Veteran broadcaster is new local 'voice' for GPB

Monday, July 29, 2013 7:24 PM
Last updated Tuesday, July 30, 2013 11:28 AM
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Andrew Dawson: New station manager has been in radio for 30 years.  SPECIAL
Andrew Dawson: New station manager has been in radio for 30 years.

A veteran broadcaster from Boston will be the new “voice” for public radio in Augusta, officials said.

Andrew Dawson, who has 30 years of radio experience and was most recently at WGBH-Boston, will be the new station manager/host of GPB Augusta and WACG (90.7), the Georgia Pub­lic Broadcasting station housed on the Summerville campus of Georgia Regents University.

“We’re really excited about Drew’s hiring and his title should probably say it all, station manager/host,” said Tanya Ott, the vice president of radio for GPB. “We really are looking at down the road giving Augusta a much greater voice in the GPB system.”

It is “a unique opportunity, one that comes along possibly once in a lifetime to be in at this stage of (a Na­tional Public Radio) station,” Dawson said. “It was just too much to resist.”

He has had experience in both commercial and public broadcasting, “which I think is really going to bode well for Augusta and for getting Augusta’s voice heard statewide and also reflected locally,” Ott said.

Dawson would not provide any specifics on what he hoped to do in Augusta, and Ott said there will likely be strategic planning sessions this fall. GRU and GPB have been collaborating on what new content GPB Augusta will provide. That could mean student internships to help with running the station and involving students more with GPB Augusta, said David Brond, the senior vice president of communications and marketing at GRU.

“It needs to be something that is driven by the students,” he said. It might be content that is health-related or focusing on education or the arts, Brond said.

It could be content “that we would be able to start small, start here, that is of interest to the local community that ties into what people want to have here,” he said.

A model for what GPB might do with Augusta could be GPB Macon, which grew from one staffer to three and now involves a project that includes Mercer University and the Macon Telegraph news­paper “to produce content and to mentor students in the production of multiplatform journalism,” Ott said.
“We’re all very interested in involving students in the station activities, and Drew has actually quite a bit of experience working with young people,” she said.


Georgia Public Broadcasting wants feedback on a new program, and Augustans can voice their opinions in person next week.

GPB is looking for a replacement for Talk of the Nation, which aired weekdays at 2 p.m., and is considering several candidates. Officials will visit the Summerville campus of Georgia Regents University on Aug. 5 to get feedback.

GPB will hold an event beginning at 5:30 p.m. in Room 170 of University Hall for the public to listen to programming and give feedback on a potential replacement. You can also provide feedback online at

– From staff reports

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Little Lamb
Little Lamb 07/29/13 - 07:58 pm
Talk of the Nation

Talk of the Nation is tired, stale, politically liberal and predictable. It needs a replacement program. I vote for a local program that broadcasts classical music from the station’s large CD library, with minimal talking between the selections.

seenitB4 07/30/13 - 07:15 am

Any chance they might play country music too? :):)

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 07/30/13 - 10:42 am

They need to play classical country music, SeenIt, like Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb, Kitty Wells and Hank Snow.

dashiel 07/31/13 - 12:35 pm
Why Not The Best?

Bring back Alan Cook!!! Music lovers miss him. Any chance of begging him to come back? Or is it more death by gru-gru?

Willie Loman
Willie Loman 07/31/13 - 10:00 pm
Scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Why would Augusta score such a big name from a market like Boston, unless he overstayed his welcome and is no longer relevant? I'll just hang on for Prairie Home Companion.

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