Luke Dennis, WYSO General Manager, and Neenah Ellis, Executive Director of The Eichelberger Center for Community Voices (The Center) have announced a number of staff changes both at WYSO Public Radio in Yellow Springs, signaling a fundamental shift in the direction and capacity of the station, and at The Center.
“Our world has changed dramatically in often turbulent and dramatic ways. The credibility of institutions is tested every day and people often are unsure where to find accurate, credible, and responsible news and information,” Dennis said. “We believe our audience, which has increased substantially over the last several years, looks to our station, our reporters, and editors and to NPR as a credible, balanced, and responsible news source. This change strengthens our news gathering and reporting capacity in order to keep pace with a rapidly and fluid news and information environment.”
According to Dennis, four new staff members have been added to the news team and three current WYSO employees have transitioned to new job responsibilities at the station. The new WYSO staff members are: News Director Jason Saul, Reporter Leila Goldstein, Environmental Reporter Chris Welter and Morning Edition Host Mike Frazier.
Three current WYSO staff members have assumed new duties at the station. They are:
Juliet Fromholt, who’s been with the station since 2009, has been promoted to Director of Digital and Programming Strategy. She will continue to oversee web and social media with a special focus on developing new digital music content in the coming year. She will continue to host “Kaleidoscope” and “Alpha Rhythms”.
Katie Main, formerly the Business Support and Events Manager, becomes an Account Executive, managing a portfolio of underwriting clients with a focus on Greene and Clark Counties.
Business Manager Art Boulet becomes Director of Finance and Administration, reflecting new responsibilities in HR and administration since Miami Valley Public Media received the station’s FCC license from Antioch College and made WYSO a completely independent radio station.
In addition, Luke Dennis becomes President and General Manager, overseeing the entire growing staff. He’s been with WYSO since 2012, leading its development team and increasing fundraising significantly in all categories.
Neenah Ellis, WYSO’s General Manager from 2009 to 2019, becomes the first Executive Director of The Eichelberger Center for Community Voices, which she began in 2010 as community training workshops.
Ellis is joined by the long time and award-winning producer of “Dayton Youth Radio,” Basim Blunt. He began an assignment in January as full-time Senior Producer and Instructor for The Center. Managing Editor and Reporter Jess Mador leaves the WYSO newsroom and becomes Senior Producer and Assistant Director of The Center focusing on community engagement and special projects. Finally, community producer Jocelyn Robinson, producer of several WYSO radio series, including “Rediscovered Radio” and “Senior Voices,” joins the staff of The Center as Producer for Emerging Initiatives, Education and Archives.
“Now is our time,” says Ellis, “we’re grateful to our listeners and donors for the faith they’ve placed in us and with this reorganization we will change the face of public media in the Dayton area, with more local voices and more local stories. There’s never been a more important time to focus on local news, music and storytelling. We’re ready.”
On the air 62 years, with studios in Yellow Springs on the campus of Antioch College, WYSO has seen steady growth in fundraising and award-winning programming in the last ten years, increasing its listening audience significantly. Last year it became independent of Antioch College when Ellis and Dennis raised $3.5 million dollars in the community and worked with the College to create a new nonprofit entity, Miami Valley Public Media, to own the license and manage the station.
“Launching the Eichelberger Center for Community Voices and strengthening our newsroom are two pillars of our strategic plan. I’m proud that, with this reorganization and the new hires, we are delivering on those aspirations,” says Luke Dennis. “Like Neenah says: We’re ready!”