ATLANTA — DEI, the membership organization that supports development and fundraising work at public radio stations, has changed its name to Greater Public.
President Doug Eichten announced the change during the opening session of the Public Media Development and Marketing Conference, which runs through Saturday at the downtown Omni Hotel.
“[T]he nature and pace of change in the media landscape now is so dramatic that we believe our industry is at a true inflection point,” Eichten said. “Greater Public is committed to providing new levels of leadership and resources for public media organizations to move forward.”
The new name signals Greater Public’s intention to broaden its membership to include more public television stations and to develop collaborations among different types of public-service media organizations, including nonprofit news outlets. It also plans to produce special offerings in leadership development and training, including for lay leaders who serve on station boards.
Specific details of the service expansion are still in the works, Eichten said in an interview. “There are a lot of opportunities coming our way, and because there are so many changes in the industry, the board decided it was time to signal something different,” he said.
The name change was developed through an intensive rebranding project led by the San Francisco–based creative agency Hattery Labs. “It came out of nine months of work,” Eichten said. He has wanted to change the name since becoming DEI president more than 16 years ago but recognized the importance of working through the process with an agency. The organization was formerly named Development Exchange Inc. but later rebranded itself as simply DEI.
“This is not just about what we do,” Eichten said. “It’s about what we can do to help others do better.” The name is “aspirational,” he said, and reflects the field’s mission and ambition to expand service to the American public.