My name is T.M. Scruggs and I am running as a Listener Candidate for the KPFA Local Station Board. I am an educator, musician, and long time social activist involved in community/non-profit media since the mid-1970s. I am a Bay Area native familiar with the issues of our region.
My various forms of organizing and cultural work have proven to me that media is the crucial battleground for providing information and framing issues that determines a society’s political direction. The non-corporate perspective and original investigative reporting that KPFA and sister stations disseminate is an indispensable resource that should be available in every city. Pacifica’s problems need to be resolved to unleash its full potential. My second career is in finances: I started a successful, growing non-profit. A top priority in my mind is straightening out the financial mess that plagues KPFA and Pacifica.
In recent years I have worked with building TRNN, TheRealNewsNetwork where I am Executive Producer. Our project centers around the internet video news site therealnews.com. Our studios, still a work-in-progress, are in Baltimore, and hopefully we can expand to our next choice, Oakland. I am also on the Board of Advisers of the print-based news site truthout.org.
KPFA, and Pacifica in general, needs to take more advantage of the internet to help our progressive message and programming reach the broadest possible audience. KPFA has recently upgraded its web page, an excellent step in a direction with great promise for the future. This use of newer technology, together with further strengthening of our internship program, will help increase more youth participation, a clear necessity.
I speak fluent Spanish (self-taught in one of the major cities of Latin America: Chicago) and much of my activism has involved Latino communities. I taught, and did research and solidarity work for several years in Central America and Venezuela. As the Latino populations around Richmond and San Pablo become “the new Mission” we need to work to include these important communities in KPFA programs and activities.
We can overcome the unnecessary divisiveness that seems to exist between our strong staff and amazing volunteers. Besides my executive-type experience with TheRealNews, I have both staff and volunteer experience in leftist and community organizations. I volunteered on community radio in every city I have lived in since high school: KBOO (Portland; hosted two shows); WUIC (Univ. of Illinois-Chicago; founded Latino student show); KUT (Austin, Texas); KRUI (Iowa City; founded world music show); and several community radio stations in Nicaragua and Venezuela. In the 1970s/80s I was first volunteer and then the one paid “Staff Person” of a then large, collectively-run bookstore in Chicago (similar to SF’s Modern Times in its heyday).
The orientation of United for Community Radio (RadioUCR.org) best represents my own. Frankly, in my previous community media experience I have never run across such factionalism, and I pledge to be open minded and creative in improving our treasured KPFA and Pacifica network.
Endorsers: Bruce Dixon; Ed Holmes; Marilyn Langlois; Barbara Lubin; Michael Parenti.