Ramsés Téon Nichols: Organizing Committee Chair of Local SEIU 1021 and member of SF Green Party. Endorsed by San Francisco Green Party and SEIU Local 1021.
I am running for Local Station Board (LSB) because KPFA is part of my community. I began listening when I moved to the Bay Area as a San Francisco State student in 2001. I migrated from borderland Mexico and was raised in Las Vegas, NV where we had little community empowerment yet all the community problems one can imagine.
When I first tuned in to KPFA, I felt validated and empowered, taping shows and mailing them to friends back home because such programming would be impossible to hear there. I value KPFA for its relationship with our community. I’m now a Bay Area resident, a Union nonprofit worker, and a labor and community organizer with experience mediating, facilitating, and building alliances. I look forward to being your LSB member and furthering KPFA’s mission and values in the Bay Area and beyond.
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and believe it is one of the best communities in the world. The struggles here are struggles that many people pay attention to and learn from all over the country and the world. I believe that KPFA plays a leading role in keeping our social justice community connected, both culturally and through communication. I would like tosee KPFA meet its challenges today and in the future in a way that is positive and healthy for all.
As a listener, I’ve noticed a lot of difficulties at KPFA recently, including labor relations with its workers. This is a field where I have experience in as a Union shop steward at my workplace and a labor and community organizer, stepping up as a mediator and a facilitator in many difficult decision-making situations. Often the difficulties and struggles we face in our community can find their way to our work and cultural spaces where we engage daily. I would like to be a part of helping KPFA work through its internal struggles and move us forward with the best decisions we can make together.
As we develop healthy, respectful, and productive ways to organize ourselves internally, I believe and will work hard to see that we need to give our listeners, staff, and volunteers all of our support in charting a path for KPFA’s future. This primarily includes analyzing how best we can increase our listener base through electronic media. It also includes keeping to our mission and values as we try to expand our base and meet our financial goals.
I urge you to give me the opportunity to be on the LSB and be able to do all of this. Thank you.
Vote for me and the United for Community Radio slate: VoteCommunityRadio.org
Questions and Answers
1. In what ways is your station moving in a positive direction, that you would want to continue or perhaps improve?
I believe our station KPFA is continuing to reach out to labor and Unions increasingly in the coverage. I also believe that Occupy reopened a lot of the political discourse around social and economic justice issues that were present in the anti-globalization and anti-war movements. KPFA and Pacifica went out of its way to make sure that these issues and all discourse and stories were covered well.
2. In what ways is your station moving in a negative direction, that you would want to stop or change? What changes would you work for?
I believe that programming and staffing is facing serious challenges. Many of us believe that the station has been in challenging times financially and therefore tough decisions have to be made around programming and staffing. As a Union Member and a KPFA listener, I want to respect all workers, paid or unpaid, volunteers, and listeners when it comes to deciding the best course of action for our station. I would participate in facilitating the processes necessary for us to make the best decisions possible in such difficult times.
3. What key experience, connections, skills or traits would you bring to the Local Station Board to advance the station’s mission?
I’ve been a student/youth and community organizer. I’m currently a labor and Union organizer. Professionally, I’ve worked as a counselor in social services. I have a lot of experience in de-escalation, conflict resolution, and alliance-building in the political community in San Francisco and the Bay Area. I would bring all my skills I’ve learned into serving for our community station KPFA.
4. What ideas do you have for helping the station and the Pacifica Foundation meet the financial challenges currently being faced?
I have had many conversations with staff and listeners about this. I believe that being clever and creative in our current situation will help us best. We are in challenging times where electronic media has become at least as popular as on-the-air radio. Many of our staff and listeners already have the ideas necessary for KPFA to further develop and put itself out there electronically. Once we analyze how other stations are doing this successfully, we can map out our best decisions for our station to move forward. I would fight for us to meet these challenges and stay true to our Mission and principles as KPFA and Pacifica.