Monday, September 19

4:30pm – 5:30pm

Newcomers Session

Come learn how to get the most of your first Content Conference from the PRPD Board of Directors.

5:30pm – 7:30pm

Opening Reception

PRPD and host stations KJZZ 91.5 and K-BACH 89.5 welcome you to Phoenix at the iconic bar and restaurant The Duce, "where pretty meets gritty and produce meets prohibition!" Housed in a 1928 warehouse that once anchored a bustling produce district, The Duce is one of Phoenix' most unique venues and just a few blocks from the conference hotel.  Sit at the original bar from Chicago’s Black Orchid Jazz Club. Enjoy a cocktail at the 1915 drug store soda fountain, and from scratch cooking using fresh ingredients made in a 1968 streamline camper. Great food, drinks and friends - the perfect way to kick off the 2016 Public Radio Content Conference!

Tuesday, September 20

8:30am – 9:30am

What does America think about us - if they think about us at all?

Good programmers strive to ensure that their stations deliver the most compelling content possible, but growth is driven by more than content. Brand strength, perceived image and position in the competitive environment matter. To that end, PRPD wanted to know - do non-users have negative perceptions of public radio or is there merely an awareness gap? Coleman Insights will present the findings of a study exclusively fielded for PRPD’s Content Conference to demonstrate the roles that market wide awareness and public radio’s brand images may play in the challenges public radio faces today.

Warren Kurtzman
President/Chief Operating Officer
Coleman Insights
Sam Milkman
Vice President
Coleman Insights
9:30am – 11:00am

State of the Public Radio Audience

After some frustrating years of down-flat, public radio's audience has seen a bit of an uptick. RRC’s Dave Sullivan will walk us through the numbers and we'll see how Spark, a surreal election cycle and that annoying Walking Dead cliffhanger may be impacting the national audience numbers.

Dave Sullivan
Manager, PPM Client Services
Radio Research Consortium
9:30am – 11:00am

Public Radio Tech Survey 8

Tracking public radio listeners as the media and technology world is roiled by change is a challenge and it is why PRPD and Jacobs Media have partnered for the 8th consecutive year to help stations better understand a changing audience.  PRTS8 is an expansive study that explains the shift to digital, including podcasting, mobile, and the connected car. Fred will use the data to talk about how this data can help better inform programming, marketing, and distribution strategies.

Fred Jacobs
President
Jacobs Media
11:15am – 12:15pm

Design Thinking for Radio

How do you transform a legacy broadcast property into a fresh product that also delights listeners in the digital space?  And how do you motivate your staff and management to chart a new path?  Studio 360 is in the midst of a major transformation.  At several steps along the way, the team has applied strategies used in design thinking (idea generation, analogous inspiration, rapid prototyping, team-building, and more).  In this session, Executive Producer Jenny Lawton presents the show’s work in progress – a case study in how to change course and inspire creativity, while maintaining a production sprint.

Jenny Lawton
Executive Producer
Studio 360
11:15am – 12:15pm

Creating a Digital Dashboard – Measuring Success for Music Stations.

Page views and sessions and shares, oh my! As more and more stations expand their content into the digital world, they find themselves awash in data and not always sure how to gauge their online successes. This session will explore how music stations are defining success in the world of sites, streams, podcasts and videos, while also sharing examples of what’s working best.

Moderator

Matt Abramovitz
Program Director
WQXR
Katie Simon
Senior Producer, Jazz Night in America
WBGO
Joe Eskola
Director, Audience Research & Insights
American Public Media/Minnesota Public Radio
Bryan Lowe
Program Director
KING-FM
11:15am – 12:15pm

Strategic Communications for Content Leaders

The rise of social media has changed how stations approach programming change.  While many of the old tactics still work, making change is much more complicated than it used to be. In this session we’ll hear from an expert in strategic communication about how to update your practices in communicating change.

John Martin McDonald
Caeli Communications
11:15am – 12:15pm

Growing the Next Generation of Editors

Editors make or break your stories. They can also be teachers, innovators, and even visionaries. Without good editors, newsrooms lose relevance, creativity, staff and audience. In other words, editors are the future of your stations and our network. And yet, public radio - and journalism at-large -- has not done enough to invest in editing. How can we find, cultivate and retain editors who can shape not only daily coverage but public radio’s future sound(s)? And how should we define the craft of editing in 2016 -- when our industry is changing so rapidly?

Moderator

Alison MacAdam
Senior Editorial Specialist
NPR Training Team
Ben Calhoun
VP of Content and Programming
WBEZ
Andi McDaniel
Senior Director of Content & News
WAMU
Phyllis Fletcher
Managing Editor
Northwest News Network
2:15pm – 3:15pm

The BBC's Insight on Millennials

BBC World Service English radio has a growing audience of 66 million worldwide, and the average age of the BBC World Service listener is 34 – much younger than the average public radio listener in the U.S. In her role as controller of BBC World Service English, Mary Hockaday is driving forward a radio and digital strategy to continue reaching new and younger audiences that are hungry for impartial, contemporary, global journalism. Hockaday will give us a dynamic view of what the BBC has learned from recent global research on Millennials and what they are doing to grow younger audiences.

Mary Hockaday
Controller
BBC World Service English
3:30pm – 4:30pm

Team #pubmedia Millennial

The media landscape is changing and so are the expectations of those consuming and creating content. We hear a lot about millennials, but too often actual millennials aren’t part of the conversation.  In this roundtable session a group of millennials will discuss the opportunities and challenges they’ve faced working in the public media sphere.  They’ll talk about fostering talent development as well providing perspective on how the panelists consume news and where they look for inspiration to navigate the challenge of attracting younger, diverse audiences to their work.

Moderator

Tayla Burney
Producer
WAMU
Emma Silvers
Writer/Producer
KQED
Marlon Bishop
Senior Producer
Latino USA
Casey Morell
Coordinating Producer
KNPR
3:30pm – 4:30pm

Stationality Beyond Stations

You've got your radio signal, your website, NPR One, podcasts, and your community events. So what does "stationality" look like when you're programming more than just a terrestrial radio station? We'll talk about how you consistently communicate what's unique about your service across platforms even when they reach very different audiences.

Moderator

Tamar Charney
Local Editorial Lead
NPR One
Joey Caroni
Digital Director
KCRW
Zoe Clark
Interim Program Director
Michigan Radio
Tom Michael
Executive Director/General Manager
Boise State Radio
3:30pm – 4:30pm

Strategies for Managing Breaking News

Whether it’s a natural disaster, an active shooter or some other kind of major news event in your local market – more and more public radio newsroom of all sizes are finding themselves in a position to report on breaking news – and fast. This session presents basic strategies program directors and news managers can follow to deliver relevant content that listeners will expect and depend on.

Terry Gildea
President / News Director
PRNDI / KUER
Matt Shafer Powell
News Director
WUOT
Jeff Ramirez
VP for Radio
KERA
3:30pm – 4:30pm

It's Not as Easy as It Sounds

What sets us apart from all the other content options out there?  Top talent, engaging hosts, unique personalities. How do you develop those personalities? There’s an art to coaching great talent.  In this session learn how to work with talent, gain their trust and nurture their abilities so they can be engaged while they strive to engage your listeners. 

Julie Amacher
Programming Director
Classical 24 and MPR
Jim McGuinn
Program Director
The Current, MPR
Marge Ostroushko
President
Launch Productions

Wednesday, September 21

9:00am – 10:30am

The Next Platform: Public Media, Public Convener

AIR's Localore: Finding America teams of independent producers and public media stations have focused on creating new, multimedia models in markets large and small. We’ll experience what has emerged from 15 local story productions focusing on engagement in neighborhoods where public media struggles to reach. Watch, listen, and be inspired by stories made with and for the community and join the teams in breakout sessions throughout the day.

Sue Schardt
Executive Director
AIR
Adriana Gallardo
Localore: Finding America Network Manager
AIR
Andi McDaniel
Senior Director of Content & News
WAMU
10:45am – 11:45am

Major Market: Disaster Ahead? How to Turn the Titanic

In this set of breakout sessions, AIR and the Finding America team will help you take what they’ve learned and translate it into action for your station.

A great challenge in this environment is how to tap into our most creative talent to create effective experimentation in an environment where the stations are fully consumed with day-to-day operations.

10:45am – 11:45am

Middle Market: Forging $mart Partnerships

In this set of breakout sessions, AIR and the Finding America team will help you take what they’ve learned and translate it into action for your station.

It’s hard to reach fresh audiences and raise new money -- but you don’t have to do it alone. $mart collaboration builds partnerships with people and organizations that are committed to the work and audiences your station needs. (Pro tip: Some of your best partners can be found in your newsroom.)

10:45am – 11:45am

Small Market: Innovation you can afford

In this set of breakout sessions, AIR and the Finding America team will help you take what they’ve learned and translate it into action for your station.

Smart partnerships can fill in the cash gap. Experienced public media journalists talk about how working with freelancers, indies and the community can help station leaders extend and diversify their resources.

10:45am – 11:45pm

Growing, Growing, Keep Going – The Practice of Audience Building

Reversing a years long trend, public radio news stations have been growing though most of 2016. All that, and peak election listening is still ahead of us if we adopt audience building as an on-going practice.  The Spark project helped set a new normal for promotion, and there’s more to be done to keep the hard won gains, while applying what we’ve learned across platforms.  NPR and stations will discuss some of those lessons, opportunities for sustaining listening through the election and beyond, and what's involved in creating a new culture of optimism.

Izzi Smith
Sr. Director of Promotions and Audience
NPR
Alan Feldenkris
Executive Director of Marketing and Branding
NPR
Ben Calhoun
VP of Content and Programming
WBEZ
10:45am – 11:45am

Classical Radio Marketing & Branding

Is it worth investing precious dollars in a marketing campaign? Hear from stations leaders who have launched campaigns that are building audiences and boosting ratings. This session provides examples of what’s working outdoors and online, and explores the power of clear branding and positioning.

Moderator

Wende Persons
Managing Director
Classical Music Rising
Jack Allen
All Classical Portland
Frank Dominguez
WDAV/Charlotte
Daniel Gilliam
WUOL/Louisville
Bill Lueth
President
KDFC
Scott Williams
KBAQ/Phoenix
2:00pm – 3:45pm

Keynote: Ira Glass

Ira Glass
Creator and Host
This American Life
4:00pm – 5:30pm

News/Talk Format Group Meeting

Moderator

Todd Mundt
Producer
Here & Now
4:00pm – 5:30pm

Classical Format Group Meeting

Moderators

Matt Abramovitz
Program Director
WQXR
Bill Lueth
President
KDFC
4:00pm – 5:30pm

AAA Format Group

Moderator

Jim McGuinn
Program Director
The Current
4:00pm – 5:30pm

Jazz Format Group

Moderator

Marcellus Shepard
Program Director/Music Director
WEAA

Thursday, September 22

8:15am – 9:45am

The 2016 Tune-up: Leadership for today's needs and tomorrow's opportunities

Learned, lived and taught. Alchemical and inspirational. Applied discipline and core skill development. Non-profit leadership in 2016 is all of these things. More than ever, a baseline leadership requirement includes the ability to consistently and continually advance an agenda no matter the circumstances. In this session produced by WNYC's Werk It Festival, you will hear cross section of leaders will walk us through the ways they are attacking the future.

Kristen Muller
Head of Content Innovation
KPCC
Paula Szuchman
Vice President, On-Demand Content
WNYC
Jennifer Keeney Sendrow
Executive Producer, The Greene Space + Multiplatform Content
WNYC
Kerri Hoffman
CEO
PRX
Goli Sheikholeslami
President/CEO
Chicago Public Media
10:00am – 11:15am

Steal these ideas: Building Audience on Digital

Audience development on digital used to be a crap shoot. Stations would try something to see what sticks. These days, it is possible to be much more sophisticated about growing audience on digital. In this session, we’ll hear from stations that are having above-average success and figure out what they are doing right. You’ll see examples from stations that lead in overall growth, audience engagement, and on-demand usage based on a blind data sort by NPR Digital Services. One of the key threads that runs through each example is the importance of good content management and strategic focus. And the lessons learned will be applicable to stations of all sizes. Be prepared to get valuable tips you can take back to your station.

Moderator

Michael Arnold
Associate Director/Director of Content
Wisconsin Public Radio
Steve Mulder
Senior Director of Audience Insights
NPR
Tammy Terwelp
GM
KRCC
David Brower
Program Director
WUNC
10:00am – 11:15am

Engagement: The Missing Link Between Editorial and Membership

Jennifer Brandel has been exploring ways to bring audiences into content decisions for years. Last year she launched Hearken, a model and supporting technology for enabling audience engagement at every point of the editorial process. In this session, Brandel will convene a panel of newsrooms using this audience-first approach and walk through, step by step, how engagement can lead to higher-performing content and attracting more members. It turns out, you don’t have to choose between your mission and the metrics. (Also, you don’t have to use Hearken to benefit from and use these same approaches!

Jennifer Brandel
Founder/CEO
Hearken
Brendan Sweeney
Managing Producer, New Content & Innovation
WAMU
Emily McCord
News Director
WFDD
10:00am – 11:15am

Podcasting by the Numbers

Larry Rosin will present surprising information from Edison’s studies about Podcasting including special findings among public radio users.

Larry Rosin
President
Edison Research
10:00am – 11:15am

Anatomy of an Episode

Kelsey Padgett of Radiolab and More Perfect takes us on the roller coaster ride that goes into making compelling, entertaining audio. What does it take to make a fully realized segment? How many drafts are too many? And why are editors so hard on you? (Spoiler: It’s because they love you.)

Kelsey Padgett
Producer/Reporter
Radiolab
10:00am – 11:15am

KPLU: Lessons Learned From An Existential Crisis

Last November, KPLU’s owner Pacific Lutheran University announced that it was selling the license to University of Washington owned KUOW in Seattle. The announcement sent shockwaves throughout the region and all of public radio, and it seemed certain that most of the KPLU staff would lose their jobs. Then something surprising happened: The community rose up and demanded a chance to raise the money to buy the station as a community licensee. What happened next is a tale of hyper community engagement that resulted in a successful fundraising effort: $8.5 million in four and half months. KPLU is now independent KNKX. Come hear about their lessons learned and how you can apply them to your station (even if you aren’t facing an existential crisis).

Matt Martinez
Chief Content Officer
KNKX
1:45pm – 3:00pm

Digital Leadership – Choices, Priorities, and Resources

Public media audiences are exploring new digital services at a rate that makes it hard to keep up.  When potential seems everywhere, savvy leadership becomes critical.  NPR’s Tom Hjelm and WBUR’s John Davidow take us through a conversation about defining the digital value proposition for ourselves and users, making choices about when to complement and when to compete with existing services, and thoughts on the alignment of national and station-based digital strategies.  KNKX/Seattle’s Matt Martinez will guide a discussion that begins with vision but gets real about resources and priorities, and where we should be placing our bets.

Moderator

Matt Martinez
Chief Content Officer
KNKX
Tom Hjelm
Chief Digital Officer
NPR
John Davidow
Managing Director, Digital
WBUR
3:15pm – 3:30pm

PRPD Membership Meeting

3:30pm – 4:30pm

An Election Like No Other

The 2016 presidential election poses challenges for journalists and stations covering local and national elections. Facts and statistics have taken a back seat to opinion and tweets. Join veteran journalists to discuss how to cover the election and the incoming president and local officials in a time changing norms in politics.

Moderator

Todd Zwillich
Washington Correspondent
The Takeaway
Larry Rosin
President
Edison Research
Terence W. Shepherd
News Director
WLRN-Miami Herald News
Kevin Dale
Executive Editor Cronkite News
Arizona PBS