President switches WFDD’s supervision to provost’s office

Wake Forest University President Thomas K. Hearn Jr. has moved supervision of public radio station WFDD from the Office of University Advancement to the Office of the Provost.

Hearn assigned Associate Provost Samuel T. Gladding to oversee WFDD (88.5 FM) after considering recent recommendations from Sandra C. Boyette, vice president for university advancement, and an interim faculty advisory committee for WFDD.

At a meeting of the undergraduate College faculty on Oct. 11, Boyette announced that she was recommending that Hearn “consider a different administrative oversight for the station.” Boyette, who supervises Wake Forest’s fundraising and public affairs activities, has been responsible for WFDD for 11 years.

In the same faculty meeting, a spokesman for the faculty committee established by the president recommended that responsibility for WFDD be moved to the Office of the Provost.

The subject of WFDD’s supervision came under consideration recently after a controversy developed between WFDD and Wake Forest, which holds the station’s FCC license and operates the station on the university’s Reynolda Campus. In interviews with news media, some members of the station’s news staff voiced their objection to a request by Boyette to limit WFDD’s coverage of a Wake Forest trustee report regarding Wake Forest Baptist Church, which meets on the campus.

Afterward, Boyette publicly apologized in meetings of the university’s Faculty Senate and the College faculty. On each occasion, Boyette repeatedly expressed her commitment to freedom of the press.

Wake Forest’s president established the interim faculty advisory committee for WFDD after the controversy arose.

Categories: University Announcement