September 8, 2014
by rebecca.marchiafava
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From the Backstage: Board Chair Updates

Two years ago, BRPN/WHYR was struggling. A core group of dedicated volunteer-leaders was burning out after years of impressive and intense work building the station, and the future of the organization was uncertain. 

At that time, I had recently returned to Baton Rouge. I officially rejoined the BRPN Board and was soon elected to replace our previous Chair who was stepping down to focus on other personal, professional, and community engagements. In addition to Board leadership and the governance-related duties that entailed, I was also fulfilling roles in communications, building management, volunteer engagement, and event organizing while holding down a full-time job and trying to deal with whatever else life was throwing at me. As you might imagine, I had way too much on my plate and a lot was going undone.

Over the past five years that I’ve been involved with the Baton Rouge Progressive Network and in my past two years as Board Chair, I’ve learned numerous lessons about unpaid work and leadership in a volunteer-run organization. 

One of the largest lessons was personal. I had to learn how to balance my involvement with my paid work, chores and errands, time with loved ones, and meaningful self-care that supports my mental-emotional-physical health. This balance consists of setting boundaries; prioritizing and encouraging others to prioritize other areas of life; separating immediate and necessary tasks from longer-term ideals, wants and goals; and making peace with moving slowly while building our capacity to do more and do better. It also involved figuring out what kind of work I and others actually want to do through our involvement. Building management? So not my thing. Communications? Gimme!

In addition to balance, it became obvious that a healthy community culture is key to building a sustainable organization. Those of us who come together to collaborate on a cause are a community, and for communities to thrive requires establishing and adhering to positive community values and norms. Regardless of one’s passion for a cause, most of us are only willing to remain involved if our participation adds value to our lives – especially in cases of unpaid work. Where we don’t benefit financially, we must reap benefits from building quality relationships and feeling like our time is spent effectively creating positive change that wouldn’t have existed or occurred otherwise. Process and product both matter, and community culture should be an incentive, not a barrier, to civic engagement. This is why we’ve challenged ourselves to establish and maintain a safe, supportive, and empowering community space. In doing so, we’ve grown our volunteer base and are thriving. I look around at what we’ve built and sustained together, and I’m awe-struck. We have a ways to go, but we’re getting there. 

Strengthening the network of progressives in BR is our cause. Our mission is to educate and unite our communities to advocate and establish progressive policy and social action. 

Have questions for us? Visit our WHYR website, BRPN website, or email

Interested in volunteering on a committee or contributing something specific according to your skill set? Email us at

Want to connect with other progressives in BR? Join us for our next Progressive Social in October.

August 13, 2014
by dbkey
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Baton Rouge Drinking Water: This week’s Third Place

Please tune in to 3dP this week for the first in a two part series honoring National Water Quality Month. Taylor Spicer and I interview several guests who are intimately aware of the issues to take a comprehensive look at the history and many facets of the ongoing struggle to manage the Southern Hills Aquifer in a sustainable way.  If you don’t know all about the water you bathe in, cook with and drink each day, you probably should.  Here’s your chance on Thursday at 5:30p, Sunday at 11:30a, next Thursday at 6:30a and again the following week.

AHT and Taylor

Pssst, pass it on…

July 18, 2014
by dbkey
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BR FAIRNESS ORDINANCE: Covered on this week’s episode of Third Place (3dP)

Please tune in to 3dP this week for coverage of the upcoming vote on the Fairness Ordinance.

Here’s the link to the archived show in case you missed it:

The BR Metro Council is expected to vote on the proposed ordinance at their weekly meeting on July 23 and we want you to know all you can about it. The show will air on Sunday at 11:30a and again at 3:30p on each day leading up to the vote. Please get informed and get involved.  Here’s the actual measure in its current form:$uXvBjavsllACLNr6VhLEUIm2tympBeeq1Fwi7sIigrCfKm_F3DhYfWov3omce$8CAqP1xDAFoSAgEcS6kSQ–&CONTENTTYPE=application/pdf&CONTENTDISPOSITION=Fairness%20Ordinance.pdf

Pssst, pass it on…

Be Fair Baton Rouge

May 28, 2014
by rebecca.marchiafava
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Join us for Radiopalooza this Saturday, May 31, 2014 from 3-10pm!

RP poster

WHYR 96.9 FM – Baton Rouge Community Radio, a project of the Baton Rouge Progressive Network, will host their fourth annual Radiopalooza community music festival on Saturday, May 31, 2014 at North Boulevard Town Square beginning at 3:00 pm. Admission is free to the public.

There’s just a little bit of everything at this year’s Radiopalooza!

  • The LSU Museum of Art will have a musical themed arts and crafts tent for children from 3:30-5:30 pm.
  • The EBR Parish Library will park its Bookmobile on festival grounds from 3:30-5:30 pm for anyone to conduct library business and will also offer children’s activities that vary from doing rubbings with crayons to storytelling and musical games.
  • Elevator Projects will be presenting an interactive art installation.


Don’t miss out! Join us this Saturday and be part of the best Radiopalooza yet! Visit for more details.