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CPB Awards Journalism Grant to Louisville Public Media, Six Other Stations

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Seven public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia, led by Louisville Public Media, have been awarded a $445,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to establish an Ohio River regional journalism collaboration.

The Ohio River Network will produce hard-hitting, high-quality multimedia journalism that examines the region’s economy, energy, environment, agriculture, infrastructure and health. The CPB grant will support the hiring of eight journalists at the seven partner media outlets for two years, with station support continuing in outlying years.

“CPB is pleased to support this historic collaboration among public media stations in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia,” said Bruce Theriault, CPB senior vice president, journalism and radio. “By working together, these stations can ensure that important stories from this underreported area are told locally, regionally, and nationally. The sum is indeed greater than the parts.”

Louisville Public Media will lead the news operation and house the project’s managing editor and data journalist. Partner radio and television stations are WEKU in Richmond and Lexington, Ky. (radio), WKU in Bowling Green, Ky. (radio and TV), WMMT/Appalshop in Whitesburg, Ky. (radio and multimedia), WKMS in Murray, Ky. (radio), West Virginia Public Broadcasting (radio and TV), and WOUB in Athens, Ohio (radio and TV).

“I am convinced that collaborations such as this are the future of journalism,” said Donovan Reynolds, president and general manager, Louisville Public Media. “Working together, we can produce and sustain the quality journalism that is required to identify the serious issues we have in common and the opportunities to build a better future for everyone in our region.”

The group will produce journalism for partner stations and collaborate with national programs, including PBS NewsHour, Frontline, Marketplace, Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and other public media outlets such as WFPL’s Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. The collaboration will produce daily reporting, investigations, long-form narrative pieces and documentaries.