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Broadcasters' Public Service
November 2015 (Part 2)

Radio and television broadcasters constantly perfom public service. Stations disseminate lifeline information about weather emergencies; support our troops; raise millions of dollars for cancer research and treatment; collect tons of food, clothes and toys; devote free air time to election coverage; promote education and health; and help nonprofits communicate critical messages.

Send details on your station's public service to Suzie Raven

Amber Alert on Broadcast Radio Locates Missing Toddler
2-Year-Old Found Via Amber Alert on Radio

A nationwide Amber Alert issued by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) and broadcast on radio stations across the country resulted in the safe recovery of a missing two-year-old Knoxville girl on Oct. 29. Investigators believed that Tyler Enix kidnapped two-year-old Brooklynne Enix after killing his ex-wife, the girl's mother. In northwest Ohio, resident Steve Adams followed the black Chevy Impala described in the alert, confirmed the license plate number and called police. This story from Tegna's NBC affiliate WBIR-TV Knoxville. includes audio from the 911 call.

Local Radio and Television Provide Food for Thousands of Families
WSOY-AM Collects 1.3 Million Lbs. of Food

Neuhoff Communication's WSOY-AM Decatur, Ill. collected 1.3 million pounds of food in the 14th annual WSOY Community Food Drive, held Oct. 9. The drive benefits Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army, Good Samaritan Inn, Northeast Community Fund, the Judy Mason Thanksgiving Basket Project and Reasonable Services. WSOY recognized five local schools for outstanding participation. (Watch video).

Alpha Media Raises $114K for Thanksgiving

Alpha Media San Antonio stations KTSA-AM, KZDC-AM, KTFM-FM, KJXK-FM, KLEY-FM and KSAH-FM raised $114,000 on Oct. 16 in a fundraiser for the Raul Jimenez Thanksgiving Dinner. Local restaurateur Raul Jimenez began the event in 1979 to serve senior citizens who live alone and/or cannot afford to prepare a Thanksgiving meal for themselves. In 2015, the event served 25,000 meals.

KFOG-FM Donates $200,000 to Bay Area Food Banks

Cumulus' KFOG-FM San Francisco donated $200,000 to Bay Area Food Banks on Nov. 12, which came from the proceeds of last year's "Live From the Archives 2,." a benefit CD featuring singles from current rock artists. KFOG's CDs are the biggest single fundraiser for these Bay Area Food Banks: Alameda County Community Food Bank; Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano; Napa Valley Food Bank; Redwood Empire Food Bank; San Francisco-Marin Food Bank; and Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties. On Nov. 6, KFOG released its 22nd annual benefit CD "Live from the Archives 22," featuring Train, Michael Franti and Cage the Elephant.

WCAV-TV Raises $120,000 for Salvation Army

Gray Television's CBS affiliate WCAV-TV Charlottesville, Va. raised $120,000 in its telethon for the Charlottesville Salvation Army, held Oct. 20. All of the money raised remains local and helps provide shelter and food for people in need. In 2014, the Charlottesville Salvation Army served more than 41,400 meals. (Watch video).

WAPT Challenge Collects 220,000 Cans

Hearst Television's ABC affiliate WAPT-TV Jackson, Miss. collected 220,326 cans of food in its “Food for Families Football Challenge,” which asks local high schools to collect cans at football games. WAPT's PSA featuring Sen. Roger Wicker, Rep. Bennie Thompson and Rep. Greg Harper encouraged participation. In 24 years, WAPT has collected almost 3.7 million cans.

Broadcasters Celebrate Hometown Heroes
Armstrong & Getty Raise $544,000

Syndicated radio hosts Armstrong & Getty raised $544,000 for Fisher House in a drive held Nov. 9-13, bringing the drive's four-year total to $2.2 million. The Fisher House Foundation provides a free "home away from home" for families while their loved ones receive medical care at a military or VA medical center.

WTMJ-AM Fund Honor Flights for Vets

E.W. Scripps' WTMJ-AM Milwaukee raised funds to send Korean War veterans from Milwaukee to Washington, D.C. to visit their memorial. Many of the local veterans have never visited the Korean War memorial. Host John Mercure aimed to raise $100,000 to pay for two flights. Listen to this audio clip.

Westwood One Airs Veterans Day Series

Westwood One News produced an 11-part original series for Veterans Day. Features included: an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran, now in college, discussing differences between military and student life; a West Point graduate sharing what he learned from leading soldiers during two tours in Iraq; a website encouraging people to volunteer on Veterans Day; a female Marine addressing women-specific military issues; Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.), a retired Air Force attack pilot and squadron commander, talking about challenges with dealing with the Department of Veterans Affairs; a former Army officer providing examples of how World War II veterans re-entered civilian life; an American Legion post manager explaining the benefits of joining veterans' groups; and a consultant who helps companies hire servicemen and women addressing the veteran employment picture.

Tribune Stations Air Vietnam Documentary

Tribune Broadcasting produced an hour-long documentary, "Untold Stories: Saluting Our Vietnam Veterans," for stations to air from Nov. 7-15. It features POW Colonel Murphy Neal Jones, war correspondent Joe Galloway, and information on PTSD. Stations also aired segments on local veterans. “We asked our award-winning journalists across the country to help give voice to the stories of our Vietnam Vets and the result is a compelling and poignant [hour-long documentary] and special series in every one of our markets,” said Tribune's Senior Vice President of News Bart Feder.

WTNH-TV Conn. Hosts Veterans Career Fair

Media General's ABC affiliate WTNH-TV New Haven, Conn. sponsored an expo, career fair and concert for veterans on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. The workshop gave advice on resumes, interviews and professional attire to prepare veterans for the career fair. The expo included art, massage and music therapy, yoga and a veteran art auction.

WTNH also helped distribute 5,000 smoke detectors and 1,000 carbon monoxide detectors to 83 Connecticut fire departments in September through “Operation Save-A-Life.” (Watch video).

Wis. Broadcasters Support New Fisher House

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association (WBA) partnered with Iraq veteran and WI Department of Veteran Affairs employee Dan Buttery on "Operation Welcome Home." Buttery has spent six years raising money for a Fisher House in Milwaukee. Fisher House offers free lodging for military families while a loved one receives medical treatment. Broadcaters' support for his efforts include:

  • iHeartRadio provides regular access to on-air talent, live interviews and event promotion.
  • E.W. Scripps' WTMJ-AM Milwaukee. Wis. Emmy-winning reporter John Mercure embedded with Buttery's unit during an Iraq deployment and has supported Fisher House.
  • Tribune Broadcasting's Fox affiliate WITI-TV Milwaukee Morning News anchor and Wisconsin National Guard member Chip Brewster has covered his story.
Radio and Television Stations Foster Education, Healthy Kids
Univision's Education Week 2015

Univision's Education Week 2015, held Oct. 3-10 on 126 radio and television stations, reached hundreds of thousands of families. Resources, tools and programs covered issues related to early childhood development to college readiness. Local phone banks answered more than 2,000 viewer questions. The “Academias para Padres” (Parent Academies) connected 1,300 people in three cities with education experts. Univision's KMEX-TV Los Angeles kicked off Education Week on Oct. 3, when 15,000 people attended the "Feria de Educación" (Education Fair). One hundred non-profit organizations and 50 workshops addressed financial aid, scholarships and parent engagement. More than 45,000 books were distributed.

WREX-TV Ignites Conversation on Bullying

Quincy's NBC affiliate WREX-TV Rockford, Ill. invited a dozen students from different schools, ages and backgrounds to discuss their experiences with bullying. Many had received death threats from bullies and transferred schools. WREX also brought in child actors to stage a bullying scenario to spark further conversations among the students. One student stood up to the bully, while others expressed fear of becoming victims if they had done the same. WREX's news segment raised awareness and included resources on bullying. (Watch video).

WCTC-AM Announces Anti-Drug Themed Music Contest

Greater Media's WCTC-AM New Brunswick, N.J., the New Jersey Broadcasters Association and the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey are hosting the "2016 New Jersey Shout Down Drugs!" The music competition encourages high school students to create positive messages about avoiding drugs and alcohol. A concert on May 25 will feature finalists. First place receives a $5,000 music contract; second place, $3,000; and third place $2,000.

WWTI Feeds Local Children

Nexstar's ABC affiliate WWTI Watertown, N.Y. launched a backpack program last winter to serve students in grades K-4 at Starbuck Elementary School, as 81 percent of students are in the free/reduced lunch program. WWTI's Alex Hazard and Starbuck Elementary School's principal designed PSAs asking for donations. Every Friday, even when school is not in session, 60 kids receive a backpack filled with 10 pounds of food. WWTI plans to expand the program to all five Watertown elementary schools in the near future. (Watch video).

WMAR Investigates School Issues

E.W. Scripps' ABC affiliate WMAR-TV Baltimore regularly investigates issues at local schools, including problems with mold and air conditioning units. WMAR posts stories online under "Classroom Concerns." WMAR was the media partner for the second annual “Get Connected: Special Needs Resource Fair” on Nov. 7. The event featured exhibitors and workshops with resources on speech therapy, sensory integration, summer camps, schools and assistive technology.

Broadcasters Provide Superior Investigative Reporting

KHOU Houston Investigations Exposes City Housing Troubles

Tegna's CBS affiliate KHOU-TV Houston exposed city housing troubles through a series of investigative reports. Even though the public housing waiting list has 24,000 people on it, some public housing residents make close to $100,000 each year. KHOU's investigation shows that officials had knowledge of the situation. (Watch video via TVNewsCheck).

KNBC Exposes Radioactive Waste Cover-Up

NBC-owned KNBC-TV Los Angeles revealed a cover-up of radioactive waste and toxic chemicals that endangered thousands of kids at a camp. Families claim that camp staff and board members covered up evidence for 65 years. Workers told KNBC's investigative team that they were ordered to secretly release radioactive gases into the wind. Watch part one and part two of the investigation.

KNTV Finds Calif. Drought Answers In Israel

NBC's KNTV San Francisco sent news teams to Israel to learn about how they handle water shortages. News segments aired Nov. 2. “Not many TV stations have the vision, let alone the budget, to send an investigative team half way around the world in the hopes of finding solutions to a major problem plaguing its region and, the entire state,” said TVNewsCheck's Paul Greely.

Broadcasters Air Critical Election Information

WHO-HD Hosts Live Presidential Forums

Tribune's NBC affiliate WHO-TV Des Moines, IA aired three one-hour live presidential candidate forums. On Nov. 17, neurosurgeon Ben Carson discussed education. On Nov. 18, two-term Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal discussed his plan for the nation's health care system. On Nov. 19, Donald Trump shared ideas on helping the economy. Iowans submitted questions on social media and in person. (Watch video).

As Elections Near, Telemundo Debuts App

Telemundo's "Noticias Telemundo" Spanish-language app launched on Nov. 8. It is the first news app for U.S. Hispanics available for Apple Watch. It includes content from “Un Nuevo Día,” “Al Rojo Vivo con María Celeste” and “Noticiero Telemundo,” and will offer real-time election results. Also, Telemundo is airing #Yodecido (I Decide) PSAs encouraging voter participation. “Telemundo is committed to empower [Hispanics] with information that is reliable and balanced, distributed across the platforms they use,” said Telemundo's Luis Carlos Velez.

NewsON Launches Local TV News App

Local news provider NewsON launched an app on Nov. 4 to provide consumers with live and on-demand local newscasts and news clips. The app’s video content from 118 stations in 90 markets covers 75 percent of the United States and is available on Apple, Android and Roku devices. Viewers can find stations via an interactive map. At launch, participating stations include those in NewsON’s owner group - ABC Owned Television Station Group, Cox Media Group, Hearst Television, Media General and Raycom Media - plus Graham Media Group and Tegna stations. Hubbard Broadcasting joined NewsON as an investor.

Local Stations Raise Thousands for Hospitals, Memorial Funds

WDVE-FM Raises $653,000 for Hospital

iHeartMedia's WDVE-FM Pittsburgh raised a record $653,000 for the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation on Sept. 26. The live broadcast featured musical performances and guest appearances from Arthur Moats and Jarvis Jones of the Pittsburgh Steelers. "As we celebrate the 125th Anniversary of Children's Hospital, we are so grateful for community partners like 102.5 WDVE, who have been loyal and supportive of our mission throughout the years," said Foundation President Greg Barrett.

'Alison & Adam Memorial Fund' Nears $90K

The “Alison & Adam Memorial Fund” has raised $88,175 for the families of the victims of the Aug. 26 Roanoke TV shooting. NAB and the Radio Television Digital News Association launched the fund on behalf of Alison Parker and Adam Ward of Schurz-owned CBS affiliate WDBJ-TV Roanoke, who were killed on-air. Proceeds will be distributed evenly between the families of Parker and Ward, Vicki Gardner, who suffered gunshot wounds, and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). Donations will be accepted until Nov. 30.

WCHR-FM Host "Boards" on Billboard

Townsquare Media's WCHR-FM Tom's River, N.J. raised $119,000 for Ocean of Love Foundation. During the fundraiser, DJ Andy Chase spent five days braving the elements and living on top of a billboard to raise awareness of the Foundation. Currently, 53 families affected by childhood cancer receive support from Ocean of Love. Watch this video showing fire trucks pull up to Andy's billboard with sirens blaring to donate $9,500. Listen to audio and watch video of Andy coming down from the billboard.

Wis. Radiothon Breaks Records

Mississippi Valley Broadcasters' WQCC-FM La Crosse, Wis.; KQEG-FM La Crescent, Minn.; and WKBH-FM West Salem, Wis. raised a record $103,500 for Children's Miracle Network in a radiothon, Oct. 22-24.

Sioux Falls Radiothon Nets $204,000

Midwest Communications' KELO-AM and KTWB-FM Sioux Falls, S.D. raised $204,000 for Sanford Children's Hospital in their 10th annual radiothon, The money helps fund specialized equipment, hospital programs and services for families. (Watch video).

Aberdeen, S.D. Radio Station Brings in $50,000 for Children's Miracle Network

Prairie Winds Broadcasting's KNBZ-FM Redfield, S.D. and KGIM-FM and KBFO-FM Aberdeen, S.D. raised $50,000 for the Sanford Children's Miracle Network in a radiothon on Oct. 8. (Listen to audio).

KSCS-FM Dallas Raises $205,000

Cumulus Media's KSCS-FM Dallas raised more than $205,000 for Cook Children's Hospital in a radiothon on Oct. 7. According to Radio Ink, KSCS raised $121,322 last year. The money will help fund daily operations, including patient care and equipment maintenance. (View photos).

KGLI-FM, KSEZ-FM Fundraise for Hospital

iHeartMedia's KGLI-FM and KSEZ-FM Sioux City, IA raised $44,000 during the St. Luke's Children's Miracle Network radiothon, Oct. 15-16. One-hundred percent of the money aids families and kids such as Taytum Thomas, who weighed less than one and half pounds at birth.

August 2015 Licensed to Serve