Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation

Our MIssion

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation contribution to broadcasting in Wisconsin encompasses a strategic, long term vision for enhancing, promoting and supporting the broadcast industry by encouraging the preservation of broadcast history, participating in public affairs activities in the State of Wisconsin and providing educational opportunities for professional broadcasters and those who seek future careers in the broadcast industry.

Two WBA members are joining the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation’s Legacy Club.

Kelly Radandt, the general manager at Woodward Radio Group in Appleton and Al Lancaster, the VP and general manager of WSAW in Wausau, were named to the Legacy Club this summer.

The Legacy Club was formed in 1998 to provide a formal procedure and recognition for those who make bequests or agree to make bequests to the WBA Foundation in their wills. 

For more information on how to join the Legacy Club, please contact Foundation President Michelle Vetterkind.

The WBA Foundation Board added a new member at its August meeting after Scott Trentadue declined to seek another term on the board.

Chris Bernier, Radio Plus, Marinette/Fond du Lac will take the seat held by Trentadue. Bernier was already serving on the board as a representative from the WBA Board.

WBA Board member Colleen Valkoun was appointed to fill the WBA representative seat occupied by Bernier before he was appointed to Trentadue’s seat.

The winner of the 50/50 raffle at the WBA Summer Conference donated their winnings to the WBA Foundation.

Jerad Clark from Mid-West Family in Madison won the raffle during the Wednesday reception at the WBA Summer Conference and donated his winnings to the Foundation. The raffle generated $2,220 for the Foundation.

Thank you Jerad!

A television photographer working in Milwaukee is the 2021 recipient of the Rick Jowett Fellowship.

Ryan Whittaker works at WTMJ-TV. He was awarded $539 to take classes to take a series of classes on visual storytelling and drone photography through the Poynter Institute. He said his aim is to constantly improve as a photographer through training, staying active in broadcasting, and always reaching for that next step.

He said he would like to work on longer format stories and develop storytelling skills for digital and social media.

The Rick Jowett Fellowship was established in 2017 by the WBA Foundation to support educational opportunities for photographers and videographers who work in media in Wisconsin. Recipients of the fellowship can use the grant for professional development in the areas of photography and videography.

Applicants can learn more and apply here.

The annual submission deadline is June 1.

Jowett grew up in a media family and spent his career in photography working for the Wausau Herald and WMTV-TV in Madison. Rick began working with the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association in 1985 as the Association’s event photographer. He served graciously and unconditionally until his passing.

Do you know a student who could use assistance with educational expenses? 

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation offers four scholarships that are increasing in value this year. Students who meet eligibility requirements are encouraged to apply for these scholarships:

  • David L. and Rita E. Nelson Family Fund Scholarship – $1,500 (up from $1,000)
  • Howard Gernetzke Scholarship – $1,500 (up from $1,000)
  • Morgan Murphy Media Scholarship – $2,500 (up from $2,000)
  • Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation Scholarship – $2,500 (up from $2,000)

More information and the application can be found here.

Students who have completed at least one-half of their degree or graduation requirements in a media or media-related course of study are encouraged to apply.

Applicants must have either graduated from a Wisconsin high school or be attending a Higher Educational Institution in Wisconsin that has been designated as eligible by the WBA Foundation Board. To verify that your school is eligible, check out the approved school list.

Applicants must be planning a media career that includes audio, visual and digital/social media platforms.

The David L. and Rita E. Nelson Family Fund Scholarship is aimed at juniors and seniors and includes the following additional requirements:

  1. Applicant must be a junior or senior.
  2. Applicant must demonstrate financial need.

Previous WBA scholarship winners are not eligible.

The deadline for application is 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021, and all applications must be received by the WBA office by this date.

The WBA Education Committee, and the stations that utilize the scholarship menu option for EEO credit, will screen all scholarship applications. The final determinations for scholarships will be made by a vote of the WBA Foundation Board of Directors. The two highest ranked applicants by the WBA Foundation Board will receive the $2,500 scholarships and the next two highest ranked will receive $1,500 scholarships.

The scholarships will be awarded at the WBA’s Student Seminar, Saturday, March 5, 2022.

A producer at WBAY-TV in Green Bay is the recipient of the Results Broadcasting Education Grant.

Morgan Schillinger graduated from St. Norbert College in 2017 and worked at WLUK-TV and WFRV-TV in Green Bay before joining WBAY-TV in June 2018. She produces newscasts daily and seeks interviews with local and national newsmakers.

Vice President and General Manager of WBAY-TV, Steve Lavin, said Schillinger was recently chosen to produce a unique new newscast, a task requiring incredible skill. He said the show has been a huge success.

“Morgan is generous, kind, and caring, and well-liked by her teammates,” Lavin wrote in his recommendation. “Although her work is behind-the-scenes, her fingerprints are all over some of our most valued programming. I’m very proud to have Morgan on the WBAY team.”

Schillinger was chosen from a long list of applicants by a subcommittee of the WBA Foundation Board.

“I feel truly blessed to have been selected for the WBA Foundation’s Results Broadcasting Education Grant,” Schillinger wrote. “Student loans can carry a heavy burden after graduation, and this will surely help me in paying mine off. I cannot thank the panel enough for selecting me. I know there were many applicants, and for that I am grateful.”

Thank you to Bruce and Don Grassman of Results Broadcasting for their vision in establishing the grant. It is an idea that is being replicated by other state broadcast associations.

“I would like Results Broadcasting to know how honored I am for this opportunity and for their generous grant,” Schillinger wrote. “This award makes a big difference for young journalists finding their way in the news industry. I would also like to thank WBAY general manager, Steve Lavin, for his wonderful letter of recommendation. I’m so lucky to work with such amazing and talented journalists at Action 2 News. It’s a blessing each and every day.”

Rachel Frye, a morning producer at WTMJ-AM in Milwaukee, was awarded the first ever Results Broadcasting Education Grant last year.

Anyone interested in applying for the grant can find more information here.

Applications for the next round will be accepted beginning Jan. 1, 2022.

Morgan Schillinger and Steve Lavin

Four scholarships will be given out during the WBA Student Seminar on March 6 to students studying broadcasting in Wisconsin. Learn more about the WBA Student Scholarship program and apply here. Interested in supporting the scholarship program? Learn more here.

The recipients are:

Reagan Zimmerman

Reagan Zimmerman is the 2021 WBA Foundation Scholarship recipient.                 

Reagan is attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is majoring in Journalism, Reporting, and Strategic Communication. Reagan is planning to graduate in the spring of 2021.

Reagan’s career goal is to be a combat journalist alongside the military overseas. Her passion is to work closely with the military to highlight important stories no one else is telling.

Reagan has worked as a reporter, anchor, and producer on “The Badger Report” student newscast and was a Civilian Public Affairs Specialist for UW ROTC Badger Battalion and U.S. Army Cadet Command.

She was also an intern at NBC 15 (WMTV-TV) in Madison where she worked alongside anchor, multimedia journalists, and producers. She was a journalist for The Green Laker, and also supported ESPN and ABC as a sideline utility worker at Badger and Packer football games.

Reagan’s work is described as professional, well-organized, on point, and timely. She’s demonstrated versatility, a strong understanding of the field, and a willingness to get involved.

Tamia Fowlkes

Tamia Fowlkes the 2021 Morgan Murphy Media Scholarship recipient.                 

Tamia is attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is majoring in Journalism and Political Science. Tamia is planning to graduate in the spring of 2022.

Tamia wants to pursue a career in broadcast or digital journalism that allows her to inform and address the issues of people from all different backgrounds, empowering and enabling them to further pursue their endeavors.

Tamia is involved in numerous groups on campus and already has a lot of media experience. She’s been an intern at the Wisconsin State Journal, earned an NBC Fellowship, was the CNN-NewsCo Temporary Development Coordinator, produces the “Pod-Cast Your Vote” podcast, and has written for Madison Commons, Madison365, among others.

Tamia is described by one professor as one the best undergraduates he has worked with in the last decade. He calls her a born leader with professional maturity beyond her years. Another professor says Tamia brings energy and enthusiasm to everything she does.

Sydney Trupp

Sydney Trupp is the 2021 David L. Nelson Scholarship recipient.                 

Sydney is attending the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. She is majoring in English with a creative writing emphasis and a minor in Marketing. Sydney is planning to graduate in the spring of 2021.

Sydney’s career goal is to work for a marketing firm or advertising agency as a copywriter or in the creative department. She has an interest in digital marketing and has pursued and earned numerous certifications in the field.

Sydney was nominated and accepted into The National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS, Sigma Alpha Pi), which is strictly awarded to a small portion of UW-Whitewater students. She’s also enthusiastically involved in numerous extra-curricular activities.

Sydney is described as having unmatched creativity and passion in marketing, attention to detail, and a strong work ethic. She’s always willing to come up with the best content.

Kingsley-Reigne Pissang

Kingsley-Reigne Pissang is the 2021 Howard Gernetzke Scholarship recipient.                 

Kingsley is attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is majoring in Strategic Communications and Reporting and African-American studies with a minor in Leadership. She is planning to graduate in the spring of 2021.

Kingsley’s career goal is to own her own crisis management agency. She plans to attend graduate school for public relations in Washington D.C. where she also hopes to build her experience and network in her path to reach her goal.

Among her many roles on campus, Kingsley is President of the Student Inclusion Coalition where she received national media attention for a video she created, produced, casted, and voiced promoting diversity and inclusion on campus.

Kingsley is also one of the leading journalists for The Black Voice, which is the only UW newspaper directly serving the African-American community. She’s also served as President of the UW Black Student Union and co-chair of the UW’s Black History Month committee.

Kingsley is described as an outstanding student with skills as a leader, writer, and designer. She has an upbeat and infectious desire to give good to the world and spread her enthusiasm to others.

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Our Mission

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation contribution to broadcasting in Wisconsin encompasses a strategic, long term vision for enhancing, promoting and supporting the broadcast industry by encouraging the preservation of broadcast history, participating in public affairs activities in the State of Wisconsin and providing educational opportunities for professional broadcasters and those who seek future careers in the broadcast industry.

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