As the election season kicks off, the “America Amplified: Election 2020” initiative, led by KCUR 89.3 in Kansas City, is pleased to announce the eight public media networks that will produce innovative journalism from community engagement efforts. Louisville Public Media’s Ohio Valley Resource is excited to be one of them.
Each of these collaborations will receive funding from the initiative, which is supported by a $1.9 million grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The networks and their commitments to “America Amplified” are as follows:
- Ohio Valley ReSource: Connecting rural communities online and in person through events and web-based outreach.
- StateImpact Pennsylvania: Working with Keystone Crossroads to embed seven reporters in Pennsylvania communities underrepresented in local media.
- Side Effects Public Media: Building engagement strategies around health issues, with a Midwest emphasis.
- Mountain West News Bureau: Organizing various initiatives to listen to the concerns of underrepresented rural, Latinx and Indigenous communities along the region’s Great Divide.
- I-4 Votes: Engaging non-voters and underrepresented communities along the Interstate 4 corridor, from Tampa to Orlando to Daytona Beach, Florida.
- New England News Collaborative: Reimagining how talk shows can reflect the concerns of communities.
- Harvest Public Media: Rethinking how we listen to and report on rural communities across the Midwest and Great Plains.
- WABE, Atlanta, Georgia: Using community engagement to strengthen relationships with and understanding of issues important to diverse women voters in the South.
The partner public radio stations will collaborate to gather data and engage communities in a variety of ways, including through listening events, public forums, texting clubs and social media. The stations will share insights, stories and content with national broadcast collaborators such as NPR, PBS, the BBC and podcast producers.
“We’re excited to see how these efforts will change the reporting narrative in the election 2020 season,” said Donna Vestal, managing director of the initiative. “Plus, we’ll be sharing what we learn far and wide.”
“We are thrilled to be part of this exciting new approach to election year coverage,” OVR Managing Editor Jeff Young said. “The Ohio Valley ReSource has helped to add reporters in some underserved portions of the region and now we will have additional ways to listen to and learn from those communities we serve.”
“America Amplified: Election 2020” is also pleased to announce that it is partnering with The Public Agenda/USA Today Hidden Common Ground Initiative, which is exploring where Americans stand on critical issues of the day through original research and creative communications. Through this partnership, “America Amplified” will explore how Americans across the country find themselves united and/or divided.
A team of seven is leading “America Amplified: Election 2020,” which aims to strengthen collaboration within public media, build trust in local journalism and deepen understanding of America’s needs and aspirations.
The team comprises Donna Vestal, Alisa Barba, Jennifer Tufts, Kathy Lu, Andrea Tudhope, Matthew Long-Middleton and Ann Alquist, who is on loan from The Public’s Radio in Rhode Island.