Broadcasters' Public Service
March 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.

Community Service Around the Country
WTAM Provides Live Coverage of School Shooting
Clear Channel Communication's WTAM-AM Cleveland provided listeners with live coverage of the February 28 shooting at Chardon High School. Mike "Triv" Trivisonno mixed coverage with commentary on the local tragedy that claimed the lives of three students and injured two others. Mike (pictured) remained on the air until 7 p.m. to take calls and give the community a place to talk, something no medium does better than talk radio. Reporter Colleen O'Neill also provided listeners with a report later in the day. The station's website featured live updates, funeral details, interviews with families, tributes to the deceased as well as donation information in the days following the tragedy.
WTKK-FM Boston Hosts Fisher House Radiothon
Greater Media's WTKK-FM Boston helped the Fisher House build "homes away from home" for the families of wounded American troops. WTKK-FM's 4th annual Fisher House Radiothon raised over $120,000 for Fisher House, which enables family members to be close to their loved ones during hospitalization in a safe, home-like environment. The Fisher House Foundation helps family members of hospitalized active-duty service members and veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Additionally, the Foundation plays a crucial role in helping veterans recover from serious wounds.
Congressman Recognizes Zimmer Radio for Outstanding Tornado Coverage
Missouri Congressman Billy Long presented the Zimmer Radio Group with a copy of the Congressional Record from December 16, when he cited Zimmer Radio's work following the May 22 tornado. NewsTalk KZRG-AM Joplin, Mo., and Zimmer Radio provided live 24-hour coverage for over a week following the deadly tornado in Missouri.

"It was just excruciating to drive down over here from Springfield and hear people call crying, panicked, looking for family members, didn't know which end was up, didn't know if their folks were alive, in a hospital, where they might be," said Long.

One KZRG-AM listener, Patricia Katopol, said the recognition was "absolutely well deserved. I listened online for days and was very impressed with the quality of programming – and the obvious concern and care that the broadcasters had for their fellow citizens – during the crisis."

KUPL-FM Raises Relief Funds for Flood Victims
Alpha's KUPL-FM Portland, Ore., morning personality Jake the Quake helped the relief effort after nearby Turner, Ore., was devastated by flooding. During a live broadcast from a local Safeway grocery store, Quake asked listeners to donate building supplies, non-perishable food items and cash. Due to the size of the town, Turner is not eligible for federal relief aid. "With your help, this town can bounce back and land on its feet once again," Jake said. Reader's Digest kicked off the drive with a $1,000 grant. Listeners voted for Turner to receive an additional $50,000 grant through hundreds of visits to the Readers Digest Facebook page.
WCKT-FM Raises Over $287,000 for Children's Hospital in Florida
Clear Channel's WCKT-FM Ft. Meyers, Fla., raised over $287,000 during their 10th annual "Helping Kids with Cancer" radiothon to benefit Children's Hospital at Lee Memorial Health System. All proceeds from the event's record-breaking total went to the Barbara's Friends fund, which helps fill treatment and educational needs so pediatric oncology patients do not have to travel far for care.
Midwest Broadcasting's Duluth Station Snowmobiles for a Cure
Midwest Broadcasting Group's KDAL-AM Duluth, Minn. raised over $750,000 for ALS during the "Blackwoods Blizzard Tour." In three days, almost 200 snowmobile riders battled snow, rain, sleet, ferries and dirt to cover 350 miles from Duluth to Lake Superior. Each rider was required to raise $1200, with the top rider bringing in over $80,000. The event has raised over $4 million in five years.

"Rarely do we see fundraising totals of this caliber, especially from a community of Duluth/Superior's size," said KDAL-AM's Johnny Lee Walker. "KDAL is proud to be a part of an event that makes such an impact and to know this money is helping people with ALS right in our community, it's priceless."

Cook Off Raises Money for Firefighters
CBS Radio's KCBS-AM and KFRC-FM San Francisco, with sponsor CSE Insurance, staged a cooking competition to raise money for firefighters. Three teams led by celebrity chefs competed at Lafitte Restaurant.

CSE and the Los Angeles Fireman's Credit Union and Firefighter Insurance Services donated $10,000 to the California Fire Foundation and Fire Family Foundation on behalf of the winners and $2,000 in the name of the runners-up.

CBS-owned KCBS-AM's "Foodie Chap" and CBS's KPIX-TV host Liam Mayclem emceed the event. State Senators Mark Leno and Leland Yee attended.

WSBT-TV Encourages Kids to Love Reading
Throughout February, Schurz Communication's WSBT-TV Mishawaka, Ind., hosted its annual "I Love to Read" month-long contest. Local teachers registered their classrooms while their students tracked how many minutes they read daily. Parents, teachers, students, friends and family voted online and by phone each day for their school to be named the school of the day. Every day, WSBT-TV featured the winning classroom on the evening news cast, with news anchors speaking with students at the winning school about the importance of education and the joy of reading.

Each child who participated received a certificate. Top readers and classrooms in each grade level were awarded savings bonds and cash prizes. The teacher who devised the most original reading program won the Creative Teacher Award and a trip for two to Disneyland. This year over 500 classrooms and 11,000 students participating in the contest. The "I Love to Read" challenge has been supporting teachers, students and parents since 1997.

LIN to Award Training Scholarships, Internships
LIN Media will award one broadcast television scholarship/internship and one digital media scholarship/internship in April. LIN has awarded two-year scholarships as part of its Minority Scholarship and Training Program since 1998.

LIN Media said the Minority Scholarship and Training Program "is an integral part of the company's strategy to strengthen its talent base and deepen connections within its local communities by building on the cultural diversity of its workforce."

Each student will receive a two-year scholarship for up to $10,000 per year to use toward tuition, fees, books and room and board. In addition, LIN will provide each student with a paid internship at one of its television stations and a full-time position at LIN Media upon graduation and successful completion of the training program.

IBF Launches New Scholarship Program
The Illinois Broadcasters Foundation (IBF) recently announced it will match scholarship funds created by members of the Illinois Broadcasters Association (IBA). Specifically, the IBF will match up to $500 of an IBA-member station scholarship designed specifically for graduating high school seniors pursuing a major in a broadcast-related field. Students applying for the scholarship must be academically eligible and accepted by an Illinois university or community college. The IBF committed up to $100,000 for the scholarship program for the 2012-2013 academic year.

"I can't think of a better use of IBF funds. Bottom line: we're positively impacting the lives of tomorrow's broadcasters," said Illinois Broadcasters Foundation Chair Russ Withers, president of Withers Broadcasting.

102.9 MGK, DeBella To Distribute Computers
During Greater media-owned WMGK-FM Philadelphia's computer drive, morning host John DeBella asked listeners to bring their old computers, printers, monitors, scanners and other equipment to either of the station's two collection locations.

"So many people receive computers or make computer upgrades during the holiday season and then let their unused, but very capable computer collect dust. The goal of this drive is to get these computers into the hands of organizations and families that need them," said DeBella.

All donations were inspected, refurbished and cleaned. Computers that could not be repaired were properly recycled. The Harmonious Volunteer Center distributed the computers to community organizations, faith based organizations and needy families, many of whom are receiving TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families). NFI Industries donated the trucks and drivers used to collect the computers. Chosen for Clear Channel Push
Clear Channel Communications named as its quarter one 2012 non-profit partner. raises funds for teachers' classroom projects. "Tools for Classrooms," a collaboration between Clear Channel Communities, and Chase, will spotlight the lack of educational resources in U.S. classrooms. A three-month radio campaign will air 300,000 radio spots nationally on 850 stations. Personalities and artists such as Ryan Seacrest, Kelly Clarkson, LMFAO and Kris Allen encourage listeners to contribute to Chase and other partners will match donations for a total commitment of $250,000.

"I am really excited to partner with other great musicians in an effort to help teachers like my wife in communities all around the country," said Kris Allen, platinum recording artist and 2009 American Idol winner.

Approximately 40 percent of U.S. classrooms use Teachers use the website to post specific requests for their classrooms, such as pencils for a poetry writing unit, violins for a recital or microscope slides for biology. Visitors to the website decide which project to support and delivers the materials once the funding goal is reached. Contributors receive photos of their selected project, a thank-you letter from the teacher and a cost report showing how each dollar was spent; those who donate $50 or more receive hand-written thank you letters from students.

Each quarter, Clear Channel Communities will spotlight a leading national non-profit organization that addresses critical issues in one of four focus areas: family and social impact; health and wellness; education and literacy; and music and arts.

Delilah Vows to Help Feed 50,000 Children
Premiere Radio Networks personality Delilah has set a goal this year to help 50,000 children and their families across the nation by providing food and essentials in partnership with hunger relief organization Feed the Children. Delilah asks listeners across more than 200 affiliate stations to donate to Feed the Children's Americans Feeding Americans Caravan, which has served more than 325,000 American families in the past two years. "If you have spent a single night with me in the studio, you would hear the calls I receive from mothers who struggle to make ends meet and have to make a decision between paying rent or buying food for their family," Delilah said. "The organization will be the arms and legs to help reach families who need our help."
KSON-FM Partnered with the San Diego Blood Bank
Lincoln Financial Media's KSON-FM San Diego hosted a blood drive to benefit the San Diego Blood Bank. The first 97 donors received a free ski lift ticket. All donors could opt for a free bone marrow test.

"Donating blood is that one more gift that people can give this holiday season that will really make a difference in someone's life," said Lynn Stedd, San Diego Blood Bank spokesperson. "We appreciate KSON for helping us spread the word about the importance of giving blood on a regular basis."

Inaugural Vietnam Veterans Homecoming Celebration for 2012
More than 216,000 North Carolina residents served in Vietnam and 1,600 made the ultimate sacrifice. The USO of North Carolina and Charlotte Motor Speedway, with support from the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters, honored their service with an incredible Vietnam Veterans Homecoming Celebration.

The event featured live entertainment, military salutes, recognized distinguished NC Vietnam veterans and premiered the new PSA supporting the initiative. David Kennerly, Vietnam Combat Photographer displayed a special exhibit of Pulitzer Prize winning Vietnam War photographs. The event was covered on nearly every broadcast radio and TV station in North Carolina.

Summit High Receives Donation from News 2
Young Broadcasting Inc.'s WKRN-TV Nashville donated its news set to Summit High School's media production program. Members of the WKRN-TV's team visited the set, answered students' questions and offered advice on entering the media field.

"I don't know that the enormity of News 2's generosity can be fully realized," said Summit Principal Dr. Charles Farmer. "To provide us with their 'retired' set is like icing on the cake to an already amazing media production setup. Our kids are appreciative of the opportunities afforded them by organizations like News 2."

Univision Radio $5.25 Million for St. Jude
Univision Radio listeners raised more than $5.25 million in cash and pledges to battle childhood cancer and other diseases during the annual St. Jude Promesa y Esperanza (Promise and Hope) Radio Event, benefitting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. This year, Univision activated 360-degree support of the event via its radio, television, online and social media platforms. A number of Latin celebrities reached out to fans through live interviews, PSAs, call-ins and continuous messages through their social media networks.
'Simpsons' Creator Matt Groening Gives $500,000 for UCLA Chair
"The Simpsons" creator Matt Groening donated $500,000 to the University of California, Los Angeles. The artist and creator of the long-running animated FOX series will be the namesake of the Matt Groening Chair in Animation at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. The endowment will "allow visiting master artists to teach classes" and "bring working professionals with wide-ranging expertise" to work with students. Matt gives an annual gift of $50,000 to UCLA to support students who create short animated films with socially conscious themes.
Benefit Concert for Edgewood Children's Ranch
Central Florida Educational Foundation's WPOZ-FM Z88.3 partnered with the Edgewood Children's Ranch to host Jeremy Camp in concert, with over 3,500 listeners attending the event. The Edgewood Children's Ranch is a residential facility for kids ages 6-17 who exhibit negative social behavior due to family circumstances. The program can accommodate 70-plus students at a time.
WARH-FM St. Louis Helps Local Food Bank
Hubbard Broadcasting's WARH-FM The Arch in St. Louis partnered with Shop 'n Save and GCS Federal Credit Union for the 2012 "Love Handles" campaign. The month-long effort encouraged St. Louis listeners to visit one of 38 Missouri and Illinois Metro area Shop 'n Save locations and purchase pre-packaged "Love Handles" grocery bags for $5 plus tax. Each bag contained a box of Frosted Flakes, a pack of pudding, a beef pasta dinner and two cans of tuna. All donations benefited the food shelter that is closest to each Shop 'n Save where the bag was purchased.
TV and Radio Stations Step Up Political Campaign Coverage
Univision Gearing Up for Election Coverage
Univision communications is enhancing its political coverage for the 2012 election cycle with Destino 2012. In addition to extensive interactive and on-air coverage, Univision is adding political commentary from analysts Helen Aguirre Ferré, Dr. Emilio Gonzalez and Fabian Nuñez.

"As Hispanics continue to grow in number and influence, and become even more engaged with technology and social platforms, Univision will continue to lead the efforts with providing unparalleled coverage regardless of where they consume," said Isaac Lee, president of news, Univision Communications.

The analysts will engage in roundtable discussions and interviews during several programs. Destino 2012's online and mobile coverage of the primaries and the presidential campaign focuses on issues that significantly impact U.S. Hispanics. Users can find information on local elections, including policy details, voter registration forms and important dates.
2012 Is the Year of Must-Tweet TV
Forget about the age of must-see television – 2012 will be the year of must-tweet TV as networks engage second-screen viewers with social media. Fox News used Twitter to measure viewer reaction to its GOP debate and to encourage online interaction based on the candidates' answers. NBC partnered with Facebook for its "Meet the Press" debate on January 8.

"Particularly over the last year, we've seen social media grow from just being the latest shiny new toy to being a really powerful tool that is integral to gathering news and telling stories," said Ryan Osborn, senior director of digital media for NBC News.

Integrating social media interaction from viewers fosters greater engagement while also broadening the audience for programming. Best of all, it provides consumer data.

WBIN-TV Goes Presidential Primetime
Station owner Bill Binnie's WBIN-TV Derry, N.H., was a broadcast partner of the Republican presidential debate at Dartmouth College. As the first debate focused solely on the economy, the debate was a chance for many viewers to see WBIN-TV, a new station, for the first time.

"We are the only broadcast station that has the rights to air it in New England," Binnie said.

The debate also broadcasted live on Bloomberg Television and Bloomberg Radio. Presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum participated.

“It’ll be something of a coming out party for WBIN,” said Charlie Arlinghaus, president of the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy in Concord. “This is their big chance.”

As more voters start to choose a candidate, debates allow WBIN to start a conversation with New Hampshire residents. WBIN-TV will host more debates in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. For Binnie, a successful businessman who unsuccessfully ran for the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in 2010, it stems from his fascination with political theater.

“I joke that it’s the sport of New Hampshire,” he said.

PEJ: Presidential Campaign Already Getting Too Much Coverage
According to a nationally representative survey conducted January 5-8 by Project for Excellence in Journalism News Interest Index, 37 percent of respondents say there has been too much coverage of the 2012 presidential campaign by the national news media.

Republicans were following the campaign more closely than Democrats, with 40 percent saying they followed election news very closely, compared with 27 percent of Democrats and 25 percent of independents.

According to PEJ, 39 percent said the 2012 coverage was the right amount. It was also the story respondents were most interested in, with 27 percent saying they followed campaign news the most closely, followed by 19 percent interested in the economy. According to the survey, 30 percent said they hear mostly bad news on the economy, which is down dramatically from the 67 percent in August.

NBC News/Tampa Bay Times/National Journal Host GOP Debate
Four GOP candidates - Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and Ron Paul - participated in a debate sponsored by NBC News, the Tampa Bay Times, The National Journal and the Florida Council of 100. It was the first of two debates focused on the Florida GOP primary.

"Florida has often been the stage for history in politics; we look forward to hosting a substantive and stimulating forum for the candidates to make their case to the voters in this crucial state and the whole country," said NBC News Senior Vice President of Specials Mark Lukasiewicz.

The event was aired live on the NBC television network and was also streamed live on,, and Telemundo's live broadcast featured simultaneous Spanish-language translation.

Scripps Stations Expand Free Airtime Offer
The E.W. Scripps Co.'s "Democracy 2012," strives to be "a one-stop shop of voter education." Stations in all 13 of the company's TV markets will provide candidates at least five free minutes of airtime nightly between 5-11:35 p.m. in the 30 days preceding the general elections. They provide free airtime in the 30 days preceding primary elections.

Democracy 2012 includes:

  • An online portal with information on candidates’ positions, voter registration and maps of political jurisdictional boundaries;
  • ‘Ask the Candidates’ lets users submit questions and compare candidates’ answers;
  • ‘Get out the vote’ public service announcements;
  • Town hall meetings and debates during the 30 days leading up to the general election; and
  • Web-based, searchable databases that allow voters to research campaign contributions.

"Political education and discourse are a centerpiece of our local news presentation. In one of the most crucial election cycles in our lifetimes, we're going to marinate our audience in political coverage so they'll make fully informed choices when it comes time to vote," said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of the Scripps television division.