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MTPR Fall Funding Update

I tell anyone who asks that I have the best job on the planet. I not only have the privilege of steering Montana Public Radio into its 51st year, I also have the partnership of thousands of deeply engaged listeners - helping, donating, and rooting for our station’s success.

MTPR embarked on this year with the intention of sharing our experience with you. We started by letting you know the full financial picture, and we continue with a commitment to more communication.

If you receive our email newsletter (you can subscribe here), look for a new monthly online article from “Inside MTPR” that shares our successes and struggles in bringing public radio to you. For those who prefer paper mail, I will send a quarterly progress letter.

I’m pleased to announce that Dave Dennis has joined MTPR as our Corporate Support Manager. Dave brings strong skills from a career in media sales and public radio corporate support. With Dave onboard, I feel confident that we can sustain sponsorship revenue this year and be poised for growth in sponsorship for 2016 and beyond.

There is significant progress to report on MTPR’s 2015 revenue goal of $1.5 million from listeners and sponsors. I’m happy to say we have received 61 percent of the goal in donations and pledges. We can safely project another 12 percent from sponsors. The final 27 percent ($423,592) must come from listener donations by year’s end.

Frankly, the station cannot afford another year in the red. If MTPR finishes 2015 in deficit, we will have to make deep and unwanted reductions in staff and programming. The support MTPR receives now through December is critically important to the future of the station. 

We began this year with several months of financial analysis and six regional listeners meetings. We mapped out a five-year plan for member and sponsor revenue for 2015-2020, taking into account the termination of the federal grant program for our transmitters and the downward trend in our University funding. We talked to many listeners and considered the years of investment from thousands of donors which enabled MTPR to grow and expand. MTPR donors have provided ever increasing financial support through our first 50 years. Finally, we presented you with the new paradigm of larger goals for listener support, this year and into the future.

Just like it always has been, the future of MTPR is in your hands.

MTPR Interim Director, Linda Talbott

MTPR is not just the station staff or the programs we broadcast. MTPR is all of us. We are idealists who believe that broadcasting has a higher purpose. We are active listeners, driven to explore and experience news and music in the way only public radio provides. We are sustained by a deep commitment to public radio values, innovative local programming and strong national partnerships.

Thank you for your commitment to intelligent broadcasting.

Let’s keep MTPR strong and thriving into the next 50 years.

Linda Talbott, Interim Director, Montana Public Radio.

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