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August 18, 2008

Joel Willer named the new Director of University Broadcasting

Joel Willer has been named the new Director of University Broadcasting at the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

Willer’s responsibilities include general management of both KEDM-FM, Northeast Louisiana’s only public radio station, and KXUL-FM, ULM’s student-operated radio station. He has served as the KXUL faculty supervisor since 1985 and joined the university’s mass communications faculty in 1984.

“I have personally long appreciated the importance of KEDM to the Northeast Louisiana communities and look forward to strengthening the service the station provides,” said Willer. “I also look forward to continuing my involvement with KXUL. The two stations each serve important, but very distinct, roles for their respective listeners.”

In a way, the additional duties close a circle for Willer. In 1985 he first proposed that then-Northeast Louisiana University establish public radio service for the region. Then, along with community volunteers, he worked to secure the federal planning and equipment grants that would build KEDM. Willer also assisted with the licensing of the station, along with generating the specifications for KEDM’s initial broadcast equipment. KEDM first went on the air in 1991.

More recently, Willer advised KEDM in a Federal Communications Commission application and two federal grant applications for separate ongoing projects to convert the station to digital transmission and to increase the station’s transmission power. He also served on several previous KEDM staff search committees.

For his work with student-operated KXUL, Willer has received two of the highest national awards available to student media advisers. He is the recipient of the College Media Advisers’ Distinguished 4-Year Broadcast Adviser Award and the Reid H. Montgomery Distinguished Service Award, along with several other national awards. He chaired a committee that founded a national student broadcasting association, College Broadcasters, Inc., and he is a regular speaker at national student media conferences.

He has worked extensively with the legal development of copyrights for Webcasting, including testimony before the Copyright Royalty Judges within the Library of Congress. He is engaged in ongoing copyright litigation in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on behalf of noncommercial Webcasters, including National Public Radio and CBI.

Willer is a longtime volunteer with the Strauss Theatre Center in Monroe. Willer received his M.Ed. from Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. He earned a B.S. in Speech, also from Kent State University.

KEDM and KXUL are each located on the ULM campus and broadcast 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. KEDM broadcasts a line-up of in-depth news, classical music, and jazz, along with special entertainment programs. KXUL broadcasts modern rock music, and has been on the air since 1973.

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