Tag Archives: David McGowan

WJCT-FM Celebrates 50th Anniversary

March 21, 2022 — JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — WJCT Public Media today announced the launch of its “50 Years of Radio That Matters” campaign, celebrating a half-century of local news and music on its flagship radio station — and a half-century of community support.

WJCT FM debuted on April 10, 1972 as “Stereo 90,” broadcasting music, news, and public affairs programming for approximately 18 hours a day. Today, after changing to an all news/talk format in 2020 that has seen the station garner some of the largest audiences in its history,  the station operates as WJCT News 89.9. Its programming includes WJCT productions such as the local public affairs call-in program “First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross,” which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2020, and the new health program “What’s Health Got To Do With It,” which debuted last fall. WJCT News 89.9 is also the co-producer of the statewide public affairs program “The Florida Roundup,” and broadcasts other Florida-focused programs such as “Florida Frontiers” and “Capital Report,” in addition to local newcasts throughout the day. 

Additionally, the station is Northeast Florida’s local source for the two most popular news magazine programs in the country, “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered” from NPR News. Alongside these listener favorites, WJCT News 89.9 carries programs from a range of program producers and distributors, including National Public Radio (NPR), American Public Media, PRX and others. 

Financial support provided by listeners is the stations’ largest source of revenue. WJCT Public Media will share highlights from the station’s history across its website, app, broadcasts and social media in the weeks leading up to its golden anniversary, culminating in a one-day pledge drive on Friday, April 8, 2022. The organization seeks to raise $50,000 to support its broadcast operations.

“The media landscape — much like our local community — has changed in ways great and small since we first took to the airwaves,” said David McGowan, President and CEO of WJCT Public Media.

“Today, we reach more people in more neighborhoods of Northeast Florida than ever before. Listeners find us on the air, on their phones and on demand. Though our delivery methods have increased in number, we still hold to the singular vision that fueled our first broadcast: that serving this community matters most.”

WJCT Public Media is currently accepting messages from listeners to share on wjct.org, WJCT News 89.9, Jax PBS, and social media. Supporters can submit their congratulations, an 89.9 FM memory or their favorite “driveway moment” that kept them listening through a story’s end at wjct.org/50.

In celebration of the station’s anniversary, WJCT Public Media has also introduced:

  • Voices from the Past, a series of personal messages from the station’s hosts, reporters and producers from across the decades
  • A limited-edition line of commemorative merchandise
  • A special edition of First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross dedicated to honoring the past and celebrating the future
  • An online toolkit that supporters can use to celebrate the station’s anniversary

To learn more about the “50 Years of Radio That Matters” campaign, including opportunities to donate, click here.


About WJCT:

WJCT is the community-owned and operated public media organization serving Jacksonville and the First Coast since 1958, using television, radio, digital media, and live events to help community members learn, share, and grow. For more information on WJCT’s in-depth programming content, log on to WJCT Online atwjct.org. Like WJCT on Facebook (facebook.com/wjctjax) and follow WJCT on Twitter (@WJCTJax) and Instagram (@WJCTJax).

FPM Elects Mullins Chair, Grove Vice Chair, Adds McGowan

The board of Florida Public Media elected David Mullins, General Manager, WFSU Public Media, as its new chair in a special election. Mullins succeeds Phil Hoffman, former Executive Director of WUCF-FM/TV (Orlando).

David Mullins. General Manager. WFSU. The Florida Channel.

The board also added David McGowan, President and CEO of WJCT Public Media (Jacksonville) as its At-Large member of the Executive Committee. 

Other members chosen for the Executive Committee include:

  • Vice Chair. Paul Grove. President and CEO. WEDU-TV. (Tampa-St. Petersburg)
  • Treasurer. Amy Shumaker, Associate General Manager – Content, WGCU-FM/TV (Ft. Myers/Naples)
  • Secretary. Chris Puorro, Station Manager of WQCS-FM (Ft. Pierce)
  • Immediate Past Chair. Randy Wright, Executive Director, WUFT-FM/TV(Gainesville/Ocala)

Florida Public Media (FPM) is the organization of 24 public radio and public television stations in the state. The stations broadcast programming by NPR and PBS, and a wide range of news, public affairs, and music programs. 

TV members provide the main distribution of The Florida Channel, and radio members serve as the backbone of the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network (FPREN).

FPREN is headquartered at WUFT on the campus of The University of Florida in Gainesville. 

FPM is the state’s leader in educational programming and emergency communications.

The King of the Waves: WJCT’s David McGowan

He [McGowan] repeatedly mentions the need to increase WJCT’s metabolism, especially in the digital landscape.

“We must work to apply the resources that will allow us to continue to do more of the work and make us more valuable to all of the different communities in our footprint.”

“Whether we want it or not, we have a greater control today over how we consume media,” McGowan says. “One of my biggest jobs [at WJCT] is to make sure that we are as available, relevant and innovative today and tomorrow as we were yesterday.”

You can read the entire (Josue Cruz) profile of WCJT’s new president and CEO in Folio Weekly Magazine here.