2006-03/Mar An Open Letter to the KRFC Community from the Board

March 22, 2006

An Open Letter to the KRFC Community

Dear KRFC friends,

A lot has happened at the station since we went on air March 1, 2003. Much to our
delight and pride, we have grown faster and bigger than many of us expected. In this last
year alone, we installed brand new equipment in all our studios and more than 350 people
volunteered more than 40,000 hours of time ­ equivalent to nearly 20 full time staff.
We've moved from infancy to toddler to teenager as an organization in three short years.
With that growth has come struggle and pain.

We set out in 2005 to create a strategic plan for the KRFC so that we could help channel
and direct our future. Part of that exercise included rewriting our mission statement. We
developed a process that was inclusive, public and very well advertised. More than 250
people were involved in crafting the new language. The board synthesized everyone's
work and on February 16, 2006 unanimously adopted a new mission, vision and
statement of core values.

At the last minute, after three months of process, several people who participated in the
process chose to stop communication with the board and staff to pursue their right under
KRFC by-laws to circulate a petition that asked for a full vote of the membership for
adoption of the new mission statement. In fact, some of the petition organizers chose to
go outside the KRFC community to collect signatures by using language that was
misleading, personally disparaging to KRFC staff and board and detrimental to the well
being of KRFC. We received numerous complaints from KRFC volunteers that they
were harassed in public and at their places of work and electronically by organizers.

We attempted to communicate with some of the organizers to quell this behavior, but
they would not return phone calls or emails from staff. We even enlisted the help of
other volunteers to try to help solve this problem and resume communication to no avail.
The organizers began to use the KRFC forums to encourage people to sign the petition
and dismissed anyone who disagreed with their position. One of the signers of the
petition attempted to remove his name from the petition with a very heartfelt plea for a
return to dialog and a reminder that the organizers had not followed the process that had
been agreed upon. We thought this was a step in the right direction toward solving our
differences. Instead this volunteer's character was defamed and the board decided to shut
down the forums. They have been used too often by this same group of people for
behavior that is inconsistent with the culture we want to have at KRFC.

This is the fourth time in the past three years that this same group of people has hi-jacked
decisions and publicly polarized the community.

After years of attempting to dialog and compromise and bring this group along, the
KRFC board decided that there were irreconcilable differences between KRFC
management and this group.

We believe that this rift was inevitable because this group has a different vision for
KRFC. The Board and staff and the vast majority of the KRFC community want the
radio station to be a community radio station that is open to the diverse opinions that
make Northern Colorado so unique. We do not believe that KRFC should be a radical,
left-wing, political radio station as this vocal minority would like. We also, very
emphatically, believe that KRFC should not be a bland, commercial-like radio station and
that KRFC should never pander to the specific interests of any group by compromising
programming for dollars. Do not be fooled by the rhetoric of this group. The open,
consensus style of operation and commitment to democratic principles, human dignity,
exploration of new ideas, and diverse music are not at risk.

And so KRFC faces a divorce. We cannot run the station or the organization without
splitting from this group. Enormous staff and board time has been spent trying to bring
everyone together, but we do not believe that there is common ground.

To that end, the KRFC board has revoked the memberships of Eddie Arthur, Paul Bame
and Kathleen Brandon, three organizers of this group who we believe have acted time
and again against the best interests of the station.

This makes us very sad. We have worked with two of these people for many years and,
in some cases, considered them friends. All three have made considerable contributions
to the station and we value and have welcomed their time, effort and expertise. We wish
that things could be different.

But we believe that our actions are in the best interest of the station. We believe that
KRFC cannot be healed and will not succeed if we do not separate and move on from this
continuing conflict.

As for the petition itself. We are sorry that some people may feel like their signature was
squandered. We intend to contact many of you personally to explain what we believe
happened and why we chose to deem the petition invalid. As we grow, we find lots of
places where we need clearer policy that will make these decisions easier to understand
and predict.

89 signatures were delivered to a KRFC board member's home without any address or
phone number. There was no legitimate way to confirm that the signatures were real.
We consulted with a lawyer who confirmed this problem and raised others. The name of
the person who asked that his name be removed from the petition was still on the petition.
Given the complaints that we had received about the manner in which signatures were
collected we had clear reason to question the intent of some of the signers.

Contrary to the information that petition organizers were spreading, people involved in
the planning process felt heard. Less than half of the Strategic Planning Advisory
committee and only three members of the public who attended meetings or gave feedback
regarding the mission statement signed the petition. Clearly the vast majority of people
who were actually involved with the process did not have a problem with the board's
decision. Only one person besides board and staff cared enough about the mission
statement to attend the board meeting where we synthesized all the comments.

After complaints were made about using a technical reason for not accepting the petition,
we spent the time to try and match signatures with our database. Fewer than 50
signatures were current KRFC members.

We know that this experience has been difficult for some of you. It has been, and
continues to be difficult for us. We hope you will contact any one of us or Beth if you
want to express your opinions, feelings or get clarifications. As always, our board
meetings are open to the public. We wish that more of you would participate in our
decision making process. Only one person, who was not a petition signer, bothered to
show up to the board meeting last week when the petitions were delivered.

As always, thank you for your continued support.

KRFC Board

This is a copy of a letter from the KRFC web site.