The 2019 Public Media Summit Presentations


The APTS Public Media Summit is the largest annual gathering of public broadcasting general managers and community leaders who come together to explore issues that are vital to the future and mission of public service media. The 2019 Public Media Summit was held Monday, February 25, 2019 - Wednesday, February 27, 2019 at the Fairmont Washington, D.C., Georgetown, 24th and M Streets NW, in Washington, D.C. Enjoy the videos of the Summit presentations below.


11:45 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Lunch Session

Welcome to the 2019 Public Media Summit
Ronnie Agnew, Board Chair, APTS and APTS Action, Inc., and Executive Director, Mississippi Public Broadcasting.

Sesame Street Celebration
Jeffrey Dunn, President and CEO of Sesame Workshop, celebrates the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street.

President's Annual Address
Patrick Butler, President and CEO, America's Public Television Stations (APTS).

1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
General Session

A Strategy of Localism

Jeffrey Cole, Director, Center for the Digital Future USC Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism, on localism as a business strategy in the age of Netflix.

David Brooks, PBS NewsHour commentator, The New York Times columnist, on localism as a political movement.

Discussion of Localism and Public Television
Professor Cole, Mr. Brooks, Molly Phillips, Executive Director & General Manager of Iowa Public Television, and Kevin Martin, President and CEO of ideastream, Cleveland, Ohio. Moderated by Patrick Butler.

3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Legislative Session

APTS Legislative Staff - Preparation for Hill Visits (APTS Members Only)

The APTS legislative staff and station leaders will provide a dynamic presentation and discussion on how to highlight your local initiatives and their community impact as you make the case for increased public media funding during your congressional meetings.

The session will also cover the importance of our grassroots and grasstops advocacy tools in our legislative success.

  • Kate Riley, Vice President, Government and Public Affairs, APTS
  • Cait Beroza, Advocacy & Social Media Manager, APTS
  • Jennifer Kieley, Director, Government Relations, APTS
  • Will Glasscock, Legislative and Policy Consultant, APTS Action, Inc.
  • Deborah Acklin, President and CEO, WQED Multimedia, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Roy Clem, Executive Director, Alabama Public Television
  • Jeffrey Gilbert, Board Chairman, New Hampshire Public Television

Watch a recording of this session.

6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Dinner Session - Ballroom

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of NHK WORLD-JAPAN
Mr. Takaaki Takai, Deputy Managing Director of NHK WORLD-JAPAN, and Ms. Kaori Kaiho, Executive Producer will introduce a fascinating documentary series on the Emperor of Japan.


7:15 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

Breakfast Session - Ballroom

Presentation of the 2019 Champion of Public Broadcasting Award and remarks by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD). 

Videos of educational services in public television.

Remarks by John Taylor, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Communications, LG Electronics USA.

9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
General Session

Exploration of Next Gen Transition and Business Opportunities

  • Susi Elkins, Director of Broadcasting and General Manager, WKAR Public Media, East Lansing, MI.
  • Fred Engel, Chief Technology Officer, Public Media North Carolina/UNC-TV, Raleigh-Durham, NC.
  • John Hane, President of Spectrum Co, LLC.
  • Skip Pizzi, Vice President, Technology Education and Outreach, National Association of Broadcasters (NAB).
  • Mary Mazur, General Manager, Arizona PBS, Phoenix, AZ.

Watch a recording of this session.

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
General Session

APTS/APTS Action, Inc. Annual Membership Meetings

Ronnie Agnew, Board Chair, APTS and APTS Action, Inc., and Executive Director, Mississippi Public Broadcasting.

Acknowledgement of retiring Board members, welcome to newly elected Board members and recognition of new Board officers.

Celebration of retiring General Managers.

Welcome of new General Managers.

A celebration of APTS Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel Lonna Thompson's 25th anniversary with America's Public Television Stations.

Presentation of the 2019 David J. Brugger Lay Leadership Award to former FEMA Administrator W. Craig Fugate.

Presentation of the 2019 Pillar of Public Service Award to Jack Galmiche, President and CEO of Nine Network of Public Media in St. Louis, Missouri.

A Celebration of Localism

Great examples of local service in education, public safety and civic leadership.

  • Ed Ulman, CEO & General Manager, Alaska Public Media, Anchorage, AK.
  • Bruce Haines, President & General Manager, WFWA, Ft. Wayne, IN.
  • Dolores Sukhdeo, President & CEO, South Florida PBS, Miami, FL.

Watch a recording of this session.

1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Lunch Session

Public Media: Local Strong, Local Matters
Before opioid addiction became a national epidemic, local stations, deeply connected to their communities, were reporting on the issue and identifying solutions. Local content matters which is why strong local stations are important. Join Pat Harrison, CPB President and CEO for lunch with Admiral James Alexander and Mary Winnefeld who lost their son to an opioid overdose and have shared their compelling story through public media. We are also honored to have with us a strong supporter of public media and a legislative leader on policies to combat opioid addiction and substance abuse, Congressman and Assistant House Speaker Ben Ray Lujan of New Mexico.

2:45 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Concurrent Sessions 

General Managers SessionMission-Driven Revenue OpportunitiesBallroom  (APTS Members Only)

Stacey Karp, Director of Communications, APTS, directs General Managers to three station entrepreneurship “revenue centers.” 
Revenue Opportunities in Education  

  • Bert Schmidt, President & CEO, WHRO in Norfolk, VA.

Revenue Opportunities Through The Grant Center for Public Media

  • Meegan White, Project Director, Grant Center for Public Media, APTS, and Anthony Collebrusco, Research Associate, Grant Center for Public Media, APTS.

Revenue Opportunities Through The Contributor Development Partnership 

  • Ben Godley, CEO, CDP.

Watch a recording of this session.

Lay Leaders Session: How To Be An Effective Ambassador – Kennedy Ballroom (APTS Members Only)

Former Congressman Charlie Dent (R-PA), a veteran of the House Appropriations Committee, will lead discussion with APTS staff and lay leaders on how "civilian" ambassadors for public television can have the greatest impact on Capitol Hill.

6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Dinner Session
Ballroom (APTS Members Only)

Remarks by Paula Kerger, President & CEO of PBS.

Robert Costa, Moderator, Washington Week and National Political Reporter, The Washington Post, moderates a discussion of 2019 politics and policy-making with:

  • Yamiche Alcindor, PBS NEWSHOUR 
  • Susan Davis, NPR
  • Lisa Lerer, New York Times

Watch a recording of this dinner session.


8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Breakfast Program
Members Room, Library of Congress

Welcome remarks by Patrick Butler, President and CEO, APTS.

Remarks by Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Chair, Congressional Public Broadcasting Caucus.

Remarks by Sharon Percy Rockefeller, President and CEO, WETA.

Presentation of the 2019 National Advocacy Award to Bohdan Zachary, General Manager of Milwaukee PBS.

Presentation of the 2019 Champion of Public Broadcasting Award and remarks by Senator Susan Collins (R-ME).