Broadcasters' Public Service
January 2012

Licensed to Serve

NAB's Licensed to Serve newsletter provides a sample of noteworthy stories that illustrate the many public service activities broadcasters organize on any given day across the country. From arranging record-breaking toy and food drives to providing free air time for political campaign coverage, broadcasters' continual commitment to their communities is showcased in Licensed to Serve.

Learn More
Click here to learn more about broadcasters' community service initiatives and nonprofit partnerships.

Send Us Your Stories
If your station has a great public service campaign that should be recognized, email Allison Kreutzjans, manager, Public Service Initiatives or call (202) 429-5448 with details. Follow NAB Public Service Initiatives
on Twitter: @BroadlyServing.

Thousands of Children Receive Holiday Toys Thanks to Broadcasters’ Efforts
Throughout the holiday season, broadcasters hosted a variety of toy drives, providing significant airtime and company resources to encourage listeners and viewers to contribute.
Bonneville Seattle Raises Over $300K for Kids
Bonneville International Corp.’s KIRO-FM Seattle raised almost $320,000 during its 23rd annual foster child holiday magic radiothon. Listeners donated online and via phone during the 14-hour drive. Donations were used to purchase holiday gifts for 4,431 children in Washington.

"On behalf of everyone at Treehouse, I would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the producers, hosts, reporters and staff at KIRO-FM for another incredible year of Holiday Magic,” said Treehouse CEO Janis Avery. “Thanks to the generosity of KIRO listeners, many kids in foster care will find the gift they were dreaming of on their doorstep this holiday, sending a powerful message that there is an entire community out there that cares."

Treehouse strives to improve the lives of foster children by filling the gaps that other agencies don’t address: fees for extra-curricular programs and summer camp, educational support services, and clothing and other supplies children need for everyday life.  Major contributors to the radiothon included GEICO, Seattle Seahawks, Seattle Mariners and Seattle Sounders FC.

Las Vegas Morning Show Collected 2000 Bikes and 16 Semi Trucks Full of Toys
The 13th Annual CBS Radio KLUC-FM’s Chet Buchanan & The Morning Zoo Toy Drive wrapped up with overwhelming numbers: 2,647 bikes, sixteen 50-foot semi-trucks full of toys and $201,012 in gift cards and cash, all of which were gifted to children who may have not otherwise had presents this holiday season.

On December 1, DJ Chet Buchanan moved into a tent atop a thirty-foot scaffolding for 24-hours, enduring wind, rain and below average temperatures. His live broadcast encouraged listeners to visit and donate.

“It is so amazing to see all these people come together and be a part of something bigger than them,” says Buchanan. “When you’re there, its magic; the semi-trucks lined up, the sea of bikes, the gift card count… it’s indescribable.”

Celebrities who donated or visited to show their support included Nick Cannon, Carlos Mencia, Nick Carter, T.I., Shane Victorino and many more. 

Toy Drive Breaks Record with 25,000+ Toys
Tribune Broadcast Company’s WGN-TV Chicago’s Morning News Drive-Thru Toy Drive celebrated its ninth year and its second tied to American Idol star Jennifer Hudson. This four-hour event featured carolers, Santa and holiday fun as viewers and companies dropped off more than 25,000 toys, a new record for the toy drive. To cap off the event, AT&T made a surprise donation of $10,000 to Hudson’s Julian D. King Gift Foundation, which gives holiday toys to needy children in Chicago. All toys were distributed to children at Drake Elementary School on Christmas Eve.
HOT 97 New York Donates Hundreds of Toys to Kids
Emmis Communications Corporation's WQHT-FM HOT 97.1 Hip-Hop Has Heart Foundation donated hundreds of toys to three local organizations: Harlem Hospital, Emergency Rights, a nonprofit that informs New York residents of the many private and government resources available to them and Area 145 Daycare, an organization that prepares children for kindergarten and beyond. For the fifth consecutive year, HOT 97's Hip-Hop Has Heart Foundation and its DJs gave children a reason to look forward to the season.
Broadcasters Provide Winter Warmth in Chilly Communities
The winter months brought lower temperatures and inclement weather to cities across the country. Broadcasters went above and beyond in protecting neighbors from the cold.
KDLT in Sioux Falls Donates Hundreds of Coats for Kids
Red River Broadcasting Company's NBC affiliate KDLT-TV in Sioux Falls, S.D. participated in its 24th annual Coats for Kids campaign, during which the station and local sponsors called on the community to donate new or gently-used coats. The Salvation Army distributed the hundreds of donated coats to children who need them. Click here to watch KDLT-TV's PSA encouraging viewers to contribute to the coat drive.

WCAX Burlington Mitten Tree
Mount Mansfield TV's WCAX-TV's drive, called "The Mitten Tree," joined with UPS Stores to collect hats, mittens and scarves from viewers and distribute them to organizations throughout the Burlington, Vt. area. Last year, the station distributed over 6,000 pairs of mittens and hats. Due to floods from Tropical Storm Irene, need was greater this year. WCAX-TV received over 200 hats and mittens in the kick-off week.

Stephen King’s Radio Stations Shatter Fundraising Goal
The Zone Corporation’s Maine-based stations, WZON-AM, WKIT-FM and WZON-FM, owned by Stephen and Tabitha King, raised $241,820 for the Help Keep ME Warm This Winter campaign, shattering the original goal of $140,000. Fundraising efforts began after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services notified Maine Housing to expect $23 million in heating assistance funds this winter, down from $55.6 million last year.

As part of the fundraising effort, morning show host Pat LaMarche spent a week living in a small wooden shed outside the studio in November to raise awareness. In early December, the Lerner Foundation gave $46,000 toward the cause and listeners donated $24,000.

King had agreed to match up to $70,000 in donations, but that changed when an anonymous donor from California called to donate $50,000, with the condition that King do the same, to which King agreed.

“Tabby and I are grateful to everybody who worked to provide heat to people in our area who have come up short,” King said. “Hopefully next year there will be less need and more help from the state and local governments.”

Broadcasters Salute Veterans
Radio and television broadcasters organized campaigns to honor the men and women of the United States' military and provided resources for their well-being.
Heroes from the Heart of Virginia
Allbittron Communications Company's WSET-TV Lynchburg, Va. launched the "Heroes From The Heart Of Virginia." The project helps local military personnel and their families reach out to each other during the holiday season. The project encompassed all parts of the station's operations including on-air special programming, news stories, PSAs, a dedicated section of the station's website, a Facebook page and a campaign to raise funds to send veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit war memorials there. Additionally, collection points were set up for non-perishable food items to be distributed to local homeless veterans.
“Thank a Vet” Fundraiser in Adrian a Success
Lenawee Broadcasting Company-owned WLEN-FM Adrian, Mich.'s annual "Thank a Vet" fundraiser raised over $8,100 in 11 hours. WLEN-FM's effort was part of the community's broader campaign to help the homeless throughout the month of November. All donations went to the "Veterans Dire Needs" fund through the Lenawee Emergency Affordable Housing Corporation (LEAHC), a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that provides emergency, transitional and permanent housing support programs for the those in need within the community.

Offering Show Tickets to Military Families
Hearst Corporation’s WMOR-TV Tampa and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey donated tickets to military families at MacDill Air Force base in Tampa as part of the station’s annual Hometown Heroes promotion. WMOR’s Hometown Heroes allows deployed military personnel to provide holiday greetings to loved ones in the Tampa Bay area. 

WTKK/Boston Radiothon Raises Over $120,000 for Fisher House
Greater Media Inc. WTKK-FM Boston's 4th annual Fisher House Radiothon raised $120,000 for Fisher House Boston, an organization that offers temporary housing near hospitals for families of wounded soldiers. Several politicians and celebrities joined Michael Graham in the broadcast, including, Sen. Scott Brown (MA), actor Adam Baldwin, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, among others.

Radio and Television Stations Fight Cancer
Stations sponsored events and raised money for community-based nonprofit organizations that serve their regions.

CBS Detroit Raises over $450,000 for St. Jude
CBS Radio Group's WYCD-FM Detroit raised over $450,000 during its annual "Cares for St. Jude Kids Radiothon." WYCD personalities Jack Shell and Coop vowed to shave their heads if the station hit $200,000 during their shift. WYCD listeners met the challenge, so Jack and Coop had their heads shaved in the station’s lobby immediately following the show. Over the past 12 years, listeners have helped Detroit's country music station raise over $6.1 million for the children at St. Jude.

KOBI NBC 5’s ‘A Night of Healing’ Addresses Breast Cancer
California Oregon Broadcasting's NBC-affiliate stations KOBI-TV and KOTI-TV teamed up with Care Oregon to present A Night of Healing: Life after Breast Cancer for women transitioning from breast cancer treatment to breast cancer survival. A panel of caregivers, specializing in various aspects of breast cancer, took private, anonymous calls for an hour. Callers spoke with the specialist of their choice regarding best practices for living with and after breast cancer. The stations included commonly asked questions and answers on Facebook during and after the event.

Houston Morning Man Runs for Kids With Cancer
Cox Radio’s KKBQ-FM (93Q) morning show host Kevin Kline ran 62 miles a day for a week to help raise awareness and money for the Texas Children's Cancer Center. Kline, who doubles as president of the Snowdrop Foundation, which raises money for the hospital, ran on a .75 mile loop around the center. Why 62 miles? There are 62 beds being occupied by kids at the center.

Kline invited listeners and other supporters to join him and run any distance they choose. The Snowdrop Foundation supports the center’s cutting edge work in pediatric cancer research, provides twice annual weekend excursions for patients, and awards college scholarships to pediatric cancer patients and childhood cancer survivors.

"This is to symbolically show what the children have to go through, through their chemotherapy," Kline said. "There is nothing comfortable about this; they actually experience pain. I just experience degrees of discomfort."

Reviving New Year's Resolutions

Get Moving to Fight Osteoarthritis Pain
Now that New Year’s resolutions are fading, the National Association of Broadcasters, the Arthritis Foundation and The Ad Council need your help to remind your listeners to get up and move to fight osteoarthritis!

Osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis, currently affects 27 million people in the United States. Expanding waistlines, inactivity and aging baby boomers are contributing to an arthritis epidemic that could rob Americans of the ability to live life to its fullest. The good news is that there are simple steps that everyone can take to prevent or decrease the pain and disability of osteoarthritis.

Your support of the Fight Arthritis Pain campaign’s radio PSAs in February will help empower those living with (or at risk for) osteoarthritis to take simple steps that can change the course of the disease and improve the quality of their lives. The spots focus on the power of movement and physical activity as weapons in the fight against arthritis pain. To sign up and pledge your station’s participation, please visit:

How To Get The PSAs:
Spots are available on NAB Spot Center. Please visit

Broadcasters Deliver Food and Clothing for Those in Need
Broadcasters, in the spirit of giving, challenged audiences to donate canned goods, money and other food items to ensure less fortunate families in their communities had meals on their tables.

Rockin' for the Hungry Event Raises 203 Tons of Food
Despite a challenging economy, Cumulus-owned WKQL-FM Ann Arbor and Kroger Foods exceed their goal for the Food Gatherers’ food bank’s largest annual outdoor food drive, "Rockin' for the Hungry." The five-day event raised 203 tons of food for families in need in Washtenaw County.

President and CEO of Food Gatherers Eileen Spring said, "This generous support allows Food Gatherers to meet the urgent and pressing demand for food in our own community. On behalf of all the people seeking food assistance this year, we are so grateful to Ann Arbor’s 107one, Kroger and the citizens of Washtenaw County for making a real difference in our community. When we needed you most, you rose to the challenge."

Since 1988, Food Gatherers has distributed more than 39 million pounds of food.

Big River Morning Man Jailed for Charity
Big River Broadcasting WXFL-FM in Florence, Ala., behind morning man, Johnny Law, started a holiday food drive four years ago that has raised over 17,000 pounds of non-perishable food items. Over the years, Law has come up with some very creative ideas to help the community.

This year was no exception. Law was handcuffed and arrested live on the air in a ploy to raise awareness for the cause. He was taken to the city jail where he was photographed, printed, and processed into the system. During three days and nights in jail, he endured the same conditions as the inmates. He received no special treatment outside of the following exceptions: a laptop and a cell phone to communicate with radio personalities during their air shifts and listeners via social networks.

Listeners donated  gift cards that were used to purchase non-perishable food items. Listeners stopped by the jail to visit Johnny during his visitation hours. After Johnny was released, he shopped for food to divide between eight local church pantries that needed the food.

Clear Channel Station in Cincinnati Collects 15K Pounds for Goodwill
Clear Channel Communications’ WKSC-FM’s five-day fundraiser collected over 15,000 pounds of clothing, furniture and toys for the Ohio Valley Goodwill during its first "Skyline Chili Stuff Santa’s Sleigh" fundraiser.

George Palmer of the Ohio Valley Goodwill said “We especially appreciate the community’s generosity during this critical time of year when donations are so very important to our mission.”

Kiss 107’s on-air personalities held live broadcasts all week from a Holman Motors recreational vehicle and “Santa’s sleigh,” a 48-foot Goodwill donation truck, to help raise awareness and collect donations for those in need during the holidays. More than 400 listeners helped fill Santa’s sleigh. Brian Leonard from the Cincinnati Bengals helped collect donations and greeted listeners, along with appearances from The Cincinnati Cyclones’ mascot and Warner Bros. recording artist Outasight.

TV and Radio Stations Step Up Political Campaign Coverage
As election season ramps up, voters increasingly rely on television and radio stations to help them make informed decisions at the polls. Broadcasters are stepping up to the plate by hosting debates, educating the electorate about candidates and providing enhanced news coverage.

Post-Newsweek Stations Offer Free Airtime
Candidates for the 2012 elections will be eligible for free airtime and free Web-time in the 30 days preceding the general elections. Post-Newsweek stations will offer free airtime on its television stations in the battleground states of Texas, Florida and Michigan: WDIV-TV Detroit; KPRC-TV Houston; WPLG-TV Miami; WKMG-TV Orlando; WJXT-TV Jacksonville; and KSAT-TV San Antonio. In addition to the presidential race, each state has important senatorial and congressional races.

"The 2012 elections are of critical importance, both locally and nationally. Our responsibility as news and public affairs leaders is to ensure that candidates and voters have a platform for rigorous public discussion and debate,” said a station representative.

In addition to free airtime and Web-time, Post-Newsweek stations will offer at least 10 minutes per weekday to locally produced political news during the political season, featuring on-air debates, town hall meetings and public service announcements to encourage voter participation.

Post-Newsweek stations websites will feature interactive opportunities for their viewers, including:“Voter's Voice,” allowing viewers to ask questions directly to candidates; “Voter Video Patrol,” giving cameras to voters to document local issues; “Ad Watch and Truth Test,” checking the facts on political ad claims; and candidate comparisons.

Over 150 candidates participated in Post-Newsweek stations' 2010 election coverage program.

Hearst Elevates Political Coverage
Hearst Television’s Commitment 2012 will involve an intensified effort at the group’s 25 news-producing TV stations, and on their respective local websites and mobile sites, to provide comprehensive coverage of national, state and local election campaigns. Hearst Television owns the leading television stations in Des Moines, Iowa (KCCI-TV), a centerpiece of the January 3 Iowa Caucus and Manchester, N.H. (WMUR-TV), a focal point of the January 10 New Hampshire primary.

Commitment 2012’s “12 in 12” pledges a minimum 12 minutes’ airtime for daily political news and candidate-discourse per weekday and on weekends (when possible), in the 30 days prior to the primary and general elections. Each station will also produce a “Virtual Town Hall” in the 30 days leading up to the election.

As part of “Commitment 2012 Investigates,” award-winning reporters from the Hearst station group will produce a series of reports throughout the year examining the campaign money trail and other issues important to viewers. The Election App, due for launch in spring 2012, will include customizable content in each market to help voters make informed decisions on-the-go, yet another way Hearst stations are delivering a comprehensive “3-screen experience” for audiences.

“We will continue to urge major political candidates to appear on our television stations,” said David Barrett, president and CEO of Hearst Television Inc. “In return, we pledge to provide the most thoughtful, in-depth and responsible electronic news coverage of the political process in our markets. And we promise to do so in a way that effectively reaches voters of all demographics – on-air, online and on-the-go.”

WSUA Talks Politics In 2012
El Dorado Broadcasters Spanish Talk WSUA-AM Miami will start the new year with a greater emphasis on political coverage through a new weekly show "Caracol Decision 2012". The show will air live every Tuesday from 8-9 p.m. until election night and will be hosted by veteran news journalist Yoly Cuello, who has covered the last four elections for Radio Caracol. The coverage will include exclusive interviews with local, state, and national candidates from both parties, top political experts, and discussions among listeners on topics that are important to them.