Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Tammy Terwelp to leave KRCC, lead Aspen Public Radio

Posted By on Tue, Dec 11, 2018 at 2:55 PM

Tammy Terwelp, KRCC's general manager, will leave in January. - COURTESY KRCC
  • Courtesy KRCC
  • Tammy Terwelp, KRCC's general manager, will leave in January.

Tammy Terwelp, the general manager at Colorado College's 91.5 KRCC-FM, will leave for the mountains early next year.

"Some news to share... I will be heading to Aspen Public Radio as their new Executive Director effective January 28th," Terwelp posted on LinkedIn Dec. 10. "I am really excited to be doing what I love (public radio) in the heart of the most beautiful place on earth."

A job posting for Terwelp's current position is online. Andrea Chalfin, KRCC's managing editor, said Terwelp will remain at the station until January.

Terwelp was hired
as KRCC's general manager in fall of 2015. Before that, she served as director of content and programming for Pittsburg's 90.5 WESA, and in multiple roles at Chicago Public Media. She has more than two decades of experience in public broadcasting.

Her tenure at KRCC was marked by a changing media landscape. Terwelp canceled the award-winning local series "Wish We Were Here" in June 2016. She told the Indy at the time that her goal was to modernize the station, which she did by striking "unnecessary" line items from the budget, updating equipment and evaluating program scheduling. Nevertheless, she said canceling the show was the "worst day of my career."

In spring 2017, Colorado Public Radio moved into the Springs, meaning that KRCC had to work harder to differentiate itself.

But KRCC saw success under Terwelp. The station is raising funds to move into a larger building downtown with more community space, and won national recognition. Among the accolades: Wish We Were Here earned an Edward R. Murrow Award in the News Documentary category, reporter Dana Cronin got a regional Mark of Excellence Award from the Society for Professional Journalists for her feature on 14ers, and Jake Brownell won Best Feature Story from the Associated Press Television and Radio Association for a gun violence-related piece. In 2018, the Colorado Pro Chapter of the Colorado Society for Professional Journalists recognized then-KRCC reporter Bente Birkeland as Journalist of the Year "for her groundbreaking work covering the #MeToo movement and a culture of sexual harassment at Colorado’s capitol."

In a Dec. 5 interview with Aspen Public Radio reporter Alycin Bektesh, Terwelp said the following about her time at KRCC:

"Here at KRCC, I was coming into a situation that needed some attention...we had a mixed format here. With a city this size and this market, that's just not optimal for performance. It's been proven over and over with the metro market that we have, especially with competition with Colorado Public Radio ... I really wanted to change the focus to be an all-news station serving Southern Colorado. So that was just, it was a lot of work, if you can imagine, but it's been so rewarding — the increase in our listenership and the increase in our membership, and to talk to members who say, 'Thank you for covering that story. No one else was doing this.'"

Jane Turnis, vice president for communications at Colorado College, told the Indy:

Under Tammy’s leadership, 91.5 KRCC has grown tremendously, developing strong local news, locally produced features and the “Air Check” show, creating a great membership program, adding more NPR programming, achieving healthy underwriting, finding a future new home for the station, and continuing to provide a rich variety of music. While I wish we’d had her at KRCC longer, I also knew Tammy would be in demand. I am grateful for her excellent work here, and wish her all the best.

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