30pm – Reception with The Splendid Table

Fresh from off the tour for their bestselling cookbook, “How To Eat Supper” (now in its third printing), Lynne Rosetto Kasper and Sally Swift welcome you to eat, drink, and find out what’s in store for this James Beard Award winning program that’s become a “must-have” on stations’ schedules.


7:30 - 9:30pm - Evening Soiree with NPR West (& East) - Twist Restaurant

Rub elbows Hollywood-style and enjoy a tasty array of West Coast cuisine while chatting and dishing with your favorite colleagues and NPR hosts. Join in the Twist(ed) fun and unwind after the first full day at the conference. Whether it's grilled, roasted, reduced, iced,  wrapped, Gorgonzola’d, or all of the above, there’s something for everyone. 


Friday, September 19

7:30 – 8:45 am - PRI's Breakfast of Opportunities
Discover your audience growth opportunity: define your local news brand, reach new audiences and make the local-global connection. Join PRI and partners BBC World ServiceThe Takeaway and The World for breakfast to see — graphically — the importance of the international perspective to the American listener. Meet the talent and see why PRI programs are essential to your local brand.


9:00 – 10:30am – GENERAL SESSION:

a) Keynote: Reinventing Public Radio
-Bruce Theriault - CPB Senior Vice President of Radio
The world around us is rapidly changing – from disruptive technology to dramatic shifts in demographics to evolving audience expectations.  Are these changes huge threats or wonderful opportunities? Bruce Theriault, Senior Vice President, Radio at CPB will share his perspectives on what lies ahead and why he’s excited about the opportunity to reinvent public radio.  He will also discuss how CPB’s current initiatives and funding priorities address the challenges public radio faces.

b) Awards for Creative excellence (ACE) hosted by Kai Ryssdal, Marketplace Host

We honor the best work in 6 programming categories: Promotion/Station Imaging, Classical Music Programming, News and Information, Jazz, Triple-A and On-Air Fundraising. Join is to hear samples of  some of the best in public radio - from a record number of entries.

 10:30 - 11:00am - Morning Coffee Break

11-12:15pm: Breakouts

10)  Our Best and Brightest Producers and Stations: What Next? - (with AIR)

With the ever- burgeoning number options for reaching listeners directly, some of today's most innovative audio producers are finding new channels and outlets for their work beyond public radio. We'll listen to how today's producers and their creative process have to moved beyond simply making a product to include anticipating distribution. We'll explore some of the new alliances being formed with publications and on-line outlets that are delivering a new audience to producers. We’ll hear work from producers who have expanded beyond radio and are actively working or experimenting or working in other listening environments.

•    Moderator: Sue Schardt, Executive Director, AIR
•    Jad Abrumad - Host/Producer, Radio Lab, WNYC
•    Curtis Fox - Independent Producer
•    Dmae Roberts - Executive Producer, Media Rites and Crossing East
•    Amy O’Leary - Multimedia Producer, New York Times

11) Lorna Ozmon workshops, Part 1: The Art of Coaching Air Talent; from analysis through application

This session will answer questions like: What is the most effective form of air talent performance analysis? How can I be more consistent in my coaching analysis and process? How do I reach the different and diverse air personalities on my staff? How do I keep the coaching process healthy and productive? How do I prevent and deflect defensiveness in my coaching sessions? How can I insure that what I say in coaching sessions translates into tangible on-air results?

•    Lorna Ozmon - President, Ozmon Media

12) Measuring Online Service. One step toward sustainability (with IMA)

For most of this decade, we have seen an expanding agreement that stations must offer a range of service (broadcast, HD, websites, digital streams, podcasts, audio archives) to remain relevant and competitive. What is much less clear is (a) are these new services connecting with the audience? and (b) are these services contributing to the financial sustainability of the stations? We’ll summarize and analyze data collected by Public Media Metrics and use that data to project a set of revenue models -based on actual revenue results from FY08 combined with revenue projections developed specifically for public radio and TV online properties.

•    Moderator: Gabe DiMaio - Program Director, WNED-FM, Buffalo
•    Mark Fuerst - President, Innovation4Media, Inc.
•    Marlene Schneider - President, Revenue Solutions & DEI Coordinator Corporate Support
•    Kara Sweet - Manager of Electronic Communications, WBFO-FM, Buffalo

13) New Program Development - Art or Science?

Is inventing new programs a creative, artistic act – or a strategic effort. The answer is “yes” -- because to work, it needs to be both. It is a fascinating process that brings together all of the strategic elements of the station: producers, programmers, management, underwriting and development and promotion – to create new programs that (a) meet the needs of the audience and (b) can succeed by being sustainable in the financial marketplace. We’ll hear from producers who have been through the process –and lived to tell about it.

•    Moderator: Jim Russell - The Program Doctor
•    Todd Bachman - WBEZ, Sound Opinions
•    Mark Brush - WUOM, The Environment Report
•    Kim Grehn- Vice President of Programming,Connecticut PR, Hartford
•    Greg Kelly - WUNC, The Story

14) PPM: What's Changed and What Are We Learning? - (with DEI)

Arbitron's Portable People Meters - Electronic measurement is replacing the Arbitron diary in the top 50 markets and the results are challenging what we thought we knew about our listeners and how they use our programming. As PPM technology is rolled out, how are PD's adjusting programming and pledge drives? What are the advantages and pitfalls of PPM? Public Radio experts talk about their experience and field your questions.

•    Moderator: Craig Oliver - Research and programming consultant
•    Dave Sullivan - Director of PPM Client Services, Radio Research Consortium, Inc.
•    John Sutton - President, John Sutton and Associates
•    Bruce Warren - Assistant General Manager for Programming, WXPN, Philadelphia 


12:30 -1:45pm - Lunch with Marketplace Morning Report

A recession leading into a presidential election. Who better to tackle that magical combination than Marketplace Morning Report. Join the hosts of Marketplace Morning Report as they welcome guests to help make sense of it all...and have a bit of fun in the process.


2:00 - 3:30pm - Grow the Audience – GENERAL SESSION

This session is a key opportunity for PD’s to provide input to the SRG Grow the Audience project.  This CPB funded project is a first step to restarting public radio audience growth – a key point in PRPD’s Strategic Plan.  After a panel presentation of the initial activities of the project Task Force findings, attendees will be involved in small group discussions to generate ideas and respond to the Task Force outline.  Results will be integrated into the project recommendations.

•    Tom Thomas & Terry Clifford - Co-CEOs, Station Resource Group
•    George Bailey - Walrus Research
•    Arthur Cohen - PRPD President


 3:30- 4:00pm - Afternoon Beverage Break with The Loh Down on Science

Join public radio personality, Sandra Tsing Loh, at The Loh Down on Science booth, as she "meets and greets," autographs copies of her New York Times bestseller, Mother on Fire, and gives away a new Apple iPhone 3G to a lucky winner!!! The Loh Down on Science is rapidly gaining popularity across the country - come listen first hand!

4:00 - 5:15pm: Breakouts

15) Balancing On-Air Messaging: Interdepartmental Strategies that Respect the Listener – (with DEI)

Our airwaves are a precious commodity, not only for our programming and underwriting credits but also as a critical vehicle for getting the word out on planned giving, station events, year-round membership fundraising, forward-promotion of programs, station branding messages, IDs, and more. But, how much is too much, from the listener’s standpoint? How can we balance our departmental agendas with what we know about message effectiveness from a marketing standpoint (necessary reach, frequency, etc.) and from an end-user standpoint (listener perceptions, tune-out, etc.)? Join us for a thoughtful whole-station discussion about setting priorities and guidelines for the use of airtime beyond our programs.

•    Moderator: Marlene Schneider - DEI Coordinator Corporate Support
•    Arthur Cohen - President, Public Radio Program Directors Association
•    Paul Jacobs - General Manager, Jacobs Media
•    Roger LaMay - General Manager, WXPN, Philadelphia
•    Jon Schwartz - General Manager, Wyoming Public Radio, Laramie

16) Talk Show Project: Building Better Local Programs - Airchecking Your Shows - (with LNI)

Public radio stations invest considerable time and resources to produce local news/information/talk shows. To assure that these programs really serve our demanding news listeners, they need to be airchecked on a regular basis. Be ready to roll up your sleeves in this session, as we’ll use actual show tape to do an aircheck session focused on selected elements needed in any successful show.

•    Jeff Hansen - Program Director, KUOW, Seattle
•    Marcia Alvar - Manager Station Based Projects, NPR Local News Initiative

17) Digital Radio 2008 for Programmers: New Knowledge / Fresh Content / Creative Ideas

In this session, we will get an update from iBiquity on HD Radio broadcasting and the current marketplace for it on public radio. Learn about new services and advanced applications that digital technology affords broadcasters, Multicasting and Program Service Data (Metadata) on digital radio. What are they? Why are they important for Program Directors? Can you turn them into revenue? Programming and promotion - what your colleagues are doing today on their HD channels and how they got there.

•    Moderator: Scott Hanley - General Manager, WDUQ, Pittsburgh
•    Dave Becker - Program Director, KNPR, Las Vegas
•    Kitsa Lee – Broadcast Business Manager, iBiquity Digital Corporation
•    Don Backus - Vice President of Sales and Marketing, ENCO Systems

18) Lorna Ozmon workshops, part 2: Getting More than Just Listening from Your Audience - How to become more memorable and make stronger emotional connections with your audience

This session will answer questions like: What are the realities of today's changing media environment? How do I make the content on my radio station cut through increasing media clutter? What have the best mass marketers recently learned about more effectively reaching people with their messages? How do I make more people care about what is said on my radio station? How does memory work? What can I do to make the content on my radio station more memorable?

 •    Lorna Ozmon, President, Ozmon Media

5:30 - 6:30pm -

6:30 - 7:30pm – Reception with APM’s Classical Music Programs
Meet the hosts and producers who bring you public radio’s most robust and popular collection of classical music programming.

7:30 – 10:30 pm – PRI’s Opportunity Bowls! - Lucky Strike Hollywood Lanes

PRI literally takes over Hollywood's most famous bowling alley (déjà vu for you "Big Lebowski" fans), giving you the opportunity to show off your 10-pin skills. Join PRI program hosts and producers for unlimited bowling, food made for the stars (their catering staff does the Emmy and Grammy Awards) and cocktails. Not a bowler? No problem! Come for the fresh music, The VIP Lounge and a hip, cool setting right next door to the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel. Life in the gutter will never be the same!


Saturday, September 20

9:00 – 10:15 am – Mark Ramsey – The Future of Listening  (General Session)

What are the greatest opportunities available to public radio - and why are public radio program directors the only folks in radio who can make those opportunities happen? Join Mercury Research President and hear2.0 blogger Mark Ramsey in a provocative portrait of public radio's content-fueled future. What is the new content? How will we capture the new audience? Who will fund the programs? Where does the Internet fit in? Do we have the stomach to make the hard choices required for the next evolution of public radio?


10:15- 10:30am - Coffee Break

10:30am – 12:00pm - GENERAL SESSION

     a) PRPD Annual Membership Meeting - we'll review the past year and discuss some of our plans.   And our annual presentation of RRC's Ralph Award and the PRPD/ARA Otto Awards  

        Immediately followed by:.

     b) Benediction: Robert Siegel - Senior Host, All Things Considered


Best known on your air as senior host of NPR's signature newsmagazine All Things Considered, Robert Siegel has played a major role in building the award-winning success of NPR News.  In his years with NPR, he has served as reporter, editor, and host, in addition to four years managing the news division. His international credits include opening NPR's first foreign bureau in London in 1979, and he has reported everywhere from Israel to China, from Ground Zero to Katrina-struck New Orleans.  Prior to NPR, Siegel worked in New York at WRVR, WGLI, and WKCR.  Robert is glad to join us on the left coast, as his wine of choice is a good California merlot.