The Library of Congress’s Radio Preservation Task Force is excited to announce a new partnership with Black Women in Radio (BWIR). This organization has successfully connected thousands of minority women and celebrated their professional contributions to Black radio culture on a national platform. This month, we spotlight BWIR:
When Felèsha Love kicked off the Black Women in Radio (BWIR) marketing and research campaign in 2017, she had no idea of the overwhelming support and impact this campaign would have on this interconnected group of women. Love, the organizations founder and president, is an educator, author and media veteran with over 30 years of experience in the radio industry. She is using that experience to help change the perception of Black women in radio and to give them the credit they have earned and deserved for their contributions for which many have been historically overlooked and excluded.
NBC Washington Channel 4 recently aired a story on BWIR and their impact on the industry. Since its inception, BWIR has identified gaps and challenges that are specific to Black women in the industry and connected thousands of women all over the U.S., and abroad of all age ranges and levels of experience. Love’s effort has proven to be quite effective and most appreciated as many of the women on the BWIR platforms did not previously know each other. In 2020, Love produced the industry’s first podcast and TV show designed specifically to inform and introduce the public to the women behind Black radio culture. The podcast is available on most audio platforms including iHeart and the television show airs on demand daily at 8:30 PM on Good Life TV Channel 19.
Black Women In Radio (BWIR) is celebrating another milestone as an active partner of the Library of Congress’s Radio Preservation Task Force (RPTF). The RPTF was created by the Library of Congress’s National Recording Preservation Board (NRPB) in 2014 to facilitate preservation of, scholarship on, and educational uses of radio materials held by formal collecting institutions and private collectors throughout the country. In addition to the partnership, BWIR will actively participate in themed caucus groups and provide collections for inclusion in the National Radio Recordings Database and educational projects. Love is a member of the African American and Civil Rights Caucus, and the College, Community, and Educational Radio caucus.
“We have been intentional about making a significant contribution to education and research and I am pleased to have earned a partnership with the Library of Congress’s Radio Preservation Task Force (RPTF) to expand our efforts with such a distinguished group of scholars, archivists, collectors, and researchers,” said Love.
In addition to her significant contributions to radio, Love developed a wellness pedagogy and authored a book during her seven year tenure at Spelman College. Her work is devoted to addressing Mind, Body, Spirit Wellness and helping people build and nurture healthier relationships which is the subject of her book “Brave Leap to Freedom: Integrating Mind Body and Spirit to Cultivate Healthy Relationships,” (Love, 2014). She also established MySpiritFitness Management Group, a production company that produces positive content for broadcast and digital media. These accomplishments only solidify her efforts to strengthen the roles of Black women in radio. Through her own personal research while serving as the Director of Development for the National Black Radio Hall of Fame (NBRHOF), she noticed the disparities of Black women in the industry, which made her determined to remove Black women from the shadows and shine a light so bright that history can no longer ignore them.
“Bernie Haynes, founder of NBRHOF, has been an activist for Black radio culture for decades and I am grateful for his inspiration and encouragement of me to build a historical infrastructure specifically for women,” said Love.
The BWIR activities has garnered some 3200 organic Instagram followers whose core audience includes C-suite executives, radio station owners, program directors, and radio personalities who often contribute content for projects and initiatives led by Love.
BWIR is excited about working with RPTF and look forward to making meaningful contributions that impact the way Black women are viewed in the past and the future.
Please use this link for more information about BWIR.