We’re excited to report that several of our renovation and construction goals are nearing completion as of late spring 2016. As always, our progress comes only through the support of so many donors, the work of so many staffers and volunteers, and the thoughts, prayers, and goodwill of so many in our community.
First, an update on our studio renovations. The Tom and Florence Busch Digital Studios are on track to become fully operational sometime later this year, hopefully in the early summer. We’re working on obtaining and installing the essential computer and broadcasting hardware pieces that will serve as the de facto “brain” of our new studios. Among those helping in this effort is Nome electrician Pat Knodel, pictured in the gallery below installing a 220-volt power outlet for one of our studios’ new equipment racks.
These are some of the final touches of a construction and fundraising project that has been ongoing for more than five years, and throughout — from the first sketches and blueprints to our most recent hardware purchases and furniture acquisitions — we’ve relied on the guidance and expertise of many experts, who’ve often donated their time to help our mission. One of these guiding hands has been engineer Van Craft, who, as pictured, attended this year’s annual convention of the National Association of Broadcasters alongside general manager Ric Schmidt. Van and Ric took full advantage of this unique, crucial opportunity to review their final options for the specialized equipment and broadcasting components that will make our new studios possible. As always, we thank Van for all of his kind expertise.
Meanwhile, back in Nome, we’ve recently been busy installing new, more energy-efficient LED lights throughout our current studios and our nearly-completed, new studio annex. Thanks to reductions in the costs of the bulbs, their exceptional brightness (allowing us to use two tubes per outlet, rather than four), and our choice to do the installation work ourselves, we were able to reduce our original estimate of the LED installation from $16,887 to a final cost of only $3,493. We’re so gratified that, thanks to you, we thus met the fundraising goal for our LED project (about which you may have read in last month’s issue of the Static). Pictured are staffer Margaret DeMaioribus and volunteer Mitch Borden, helping to install several LED light tubes in the lobby of KNOM’s current studio building.
Overall, our digital studios fundraising is approaching our $1 million goal; the fund now exceeds $850,000. We’ve come such a long way, with donations big and small from state and national endowment organizations and from thousands of supporters. Thanks so much for all who’ve helped make this crucially-needed project possible; it will help ensure KNOM’s continued operations for decades to come. Stay tuned in future newsletters for more on our soon-to-be-completed digital studios!