WYSO

Neenah Ellis

President, Miami Valley Public Media

Neenah Ellis began her radio career in high school, working at her parents’ commercial radio station in Valparaiso, Indiana. She came to WYSO in 2009 after 30 years as a radio documentary producer in Washington, D.C. She’ s been a producer for “ All Things Considered” at NPR and has won three Peabody Awards, broadcasting’ s highest honor, for her work. She is also the author of “ If I Live to be 100: Lessons from the Centenarians,” which is based on her radio series about people 100 years of age.

Ways to Connect

Luke Dennis and Neenah Ellis
photo by Andy Snow

Dear listeners,

It’s official: the FCC has approved the transfer of WYSO’s broadcast license from Antioch College to a new 501c3 called Miami Valley Public Media. WYSO is now independent and community-owned!

As you may recall, MVPM took fiscal responsibility for the station and WYSO staff began managing the day-to-day finances on April 1.  Now that we have the license, we’re ready to begin the next part of our growth as your public radio station, including growing our newsroom and preparing to launch The Center for Community Voices. 

Hello WYSO listeners,

You may have heard by now that WYSO is on a path toward independence. Antioch College has agreed to transfer control of WYSO to a new, community-owned 501c3 called Miami Valley Public Media, Inc. (MVPM)

That transfer of ownership needs to be approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)  and that will take some months, but we’re on our way.   

Hello WYSO listeners,

I’m writing you with some exciting news.

WYSO will soon become an independent, community-owned radio station!

Antioch College owns our license, as you know, and they will soon give WYSO its independence so that both organizations can pursue their unique missions.

WYSO went on the air 60 years ago, and we’re celebrating by listening back to some highlights from our historic audio collection.

The feminist movement found a voice on WYSO in its early days, with poets, writers, filmmakers, political activists, and of course, musicians.

On International Women’s Day in 1980, the Dixie Darlings performed live in the WYSO studios. They were fiddler Barb Kuhns, guitarist Cindy Mapes, and Linda Scutt on banjo, fiddle, and guitar, later joined by bassist Joy Clendenon. The Dixie Darlings had a loyal following, and often performed old time music from a woman’s perspective.

WYSO went on the air 60 years ago, and we’re celebrating by listening back to some highlights from our historic audio collection.

The WYSO archive includes the voices of elders from all over Ohio, like this one:  Earl Gregg from West Jefferson. In the early 1980s, Mr. Gregg was 94 years old and he read for the radio from the notebooks he kept about his long, colorful life. He spoke with Jeff Hooper from Little Miami Theater Works.

You can record a birthday greeting for WYSO.  Here's how:

Plan a message about 90 seconds long.  You can start it like this:

WYSO went on the air 60 years ago, and we’re celebrating by listening back to some highlights from our historic audio collection.

In the 1970s, local programs were flowering at WYSO. Antioch College students, WYSO staff members, and community volunteers collaborated to make programs then, as now. And live, local music was also a defining part of what made WYSO, WYSO. Here’s a recording of the Hot Mud Family – familiar to WYSO listeners and music lovers all over the country back then.

We’re celebrating WYSO’s 60th birthday this year by listening to highlights from our historic audio collection.

Over the years, WYSO has often reported from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base In 2003, early in the war in Iraq, WYSO producer Ryan Warner did a story about the C-141 Starlifter, a gigantic military transport plane that became a common site in our local skies that year.

The Starlifter has since been retired, and Ryan Warner can now be heard on Colorado Public Radio.

You can record a birthday greeting for WYSO.  Here's how:

We’re celebrating WYSO’s 60th birthday this year by listening to highlights from our historic audio collection.

In 2001, WYSO news director Aileen LeBlanc produced a story about corn mazes for her Friday afternoon program called Sounds Local. She went to the corn maze at Young’s Jersey Dairy outside Yellow Springs, and then, another maze called Tom’s Maze in Germantown.

These days, Aileen LeBlanc is a freelance producer out of Beaufort, South Carolina. And here at WYSO, we’re celebrating 60 years of great local stories in Southwest Ohio. 

We’re celebrating WYSO’s 60th birthday this year by listening to highlights from our historic audio collection.

In the early 1970s. WYSO had a growth spurt, adding staff and expanding the listening area. In 1973 came the first grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The money allowed us to buy programs from NPR for the first time. Also that year, the first on-air fundraiser was held. Listeners and businesses donated goods and services for an on-air auction, things like airplane rides and fresh baked bread. The fundraisers were called marathons. Regular programming was suspended for four straight days. Those who remember say the programming was wild and kinda wacky, and the few precious recordings we have confirm that things did get pretty squirrelly.

We’re celebrating WYSO’s 60th birthday this year by listening to highlights from our historic audio collection.

Julia Reichert got her start in media at WYSO with a radio program called The Single Girl – maybe the first feminist radio program in the United States. Today, she’s a celebrated and award-winning documentary filmmaker.

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