Adelaide’s Fresh 92.7 has announced a new board after their AGM and it features several Life Members of the broadcaster that this year is celebrating 21 years on air.
The changes are a result of expired terms of former directors and were announced to members last week.
Kat Leese who has been an active member of Fresh since 2002 was one of the inaugural Life members has been appointed Chair as well as Jay Antoney who takes up the role of Secretary.
Leese is more than optimistic about what the future holds: “I am extremely excited about our future. We have a new board along with a dedicated team of passionate radio professionals who are ready to face whatever challenges the future holds. The board have appointed a new sub-committee for the Life members, together we will overcome any hurdles and will remain strong in our market position”
The station has had a period of excellent growth but as General Manager Dave Shearer told radioinfo, things are tough in Community Radio as sponsorship dollars become harder to find. “The last year has seen an increase of 13% in sponsorship revenue in a declining market. We have also seen audience grow by 18% and we have managed to reduce our costs by nearly 20%.
“The station still faces challenges as the current sponsorship rules limits us to only 5 minutes per hour and our income from grants and donations has fallen significantly.
“We are delighted to have engaged the support of the life membership who have been outstanding and have helped to ease some of the workload our small but extremely hard-working core team.
“Alongside our new board, life members have been working tirelessly on helping us to make sure that Fresh 92.7 has a long-term future as we face the challenges ahead.”
Other board members include legendary radio consultant Phil Dowse along with radio sales veteran Darren Pike.
Fresh was started in Adelaide in 1998 with just $50 from founding member Chris Velliaris, a Chartered Accountant who is also one of the original Life Members.
Shearer added “I’ve been very lucky to persuade Chris and other founders to return to Fresh, and their passion and knowledge has been instrumental in steering us through some difficult months. We are all grateful for their support as without them the road ahead would be far more challenging.”
The latest McNair survey shows Fresh has 170,000 weekly listeners who spend nearly 12 hours per week listening to the locally made output.
On the return of Ben & Liam to Adelaide, Shearer says, “They are a very talented and hard working duo that began their radio careers at Fresh, and I think they will shake up Adelaide radio when they arrive at their new home (Nova91.9) next year.
“I’m confident our breakfast team Loz & Thomo will be able to hold their own, but it is going to be an interesting time for all of the breakfast teams.”
Related story on Ben & Liam’s move