KNOM Radio Mission, 2013: Twelve Snapshots
The KNOM newsroom has an extra “newsie” for a few days: Janice Homekingkeo, a college student whose hometown, Koyuk (COY-uck), Alaska, is within KNOM’s listening range. Janice shadows news director Laureli Kinneen, learning about the daily duties of a busy radio newsroom; she records daytime weather reports and, on her last day, anchors a newscast.
Construction crews work through Nome’s deep-winter temperatures to build the floor of our digital studios annex. Meanwhile, KNOM volunteer alumnus Ben Matheson is back in the station for a week. With our volunteer crew, all of whom are in their first year of service, Ben helps report on the Norton Sound 450 sled dog race.
Former news director and current board member Paul Korchin volunteers many hours to help us with the hectic March “race season” in Western Alaska: the Nome-Golovin Snowmachine (or Snowmobile) Race and the world-famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Also this month, work continues on our digital studios; a roof now sits above the nascent structure.
KNOM receives the coveted Crystal Heritage Award – a special distinction recognizing “long-term commitment to community service” – from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). In a ceremony at the annual NAB Show, general manager Ric Schmidt shares this great honor with all the members of our KNOM family and Western Alaska community.
Bob Froehle – deacon at Nome’s St. Joseph Catholic Church and secretary of KNOM’s board of directors – is waylaid in remote Little Diomede, Alaska for several days. Deacon Bob travels to the Bering Strait community to preside at a funeral; harsh weather prevents his immediate return. (Travel delays like this are common in rural Alaska, even in late spring.)
On select days this month, Sister Alice Sullivan – part of the community of nuns at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Nome – joins the KNOM Morning Show to talk about ornithology. Sr. Alice is an expert birder, and her special tips are very timely, since Nome, one of the best sights for bird-watching in the world, sees its bird migrations peak in early summer.
Volunteer producers and Morning Show hosts Lucus Keppel and Dayneé Rosales receive four Communicator Awards from the International Academy of the Visual Arts (IAVA). The awards honor their radio “spots,” or PSAs, as well as a recurring nutrition segment on the Morning Show and a Christmastime radio drama that the two created from scratch.
It’s a busy season of departures and arrivals for our volunteers. After finishing their service years, 2012-2013 volunteers Josh Cunningham, Eva DeLappe, and Margaret DeMaioribus (pictured) depart for the Lower 48. Meanwhile, we welcome 2013-2014 volunteers Zachariah Hughes, Emily Bieniek, Anna Rose MacArthur, and Tara Cicatello.
Supporters Tom and Marian Braun (pictured) spend two weeks at KNOM to help with renovation projects. Labor continues, also, on our studio annex, which is now ready for interior work. Volunteer Lucus Keppel departs at the end of his service term. In the Static, we report on a fruitful volunteer trip to Gambell, Alaska and a rare killer whale sighting in Nome.
KNOM launches a re-designed, mobile-device-friendly version of its website, knom.org. In the Static, we report on the pending completion of the application for our FCC broadcast license renewal; it’s required once every eight years. We also report on volunteers Emily Bieniek and Dayneé Rosales traveling to the village of Wales for a music festival.
Our newsletter this month showcases the incredible trip to Chukotka – a far-eastern region of Russia – taken by news director Laureli Kinneen. Her travels allow Laureli to send reports back to KNOM’s listeners on the Beringia Days International Conference, a gathering that brings together cultural representatives from both sides of the Bering Strait.
In the Static, we report that Father Armand Nigro, SJ is now our Spiritual Advisor Emeritus; pictured is general manager Ric Schmidt, presenting Fr. Armand with a plaque recognizing his service and new title. (Our mission will have a new spiritual advisor, Father Mark Hoelsken, SJ, as of 2014.) On Christmas Day, KNOM broadcasts Mass to thousands of listeners.
This article is part of the Year-End 2013 edition of our newsletter,
The Nome Static.
Read more articles from this issue (Year-End 2013)