Broadcasters' Public Service
Licensed to Serve – August 2014
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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.

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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.
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on Twitter: @BroadlyServing.

Broadcasters Invest in Local News and Investigative Reporting
Broadcasting & Cable recently reported on a significant increase in new and expanding investigative news teams at local broadcast TV stations across the country. The article names several stations that have expanded or launched investigative news programs: NBC-owned KNTV-TV San Jose; Raycom Media's NBC affiliate WIS-TV Columbia, S.C.; ABC-owned WLS-TV Chicago; Cox Media's ABC affiliate WSB-TV Atlanta; Tribune Broadcasting's CW affiliate WPIX-TV New York; Hearst Television's NBC affiliate WBAL-TV Baltimore; Cordillera Communication's NBC affiliate KVOA-TV Tucson; and LIN Media's CBS affiliate WIVB-TV Buffalo.

The Pew Research Center supports much of the findings in B&C's report. A recent Pew "State of Local TV Newsrooms" report found, "The number of local stations that air newscasts hit a new high in 2013." Additionally, "In the vast majority of local TV newsrooms, budgets either grew or held steady in 2013."

The next editions of Licensed to Serve will feature many of these efforts to increase investigative news programs and highlight stations that receive awards for their outstanding reporting. Below are just a few recent examples.
TV Stations Investigate Helmet Safety at Local Middle Schools and High Schools
Many television stations across the country have been investigating students' football helmet safety after growing concerns that the sport could cause head injuries. In May, Graham Media Group's NBC affiliate WDIV-TV Detroit examined the school-issued helmets that several local teams were using to test their ability to prevent concussions. Using a rating system developed at Virginia Tech, WDIV-TV found that 13 Detroit schools were using the lowest-rated helmets. In total, one in four helmets that are being used by football players in the Detroit Public School System are one-star or two-star, the lowest rankings.

Two stations in Indianapolis have also investigated helmet safety. LIN Media's CBS affiliate WISH-TV Indianapolis polled seven local schools for information about their students’ helmets. The results were posted on the station's website, leading state officials to now require that all area schools report any concussions that occur. Additionally, Dispatch Broadcasting's NBC affiliate WTHR-TV Indianapolis surveyed 160 schools across Indiana, filing more than 100 requests for schools to share information about their football helmets and concussion records. The station created an interactive map that shows the manufacturers and models of more than 12,000 helmets used by middle school and high school football players across the state. The WTHR-TV investigation found that hundreds of the helmets in use offer little protection from severe head injuries.
WMAR-TV Launches New Investigative News Program in Baltimore
Scripps' ABC affiliate WMAR-TV Baltimore recently announced the station has launched a new, original news program, "ABC2 In Focus," during its 6 p.m. newscast. The program features original, in-depth community reports from WMAR-TV's team of investigative journalists and producers. "We've noticed a thirst in the market for in-depth stories," said WMAR-TV's News Director Kelly Groft. "We’ll always cover the news of the day, it's just now, at 6 p.m., we’ll slow down a bit, dig deeper and ask more questions." "In Focus," promoted as "The Next Level in Local News," intends to ask the hard questions, provide relentless follow-ups and target the issues too often ignored in the Baltimore area and beyond.
Stations Take a Stand Against Local Violence and Hunger
Radio Stations Stand Against Violence in Indianapolis
Nineteen radio stations across Indianapolis came together on July 7 to promote and produce "Indy United on the Circle," a rally in downtown Indianapolis to support law enforcement and take a stand against violence. The event was in response to a Fourth of July holiday weekend mass shooting, in which seven people were shot on a main street in one of the city's most popular nightlife districts and a local police officer was killed. Seven radio groups – Emmis, Entercom, Clear Channel, Radio One, Cumulus, Continental and Sarkes Tarzian – promoted the event for a week leading up to the rally. "Indy United" included speeches from business leaders, local elected officials and five members of the Indianapolis clergy. The event was capped off by a moving performance by the Indianapolis Children's Choir.
North Carolina Stations Raise $112,000 to Fight Local Hunger
Capitol Broadcasting's CBS affiliate WRAL-TV Raleigh and Radio One's Raleigh cluster partnered for a week-long initiative called "HungerFreeNC" to raise awareness of North Carolina's hunger crisis. The campaign included a 13-hour fundraiser that was broadcast live on TV and radio and was highlighted on digital and social media. In addition, WRAL-TV produced and aired a documentary, "Hungry for Answers," that uncovered the invisible hunger epidemic in the state and showcased creative solutions to combat the issue. The program also ran on Capitol Broadcasting's FOX affiliate WRAZ-TV Raleigh and its CBS affiliate WILM-TV Wilmington, N.C. In total, "HungerFreeNC" raised more than $112,000 to benefit the local nonprofit Inter-Faith Food Shuttle.
Clear Channel Philadelphia Hosts Campaign for Peace
Clear Channel Communities and Clear Channel-owned WUSL-FM Philadelphia held the 11th annual "Peace on the Street Jam," a three-part series featuring activities that promote peace and provide resources to help curb violence. The events included jam sessions featuring local artists and an essay contest that involved a partnership with Philadelphia Futures, a local nonprofit that provides college admission resources to first-generation college students.
Broadcasters Support Local Children's Happiness, Learning and Safety
Boston Stations Help Fulfill Local Boy's Birthday Wish by Helping to Collect 100,000+ Cards
Cumulus Radio and Westwood One's Boston cluster recently rallied around a local little boy, Danny Nickerson, who is battling a rare form of cancer. Danny’s sixth birthday wish was to receive a "big box of birthday cards." Danny's cancer is inoperable and since his diagnosis last October, he has not been able to attend kindergarten. The local Cumulus and Westwood One stations encouraged listeners to send cards to Danny, who says he sometimes gets lonely, but cards with his name on them make him happy. The request went viral, and by Danny’s birthday, he received over 100,000 cards, along with thousands of gifts and messages on Facebook.
WBRZ-TV Stuffs Six Baton Rouge Buses with School Supplies
Manship Stations' ABC affiliate WBRZ-TV Baton Rouge hosted the seventh annual "Stuff the Bus School Supply Drive," encouraging viewers to help the station completely fill one East Baton Rouge Parish school bus and one Ascension Parish school bus with supplies for students in need. The drive exceeded expectations. WBRZ-TV raised nearly $73,000 worth of school supplies and stuffed a total of six buses with supplies.
Univision's KXLN-TV Encourages Dreaming Through Reading
Univision's KXLN-TV Houston partnered with the Houston Public Library to promote its summer reading program during the months of June and July. The program encourages school children to read during their summer vacation, use the library as a place tehy called, "Your Space to Dream," and develop the habit of reading. Children are rewarded for reading a certain amount of books. The program also provides an opportunity for families to spend time together.
Raycom Cleveland Raises $70,000 for Boys & Girls Clubs
Raycom Media's CBS affiliate WOIO-TV and MyNetworkTV affiliate WUAB-TV Cleveland were busy supporting children this month. Continuing their partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio, the stations sponsored the organization's Race for Kids and Wellness Festival at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. WOIO-TV and WUAB-TV promoted the event on air, while station talent emceed the day's events. The stations helped raise $70,000 to support local children in need with many afterschool programs, nutritious meals and caring, adult mentors.
Univision Radio Miami Supports Local Children's Shelter
For two weeks during July, the employees of Univision Radio's Miami stations collected nearly $500 and several boxes of food and non-perishable items for the children of His House Children's Home located in Miramar, Fl. His House Children's Home is a private, nonprofit, faith-based group that provides residential care for abused, abandoned and neglected children in a home-like setting. The radio stations assisted the organization, which is constantly receiving and supporting children in need of help.
Stations Fundraise for Cancer Research, Returning Veterans and the Elderly
Raycom's Hawaii Stations Raise $212,000 for Arthritis Research
Raycom Media's NBC affiliate KHNL-TV and CBS affiliate KGMB-TV Honolulu sponsored the Walk to Cure Arthritis this summer. Both stations produced and aired several PSAs about the walk and encouraged viewers to register or make a donation. The stations' meteorologist Jennifer Robbins emceed the event, and the walk was featured in live reports on both stations' morning newscasts. In total, KHNL-TV and KGMB-TV helped raise over $212,000 to help find a cure for arthritis.
ESPN Radio Auction Raises $1.2 Million for Cancer Research
ESPN Radio hosted the 10th annual ESPN Radio ESPY Day Auction to benefit The V Foundation for Cancer Research. ESPN Radio stations across the country encouraged listeners to visit eBay, the host auction site, to view the special auction items, including one-of-a-kind sporting experiences and all access tickets to several games. The event raised $1.2 million for cancer research.
KAMX-AM Host Walks 100 Miles, Raises $20,000 for Veterans
Entercom's KAMX-AM Austin afternoon host Jay Styles recently completed the "Mix 94.7 and Jay Styles Courage Walk" to raise money for Wounded Warrior Project and veterans who are battling post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Jay walked 20 miles per day for five days straight to raise money for the effort and encourage listeners to support his mission. In total, Jay walked 100 miles and collected more than $20,000 for veterans.
WFNC-AM Donates Fans to Heat-Stricken N.C. Residents
Cumulus Media's WFNC-AM Fayetteville, N.C., has been collecting box fans during the summer for the last 20 years to help local residents who cannot afford air conditioning or a fan in their homes. Most of the listener-donated fans are given to the elderly who are among the most heat-sensitive. More than 35 fans were donated this July. In a typical year, WFNC-AM distributes between 300 and 500 fans.
Broadcasters Help Voters Stay Informed During Political Campaign Season
WJAR-TV Hosts Two Gubernatorial Debates in Rhode Island
Media General's NBC affiliate WJAR-TV Cranston, R.I., hosted two pre-taped debates for the leading candidates in Rhode Island's gubernatorial race. The first, one-hour debate aired in primetime at 7 p.m. and featured the four Democratic candidates. The following night, WJAR-TV aired a half-hour debate between the two leading Republicans in the race.
WPRI-TV Hosts Debates for R.I. Gubernatorial Candidates
LIN Media's FOX affiliate WPRI-TV East Providence, R.I., partnered with the Providence Journal to host two debates on June 10 and June 17. Both debates broadcast live in primetime at 7 p.m. The first featured the Democratic candidates running for governor, while the second involved the Republican candidates. Both events were moderated by WPRI-TV reporters and a Providence Journal political columnist.
Californian Gubernatorial Candidate Hosts KFBK-AM Morning Show
Clear Channel's KFBK-AM Sacramento recently invited the candidates running for California's gubernatorial seat to each host the station's morning talk program. California's Republican nominee for the seat, Neel Kashkai, accepted the invitation and took calls from local listeners for three hours. KFBK-AM's Vice President of Programming Ken Charles said the station is waiting to hear back from the Democratic incumbent, Governor Jerry Brown.