Berkeley-15 days after being seated, the 2017 Pacifica National Board finally threw off the shackles of the previous board, refusing to concede to an imperial order from 2016 officers Adriana Casenave and Janet Kobren to unilaterally adjourn the February 10 meeting without conducting any business. The expired officers got on the phone call, established a quorum was present, and then claimed the previous year’s officers had to “approve the meeting in advance” and therefore the meeting was to be adjourned without any vote. The ploy didn’t work and a quorum of the board remained on the call after half a dozen Siegel/Brazonites hung up, passing several motions and then moving on to an executive session. Quorum was re-established in the closed session and the 2017 board made a change in the interim executive director position, relieving former board member Lydia Brazon of the position and appointing Houston listener rep Bill Crosier, pending the hire of a permanent executive director. A 20-minute summary reel of the open session of the meeting can be heard here. The meeting notice can be seen here. Continue reading 2017 Board Finally Shows Up
Update: As of 11/17, the rumor is not a rumor. KPFA local station board member Sharon Adams as apparently the voice of the “crisis group” released the following document:
The drift seems to be that if the PNB does not either swap out WBAI’s license, transfer KPFA’s broadcast license and 40% of the real estate assets at a fraction of their value and/or allow some unidentified group of “core people” to unilaterally rewrite the foundation bylaws, the authors intend to sue to dissolve the Pacifica Foundation.
Berkeley – A reliable anonymous source has indicated the Berkeley wing of the Siegel/Brazon faction, who refer to themselves as “Save KPFA”, intend to present an offer at the next KPFA local station board meeting on November 19 to pay off Pacifica’s debts (last reported at $4-5 million dollars) and in exchange get KPFA’s broadcasting license transferred to themselves. Continue reading Rumored Asset Grab
Berkeley-After a literal slew of “special meetings on finances”, the Pacifica National Board finally came to the conclusion they had to pay the fiscal year 2014 audit fee – 22 months after the end of that fiscal year. At a few minutes to midnight, in a bit of a hysterical rush, they agreed to snatch money from anywhere in the network they could find it, starting with a $50,000 bequest gift to KPFK that reportedly came in just a few days ago. The motion was amended repeatedly, most significantly to authorize another grab for a $38,000 payment to the contractor for the board elections. The total amount will range from $68,000 to $117,000, depending on what portion of the $67,000 remaining balance due on the audit fee will be enough to pry the audit from the unpaid audit firm. The motion may have been motivated by the looming August 11 deadline on the third extension of board liability insurance that protects the assets of board members from litigation directed at Pacifica.
Berkeley- Troubles continue at Pacifica’s archives following the announcement of long-time director Brian De Shazor’s resignation. Boston PBS station WGBH wrote to say they were withdrawing the American Archive of Public Broadcasting National Digital Stewardship Residency from Pacifica and would be removing their resident from the archives. Continue reading The Kool-Aid We’re Drinking
Berkeley-Pacifica’s 2015 board elections ended with a bang when the KPFK election delivered a huge supermajority (17 out of 24 seats) for the Committee to Strengthen KPFK/Candidate Slate group in a stinging rebuke for the majority Siegel/Brazon faction. The last time any Pacifica local board had a supermajority was more than five years ago. Continue reading Landslide in Los Angeles
On Day 2 , the student shrink presiding over Safe Harbor heard from KPFK’s listeners as he tried to counsel them to accept changes they didn’t like without a fight. Continue reading Shit, Goddamn, Fuck Yeah: The Revolt of the Listeners
Berkeley-Notes left on a conference room white board overnight at KPFK-FM in Los Angeles outlined GM Leslie Radford’s plans to replace the station’s longstanding and popular Roy of Hollywood overnight program Something’s Happening with programs on sex, therapy, and poetry labeled “Zulu” and “Friday Night Fights”. The contents of the white board can be seen here (picture below). While it isn’t clear why Radford would leave the information exposed except to create a hostile work environment, the proposed changes target the most lucrative of the station’s evening programs. The proposed change would reduce revenues, delaying if not finishing off entirely the station’s broken promise to SAG-AFTRA union staff that they would be returned to normal work schedules. Continue reading Zulu Sex Therapy
Berkeley-Only in Berkeley will the network’s troubled board elections come to a close today, with balloting extended to January 4th in Los Angeles, NY and Houston. The election supervisor has decided to close the Northern California elections despite a large number of voters stating they haven’t gotten ballots and that their requests for replacements have gone unanswered. In last nights national board meeting, L. Joy Williams stated she had more than 600 “unread emails”, most of which are likely to be from voters trying to vote. The closing of the balloting under these circumstances runs contrary to California law which upholds the rights of eligible voters to vote and expects organizations to demonstrate a good faith effort to accommodate those who attempt to participate. If even half of the unread emails come from the Berkeley signal area, the quantity could cause a measurable change in the outcome. Continue reading More Than 600 Unread Emails
Former Siegel and Yee associate attorney Jose Luis Fuentes, who replaced his then-boss Dan Siegel on the Pacifica National Board in January of 2014, has the solution to Pacifica’s problems: jettison the executive director position and sell everything off.
Fuentes has been aggressively pursuing the Siegel/Brazon faction’s bankruptcy strategy, and spent all of Tuesday nights Pacifica governance committee meeting discussing bylaws amendments to dispense with a paid executive director permanently (the network has only had one for 7 of the last 21 months) and to enable the lame duck board to sell off assets without the permission of the network’s members and donors.
Fuentes’ boss of 12 years, Dan Siegel colluded with Margy Wilkinson when both were board members in 2013 to secretly set up a new foundation under their sole control to recover foundation assets should be they be sold off. Wilkinson then went on to orchestrate the firing of the networks ED, replace her with herself and hire Siegel as the corporate counsel.
Berkeley-Ten days after Pacifica’s interim controller issued a long list of accounting schedules and bank reconciliations to meet a projected start date on November 30th for the 2014 audit, it looks likely that deadline, the latest in a long series of blown deadlines, will be missed. Requests from board members for a copy of a signed engagement letter with auditor Armanino have been met with silence. The last meeting of the board’s audit committee wasn’t attended by either the committee chair or the secretary and disbanded rapidly. Continue reading Latest Audit In History