CPB’s $7.5M in pubmedia news grants honors slain Charlie Hebdo journalists

CPB reacted Jan. 8 to the attack on journalists at the French satirical publication Charlie Hebdo by announcing grants totaling $7.5 million to four public media newsrooms.

“Now more than ever it takes so much courage to be a journalist,” said CPB President Pat Harrison in an to public media managers. “To understand that every word you may write, every cartoon you might draw could be your last. The chilling effect this can have may result in stories not told, reports not filed, journalism watered down.” CPB awarded the grants in memory of eight journalists who were killed. The money is given “in support of freedom of the press and freedom of expression,” Harrison said.

Fix to pubradio’s loudness problem rolls out to stations

Sssshhh . . . the sound of public radio is about to get a little quieter. But if all goes according to a plan unveiled last month by the Public Radio Satellite Service, listeners won’t notice the change in audio levels for programs distributed to stations around the country.

Raymond Davis, WAMU host with ‘encyclopedic’ knowledge of bluegrass, dies at 81

Raymond Davis, a veteran broadcaster who influenced and nurtured the bluegrass music scene as a music host for WAMU in Washington, D.C., died Dec. 3 of leukemia. He was 81. Davis capped his 65-year career in radio broadcasting as an afternoon host on WAMU’s all-music station Bluegrass Country. He joined the pubcaster in 1985, when the station split its weekday format between NPR News programs and bluegrass, and retired in 2013.

KCETLink selects former ABC Family executive as new president

Michael Riley, a former head of ABC Family, is the new president of Los Angeles-based KCETLink, the independent public media station and satellite TV channel. Riley succeeds Al Jerome, the KCET executive who led what had been PBS’s flagship station in Los Angeles through its acrimonious 2011 split from PBS. He spearheaded the station’s subsequent merger with noncommercial satellite broadcaster Link TV in October 2012. Dick Cook, board chair for KCETLink Media Group, cited Riley’s “strong track record in brand-defining content creation, strategic partnerships, acquisitions and digital leadership — both domestically and across international markets” in Monday’s announcement. Riley began in the job immediately.