Comings and goings: The Current names Urban Alternative content director, staff changes at WETA/NewsHour Productions …

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Julian Green was named content director for The Current’s Urban Alternative Project, which launches in spring 2022.

Green

Green joined The Current in June as an intern. He previously worked as PD for Radio K-KUOM, a student-run radio station at the University of Minnesota. As PD, Green created The Vanguard, a hip-hop and R&B radio stream.

“Julian brings the right mix of talent, music knowledge and energy needed to bring this new service to life,” said David Safar, managing director of The Current, in a news release. “More importantly, Julian brings a lifelong passion for the music, making him uniquely suited for the Content Director role.”

The Urban Alternative Project, funded by CPB, is designed to diversify public broadcasting’s audience with local hip-hop and R&B programming. The Current’s Urban Alternative format is led by Minnesota Public Radio in partnership with local station KMOJ. MPR’s Urban Alternative format will center on The Ice, a hip-hop stream on KMOJ’s HD2 digital channel.

Jeff Bieber, EP of Washington Week, resigned to start an independent production company.

Bieber joined WETA in Washington, D.C., in 1981. He was EP of Washington Week during the tenures of hosts Gwen Ifill and Robert Costa and was also VP of content development and production.

Bieber formed Bieber Productions, which will create documentaries for public media. He previously helped manage several prime-time series for PBS, including The Jewish Americans, Latino Americans, Italian Americans and Asian Americans.

NewsHour EP Sara Just was named EP of Washington Week while management searches for a successor.

Separately, Annette Miller retired as VP of NewsHour Productions. Miller was VP for MacNeil/Lehrer Productions and was also director of research and archive services for PBS NewsHour.

In addition, Chris Alexander was promoted to executive director of media resources for NewsHour, according to a spokesperson. Alexander joined the organization in 2015 and most recently worked as senior director of media assets.

Marketing

Klingensmith

Michele Klingensmith was hired as director of marketing for the Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation, the parent organization for WESA and WYEP. Klingensmith most recently worked as senior marketing manager for Philips Respironics. She has also held marketing positions for GlaxoSmithKline, Heinz, Lipton and Frito-Lay.

Content

Chau Lam became the poverty and economics instability reporter for WNYC in New York City. She will report to Karen Rouse, who leads the economics and equity desk. Lam previously worked as a reporter for Newsday and the Los Angeles Times. WNYC also hired Caroline Lewis as a health and science reporter. She will report to Nsikan Akpan on the community health and environment desk. Lewis has been a contributor for WNYC and Gothamist and was also a reporter for Crain’s New York Business and PriceCheckNYC.

Chan

Julia B. Chan is leaving her position as managing editor of digital for KQED in San Francisco to become editor-in-chief of The 19th, a nonprofit newsroom. Chan joined the station in 2019. She has also been director of audience for Mother Jones, digital editor for Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting and a journalist for Radio Valencia and the San Francisco Examiner.

Durrie Bouscaren announced that she will be a reporter for The World covering Turkey. Bouscaren most recently worked as a freelance journalist. She was also a fellow for NPR and held reporter positions with St. Louis Public Radio and Iowa Public Radio. 

Cornette

Mike Cornette retired as jazz director and host of All Night Jazz, produced by WUSF in Tampa, Fla. Cornette became the program’s host in 2010 and was reappointed jazz director in 2016. Cornette first joined the station in the 1970s as jazz director and was a part-time announcer for decades. Between jobs at WUSF, Cornette worked for Navarre Entertainment Media and Rhapsody. “Retirement awaits. Family, traveling, reading, plus staying healthy are all on my agenda,” Cornette said in a WUSF news story. “One thing I can say: I’ve had a blast!”

Brown

Michael Brown is retiring as volunteer host for At the Edge, a music program produced by Wisconsin Public Radio. At the Edge will cease broadcasting Dec. 27, and the station will replace the vacant hour with Classical 24 next year. “Brown never liked to define what exactly his show was, but said music played on the show had to fit two criteria: it shouldn’t be well known, and it has to stretch the boundaries,” reads a WPR news release. “We’d like to thank Michael for his extraordinary dedication to serving the community and wish him the best in retirement.”

Governance

Kristen Wesloh was elected to the board of directors for the Association of Independents in Radio. Wesloh is the director of institutional investment for Prosperity Now, based in Washington, DC. She has also been director of institutional giving for American Public Media.

Send news of “comings and goings” to people@current.org

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