Last year radio giant Clear Channel decided to combine its need to clear a certain number of stations out of its portfolio with the national goal of increasing diversity of ownership of such stations. To that end, it donated six to Minority Media and Telecommunications Council. MMTC has now accepted the stations and has plans for their use.
First, Clear Channel’s John Hogan touted the effort. “We appreciate how MMTC has put our donations to good use,” he said. “MMTC’s mentoring of these new LMA partners is very important. They will learn good broadcasting is about supporting your community, delivering excellent content and building a stable business operation. Radio is a dynamic, fun and rewarding business. We wish these broadcasters the best.”
“This was a win-win situation for all;” notes former FCC Commissioner and current volunteer Chairman of MMTC Henry Rivera. “Clear Channel continued their commitment to our work, the buyers had the chance to buy the stations at significant discounts and MMTC will use the proceeds to fund the important training and advocacy work they do. Most importantly, the listening public gets more diverse content on their radio dial. Hopefully other broadcasters and telecom companies will follow MMTC’s lead and work with us in this way.”
From MMTC, here is a list of the stations and what they’ve done or will be doing:
KFXN (AM) Minneapolis, Minnesota
Xeng Xiong and Kongsue Xiong operated an on-line radio station for Hmong residents and run a small business in the Twin Cities. Their on-line station has moved to KFXN AM, where they operate an LMA for MMTC. KFXN AM will broadcast information and entertainment in the Hmong and Laotian languages as they strive to promote social cohesiveness and understanding in Minneapolis. The Hmong community is 70,000 strong the community operates over 200 small businesses. This is a strong indication of the potential audience size for KFXN and hopefully an indication of the support they will receive from businesses in the area. The Xiong cousins plan to exercise their option to purchase the station from MMTC in the next 3-5 years.
WNRR (AM) North Augusta, South Carolina
Renee deMedicis is operating WNRR as an LMA and purchase the station from MMTC in 2012. Ms. deMedicis and her husband have extensive experience in radio sales and programming. Ms. deMedicis owns and operates an advertising agency in North Augusta. Both are on air personalities, sell advertising, serve the community and are working to grow the station. Visit WNRR and listen here: http://www.wnrr1380.com/
WHJA (AM) Laurel, Mississippi and KYHN (AM), Ft. Smith, Arkansas
James Hardman, a minority broadcaster from Tulsa with decades of experiences. Mr. Hardman will improve the broadcast equipment and plans to put both stations back on the air under an LMA with MMTC. Mr. Hardman will program the stations targeting the African American community. He plans to buy the stations from MMTC in 3-5 years.
KMFX (AM) Wabasha, MN currently WBHA (AM)
Alan Quarnstrom and Q Media Group purchased KMFX from MMTC in June. As part of the purchase price Q Media and MMTC allocated funds for the purpose of initiating and/or maintaining training programs targeted at women and minorities who wish to manage or otherwise participate in the operations of broadcasting stations, broadband systems or any other medium of mass communication. Q Media operates other stations.