Regional Summit – West Coast 2018-06-08T05:06:34+00:00

About this Summit

Just 55 miles north of San Francisco in the heart of the California Wine Country, Santa Rosa is the location of our final Regional Summit. Though wildfires took a major toll on this community last fall, the thriving downtown area boasts a plethora of wineries, brewpubs, cycling trails, shops, and amazing restaurants. We’ll meet downtown at the Glaser Center.

North Bay public media powerhouse KRCB will host this gathering, and we will be joined by numerous Northern California stations that are mobilizing to attend and to build their collaborative muscle. With climate instability issues in mind, and located only 30 miles from the coast, this summit will spotlight how local media organizations can respond in emergencies and expand the scope of their service to their communities. We’ll learn from local emergency response leaders about the experience they gained during recent challenging wildfire events.



Attendance of the Regional Summits is exclusively for NFCB member stations. Pre-registration is required. As soon as we receive your registration form, we will invoice you and keep you up to date with details.

Summit Agenda

A preview of the Santa Rosa Regional Summit. Full schedule to be announced soon.

Welcome Event

Join NFCB, Santa Rosa Mayor Chris Coursey and our local hosts to hear from community leaders and enjoy entertainment and social time with your peers.

Managing Talent and On-Air Performance

Marilyn Pittman presents her Talk The Copy™ and Voice Chops Toolbox™ techniques along with best practices for managing volunteer radio staff. A two-hour workshop designed to give station leaders a blueprint for managing their on-air sound along with voicing techniques and volunteer on-air guidelines.

Marilyn is a broadcaster, comic, narrator, actor, and performance coach.

Her “Talk The Copy™” and “Voice Chops Toolbox™” voice workshops have been a staple of public radio stations for 25 years and have been a highlight at dozens of conferences including RTNDA, BEA, PRNDI, Unity, NPR and NFCB.

A guest lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, she also works with tech executives in San Francisco on presentation and media skills. In 2018, she prepped a Salesforce executive for “60 Minutes.”

She narrated the Academy-Award-winning documentary, “Deadly Deception: General Electric, Nuclear Weapons, and Our Environment,” and was an actor in Ron Howard’s film, “EdTV.” Her solo show, “It’s All The Rage,” won Best One-Woman Show at the United Solo Festival in NYC.

She is a dynamic educator and her workshops are filled with valuable content and lots of laughter.

Steps Toward a More Responsive News Effort

The public has information needs, and most news efforts have no efficient ways to learn what those needs are. Join audience engagement expert Julia Haslanger from Hearken for this 2-hour interactive workshop to learn how stations can better surface what your audience wants and needs, and then create and serve relevant content to those audiences. You’ll practice new methodologies for involving the public in decision-making, and learn from examples of innovative work journalists are doing not just for the public, but with them.

Stephanie’s career in local journalism has spanned newsrooms ranging from for-profit and nonprofit startups to traditional daily newspapers, where she gradually shifted from multimedia reporting to a focus on audience development and community engagement through public-powered journalism, events, social media and connecting with readers.

Like a quickly-growing number of people, she is an enthusiastic Denver transplant (mountains! breweries! erratic weather!) after working as a journalist in New York City, Southern California, Washington, D.C., and her hometown — Phoenix.

Plenary on Community Radio Emergency Response: California Wildfires

How does your organization approach an emergency — a natural or man-made disaster? How ready are you? Are you prepared if you can’t operate out of your studios because of the effects of a wildfire or tornado? Does your staff know how to react, and do they understand their roles in an emergency? How do you engage with your community and become a reliable resource in an emergency? In this interactive afternoon plenary, we’ll welcome stations impacted by California’s recent spate of fires to talk about ways they used the moment to serve their communities. From unique programming to station operations, we’ll explore the role of community media before, during and after a crisis.

Live Storytelling Events

Information forthcoming.

Sue Schardt leads AIR, a growing network of nearly 1300 independent producers, audio journalists, technologists, and public media organizations working to lead change and broaden the impact of mission driven media. She is creator and Executive Producer of Localore: Finding America, a ground-breaking production designed to invent new ways of making stories “with and for the people” living in 15 different communities across the United States.

She writes and presents frequently on media-technology including at the 2017 3D Journalism Conference in Moscow, the Australian Centre for Moving Image’s 2013 Co-Creative Communities forum and, in 2012, a Radio Features “think tank” in Leipzig, the NEA’s National Council meeting, and the FCC’s Future of Media in the Digital Age. Schardt served as an American advisor to the Ukraine in 2015, consulting on the formation of a new public media system. She is a 2014-15 National Arts Strategies fellow, and has served on the NPR Board’s Distribution and Interconnect Committee, is an artistic advisor to NPR’s From the Top, and was the project consultant on the launch and design of Native Voice One. Schardt is a long-standing live music DJ on MIT’s free-form station WMBR in Cambridge.

Leadership Seminar: Optimizing Organizational Capacity to Lead Change

In 2017 NFCB’s CEO Sally Kane joined a cohort of arts and culture organization executives for an intensive year long training to understand better the dynamics and variables that allow nonprofits to thrive and not just survive. This year’s Regional Summits will feature a three hour Saturday Leadership Seminar to explore the tools, ideas, practices, and insights that Sally gained and is highly motivated to share. This seminar is open to community radio leaders who are interested in optimizing their own leadership skills and the overall capacity of the organization. The seminar will be broken into three segments as follows:

  1. Elements and Essence of Leadership
  2. Building Teams, Communication Styles, and     Delivering the Message
  3. Strategic Thinking and Leading Change


Regional Summits are intended to be high-quality, low-cost gatherings that fit your budget. We do not have a hotel room block reserved. Here is a list of recommendations.

Hotel Azura
635 Healdsburg Ave.
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Phone: (707) 544-4141

Courtyard by Marriott Santa Rosa
175 Railroad St.
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Phone: (707) 573-9000

Hyatt Regency Sonoma Wine Country
170 Railroad St.
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Phone: (707) 284-1234

Hotel La Rose
308 Wilson St.
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Phone: (707) 579-3200

Redwood Inn
1670 Santa Rosa Ave.
Santa Rosa CA 95404
Phone: (707) 545-0474

Courtyard Santa Rosa
175 Railroad St.
Santa Rosa, CA 95401
Phone (707) 573-9000

Pre-Register Now