CPB’s new RFP, deadline Feb 3

I have mixed feelings about sending you hard-working freelancers down this rabbit hole, but for those of you who are super motived, connected, and strong-willed, this is an amazing potential opportunity. Spread the word if you dare. Deadline Feb 3. -Mia
PS: The first part of the post comes from Sue Schardt, Executive Director of AIR. The second part is the actual RFP from the CPB.
This new funding opportunity from CPB (below) is directed at stations, but has embedded opportunity for producers, especially if you are:

a) an indie producer with a good relationship with a local station, or
b) a station-based editor or reporter eager to create a new collaboration, or
c) either a station-based or indie with a strong relationship with an editor at NPR, PRI, or APM.

In addition to thinking about how you'd approach the topic areas the RFP is aimed at (detailed below) in some distinctive way, you'll want to also consider the ways potential stations or network program partners may want to break out of traditional coverage. Collaboration is a central opportunity for this, and we know that many AIRsters are strong, gifted collaborators.

Once you determine whether there is receptivity, and have the germ of a good idea or two, you'll need to investigate/take on board what the strategic goal is for the broadcast partner(s). How would you, for example, help build a collaboration that, from the inception, is designed to extend the work beyond their traditional broadcast? How would your idea expand and diversify the station's audience? What are the unique challenges in community that haven't been revealed? What do you see that is not apparent to others? These are just a few possible questions of many you should ask yourself. Your idea needs to be shaped/informed by the vision/goals of your prospective partners if you're to make an effective pitch. Don't forget the field research.

Take time, too, to a look at/refresh yourself with the Station Runway AIR created at the start of our Localore production. You'll find short, 3-5 min, mostly videos from more than 60 stations telling the story of their station culture, their community, and their vision for the future. This may be helpful in guiding you to potential partners, some of whom may be in your own backyard, and at least give you some inspiration to experience the breadth and diversity of the station network:


AIR has had no role in shaping the RFP or this new call from CPB, and I can't guarantee the level of receptivity you may get. But it would sure be nice to have juice from some of us fueling this initiative. I've no doubt that AIRsters' participation, if played right, would only strengthen the outcome. Keep us posted on your progress here on the AIRdaily!

go go.

– ss

Sue Schardt, Executive Director

++ AIR is everywhere ++

Dear Colleague:
I’m excited to inform you that CPB’s Diverse Perspectives grant program, first announced by Pat Harrison, President and CEO, at last month’s Super Regional Conference in Washington, D.C., is now open for applications.

The Diverse Perspectives: Enhancing the Diversity, Capacity and Quality of Local and National News grant program is part of CPB’s continued effort to support stations by promoting collaborative partnerships geared towards increasing capacity and production of high quality, locally-focused news programming.

CPB aims to fund work at news-oriented public radio stations to expand coverage of important issues heard locally, regionally, and nationally. Grants will be awarded on two-year terms to partnerships consisting of at least four stations aligned around original reporting of specific “beats” or “content verticals.” Possible topics may include: military veterans, education, health, transportation, technology, or coastal issues; however, applicants are free to propose topics of their own choosing.

In addition to building internal capacity among collaborating stations (more on that below), partnership groups will need to develop strong working relationships with national editors at NPR, PRI and APM. CPB intends for these connections to create opportunities for partnership groups to contribute content to the major national flagship programs (e.g., All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Marketplace, The World, Here and Now, The Takeaway).

The terms of the grant program are intended to promote enduring alliances that strengthen each partner’s ability to produce high quality reporting. Each partnership must hire a dedicated editor and commit at least one reporter per station to its chosen topic. This may include a new hire or re-assignment of an existing full or part-time staff member. Reporters are required to spend a minimum of 50 percent of their time creating content focused on the given topic. There are no restrictions regarding the geographic location of collaborating stations. Additionally, individual stations are free to participate in more than one partnership.

Partnership groups must demonstrate a significant financial commitment over the two-year grant period to be eligible for the program. CPB will provide up to 50 percent funding for both the reporter position(s) and the Editor position in Year One, followed by up to 25 percent funding for each position in Year Two.

For more about Diverse Perspectives: Enhancing the Diversity, Capacity and Quality of Local and National News please see the request for grant proposals on the Open Grants and RFPs page at CPB.org or contact Jeff Luchsinger at jluchsinger@cpb.org or 202-879-9703.

Bruce Theriault
Senior Vice President, Radio

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