Lillie Herndon, 93

Lillie Edens Herndon, who served on the boards of CPB and PBS, died Dec. 3, 2010, at her home in Columbia, S.C. She was 93. Herndon’s CPB appointment was one of seven by President Richard Nixon. Five of those were in August 1974, just two days before Nixon turned over power to Vice President Gerald Ford. Herndon also served on the CPB Board under presidents Ford and Carter.

Winter Horton Jr., 80

Winter D. Horton Jr., a leader in public broadcasting since the 1960s, died Nov. 12 in Pasadena, Calif. He was 80. In 1964 Horton was among the founders of Los Angeles public television station KCET. From 1965 until 1970, he served as v.p. for development at National Educational Television, a predecessor of PBS.

Where the Crossroads films and funding went

CPB's big America at a Crossroads initiative 20 independently produced documentaries on aspects of the post-9/11 world, at a cost not wildly above the predicted $20 million. [This list tracks the 21 grants to producers and the resulting 20 broadcasts. See also <em>Current</em>'s related 2009 article and timeline.]
The funding
Costs of the project's major phases:
$2,520,724 — for R&D on proposals from 36 producing teams, the first cut in the grantmaking process,
+ 12, 629,507.— for production of the final 20 selected projects, and
+ 5,644,158 — for WETA's work as "Crossroads entry station" including packaging and promotion of the series and outreach efforts. = $20,794,389 — total cost
Here's a boxscore counting the productions. Links go to pages about the programs on PBS.org.

Democrats suggest ex-Sen. Pryor for one of the two CPB Board vacancies

The Senate Democratic leadership has asked the White House to appoint a Senate alumnus, David H. Pryor of Arkansas, to one of the two vacancies on the nine-seat CPB Board. The former senator is dean of the Clinton School of Public Service at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock. Pryor would fill a long-vacant seat reserved for a non-Republican under a provision of the Public Broadcasting Act that requires the CPB Board to be bipartisan. The Bush administration refused to nominate an earlier Democratic candidate for the seat, media studies professor Chon Noriega. The other vacant seat probably would be filled by a Republican.

CPB Inspector General’s recommendations after the Tomlinson episode

Excerpted from Inspector General Kenneth Konz's full 67-page report (PDF), Nov. 15, 2005. We recommend that the Board of Directors take the following actions to improve CPB’s governance processes. 1) Revise CPB’s By-Laws to:

a) Clarify the Board of Directors’ and President/CEO’s roles and responsibilities (e.g., Board of Directors are responsible for development and oversight of high level public policy issues and CEO is responsible for managing professional staff in implementing policy). b) Develop Board of Director processes to investigate and discipline Board members when they are found to violate the CPB By-Laws, Directors Code of Ethics, CPB’s operating policies and procedures, and the Public Broadcasting Act.

CPB Board reaction to Tomlinson affair, November 2005

Below are the chair's speech and several resolutions passed by the CPB Board Nov. 15, 2005, responding to the CPB inspector general's report on the Tomlinson Affair. The board unanimously created a Corporate Governance and Executive Compensation committees, as recommended by the inspector general and a Special Committee "to enhance awareness and appreciation of public broadcasting's achievements and potential for future service." It also renewed and appointed members of its Finance and Audit Committee. Statement by Cheryl Halpern, CPB Board chair

CPB Board of Directors meeting, Washington, D.C., Nov.

CPB Goals and Objectives, 2002

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting Board of Directors adopted this statement in November 2002, according to CPB. I. Local Services and Content
Strengthen the value and viability of local stations as essential community institutions by improving their operational effectiveness and fiscal stability, and increasing their capacity to invest in and create sustainable services and content that will advance their local mission. To achieve this Goal, CPB will pursue the following objectives:
A. Measure the value of local service as perceived by the intended beneficiaries-Conduct research to understand how various media are used by the audiences stations serve or hope to serve in the future, and how the pattern of use is changing as new platforms and media emerge. Create mechanisms that can be used to evaluate the success of local content and services, and inform the local/national conversation. B. Improve station practices and institutional effectiveness-Assess the performance of individual stations and station cohort groups within public broadcasting to identify opportunities to increase stations' income-earning capabilities and reduce the cost of current operations through improved practices and new operating and service models.

CPB Goals and Objectives for fiscal year 2003

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting Board of Directors adopted this statement in November 2002. I. Local Services and Content

Strengthen the value and viability of local stations as essential community institutions by improving their operational effectiveness and fiscal stability, and increasing their capacity to invest in and create sustainable services and content that will advance their local mission. To achieve this Goal, CPB will pursue the following objectives:

A. Measure the value of local service as perceived by the intended beneficiaries-Conduct research to understand how various media are used by the audiences stations serve or hope to serve in the future, and how the pattern of use is changing as new platforms and media emerge. Create mechanisms that can be used to evaluate the success of local content and services, and inform the local/national conversation. B. Improve station practices and institutional effectiveness-Assess the performance of individual stations and station cohort groups within public broadcasting to identify opportunities to increase stations' income-earning capabilities and reduce the cost of current operations through improved practices and new operating and service models.

How reform can minimize politics in presidential appointments

If public broadcasting is disadvantaged by having political appointees — often very partisan ones — on the board of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting as David Stewart argues in an accompanying commentary, what could be done about it? This analysis by the editor and co-founder of Current describes methods used elsewhere to reduce the influence of political favor in naming boards. If patronage appointments are giving CPB a mediocre Board of Directors and top management, as retired longtime staffer David Stewart contends in the accompanying commentary, there's a simple reform that's widely used in such situations. That is: inserting a nominating step in the process, a reform that brings to bear the attention and efforts of additional interests and reduces the now-predominant role of partisan considerations. Commentary: It's time to retailor the CPB Board appointment process
That's how people are named to the board that runs the National Science Foundation.