Ugly GPB Media Takeover Continues To Burn Atlanta



Bill Nigut of Georgia Public Broadcasting shows his hand as to why he was so excited about the WRAS Album 88 kids getting kicked to the curb: he gets to expand his own personal talk show, On The Story, to another platform. What a preening douche. ‪#‎SaveWRAS‬ indeed. From that.

The full GPB press release is at the jump.

For Immediate Release
May 14, 2013
Contact: Mandy Wilson

Veteran Journalist Bill Nigut Expands GPB’s “On the Story”
Television Program To Other Platforms

Veteran journalist Bill Nigut, who currently serves as executive producer and co-host of GPB’s nightly television program On the Story, will expand the program to radio as the host of a new weekly show set to launch this summer on Atlanta’s WRAS 88.5 FM. GPB announced on May 6 that it will make its debut on the Atlanta radio airwaves this June through a programming partnership with the Georgia State University (GSU) station.

Nigut has been a fixture in the Atlanta area for 31 years through his work in broadcasting and involvement with community organizations, and he will continue to serve as the television co-host with Bobbie Battista. Former CNN supervising producer Eric Burns has been tapped to take over the day-to-day leadership of the television program. Burns will also oversee the show’s online presence, and grow the web component of On the Story’s multi-platform initiative.

“I’ve been very fortunate to have found a home at GPB and On the Story,” says Nigut. “I’ve had a wonderful opportunity to create a television show that engages smart people in conversations about the issues that make an impact on our state, and to give exposure to so many areas of our lives that don’t get much media attention: arts & culture, technology & innovation, business and agriculture and more. Now, I’m looking forward to expanding this concept to radio, where I started my media career.”

As the host of the new On the Story radio program, Nigut is expanding a rich career portfolio that includes serving as the chief political reporter for Atlanta’s WSB-TV for 20 years. He also hosted the former weekly GPB program Georgia Week in Review from 1996-2002. Nigut is the past Southeast Regional Director for the Anti-Defamation League, where his accomplishments include launching “No Place for Hate,” an anti-bullying initiative now operating in more than 100 metro Atlanta schools. In addition, he served as the founder, President and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Arts & Culture Coalition (MAACC).

“Bill has done a wonderful job with the launch of On the Story for television, and we are excited to have a journalist of his caliber and credibility host the radio program as we strive to provide an all-news and information public radio schedule not currently available to Atlantans,” says GPB President and CEO Teya Ryan.

GPB Radio and Georgia State will share the broadcast schedule on WRAS, with GPB offering public radio programming on WRAS daily from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. From 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., and 24/7 on WRAS digital, the station will continue to be programmed by Georgia State students.

The partnership calls for GPB’s programming schedule to be dedicated to news and information. In addition to On the Story and the new program being hosted by NPR journalist Celeste Headlee that was announced May 12, GPB’s other offerings will include a mix of nationally produced programs from public radio providers, including National Public Radio (NPR), Public Radio International (PRI) and American Public Media (APM).

As one of the largest PBS stations in the nation, Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB Media), has been creating content worth sharing for over 50 years. With nine television stations, 17 radio stations and a multi-faceted web presence, GPB strives to educate, entertain and enrich the lives of our viewers and listeners with programming that includes statewide radio news, current affairs, high school sports, educational resources for teachers and students and enlightening programs about our state like Georgia Outdoors, Georgia Traveler and On the Story.

Mandy Wilson
Communications Manager

260 14th Street N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30318
Ph: 404-685-2427

7 responses »

  1. Bill preens a bit, but I wouldn’t call him a “douche.” I mean, he was the ADL director once. Give him a bit of credit. That said, this gutting of WRAS is completely sickening.


  2. Doug, never underestimate, you of all people, the desperation force of an old media geezer to get back in front of a mic. Any will do. Last stances must be made. Can’t really blame him. He saw an opportunity, and he bulldozed down a lot of young folk to seize it. Adults do stuff like that. All the time.


  3. I don’t think he had anything to do with the WRAS takeover. I don’t blame GPB for wanting WRAS. I blame GSU for selling out its students and gutting a great radio station for next to nothing in return.


  4. GSU is giving away (selling would be admirable) a treasure and they don’t know it. GPB are hard up and shame on Bill Nigut. This’ll be a great legacy, something he and Becker can look back on in their “what have we done?” hangover. Bravo GSU/GPB – you lowered the bar!


  5. I’m reminded of that old Thomas Nast political cartoon…which show’s a bunch of pols pointing to the next one in the circle while taking money from the one on the other side. It’s easy to claim its the other that has the blame when all share the responsibility. Where is the personal ethics to say “No” to some action that harms another? GPB is equally responsible for seeking out the station, offering $150,000 (really for merely paying for their own employees and needed upgrades). In fact, they are getting the students recently purchased (yes the student government, NOT GSU, just purchased this) $750,000 transmitter. Highway robbery.


  6. President and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Arts & Culture Coalition (MAACC)? Perhaps he could do a radio show that focuses on the way that GPB’s backdoor deal with GSU is effectively gutting a major cultural outlet: Album 88’s award-winning student-run radio station.


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