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DEI Is Now Greater Public

New name reflects expanded focus for noncom station development organization

A group that helps noncommercial stations obtain development funding has changed its name to reflect an expanded focus. DEI is now Greater Public.

In 1974 the Corporation for Public Broadcasting established a station development unit to help noncoms start or expand fundraising. In 1983, the unit that helps public station managers, fundraisers and marketers was incorporated as The Development Exchange. The name was shortened to DEI in 1997.

Now, the member-based organization is evolving again. The new name signals an evolution of services designed to keep up with the rapidly changing ways in which public radio and television stations serve their communities, according to President Doug Eichten. The 250-member station Greater Public is “committed to providing new levels of leadership and resources for public media organizations to move forward.”

The organization has always had a bias towards action, and it will continue its emphasis on practical, ready-to-implement solutions, Eichten said, promising hallmarks of Greater Public’s work would be new investments in innovation, collaboration and an expansion of services.

Greater Public Board Chair Mikel Ellcessor, who’s also general manager of WDET(FM), FM Detroit, said station executives recognize that greater efficiency, collaboration and significant revenue growth are critical to their public service. “As our industry’s content and relationships increasingly extend to digital, social and mobile platforms, so too our proficiency at raising revenue through those platforms must grow and improve. If we all work together through these changes, we’re all stronger as a result — and so are the communities we serve.”

The executives made the announcement at the annual Public Media Development and Marketing Conference held in Atlanta last week.