California PTV Stations Organize

(Sacramento, CA 12/10/02) California's public television stations have created a new statewide organization, California Public Television, Inc. (CPT). At an organizing meeting in Sacramento on October 31, the charter members of the nonprofit association, which includes all 14 California stations, adopted by-laws and a statement of purpose and elected officers.

"We've seen what stations in other states can do when they work together in their own collective best interests over a sustained period of time," noted new CPT Chair, Mel Rogers, KOCE, Orange County. He added, "We had some modest success two years ago when we joined forces on an ad hoc basis to seek state funding for digital transition, and we're optimistic that, over time, we can accomplish a great deal together that we could not accomplish separately."

Vice Chair, Jeff Clarke, from KQED in San Francisco, a veteran of the Texas PBS stations' successful efforts to secure solid support for digital television services, said, "We're in this for the long haul. California’s public television stations are committed to helping create a stronger sense of community and connectedness in a large geographic and exceptionally diverse state. It's a big challenge, but we're already seeing programming success with our California Connected series. All of us at CPT, Inc. stations are confident that we can build on that success."

Late last year the James Irvine Foundation funded a feasibility study conducted by BMR Associates, Inc. The study concluded that, in spite of the current gloomy economic climate in the state, if stations were willing to invest significant effort and resources over a three- to five-year period, they could begin generating support similar to the levels of funding achieved by other long-standing statewide public broadcasting associations.

Approximately 30% of the funding needed to establish and operate CPT through 2003 is being provided by a grant from the James Irvine Foundation. BMR Associates is assisting with start-up activities.

CPT will be housed at KVIE in Sacramento. A full-time Executive Director will be hired after the first of the year, according to Al Jerome, KCET, Los Angeles, who heads the search committee for that position.

In addition to Rogers and Clarke, the other officers of CPT are Treasurer, David Hosley, KVIE, Sacramento; and Corporate Secretary, Ron Schoenherr, KEET, Eureka.

The Board of Directors of CPT consists of the CEO's of the 14 member stations. In addition to officers and Jerome, the Board members are: Nancy Dobbs, KRCB, Rohnert Park; Colin Dougherty, KVPT, Fresno; Thomas Fanella, KTEH, San Jose; Janalyn Glymph, KLCS, Los Angeles; Marilyn Lawrence, KCSM, San Mateo; Doug Myrland, KPBS, San Diego; Myron Tisdel, KIXE, Redding; Booker Wade, Jr., KMTP, San Francisco; and Lew Warren, KVCR, San Bernardino.

Mel Rogers
KOCE, Huntington Beach
Ph: 714.895.5623