KUT Wraps Up Fall 2011 Membership Drive
AUSTIN, Texas—Oct. 5, 2011—KUT 90.5, community supported public radio, concluded its fall membership drive this morning by raising more than $900,000 to support local and national news, and uniquely Austin music programming.
“We are grateful that thousands of listeners—from Central Texas and beyond—choose to financially support the fact-based reporting, thoughtful analysis, music and cultural programming KUT provides,” said Stewart Vanderwilt, KUT director and general manager. “This is especially important as public radio faces new (pg. 114) challenges in Congress to control the programming on public radio.”
More than 6,000 individuals and businesses, 25 percent of whom chose to become sustaining members, contributed to the semi-annual membership drive, which began Sept. 27 and concluded at 9 a.m. today.
Sustaining members make a continuous monthly gift, which saves KUT thousands of dollars in postage, paper and administrative costs associated with renewal mailings. Sustaining members receive all the benefits of being a member, including access to special events and offers, and automatic entry into all KUT semi-annual membership drive drawings.
KUT Leadership and business members pooled their respective resources through e-mail and social media channels to create challenge grants totaling $80,000. Many of these individuals joined KUT staff in on-air fundraising including: Karen Bartoletti, Graves, Dougherty, Hearon and Moody; Ben Bentzin, McCombs School of Business; Rabbi Neil Blumofe, Congregation Agudas Achim; Boyce Cabiness, Graves, Dougherty, Hearon and Moody; Elizabeth Christian, Elizabeth Christian and Associates; Amy Cook, singer songwriter; Jim Cousar, Thompson and Knight, LLP; Sandy Dochen, IBM; Rodney Gibbs, Ricochet Labs; John Kunz, Waterloo Records; Kathleen Panoff, Texas Performing Arts; Evan Smith, The Texas Tribune; Mary Gordon Spence, speaker; and Bruce Todd, Bruce Todd Public Affairs; and Tyson Tuttle, Silicon Labs.
Signature thank-you gifts included tickets to see Ray Davies, Aretha Franklin, Dolly Parton and National and Local Natives, and a limited edition KUT Live Volume 11 CD featuring live performances in KUT Studio 1A from artists including: Marco Benevento, Edie Brickell, Dodos, Steve Earle, Robert Ellis, Fitz and the Tantrums, Michael Fracasso, Girl in a Coma, Grupo Fantasma, Junip, The Kills, Leatherbag, Motopony, The Octopus Project, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Willis Alan Ramsey, Raphael Saadiq, Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside, Steve Wynn & the Miracle 3, Trio, White Denim and The Wooden Birds.
Volunteers and the community at large played a significant role in the success of the fall membership drive. Nearly 250 volunteers, including Convio, Dell, Girlstart, JB Goodwin Realtors, Lexus of Austin and University United Methodist Church answered phones in the KUT pledge room. Nearly 40 local restaurants donated food and beverages for those volunteers.
KUT depends on individuals and businesses for 87 percent of its annual operating budget. One hundred percent of those contributions are used for direct programming and broadcasting expenses, such as maintaining a news bureau at the state capitol, reporting on Central Texas news and paying for programming such as “Morning Edition,” “This American Life,” “Fresh Air,” “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me” and “A Prairie Home Companion.”
About KUT Radio
For more than 50 years, KUT 90.5, listener-supported public radio from Austin, Texas, has striven to be the most trusted radio source for news and music in Central Texas. A founding member of NPR, KUT established a news department in 2002. Since then, KUT News has won more than 50 state, national and international awards for journalistic excellence. KUT is nationally known for playing a unique blend of handpicked, homegrown and uniquely Austin music. In summer 2012, KUT will complete the KUT Public Broadcast Center, which will demonstrate KUT’s work from the inside out, showcasing KUT as one of the most creative, exciting and community-focused public media organizations in the world.
Contact: Erin Geisler (512) 475-8071