A letter to donors from JAZZ.FM91 board chair Brian Hemming

Thank you!  Thank you!

When we launched our spring fundraising campaign on Saturday, March 2, we couldn’t anticipate what the reception would be.

Now we know! Through the generous support of 1,298 returning donors and 187 new donors to JAZZ.FM91, we raised almost $325,000. That’s a record for our spring campaign.

The result was gratifying on many levels. While we had a mandate for positive change from many members, we thought there were also some who might “wait and see.” The response sent a very strong signal. We knew JAZZ.FM91 listeners are passionate about the station and love having a radio station that plays a wide range of music in the jazz genre. But we are also left in no doubt that you also love, and have missed, the connection to live on-air hosts.

We are grateful for the familiar voices of Heather Bambrick, Jaymz Bee, Terry McElligott, Ralph Benmergui, David Basskin and Walter Venafro, who lent their time to help us achieve this amazing result. Your comments, and your donations, told us how delighted you were to hear them on the radio again.

Throughout the nine days of the campaign they were joined by many others who are part of the rich jazz community: Bryan Snelson, who teamed up with Brad Barker on several occasions; Bill King, back on the air at JAZZ.FM91 after several years; Ronnie Littlejohn with Lou Pomanti; Laura Fernandez and Michael Booth; Alex Pangman and Justin Bacchus. Also stopping in to chat with hosts and thank donors were Julie Michels, Ron Davis, Sam Broverman, David Miller, Eric Alper, Leo Sullivan, Terra Hazelton, Sophia Perlman, June Garber, Ori Dagan, Amy McConnell, Michael Occhipinti, Chris Churchill and a phone call from Toronto Mayor John Tory. 

And a huge thank you to all the volunteers who came to the station to answer phones and take your pledges.  We couldn’t do it without you. You were magnificent, as always.

Now we must focus on the positive change we promised, tempered by the financial realities faced by the station. But your support has eased that strain. Soon you will hear some of those changes on air.  

As a board, we are committed to respecting your views and to keeping you informed of changes and progress.  If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at chair@jazz.fm.

And again, thank you!

Gratefully yours,

Brian Hemming