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KERA sets new multimedia direction

Dallas, TX –

KERA announced new signature multiplatform initiatives today that build on the organization's nationally recognized and award-winning track record in the content areas of news and public affairs, Southwest programming, and children and families. The initiatives reflect KERA's goal to continue to find new ways to serve the North Texas community while its public service mission remains constant.

President and CEO Mary Anne Alhadeff believes KERA must be focused on its mission of serving North Texas communities with strong, local content on multimedia platforms. "Our members and users turn to us because they are life-long learners, and curious about the world around them. They want to know what is happening in their region, and KERA will help them understand that. One of my top priorities is to reach out to our communities and expand the financial support we need so we can bring them the best content possible," she said.

KERA is developing three major initiatives with a multiplatform approach:

- A new, mid-day talk show on radio with fresh twists to topics and format. The show will incorporate "Anything You Ever Wanted to Know," created by the late Glenn Mitchell, and will have latitude for experimentation on the Web and television. This spring KERA will conduct a national search for new talent to host the program.

- A Texas history series that will feature notable people, places and things, and reflect how history has shaped our region today. The format will incorporate profiles and interviews, and look at important events from the past. Content will be adapted for television, radio, Web and educational curriculum.

- An expansion of educational materials in math, literacy and parenting with new applications, such as interactive games, online courses and Internet forums.

The public broadcasting institution also repositioned its staffing and resources to be a more responsive multimedia organization. Staffing changes are a reflection of the industry-wide convergence of media, and KERA will consolidate content creation and distribution across platforms.

Alhadeff has streamlined the staff that directly reports to her by designating three positions to oversee content, operations and development. The positions of vice president for radio and vice president for communications were eliminated. Radio, television, Web, communications and education will come together under a new content division headed up by Sr. Vice President Sylvia Komatsu. Yolette Garcia, the former assistant radio station manager and news director, will assume the position of multimedia communications director, and supervise radio programming and communications.

Integration of finance, administration and operations will be the charge of Executive Vice President and COO Kevin Martin. In addition, a new position has been created and a search has been launched for a Sr. Vice President for Development, who will oversee all fundraising activities.

KERA's financial position is stable, due to strong investment earnings and tightly controlled expenses. The organization ends the second quarter with healthy cash balances and debt reduction. To enhance the funding and growth of all content, KERA also is exploring a variety of community partnerships.

Mary Anne Alhadeff assumed the position of President and CEO in October 2005. She is a 25-year veteran of public broadcasting with a background in production, programming and administration. She currently serves on the national PBS Board of Directors, where she chairs the Content Policy Committee and also serves on the Strategic Planning Advisory Group and the Editorial Standards Review Committee.