NPR member stations across the country voted to elect WGLT General Manager RC McBride to the NPR Board of Directors. McBride will serve a three-year term beginning in November.
McBride is a 30-year veteran of the radio industry who has spent the past six years as WGLT’s General Manager. Under his leadership, the station expanded local news and music programming, achieved financial stability, continued to win numerous industry awards, and more than doubled the size of its student internship program to focus on the developing the next generation of diverse talent in broadcasting and journalism. Most notably, McBride spearheaded the partnership agreement between Illinois State University and Bradley University to run WCBU, Peoria Public Radio in 2019. This fortuitous partnership and its effectiveness helped both stations survive to the many challenges of COVID, including a severe economic downturn. In 2021, McBride partnered with School of Communication Executive Director Steve Hunt to take over the operations of ISU’s student newspaper, The Vidette, which kept it from closing.
“RC has contributed years of dedicated service and leadership to Illinois State University, the School of Communication and WGLT,” Hunt said. “His innovative and strategic approach to media will be a wonderful addition to NPR’s Board of Directors. RC has established best practices that many others can learn from, and I’m thrilled to have him represent us nationally. .
As a member of NPR’s Board of Directors, McBride will be part of the leadership team during a major transition to the NPR network, as well as large-scale initiatives to grow viewership and support for donors, including national brand campaigns, digital platform extensions and more.
“Journalism, including current and future journalists, is the backbone of a well-functioning democracy and is essential to the future of our community, our country and the world,” McBride said. “The media industry continues to face many threats ranging from growing misinformation to financial devastation. WGLT is investing more in local news than ever before because the nonprofit news model works and Central Illinois deserves high-quality local news. I am humbled and honored to join NPR’s Board of Directors at such an exciting time for the organization, and look forward to the innovation this will spur locally. My goal is to grow NPR and WGLT for future generations, delivering a better network and station than we found.