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National Public Radio — NPR — was born when America’s commercial news business was all grown up and powerful. Now, commercial news is struggling. And NPR is bigger than ever. Fast Company magazine calls NPR “The country’s brainiest, brawniest news-gathering giant.” Says it may end up “saving the news.” That’s a tall order.
In January, Vivian Schiller took over as the brand new president and CEO of NPR. She’s looking at record numbers of listeners, a huge responsibility as newspapers cut back, and challenges of her own at NPR.
This hour, On Point: NPR chief Vivian Schiller on the future of public radio.
You can join the conversation. Why do you think NPR’s audience numbers are up when other news media are on life support? What’s your question for NPR’s new chief on the way ahead?
Vivian Schiller joins us from Washington, D.C. She came to NPR as president and CEO on January 5, 2009, arriving from The New York Times Company, where she was senior vice president and general manager of NYTimes.com. Before joining The Times, she spent four years as senior vice president and general manager of the Discovery Times Channel. She has also served as senior vice president of CNN Productions.
Schiller spoke last month at the National Press Club. Watch the video here.
At the Integrated Media Association's Public Media conference in February, Schiller and NPR senior VP Kinsey Wilson talked about the role of local stations in covering their communities.
Here's the Fast Company article, "Will NPR Save the News?" The tease: "The most successful hybrid of old and new media comes from the last place you'd expect. How NPR's digital smarts, nonprofit structure, and good old-fashioned shoe leather just might save the news."
And The Washington Post's Paul Farhi reported on NPR's record ratings last month.
This program aired on April 14, 2009.
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