Candidate Statement 2016

My name is Michael Ochoa. As a volunteer and a supporter of WBAI and Pacifica, I believe this is an important asset which can only be preserved by growing the audience. WBAI and Pacifica should welcome voices which are politically, geographically and artistically diverse not just because of a bylaws mandate, but because it is the right thing to do.

I want to be part of a station and a network where progressives engage in thoughtful and stimulating conversations with moderates and conservatives instead of shallow conversations with people who already agree with them on everything.

I want to be part of a station and network where listeners look forward to programming that informs and challenges them and where the programming itself is the only premium that ever needs to be offered.

Someone once said a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. I believe a revitalized LSB can be that first step to change at WBAI and Pacifica. As a person with experience running meetings using Robert’s rules of order and running meetings at Occupy Boston by consensus, I find it hard to believe that LSB meetings can sometimes be less productive than Occupy GA meetings. LSB meetings should be open, transparent and allow meaningful participation of WBAI community members. Meeting notices and minutes should be posted promptly.

Meetings should be held in places that are convenient and encourage new members to attend. Agendas themselves should not be a source of conflict. Committees should be created and maintained fairly because responsible organizations do the bulk of their work in committees. Meetings can and should be run in a flexible and firm manner that inspires confidence in the process.

A revitalized LSB is possible and can be achieved quickly. Such a revitalized LSB would be capable of major changes including finding ways to evaluate programming in order to build the audience, rebuilding a relationship with management and restructuring fundraising methods in ways that are more efficient and less intrusive.

If you agree with me that WBAI and Pacifica is an important resource that should be preserved and if you agree with me that a revitalized LSB can be a catalyst for change and growth, then please exercise your vote and let me serve as your voice on the WBAI Local Station Board.

1. In what ways is the station moving in a positive direction, that you would want to continue or perhaps improve?
As a volunteer at the station, I am encouraged by the number of volunteers coming in to help send premiums and perform other duties. I would look for ways to better utilize volunteers to tasks that take advantage of their skills and experience.
2. In what ways is the station moving in a negative direction, that you would want to stop or change? What changes would you work for?
Fiscal issues and lack of organization have seriously impacted the station. We need to evaluate and improve the programming as quickly as possible in order to grow the audience. Lack of organization exacerbates conflicts on the LSB. Reorganization would rebuild trust and help to grow membership by encouraging more people to donate money and time to the station.
3. What key experience, connections, skills or traits would you bring to the Local Station Board to advance the station’s mission?
I believe my experience broadcasting at a Low Power FM station and strong organizational skills as an IT professional are a key contribution that I can make because the LSB needs to be reorganized and become more welcoming to members and the general public.
4. What ideas do you have for helping the station and the Pacifica Foundation meet the financial challenges currently being faced?
I want to find ways to evaluate and improve programming as quickly as possible in order to grow the audience. I would like to minimize fundraiser marathons by doing continuous fundraising within the context of a program. I’d like the LSB to take a direct role in membership affairs in order to recruit and retain members and rebuild trust by delivering premiums on time.

This is not an official Pacifica Foundation website nor an official website of any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio). Opinions and facts alleged on this site belong to the author(s) of the website only and should NOT be assumed to be true or to reflect the editorial stance or policy of the Pacifica Foundation, or any of the five Pacifica Radio Stations (KPFA Radio, KPFK Radio, KPFT Radio, WBAI Radio, WPFW Radio), or the opinions of its management, Pacifica National Board, station staff or other listener members.