July 25, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Tiffany McCallen
(Columbia, Mo.) — When ColumbiaFAVS.com launches this month—the third community religion news site from nonprofit Religion News LLC—fans of faith and values news will find well-crafted religion news coverage. They’ll also regularly hear professional, radio-style news stories, thanks to a new partnership with local NPR affiliate KBIA 91.3 FM.
The partnership is the brainchild of RNLLC President Debra L. Mason and KBIA News Director Janet Saidi, who have both played roles in similar agreements with other media outlets. ColumbiaFAVS Editor Kellie Kotraba will oversee the weekly audio briefs and longer features that will be on both KBIA and the local ColumbiaFAVS.com.
“Stories about faith and values in our culture are some of the most important stories playing out in our communities, and I think public radio is the perfect venue for those stories, and to nurture the connections and conversations between the faith community and the media,” said Saidi. “So we’re really excited about the FAVS desk at KBIA and the reporting that Kellie Kotraba has already begun to produce for our listeners.”
In addition to audio reports from its KBIA partnership, ColumbiaFAVS.com will include coverage from citizen journalists, the site’s main partner, the nationally-recognized and award-winning Religion News Service, and the project’s sister websites: SpokaneFAVS.com, WilmingtonFAVS.com, ToledoFAVS.com (launching August 2012) and HartfordFAVS.com (launching August 2012).
ColumbiaFAVS.com is slated to launch by Aug. 1. Previews of Kotraba’s audio reports are available at KBIA.org. Kotraba graduated in May with a master’s degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism.
ColumbiaFAVS (Faith And ValueS) is the third website in a three-year initiative of Religion News LLC, the parent company of Religion News Service, to create local religion news sites in the U.S. where faith coverage is underreported or could be expanded. The sites cover beliefs, ethics and ideas from a non-sectarian viewpoint and feature daily news and opinion content from professional and citizen journalists. RNLLC and RNS are headquartered at the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism. The community news sites are part of a $3.5 million grant from the Lilly Endowment.
About KBIA, 91.3 FM
KBIA is a University of Missouri-licensed public radio station broadcasting out of Columbia, Mo. KBIA has been a National Public Radio member station since joining the mid-Missouri airwaves on May 1, 1972, and also carries programming from Public Radio International, American Public Media and other national and local sources.