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Contact Rich Stone
Listener Candidate for the KPFA Local Station Board
My name is Richard Stone, a twenty-five year long listener, a one time Community Advisory Board member (2015-2018) and longtime subscriber to KPFA. I’m an anti-war VFW (served four years, from 1984-1988 in the United States Navy, culminating in a short battle in the Persian Gulf known as Operation Praying Mantis), which I consider the advent of my activism. And it was first, the event of Operation Desert Storm in 1991, that made me an anti-war activist; and years later, the tragic events of September 11th 2001, that finally made me give up the Two Party War Machine. Moving forward from that point, I became an active member of the Green Party on the local (San Francisco) and the state levels. I’m also a long time union activist with the American Postal Workers Union, both on the local level (am currently on the Executive Board, serving as the Sargent-At-Arms), as well as a delegate to the San Francisco Labor Council (since 2007), serving on the Social Economic and Justice Committee. I also identify and work with with The Zeitgeist Movement, a sustainability advocacy group (whose work has been previously covered on KPFK), which envisions the transformation from a free market system towards what's known as a Natural Law Resource Based Economy.

But as a longtime labor and Green Party activist, I realize how easy it is for progressive activists to become placated in reliance of forming policies and agendas around the Democratic Party, which never has enabled the labor movement or third parties to flourish, where “play along to get along” distorts and demonizes all progressive third parties, as well as social and economic justice causes within the labor movement. All of this carries over to KPFA, where both labor and progressive third party issues are lacking in programming/discussion (especially during election time for third parties) which is in part, why I'm running for the KPFA LSB.

The current state of the station - especially in light of the second failed attempt in restructuring the governance of the station since 2019 - shows that the struggle for the maintenance of the empowered listener sponsor is something that cannot be taken for granted. The preservation of the Local Station Board (my given 'nickname' is the 'Listener Sponsor's Bpard'), and the continuation of the Community Advisory Board is essential in the station moving forward and maintaining a strong decentralized structure with optimal power at the local station level for the listener sponsor to have more of an impact on station affairs.

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 served three years on the KPFA Community Advisory Board (2015-2018), where I assisted in conducting public forums on various station affairs (including breakout sessions), assisting in CNA reports for the LSB. I've also served on committees on the SF Labor Council, the California Green Party and SF Green Party, which helps hone my ability to co-facilitate break out session sat past Community Advisory Board meetings, and even at a Local Station Board "Town Hall" meeting.
2. What do you appreciate and value in the station's current operations?
  The station's ability to see itself to operate both in station and remotely through the current COVID-19 pandemic. Also, the ability to eke out the bare bones minimum in each fund drive, though 'donor fatigue' seems to be taking an impact with each passing fund drive..
3. What would you like to see improved or changed in the station's current operations?
  The ability of the station to allocate its funds and resources (as proposed through the two recent governance restructure elections in 2019 & 2021) in its current decentralized governance structure, to maintain the maximum involvement and input of listener sponsorship..
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) Push for more “outside of pledge cycle” fundraising in terms of literary and musical events.2) Bring back the Programming Council. 3) Bring back more labor related programming.
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?
  By having more fundraisers in forms of entertainment culliing from the talent of Bay Area musicians and other artists
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?
  By having more fundraisers in forms of entertainment culling from the talent of Bay Area musicians, poets and other artists; perhaps an annual KPFA music and art festival in a large venue, as well as occasional gigs in smaller venues.
6. Is there anything else you would like prospective voters to know?
  I sing baritone and bass for the a cappella arrangement known as the Conspiracy of Beards, singing the songs and poetry of Leonard Cohen (2010-present).
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