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Contact Lawrence Reyes
Listener Candidate
for the KPFK Local Station Board
Statement
I am Lawrence Reyes, running with Grassroots Community Radio Coalition to return to the LSB and preserve community-based free-speech radio at KPFK and Pacifica. We need to get money out of Pacifica politics - you should not try to buy people's votes with glossy mailers, but earn people's respect and support through hard work and commitment.

To survive itself, KPFK must address survival issues of people who have been marginalized by the state, the 1%, and those who cling to airtime like oxygen.

Aren't you, like me, committed to covering critical issues, attracting younger listeners, providing for creative cultural expression, and thereby devoting less time to on-air fund drives? powered by the people” is a call to community empowerment.

Yet the current local Board majority restricted listener participation, tried to eliminate hardship waivers for people who can't afford to subscribe or volunteer, attacked management efforts to train young people and air fresh voices, and is imposing gentrification and whitening of the airwaves. This is a return to the stale cronyism and disrespect for community based unpaid programmers that drained the station's reserves and ran up huge deficits by failing to attract new listener-sponsors.

KPFK must allow diverse communities to communicate with each other. Listeners and volunteers must have a say in how it is run and what it airs. KPFK must cover solutions to big problems– immigration raids; homelessness and displacement; lack of health care; denial of rights for the disabled, children and the aged; police killing Black, Brown and other poor people with impunity; repression of whistleblowers; food deserts; militarized schools; racism, war, colonialism and genocide. I deal with these issues as an organizer, parent and social worker. I have been involved as a listener, around these issues. I want to assure KPFK keeps airing expressions directly from affected communities. As an LSB member, I support financial transparency and local news. I serve on the National Board and helped save the network from ruin by changing the national management. I have been back on the National Board this year, but in a distinct minority.

An open evaluation process of existing and proposed programming is critical to improve its quality. We should bring back the Peoples School of Broadcasting that former created for our next generation of listeners and producers who have the capacity and commitment to carry the station forward. Those who would eliminate grassroots voices, Spanish-language shows, and collectives threaten the survival of KPFK and Pacifica. The antidote is allowing the community to speak for itself. On-air forums and town halls like those I helped organize previously are required by the By Laws and must be restored so you can debate these issues.

I am running, along with others from the Grassroots Community Radio Coalition, to bring accountability, so the station can survive the attacks that will come no matter who wins the 2020 US elections. Call me at 310-460-8586, email [email protected], or check www.gcrc-socal.org for more on our anti-capitalist, eco socialist approach to media democracy.
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'm a County Senior Community Worker, a Union Leader and with outside Board Experience. I'm a SEIU 721 Union Steward and on the County Health Agency where we look for Educational and Social Solutions to those whomed are un-housed and displaced by the economics and gentrification process that has engulfed and dis-empower those that are the most vulnerable among the people.
2. What do you appreciate and value in the station's current operations?
  I value the Spanish-language programming and other locally-produced, community oriented public affairs programming. I like the diverse eclectic mix of programming, and wish there was more local news.
3. What would you like to see improved or changed in the station's current operations?
  KPFK should restore the Peoples School of Broadcasting to train a new generation in effective, attractive radio production and operations. The station should do more remote broadcasting from communities, conferences and protests. There should be more solutions-oriented programming from young organizers and activists who are making positive changes in their communities.
4. Describe what you anticipate would be your top three priorities or areas of focus if you were elected to the local station board.
  Increase democracy, transparency and accessibility to listeners engagement in the Local Station Board and station finances; work with management and staff to identify the steps of a strategic plan to best use existing station resources to improve programming and attract listeners; push to fulfill bylaws requirements including holding town halls for listener input, pushing the community advisory board to conduct an objective, meaningful and in-depth community needs assessment; working to improve off-air fundraising efforts by the board and the station generally
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?
  use community connections to increase listener engagement and satisfaction, including outreach & fundraising events in the community; show greater responsiveness to and appreciation for listener involvement; work collectively and individually to increase the number of on-going monthly sustainers to reduce the need for on-air fund-drives
6. Is there anything else you would like prospective voters to know?
  The survival of Pacifica and KPFK are at stake in this election. I and the other Grassroots candidates are committed to reviving and rebuilding the station's and the foundation's commitment to its principles, mission and service to the needs of the community for peace, justice and positive social, political and personal change and growth.
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