Seattle’s KPLU meets $7M fundraising goal, avoiding sale

Image courtesy of KPLU.
Image courtesy of KPLU.

A public radio station based in Seattle and serving the Puget Sound Region announced Thursday it has raised enough money to stay on air.

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In November, Pacific Lutheran University announced it would sell the licence for KPLU 88.5 FM to another public radio station in the area owned by the University of Washington. But as the station’s General Manager Joey Cohn told listeners, donations from 24,103 individuals and businesses raised enough money to buy the licence instead.

“I am very excited to announce today that we reached our goal of $7 million dollars,” Cohn said to raucous applause.

Supporters formed the Friends of 88.5 FM group which is negotiating the terms of the sale. A final purchase still has to be worked out with PLU and receive FCC approval. Cohn estimates it will be September or October before KPLU becomes its own independent, community licensed radio station.

Several KPLU staff are former members of the Alaska Public Radio Network–reporters Gabriel Spitzer and Ashley Gross, as well as producer Ariel Van Cleave and afternoon host Ed Ronco.


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Zachariah Hughes reports on city & state politics, arts & culture, drugs, and military affairs in Anchorage and South Central Alaska. @ZachHughesAK About Zachariah