Max Schmid is my name, running again for a Staff seat on the WBAI Local Station Board. I have been the producer and host of The Golden Age of Radio since December 1978, and have been on the paid staff continuously since before my official union hire in 1989.
After 40 years as programmer, and over 30 years as paid staff, I think my commitment to the Pacifica Mission and WBAI should be clear. I am dedicated to the resurgence of our radio station as a bastion of truth and a beacon of the arts in the tri-state area.
The actions of our new program director in bringing back the news is a welcome step that I support. It gives me hope for the future of WBAI. Great programming is what we need to turn the station around and make it vital and relevant again, which will bring in listeners and much need revenue.
We have forgotten that the purpose of on-air fundraising is to build a database of supporters, and then work that database to solicit further funding. We haven’t sent out renewal letters in YEARS!! The air cannot be the sole source of funding. The staff and listeners are worn out, and tired of hearing endless repeats of what amounts to selling snake oil. If this is the audience we appeal to, this is the only audience that will be left. We are paying for a Development Director, so where’s the development? The grants, the outreach to major donors, the solicitation letters?
We need to return to some of the financial practices that worked well in the past. Outreach and fundraising letters, working the database. Outreach to major donors. We cannot survive by using 40% of our air time for on-air pitching!
I have the experience and skills that I bring to the Local Station Board to advance the station’s mission. As a WBAI lifer, I know how the place runs. What works, what doesn’t work, or what won’t work. I offer my service again to continue the effort to preserve and strengthen our radio station.
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