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Contact Ralph Hawkins
Listener Candidate for the KPFK Local Station Board
Statement
The five Pacifica Network stations and our 250+ affiliates represent the bulwark of community radio across the country. As an undergraduate I was heavily involved in student governance, and was elected General Manager at two college FM stations, KUCI-Irvine and KSDT-San Diego. And so I can say I have some familiarity with nature of the internal politics and budgeting issues that all public broadcast stations must face.

The goal of the LSB is to provide the programing staff with the tools and equipment necessary to provide a quality broadcast experience to our listeners, as envisioned in the Pacifica Mission Statement. This is accomplished by taking responsibility for the oversight of station expenses and liabilities, including the management of fund-raising activities -and- supporting station managers and staff to continually improve the quality of our broadcast sound and content.

Volunteer programmers are the backbone of KPFK's legacy and the LSB should seek to tap the cultural diversity of the community by empowering those who wish to protect free speech for all peoples and pursue the educational and creative goals of the Pacifica Foundation.

The LSB should seek to explore or expand on every alternative for fundraising that would reduce reliance on the extensive on-air fund-drives we have experienced, without compromising our non-commercial format. The LSB has the duty to insure we obtain successful financial audits in order to obtain our rightful share of the Federal funding issued by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

I would like to re-establish local/regional news coverage in-house and explore the development of an internet podcasting model that would appeal to subscribers seeking reliable analysis and narratives. Such initiatives are direct ways to grow our listenership, and introduce them to ways of promoting racial harmony in the pursuit of eliminating the local and international antagonisms that plague our society.

I am a retired employee of the State of California, where I managed benefits and provided litigation support under the Worker's Compensation system. While there I was a Senior Steward for SEIU Local 1000, and served as a member of the bargaining team representing the rank-and-file in negotiations with the Schwarzenegger Administration for the state-wide contract covering employees pay, benefits and workplace conditions.
Answers to Candidate Questionnaire
1. What experience, connections, skills or traits would you bring to the local station board to advance the station's mission?
  As an undergraduate I was heavily involved in student governance, and was elected General Manager at two college FM stations, KUCI-Irvine and KSDT-San Diego. And so I can say I have some familiarity with nature of the internal politics and budgeting issues that all public broadcast stations must face.
I am a retired employee of the State of California, where I managed benefits and provided litigation support under the Worker's Compensation system. While there I was a Senior Steward for SEIU Local 1000, and served as a member of the bargaining team representing the rank-and-file in negotiations with the Schwarzenegger Administration for the state-wide contract covering employees pay, benefits and workplace conditions.
2. What do you appreciate and value in the station's current operations?
  Perhaps our greatest strength is the excellent music programing we have. One should not under-estimate the power this can have in attracting new memberships. I applaud the programmers of Global Village, and esp. those DJs working the weekend overnight shifts.
3. What would you like to see improved or changed in the station's current operations?
  I have no specific agenda, except to provide the programing staff with the tools and equipment necessary to provide a quality broadcast experience to our listeners, as envisioned in the Pacifica Mission Statement.
4. Describe what you anticipate would be your top three priorities or areas of focus if you were elected to the local station board.
  (1) Responsibility for the oversight of station expenses and liabilities, including the management of fund-raising activities.
(2) Support station managers and staff to improve the overall quality of our broadcasting sound and content.
(3) Provide listeners local/regional news coverage, esp. for those residing outside the urban core but within the vast footprint of our signal.
5. Sustainability is an important part of any nonprofit operation. What are your thoughts on how the board can help to improve the station's financial footing?
  We should seek to explore or expand on every alternative for fundraising that would reduce reliance on the extensive on-air fund-drives we have experienced, without compromising our non-commercial format. Examples could or should include the following:
(1) Insure successful financial audits to obtain our rightful share of the Federal funding intended for public broadcasters.
(2) Explore the development of an internet podcasting model that would appeal to subscribers seeking reliable analysis and narratives to counter mainstream propaganda.
(3) Stage more live concert/performance events to co-sponsor with social justice allies in our community.
6. Is there anything else you would like prospective voters to know?
  Hopefully we have all crossed paths with special people that profoundly expanded our view of the world. I've met my share of superior intellects, but the two most influential people I actually had the opportunity to hang-out with were John Cage the composer -and- Herbert Marcuse the philosopher.
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