From the presidentThis year marks an important milestone for KUOW — 70 years since our first broadcast in 1952. 70 years. From our first days as a student-run radio station to a founding NPR member station to the community institution you know today, KUOW is an organization fundamentally transformed by community investment and engagement.
As we mark this anniversary with immense gratitude, we also must look forward with determination. As always, we’re here to keep you informed. We’re here to keep you engaged. We’re here to give you driveway moments and maybe even a little inspiration and delight. But make no mistake, we’re also here to have impact.
In the years to come, KUOW must evolve — in ways both radical and subtle — to meet the unique challenges facing our community and our democracy. We must continue to tell it like it is and help our community make sense of confusing times with factual and trusted information. We must make journalism not for, but with, our community — with a commitment to stories and reporting that reflect the diverse communities of the Puget Sound region, especially those that KUOW has not historically prioritized. We must radically rethink our way of doing things if we are to challenge narratives that have upheld racism and existing power structures. We must be nimble, innovative, thoughtful and above all else, courageous.
I have no doubt we have what it takes to meet the challenges of tomorrow — thanks in no small part to your continued investment and support. Thank you for 70 years and here’s to the next. The work continues.
Listen up for stories with impact.
This year, our community navigated a complicated vaccine rollout, a pivotal election season and the most extreme temperatures on record. Through it all, the KUOW newsroom worked to keep you informed about the challenges and changes facing our region. Here are some of our most impactful stories of 2021, all made possible through your support.
Listen here for youth storytelling.
KUOW’s award-winning RadioActive Youth Media program continues to help young people across the region discover and build skills in public radio journalism. Here are just some of the ways this program has impacted youth in our community and helped them share their stories and perspectives with a wider audience.
RadioActive's year in numbers
Looking forward in our 70th year.
As we step bravely forward into the new year, KUOW and NPR are committed to keeping you informed, empowered, and entertained with the news, information and moments of joy you need to navigate what comes next. This year will bring more local perspectives, more community voices, more transparency, and stories with real impact. Here are just a few things we have in store for you.
Staying committed to diverse voices and perspectives.
At KUOW, we believe it is imperative to prioritize the inclusion of diverse voices. Since 2015, KUOW has tracked the diversity of sources in our local broadcast features — defined as planned stories, investigations, or profiles — and on our midday local show to better understand how we’re representing our community and to push for improvement.
2021: The year in numbers
In our last fiscal year, 92% of KUOW’s funding came from individual donors and local business supporters. We are proud to report that 71% of our revenue went directly back into our news programming. Below, you’ll find an overview of KUOW’s finances in Fiscal Year 2021 (July 2020–June 2021). You can see more details on our revenue sources and spending here.