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Pacifica fundraising report

November 22, 2002
Pacifica Radio Release

Contact: danc@pacifica.org

Pacifica Radio Posts Third Straight Record Fund-Raising Drive Listeners Respond to Independent Coverage on War, Civil Liberties

WASHINGTON, DC (Nov. 22) – The five-station Pacifica Radio network recorded its third consecutive record fundraising drive this fall, posting large gains at its California and Texas stations, Pacifica announced today.

Led by the network’s flagship station 94.1FM in Berkeley, California, which raised more than one million dollars in on-air pledges for the first time in its 53-year history, Pacifica raised a total of $3.6 million in on-air pledges nationwide this fall.

"Listeners are responding to Pacifica’s independent and critical coverage of the drive toward war against Iraq, the restriction on civil liberties, and the economic crisis,” said Pacifica Executive Director Dan Coughlin.

Listeners at Pacifica station KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles pledged a record $820,000, up from $534,000 last October. WBAI 99.5 FM in New York posted its second one million dollar fundraiser this year and Pacifica station WPFW 89.3FM in Washington, DC, raised some $385,000 during its fall drive. Pacifica station KPFT 90.1FM in Houston blew by its fund-drive goal of $300,000, posting $354,000 in on-air pledges.

The record fall fund-drive concludes the largest and most sustained year of fundraising in the network’s history. Total on-air pledges reached $10.2 million in 2002.

The pledges come at a critical time in the Pacifica’s history. The network is still reeling from a spending spree by a previous national board and executive leadership that left the network on the verge of bankruptcy. Following legal action, and nationwide street protests, a settlement in December 2001 ushered in a new interim board of directors committed to restoring fiscal accountability, deepening the network's peace and social justice mission, and initiating a process of listener elections for democratic governance.

But the reform leadership inherited a staggering deficit of $4.8 million and faced a projected budget gap of $1.5 million. The network initiated a series of sharp cuts, mostly at the national level, and then launched a sustained nationwide campaign of fundraising. Those actions and others reduced Pacifica’s debt to some $1.5 million, all of it due to claims from law, PR and security firms hired by the previous board.

The network’s annual operating budget for the fiscal year ending Sept. 31, 2003, is $12.6 million.


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