Written by: Tom Rieland
Date: July 2, 2010

By now, many of you interested in public radio and WOSU in particular have heard of WOSU’s acquisition of 101.1 FM. If not, access the WOSU Press Release for more information. This is about listening to our membership and having the rare opportunity to find a way to serve their desires. We know the performing arts in this community are under stress, but we are convinced a strong, locally based, talent filled classical music station that is 24/7 will not only serve the needs of listeners, but bring more people to local performances and build a greater appreciation for all the performing arts in Columbus — from the Opera to the Symphony to the Ballet to the Jazz Orchestra. And, we’ll not just be premiering Classical 101 FM in Columbus soon, but also bringing online an all classical station, WOSB in Marion at 91.1 FM to serve the northern part of the Columbus market.

We also believe a journalistically sound local and NPR news station that is 24/7 on the FM band can serve this community with international, national, state and local news better than any other radio station in central Ohio. Of course, we are doing that already on WOSU AM, but now more people will have access to WOSU’s news and talk programming at 89.7 FM.

A passionate team of folks at WOSU, Ohio State and the community, along with advisors from well outside this community, from Denver to D.C., made this historic purchase possible.

WOSU radio came into existence in 1922 as one of the first educational radio stations in America. FM came on the air in 1949, even though there were few FM radios until the 1960s. WOSU added regional stations in an impressive partnership with four Ohio communities in the early 1990s…and now, in 2010, a new station is part of our network.

More to come about our programming plans soon. So far, the reaction from listeners has been extremely positive and, since we have a few months before the switch to all news and all classical, we have time to work through any concerns.

Finally, my deepest thanks go to our leadership at WOSU and to President Gee, Tom Katzenmeyer and Geoffrey Chatas at Ohio State, who so believed in our plan that they supported it from day one! We believe the greater Columbus community will support these efforts as well. As WOSU supporter and local performing artist, Christine Mortine says “This is Wonderful…Lucky Columbus.”