Comings and goings: Denny exits in Wisconsin, ‘NewsHour’ staffs Ariz. bureau …

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Garry Denny, director of programming at Wisconsin Public Television, is retiring after 33 years with the station. He will remain in his role while the station looks for his successor.


“Garry has been a key leader in one of the best success stories in audience development and engagement, and the continued growth of audience and membership,” said Jon Miskowski, WPT’s director of television. “Garry’s many contributions to public television nationally and in Wisconsin will be enjoyed for generations, we’re extremely grateful for his good work and look forward to his continued impact and influence on public television nationally, and his continued work as a champion of public media.”

Denny joined WPT in 1986 as traffic supervisor after graduating from Howard University. He has served as the president of the Public Television Programmers Association and on systemwide committees including the PBS Communications Advisory Committee and the CPB-funded Programmers’ Research Council.

Denny also served on the POV Editorial Committee and Open Call activities for the Independent Television Service. He is currently serving a 3-year term on ITVS’ board of directors. Denny was recognized as PBS Programmer of the Year in 2001.

PBS NewsHour announced appointments to its new Arizona-based bureau.

Stephanie Sy is joining NewsHour as anchor of PBS NewsHour West, based at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. The show also announced that Richard Coolidge will lead editorial operations at the Phoenix location as senior producer of PBS NewsHour West.

Sy, who will also report for NewsHour, most recently served as an anchor and correspondent for Yahoo News. She has also hosted and reported for CNN International, Al Jazeera America, ABC News, CBSN and NewsHour Weekend

Coolidge has served as a senior content producer and managed station and partner editorial collaborations for NewsHour since April 2015. 

Dan Alpert is retiring Friday from his position as senior VP of philanthropy for Detroit Public TV/WRCJ

“I’m proud to have helped our viewers, listeners, and supporters improve their lives with our trusted programming and community partnerships, and to have worked with you and so many wonderful colleagues across all departments during my 43 years here,” Alpert wrote in a note to staff. “It’s time for me to turn my attention to the next part of my life.”


Alpert joined DPTV in 1976 as director of public information and served as VP of communications from 1979–82. He was promoted to acting GM in 1983, senior VP/assistant GM until 2000, interim GM in 2007 and COO and station manager until 2010, when he moved into his current role. 

Among his achievements, he led the launch and growth of DPTV’s top donor society, the Smith Leadership Circle, which has raised more than $6 million since 2013. He was also chosen as the Outstanding Fundraising Executive by the Association of Fundraising Professionals/Greater Detroit Chapter in 2012.

Before joining DPTV, Alpert worked in promotion at WKAR in East Lansing, Mich., and in radio as a reporter, writer and producer.


Cara Stevens is a new voice for NPR’s digital funding credits. Stevens is also handling production work in the role. She began her professional voice career in 2017 after working with the United States Institute of Peace on conflict resolution work within its Africa program. “As NPR’s podcast offerings have grown, so have the number of sponsorship spots to be filled across the network,” the network said.


Sara Nics is leaving the New Yorker Radio Hour to be the first managing editor for the podcast company Transmitter Media. She has been serving as the producer and assignment editor for New Yorker Radio Hour, a co-production of the New Yorker and WNYC in New York City.

Also at WNYC, Anabel Bacon is becoming a development producer with the podcast Death, Sex & Money. She has been working as a producer for the show.

Lexie Schapitl is joining NPR as a news assistant on its Washington Desk. A social media manager for Vox, Schapitl previously worked as an associate producer for NPR newscasts and interned on the Washington Desk.

Colorado Public Radio announced the latest recipients of its Max Wycisk Fellowships: Taylor Allen and Claire Cleveland. They will work in CPR’s newsroom for a year to expand their journalistic skills. Allen, a graduate from Temple University, has worked part-time as a digital producer and reporter for WHYY in Philadelphia. Cleveland, a graduate of Arizona State University, has interned with the Denver Post and the AZ Center for Investigative Reporting. Six of the fellowship program’s participants over its past five years have gone on to regular full-time jobs at CPR. The program is named after CPR’s founding CEO.


NPR announced the second team taking part in its Public Radio Incubation Lab, a project focused on converting NPR digital audiences to local station membership. The station participants are: Chad Lampe, station manager, WKMS in Murray, Ky.; Elyse Poinsett, director of marketing and brand management for WHYY; and Kjerstin Wood, digital fundraising officer for KUOW in Seattle. The team also includes three staffers from NPR’s digital media division: software engineer Noah Carnahan, senior product designer Kaytee Nesmith and scrum master Cp Richardson. Team members will work full-time for the Lab for 16 weeks beginning Aug. 12 under the supervision of NPR VP of Design Liz Danzico

Lay leaders

The board of Southern Nevada Public Television in Las Vegas seated new leadership. President is Tom Warden, senior VP of community and government relations with the Howard Hughes Corp. VP is Clark Dumont of Dumont Communications LLC, who has been VP of communications and public affairs for the opening of the Nevada Cancer Institute. Dumont previously served on the boards of New Hampshire PBS and New Hampshire Public Radio. Secretary Nora Luna is 4H youth development programs coordinator at the University of Nevada, Cooperative Extension. And Treasurer Kim Walker is a CPA who runs her own accounting firm, Kim Walker Inc.

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