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KAXE Announces News Expansion in 2023

Coverage Map 2023.jpg
KAXE KBXE Coverage Map 2023

thanks to funding from the Blandin Foundation and the Northland Foundation

PRESS RELEASE: Tuesday, December 6th, 2022

KAXE Receives Funding for Local Journalism from Blandin Foundation and Northland Foundations

The function of journalism is to uncover vital information of interest to the public and to put it in a context that can improve the human condition.

Northern Community Radio is a non-profit, community public broadcast organization, operating radio stations 91.7 FM KAXE Grand Rapids with a translator at 89.9 FM Brainerd, and 90.5 FM KBXE Bemidji as well as kaxe.org and podcasts. KAXE is a NPR affiliate and a member of AMPERS. Founded in 1976, KAXE has been telling the stories of the people and the land of northern Minnesota through music, conversation and events.

With the creation of a Northern Community News Initiative, KAXE will be adding to an already successful reputation that listens to the needs of the community and reflects the diversity of life in northern Minnesota. Many small towns have no newspaper or locally owned news source. We know local news is critical – it can help bridge divides that are fostered by social media and national partisan news sources. With the start-up help of foundations, KAXE is poised to expand to meet the needs of the community.

Blandin Foundation in Grand Rapids, MN has a new strategic direction: to align their resources toward a sustainable, equitable future for rural Minnesota. For the next three years they will fund KAXE $500,000 to create a newsroom where rural people can tell their stories.

Northland Foundation of Duluth has funded KAXE $50,000 over the next two years and has a mission to help people and communities in Northeastern Minnesota to move forward together.

Heidi Holtan is the News Director at KAXE where she hosts the local edition of NPR’s Morning Edition and manages a small crew of producers. “We have limited capacity right now to fulfill the role of watchdog in our communities. Additional funding means the build-out of a newsroom and website with qualified journalists and editor. Local stories get missed every day that could make a difference in the future. We are beyond thrilled.”

“Unlike the traditional news model, community radio has the infrastructure that can be sustained through grants, individual and business contributions that do not interfere in editorial content. We invest in our community because we care about the place we live.” said Sarah Bignall, CEO/General Manager of Northern Community Radio. “We can leverage our 46 years of experience and relationships, and deliver content in a variety of ways to meet the multi-media needs of today's audience. We are excited for the future and how we can serve our communities better.”

KAXE is hiring for many positions in early 2023 including journalists and a News Director. Go to kaxe.org to find more information.

Northern Community Radio has a commitment to the principle of diversity, as it creates a healthier work environment. In that spirit, we welcome applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, or any other characteristic protected by law.