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Contact Hazel Pinder
Listener Candidate for the WBAI Local Station Board
Statement
Hazel@justice+unity.org
I am retired from the New York City Board of Education, and Nassau County's Uniondale School District. I often incorporated WBAI programs into my lessons, especially shows such as Law and Disorder, Democracy Now, and Talk Back, to name a few. My students were fascinated with the wide range of topics, and the incredible information, so much so, that they even encouraged their parents to listen! WBAI has contributed enormously to my political education on social justice, war, peace and other important issues.
My parents emigrated to the United States from the island of Grenada, WI, in the 50s. My father was the first Black man to represent his local at a union convention. As a young child, I remember missing a day of school to participate in a rally in which I carried a picket sign. This event helped to spark my interest in becoming an advocate for change.
I am running for the board because I believe that our mission in life is to be of service to our families, communities, and beyond. A strong BAI is part of this because there is so much misinformation that we are bombarded with from mainstream media. WBAI has played a significant role in helping to build diverse radical movements. We must do everything we can to preserve this gem on the FM dial. I want to build a brighter future for this station, but I am
extremely concerned with WBAI's overwhelming reliance on endless fund drives, and the frequent program schedule changes. I believe we must expand our efforts to seek new sources of revenue. We must also deal with our three million dollar loan, as well as, a drop in our listenership. We are not raising sufficient funds to pay our operating costs. In addition to this, the paid staff at BAI, has been slashed by more than 50%.
I have been a dedicated listener, supporter, and member of BAI for over 35 years. I have worked to keep WBAI on the air, especially after the takeover in 2019. I have participated in debates, and made several Reports to the Listeners. I am proud to have played a role in the development of "Mind Field," a new show on Black mental health.
Recently, I advocated and voted, "No," in the Bylaws referendum because I believe that it is important for members to have a real voice in our station.
It has been an honor to have served as a Local Station Board member for the past three years. I value freedom of expression, and the fair exchange of ideas that BAI provides. I pledge to do all that I can to preserve the survival of BAI.
With your support, I can continue to fight the good fight to enable this station to thrive and grow for another 61 years.
Please re-elect me using the following rank order: 1. Errol Maitland 2. Hazel Pinder 3. Geoff Munroe 4. John Brinkley, 6. Jose Gonsalves, 7. Sarah Klepner, 8. Cerene Roberts.
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?
  I am a longtime member of CEMOTAP, the Committee to Eliminate Media Offensive to African People. I am also a member of the UNIA,( United Negro Improvement Association), as well as the Free Mumia Coalition. I am the MC for the annual Black History Program and fund raiser at my church. For over five years, I was responsible for booking the featured act, and hiring a band. It has been very successsful, and we have had over 250 people attend.
2. What do you appreciate and value in the station's current operations?
  I appreciate and value the public education WBAI provides on war, peace, and social justice. I especially appreciate how the station has been able to survive with a staff that has been slashed by 50%, and mounting legal fees, as well as a three million dollar loan on which only the interest is being paid.
3. What would you like to see improved or changed in the station's current operations?
  I would like to see an end to the station's reliance on the fund drives. I would also like to see producers have more input in programming, and scheduling changes.
4. Describe what you anticipate would be your top three priorities or areas of focus if you were elected to the local station board.
  My top three areas of focus would be developing a strong internet, and video presence; helping to eliminate our financial debt, and promoting more local community involvement.
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 can apply for grants from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which would help to defray operating costs.
6. Is there anything else you would like prospective voters to know?
  I have been a listener, supporter, and member for over 35 years. In addition to this, I have served on the Local Station Board for the past three years, and I have responded to messages concerning missing premiums. I am also a member of the Committee of Inclusion, and I voted, "No," on the most recent Bylaws referendum.
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