Wednesday, October 19, 2011

WVTF Expands Audience Base Again With Purchase

That's your favorite editor with News Director Connie Stevens cutting an essay.
WVTF Public Radio in Roanoke is continuing its dramatic expansion, this time with an acquisition that will allow it to serve Spotsylvania County and Fredericksburg. WVTF has received permission from the Federal Communications Commission to acquire WHMM, following a purchase agreement with Mariamante Academy in Northern Virginia to buy the construction permit for a 2,500 watt full-power station at 88.3 FM. It will be the only NPR service available in those communities.

The new station will broadcast the same RADIO IQ programming heard in Charlottesville and Richmond. RADIO IQ was introduced in 2003 as an addition to the WVTF Public Radio offerings and was first broadcast in Blacksburg on 1260 AM.

Right here I'll mention that though I get no money from WVTF, I have been a regular essay contributor to the station for 20 years and am an unabashed supporter. I especially approve of the way the station is moving hard at solidifying its economic base with these expansions as government money dries up. I have rarely heard WVTF complain about declining government dollars. It has generally adjusted well by increasing fund-raising activity and expanding its base, as it is doing here.

According to a WVTF press release: 

This will be the ninth full-power station owned by WVTF and will expand coverage beyond Charlottesville to serve an important and growing region of the commonwealth. Fredericksburg is halfway between Richmond and Washington, D.C., giving RADIO IQ the opportunity to serve communities along portions of the Interstate 95 corridor as well as throughout the entire Spotsylvania County region.

“Along with many commuters, the new signal will cover approximately 150,000 more residents than RADIO IQ serves and will be an important component of the RADIO IQ mission to serve Virginians with intelligent, significant, and valuable radio program content," says WVTF General Manager Glenn Gleixner. "It will take a few months to build the new signal, but we plan to have the station on the air before the end of the year. We will offer the same program schedule heard on 88.5 FM in Charlottesville and 92.5 FM in Richmond.”

News of the acquisition comes on the heels of the announcement of the new RADIO IQ 88.7 FM in Lexington which went on the air on July 12, 2011. RADIO IQ 88.7 FM serves Buena Vista, Craigsville, Glasgow, Lexington, and the Interstate 81 corridor in Rockbridge County and northern Botetourt County of Virginia with the region's only all news public radio service. In late summer 2010, RADIO IQ also went on the air in Richmond on 92.5 FM.

Corporate underwriting support and individual contributions have increased along with the addition of RADIO IQ and its growing number of broadcast signals, says Gleixner.

“We added an additional underwriting specialist position working from our Charlottesville office to serve the growing number of companies who are attracted to our extended reach throughout Virginia and portions of North Carolina and West Virginia,” says Gleixner.

Once the Fredericksburg/Spotsylvania station signs on, WVTF Public Radio and RADIO IQ will reach an estimated population of 1.4 million.The new Fredericksburg/Spotsylvania station can expect to attract corporate support from as far north as Washington and Maryland.


  1. Radio IQ is fantastic. I'm very pleased that more will get the opportunity to tune in.

  2. Everything is very open and very clear explanation of issues. Agreements