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BPR Community Forum meets virtually February 22, 2022

The next virtual meeting of the BPR Community Forum is scheduled for Tuesday February 22, 6:00-7:30 PM via Zoom. BPR will welcome new Forum members, share station updates and discuss working group ideas and priorities for 2022. Learn about our all our Forum members here.

The Blue Ridge Public Radio Community Forum is a volunteer group that provides input to BPR about programming, public service and community engagement. The members of the Forum represent different backgrounds, geographic regions, and needs and interests of the communities Blue Ridge Public Radio serves.

The BPR Community Forum is an advisory committee, which is not involved directly in the station's daily management or operations. Forum members learn about public radio, meet Blue Ridge Public Radio staff members, and have regular communication with the station about how to strengthen our service to local communities.  

The public is invited to attend and observe Community Forum meetings. For more information, please contact Catherine Komp by Wednesday February 16th, 2022 by emailing ckomp@bpr.org or calling 828.210.4830 to register for the Zoom meeting. 

Community Forum Meeting
Tuesday February 22, 2022
6:00-7:30 PM – Zoom 


Station Updates - 30 minutes

Welcome - 5 Minutes (Catherine Komp)

As people arrive, introduce yourself in chat and share a recent news or culture story from any media organization that was valuable to you.

Community Forum Overview - 5 Minutes (Catherine Komp)

What is the purpose of the Community Forum? How has BPR’s Community Forum evolved?

Community Forum Diversity Update - 5 Minutes (Steering Committee member Rick Devereaux)

Community Forum Evolution & Working Group Structure - 5 Minutes (Outgoing Steering Committee member John Wood)

Community Forum Board Member Liaison - 5 Minutes (BPR Board Vice Chair Travis Childs)

Interim CEO Intro/Update - 5 Minutes (Mark Vogelzang)

Questions - 5 minutes (15 minutes at end for more questions)

Breakout Sessions - Working Groups - 20 Minutes 

(See Working Group summaries below)

Working Groups Debrief – 15 Minutes

General Q&A –15 minutes


Working Group meetings will occur monthly. Next full Community Forum meeting will be in May or June.

Working Groups Overview

Listening Session Working Group (2/22 Facilitator John Wood)

As part of BPR’s strategic plan and commitment to better serve communities in WNC, we would like to expand community listening. Community listening can take the form of virtual or in-person guided discussions as well as surveys and questionnaires. We’d like this working group to plan a small listening session of 6-10 people from an audience we’re not currently reaching. (BPR’s current audience is majority 55+, white and middle class to affluent.) The goal is to find out what’s important to them, their family and community; what’s not being covered; and how media and news could better serve them. The working group reviews the input and synthesizes it for BPR staff. The Listening Session Working Group also uses their experience with the pilot listening session to create a “Listening Toolkit” for staff and volunteers to use with other groups.

Prompt for breakout group discussion: What topics or target audiences come to mind for listening sessions? What data could help prioritize that list? If you’ve participated in a listening session, what went well? What could have been improved?

Expanding Audience Working Group (2/22 Facilitators: Travis Childs and Catherine Komp)

This working group will begin by providing input on current programming (music and news), sharing and reviewing new programming to consider, and developing a list of potential local voices missing from BPR’s airwaves (both general and specific). This working group may be tapped to review past programming to provide feedback and insights on what might be missing from coverage. The Expanding Audience Working Group may also review listening session materials to help inform their recommendations on programming and information needs of the community.

Prompt for breakout group discussion: When do you listen to BPR? When do you turn to other media for information? What gaps do you see in the programming BPR offers?

Reimagining Radio What Radio Can Be (Facilitator: Rick Devereaux) 

While BPR’s largest audience is currently those who listen on the radio, we know there are many, many other ways to reach and engage with community members. This Working Group will provide feedback on some of those traditional platforms (BPR’s website, social media, mobile app), while also dreaming up new ways of gathering and distributing content.

Prompt for breakout group discussion: How do you receive BPR content? What are some other, non-broadcast ways BPR could more penetrate and engage the community? Can you think of ways BPR could “crowd-source” its journalism?

Catherine Komp joined Blue Ridge Public Radio in September 2020 as the organization’s first Director of Content, leading BPR’s talented team of local journalists and content creators, overseeing national programming and facilitating collaborations and engagement initiatives.