PLEASE NOTE: We use ranked-choice voting. SaveKPFA supports all our candidates and we have decided not to rank them. However, you should, in any way you like. The important thing is that you vote for all 9 and that you rank them 1 – 9. If you give them all the same ranking, a 1 for example, it hurts us because the way ranked choice voting works is that as soon as one candidate has enough votes to be elected his/her remaining votes go to that voter’s second choice and so on. If all your candidates are ranked 1 there is no second or third choice to receive the extra votes and the votes are discarded. Questions? Email us at email@example.com or call 510-969-9373. PLEASE get your ballot in the mail by December 1. Thank you!
This is from my friend, ally, and colleague Brian Edwards-Tiekert:
*Please forward, share, and shout from the rooftops!*
If you’re a KPFA member, you should be getting a ballot this week from the Pacifica Foundation that asks you to rank candidates for 9 seats on KPFA’s Local Station Board. THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT! Here are the people I’m endorsing (I’ll explain why below). You can read more about them at www.savekpfa.org. In no particular order:
Jose Luis Fuentes-Roman
What’s at stake is the survival of KPFA as we know it.
Right now, our radio station is slowly recovering from a near-mortal blow. When Pacifica purged The Morning Show two years ago, it removed KPFA’s biggest fundraiser from the air. To compensate, the station had to increase the amount of days it spends in fund drives by 30%–a sure recipe for dropping listenership and diminishing pledge totals. Then, Pacifica racked up hundreds of thousands in legal fees—some from the country’s most notoriously anti-union law firm, Jackson Lewis—and stuck KPFA with most of the bills.
Thanks to heroic fundraising efforts by KPFA’s staff, the generosity of KPFA listeners who kept donating under protest, and to a fortuitous bequest gift, we’ve made it this far—barely.
And, against the odds, we’ve started to re-build.
Thanks to our union, several of us won reinstatement after Pacifica’s purge. With support from local management, we launched UpFront—KPFA’s new 7:AM program. Since day one, we’ve been the station’s top fundraiser—and thanks to the boost in morning fundraising, KPFA’s fund drives are now raising more money per day, and ending sooner. Meanwhile:
A SaveKPFA campaign forced Pacifica to ditch Jackson Lewis—which should fend off further inflated legal bills. Another SaveKPFA campaign fended off a move by Pacifica to impose another disastrous round of cuts on KPFA.
Now, the Pacifica National Board has apparently seen the light—they decided to let go the two executives who carried out the Morning Show purge in the first place.
KPFA is still extremely fragile, but we are headed in the right direction. And that is largely thanks to the fact that we’ve had SaveKPFA boardmembers supporting us every step of the way.
The dividing line on KPFA’s board is this: austerity vs. growth.
On the growth side: SaveKPFA thinks the way you build KPFA is by building great programs that attract large audiences so there are more people will to give come pledge drive. We already know what success looks like: KPFA’s two newest daily programs, Letters and Politics and UpFront, are also its two largest fundraisers, bringing in far more than they cost to produce. Together, those two hours account for over a third of KPFA’s fundraising. Building on those successes with more cutting-edge programming is the key to strengthening KPFA.
As for austerity: this year, its champions are calling themselves “United for Community Radio.” Of course, they never use the word “austerity” – but rest assured, when you hear them call for financial responsibility and supporting unpaid staff, it translates to firing KPFA’s unionized programmers and parceling our airtime out to their allies. Some of them are philosophically opposed to paying people to produce daily shows–they’d rather KPFA sound like a volunteer-run local-access cable station.
Their incumbents have had two years to prove exactly what they stand for. When our union protested impending cuts, they came to counter-protest. When Pacifica fired the entire staff of The Morning Show, they supported it. When Pacifica hired the nation’s most notorious union-busting law firm to fight us, they publicly defended it. When KPFA’s local management proposed a balanced, no-cuts budget, they walked out of the meeting to block its passage – even though KPFA was running a surplus.
Does that mean everyone running on their ticket supports more of the same? Not necessarily. There are a lot of new faces in the election this year, and they don’t all necessarily understand what they’ve signed up for. But the first thing they’ll do once they’re on KPFA’s Local Board is vote to send their slate-mates to the Pacifica National Board, where the real power lies. And those slate-mates will make their worst decisions behind closed doors in Executive Session meetings, where there’s very little accountability.
Again, the record speaks for itself: For four years, the UCR’s precursor slates have been in a majority coalition on the Pacifica National Board. They, and the executives they’ve installed, have left Pacifica a hollowed-out wreck: with millions in unpaid bills, corporate law firms baying at the door, a finance office now incapable of handling even simple payroll transactions, legally-required contributions to workers’ retirement accounts unpaid (for several months now), donor checks meant for KPFA piling up undeposited.
Now is our chance to turn things around: Next year’s boards will choose a new manager and program director for KPFA, a new Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer for Pacifica. It’s a chance to put the entire Pacifica network on the right track – if you do your part.
Help get out the vote. KPFA elections have low turnout, and tend to be decided by relatively small margins—which is why your actions are so important. Please:
Pass this message on to people you know who might be KPFA members.
Go to the website www.savekpfa.org to learn more about the SaveKPFA slate.
Most importantly, return your ballot now so you don’t forget. Pacifica is not allowing any in-person ballot drop-offs this year— you have to mail it. Your ballot has to arrive at the ballot-counting location in New York by December 11—it will be competing with holiday mail traffic to get there, so send it now.
Co-Host, KPFA’s “UpFront”,
Former Co-Host, “The Morning Show”
Former Staff Representative, KPFA Local Station Board
KPFA 94.1 FM
1929 Martin Luther King Jr. Way
Berkeley CA 94704