Good News for Local Independent Media

Good News for Local Independent Media
On Nov. 8, Assembly Member Joaquin Arambula presented a $2 million check to Radio Bilingüe to support the historic Fresno-based public radio network’s plans for a much-needed new facility. Photo by Mike Rhodes

Radio Bilingüe (KSJV 91.5 FM) has received a $2 million check for a much needed new facility in Fresno. Presenting the check on Nov. 8 was Assembly Member Joaquin Arambula (D–Fresno).

Radio Bilingüe is a nonprofit public radio network that has developed into being the preeminent bilingual public radio producer in the United States. Arambula this year secured State General Funds in the State budget for the $2 million allocation.

Radio Bilingüe was founded in 1976 by Hugo Morales, with the support and work of volunteer farmworkers, activists and community members. The station quickly established itself as an important voice for Spanish-speaking underserved and underrepresented communities.

It has expanded to 25 stations across the San Joaquin Valley, California and the nation. It is also the leading  Latino-issues-focused public radio producer in the United States, with offerings ranging from news to cultural programming used by stations nationwide, all originating from Radio Bilingüe’s studios on Belmont Avenue in south Fresno.

“For several decades now, Radio Bilingüe has shown that it is much more than one radio station,” said Arambula.

Hugo Morales and Sarah Reyes share a laugh during the Q&A of the Radio Bilingüe press conference. Morales is the executive director and co-founder of Radio Bilingüe, and Reyes is the managing director of communications at the California Endowment. Photo by Mike Rhodes

“Under the leadership of Co-Founder and Executive Director Hugo Morales, it is a trusted messenger to our Latino and Indigenous communities in the San Joaquin Valley and beyond, and this was especially vital during the Covid-19 pandemic when important information needed to be communicated in Spanish and Mexican Indigenous languages to the underserved.

“Radio Bilingüe has long proven its importance in public service and advocacy for equity for marginalized communities, whether it’s about education, healthcare, immigration, government, the arts and more.

“The station is integral to the lives of many people, and it is my hope that this State allocation will help guarantee a new home that the network needs to continue its invaluable work in the years ahead, including a hoped-for space for training Fresno area youth in community media.”

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