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NPR Makes Three Promotional Moves at the Exec Level

Laura Soto-Barra is now the VP of Research, Archives & Data Strategy (RAD); Chris Nelson assumes the role of SVP, Technology Operations; and Keith Jenkins rises to VP of Visuals and Music Strategy.

Eduardo Razo

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NPR will see some changes at the executive level as the company promotes three people to new positions, per Inside Radio.

Laura Soto-Barra is now the VP of Research, Archives & Data Strategy (RAD); Chris Nelson assumes the role of SVP, Technology Operations; and Keith Jenkins rises to VP of Visuals and Music Strategy.

“The RAD team’s work is indispensable to our NPR colleagues. By being alert and perceptive about people and processes, we are responsive and accountable,” Soto-Barr said. 

 “We strive to anticipate, identify and build on the intersections between our work and that of our many partners across the newsroom and the organization – a list that has been growing considerably. My promotion reflects the value that research, archives, and data hold for NPR.”

Nelson has been with NPR for 21 years. With his team, he has assisted the public broadcaster in covering significant news events, provided that its content gets to hundreds of radio stations, and made sure the staff’s day-to-day technology needs are met. 

“For technologists, NPR offers a unique media environment that requires both technical excellence and a deep commitment to our public service journalism mission,” Nelson remarked. 

“The professionals in our IT, Audio Engineering, Distribution, and soon-to-be-formed Content Production Technology teams are world-class in their fields, and it is an honor to work alongside them and champion their important work. I look forward to our continued growth and collaboration.”

Meanwhile, Jenkins joined NPR in 2018, and in his new position, he’ll operate with the teams in Programming and News to create, socialize and start content plans for visuals and music.

“NPR Visuals and NPR Music are establishing public media on the platforms and in the spaces where the next generation of NPR audiences can already be found,” Jenkins added. “They are on YouTube watching Tiny Desk, they are on Instagram, they are on Alexa, and they are on TikTok.”

“Most importantly, they are heavy consumers of visual information and entertainment. They have grown up with screens everywhere, and photos and videos are their primary means of communication. I’m excited for the opportunity to help NPR evolve with our audience and find new ways to navigate this world with them.”

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Ben Shapiro: Donald Trump Endorsing People Doesn’t Carry a Lot of Power

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

Ryan Hedrick

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AFP/Getty Images/Jason Kempin

Syndicated radio host and author Ben Shapiro suggested that an endorsement from former President Donald Trump is not the golden ticket it’s portrayed to be.

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

“So, there’s a difference between Donald Trump endorsing a person, which I don’t think has a lot of power. And Donald Trump is destroying people,” Shapiro said via Mediate.

“He (Trump) actually talked about how Brian Kemp was terrible and horrible and no good and very bad. And Brian Kemp won because he had earned the loyalty of the Republican voting base in Georgia, despite Trump’s anger at Brian Kemp.”

Shapiro concluded that “Trump does not have the sort of stranglehold the media thinks he has on the Republican Party.” 

Recently, Pennsylvania Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz is one Trump-endorsed candidate that has backed away from the former president.

An Axios analysis of Oz’s social media and campaign website uncovered that the Republican candidate is no longer lauding his Trump endorsement ahead of the midterm elections this fall.

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Longtime WIBC News Anchor Retires After Nearly 30 Years

Stan Lehr is calling it quits with his final day coming July 1.

Ryan Hedrick

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Longtime WIBC-FM news anchor Stan Lehr is calling it quits after nearly 30 years behind the microphone. The Indianapolis Star reports that Lehr’s last day will be July 1. 

WIBC is owned by Emmis Communications who last week announced a move to sell its Indianapolis radio properties to Maryland-based Radio One. Lehr’s retirement reportedly had nothing to do with the news of the impending sale. 

“This will bring to an end a long chapter in the station’s history,” WIBC News Director Chris Davis wrote in his email. “His reputation as a stickler has been widely-known in the industry for decades.” 

Davis described Lehr as a “stickler” who never wanted recognition for his work. 

“Instead, he made it clear to all who work or have worked with him that strong writing, accuracy, and excellence in delivery are the best ways to serve the listeners,” added Davis. 

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WWL, FEMA Unveiling New Emergency Broadcast Studio

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Eduardo Razo

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FEMA and Audacy’s WWL-AM/FM will present the unveiling of an all-hazards upgrade to the “Primary Entry Point” facility on June 28th. 

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Some of the speakers at the event will include Erik Hooks, Deputy Administrator, FEMA, and Kevin Cassidy, Senior Vice-President, Market Manager, Audacy-WWL. 

“The modernization to the emergency studio increases WWL’s resiliency to continue broadcasting under all conditions, including natural disasters and acts of terrorism,” the statement said which Barrett News Media obtained. “This facility is one of 77 across the country that serve as a National Public Warning System Primary Entry Point (PEP) station, participating with FEMA to provide emergency alert and warning information to the public before, during and after incidents and disasters.”

“WWL is the 15th radio station in the country to work with FEMA to complete the all-hazards upgrade, which includes increased sheltering capabilities, expanded broadcast capacity, and sustainable power generation for all types of hazardous events.”

Anyone attending the event will arrive at check-in 15 minutes before the press conference starts.

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