Seven public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia, including West Virginia Public Broadcasting, have been awarded a $445,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) to establish a regional journalism collaboration.
The still-to-be-named network will produce hard-hitting, high-quality multimedia journalism that examines the region’s economy, energy, environment, agriculture, infrastructure and health.
"This will help expand the storytelling we already do through regional shows such as 'Inside Appalachia,'" said Scott Finn, CEO and executive director of West Virginia Public Broadcasting. "We're excited to work more closely with other stations in our region to report more deeply about the economic transition we face."
The CPB grant will support the hiring of eight journalists at the seven partner media outlets for two years; with station support continuing in outlying years.
“CPB is pleased to support this historic collaboration among public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia,” said Bruce Theriault, CPB senior vice president, journalism and radio. “By working together, these stations can ensure that important stories from this underreported area are told locally, regionally, and nationally. The sum is indeed greater than the parts.”
Louisville Public Media will lead the news operation and house the project’s managing editor and data journalist. Partner radio and television stations inlcude WEKU in Richmond and Lexington, Ky., WKU in Bowling Green, Ky., WMMT/Appalshop in Whitesburg, Ky., WKMS in Murray, Ky., West Virginia Public Broadcasting, and WOUB in Athens, Ohio.
The group will produce journalism for partner stations and collaborate with national programs, including PBS NewsHour, Frontline, Marketplace, Morning Edition, and All Things Considered, and other public media outlets such as WFPL’s Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. The collaboration will produce daily reporting, investigations, long-form narrative pieces, and documentaries.
About the Corporation for Public Broadcasting:
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services.