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WRAS alums form nonprofit to save station

Metro ATL

WRAS alums form nonprofit to save station

Photo from a Facebook page created to promote the boycott of the GPB takeover of WRAS. /File

Photo from a Facebook page created to promote the boycott of the GPB takeover of WRAS. /File

The fight to over Georgia State University’s FM station isn’t over. 

Georgia Public Broadcasting took over WRAS 88.5 FM on June 29, and GPB programming accounts for 14 hours of each week day, from 5 am to 7 pm, Monday through Friday. Prior to the announcement by GSU, the station consisted entirely of student programming. Now the station’s student-run daytime programming is available online via Tune In Radio, and on HD radio receivers. 

The deal has been under fire since it was first announced back in May, and several generations of station alumni created the Album 88 Alumni group to continue pursuing the restoration of student control of the station. Today the Album 88 Alumni group reached a new milestone, announcing that they had achieved 501 (c) (3) nonprofit status retroactive to the group’s founding in May of 2014. 

This means that contributions to the Album 88 Alumni effort are tax deductible. According to board member and spokesperson Reid Laurens, the nonprofit status also means the group can run public service announcements on radio stations. 

Decaturish asked if that meant the group would try to run the PSA’s on 88.5. 

“Certainly that’s popped into my mind,” he said, but added that those decisions would be in the hands of the station’s new management. He also said the group might try to run the PSA’s on the rival nonprofit radio station, WABE. 

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Laurens said the group is not going to give up fighting for a return of student control to the station. 

“Our position is the station needs to be controlled by the students 24 hours a day,” Laurens said. 

Lee Morin, the Album 88 Alumni corporate secretary, said via press release that the group’s new nonprofit status “validates our mission.” 

“The timing is perfect, as Album 88 Alumni prepares for a big push this winter to continue to educate, inform, and engage every possible remedy to preserve the college radio tradition, and return full control of WRAS Album 88’s signal to the students of Georgia State University, who fund its operation,” Morin said in the press release. 

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