Tuned In with Beth Markley

Beth Markley

In continuing with our theme of introducing you to all of Radio Boise’s 2016 Volunteer of the Year award-winners, this month we hear from Beth Markley, Radio Boise show host, mega-volunteer, and Chairwoman of the Board of Directors. Beth makes her  station volunteer work a family affair, often bringing her two boys, exchange student, and husband (who’s also a sub programmer!) along for the ride. She’s always quick with a joke, an idea, and a helping hand – we were so excited to be able to say “thank you” in December with her award!   

When did you catch the community radio bug?

Founder Jeff Abrams saw a presentation I did on fundraising in 2009 and asked if he could pick my brain about how to raise money for the Boise Community Radio Project. At the time, Boise was the largest market in the country without its own community station, and Jeff and I talked at length about how the majority of everything we see, hear, and read is owned by a handful of large companies, and the impact that fact had on individuality, localism, and the potential for a robust democracy.

The conversation struck a chord with me. I said yes when Jeff asked if I would join the fundraising committee.

I remember where I was that April day when we first heard the station go live. In October 2011, I launched my public affairs program, Elemental Idaho, and then in February 2012 I joined the board of directors.

What is it that you appreciate about community radio?

I love hearing local voices and stories, local issues-based programming.

What do you like most about Radio Boise?

I love working with such a diverse group of people who are all so passionate about community radio. I love that we have such a dedicated volunteer base. Radio Boise feels like family to me.

Where and when do you listen to Radio Boise?

I listen most often in my car, although I’ll stream programs sometimes while I’m working. I love the V-3, and all the public affairs and news programming we offer.

What can’t you get out of your head, music-wise?

I’ll be honest, I’m mostly into news and public affairs programming. As far as music, my husband usually selects the music we stream at home. My older kid puts my running playlists together, and my younger selects our road trip music. They have good taste. I can’t complain. If I can’t get something out of my head music-wise, it’s because someone put it there to annoy me (I swear, no one better play any truck-convoy music or the Girl From Ipanema or I will lose it).

If you could go backstage for any artist’s show, who would it be and why?

I’m more into journalists and storytellers than music artists: Ira Glass, Nina Totenberg, Amy Goodman, Terry Gross. I love listening to them suss out the real story out of their subjects, and I’d enjoy talking about the kind of background work they need to do for a good interview.

Where do you see Radio Boise in 5 years?

I would love to have more robust public affairs programming and news on Radio Boise. I’d like to provide an avenue for training new public affairs programmers, reporters, and producers, and believe we can also be a conduit for appreciation of solid local news and public affairs programming. I’m thrilled to see the growth Radio Boise has experienced so far and am proud to be a part of it.

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