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Message from the General Manager

Rus Peotter, WGBY General ManagerAlthough many western New England students returned to classrooms in late August, WGBY’s commitment remains yearlong.

All summer, our Education staff, bolstered by energetic interns, was busy across the region (thanks to the many Valley Gives donations last May). We facilitated educational programs for all ages, from pre-schoolers to high schoolers, in Springfield, Holyoke, and on the Hampshire College campus. Now, PBS gives a special push to our national educational work with PBS LearningMedia.

Our production team has been busy all summer, too, gathering background about the region’s biggest event: Eastern States Exposition. The Big E takes place from Sept. 16 to Oct. 2 and is celebrating its centennial. Our crews will head to West Springfield to capture this season for a special documentary, 100 Years on the Avenue: The Story of the Big E, which will premiere in December. Watch the trailer at wgby.org/bige.

As a salute to WGBY’s work in the community and, most recently, our bilingual show Presencia, we will show Puerto Rican pride at this year’s parade. Our very own Vanessa Pabón-Hernandez, WGBY’s Director of Community Engagement and Education, has been bestowed with the honor of Grand Marshal for her work in education and as executive producer of Presencia.

We will also be in Great Barrington this month recording the third annual BerkshireSPEAKS at the Hevreh. This year’s speakers include such longtime WGBY partners as John Downing of SOLDIER ON and public media journalist John Hockenberry. Look for the broadcast edition later this Fall if you can’t attend.

Finally, this is also the month when the campaign season really winds up. Frontline’s “The Choice” and PBS Newshour Debates: A Special Report will be featured. Plus, you can get the local facts with WGBY’s Connecting Point series, which has curated ballot question-related videos for you at wgby.org/vote.

Yes, it’s been a busy summer and will be an even busier fall—and it’s all possible because of your support. Thank you. 

Russell Peotter, signature

Russell J. Peotter
General Manager