Listener Candidate Statement


Nia Bediako (Chair, Local Board Programming Committee; member of several other WBAI committees; Treasurer, block assn. in Harlem; certified financial analyst)

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Nia Bediako

Nia Bediako

I am a Black Jamaican-Cuban woman and chair of the WBAI Local Station Board Programming Committee. In addition to being active on other board committees, I’m a volunteer during fund-drives, book sales, and station parties. For 20 years, WBAI has been my main source of information and inspiration. When I tune into this sanctuary of independent media every day, I hear hosts who are unafraid to speak truth to power about such topics as health, the environment, and the day-to-day issues of the working class. Two examples of ’BAI’s path-clearing work are revealing the nature of the imperialist war in Iraq and saying what other media now acknowledge with shock: that New York’s “Ground Zero” was not environmentally safe for people to live and work in when they were urged to return.

I’m seeking your support to become a member of the LSB in order to help maintain and expand the voices of the station’s diverse communities in the tri-state area. I am interested in programming that acknowledges the humanity of the poor, promotes self-determination of communities of color, and explores our shared humanity, unlike some board members who advocate reducing WBAI’s hard-hitting political programming. I’m proud to run on the WBAI Justice and Unity Campaign ( ) slate. Please vote for me and my colleagues in this precise order to maximize the impact of your vote:

1. Fr. Lawrence Lucas
2. Nia Bediako
3. Berta Silva
4. Ray Laforest
5. Marianela Tricoche
6. Bernadette Ellorin
7. Sam Spady
8. Samia Halaby
9. Imani Henry
10. Tibby Brooks

Our platform calls for maintaining and expanding progressive, activist, anti-racist programming and advancing affirmative action throughout Pacifica. A particular goal is to work with management and staff to utilize available and new technologies to expand WBAI’s reach. We propose expanding the station’s bandwidth (channels) using existing sidebands of our current transmitter, later raising funds to convert to High Definition (digital) radio. This would provide space for more communities to access the airwaves, while also allowing rebroadcast of popular programs like “Democracy Now!”

As an active member of several Local Station Board committees and an attendee of all but two board meetings for the past two years, I have a good understanding of how the board and management should work together; I believe I can help improve the interaction. I have made working for the station my major commitment.

Progressive radio should be truthful, civil, and inquisitive and have diverse appeal. A progressive station board should have board members who believe and live the mission of Pacifica that promotes respect for the diverse parts of the human community and advances peace, justice, and unity. It troubles me that some board members have veered from the mission and have made racist and vulgar statements that directly contradict the mission of this wonderful foundation that Lew Hill built.

If elected, I promise to live up to the mission of the Pacifica Foundation.

In struggle,
Nia Bediako