FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PBS DIGITAL STUDIOS SELECTS PBS NORTH CAROLINA AS A REGIONAL DIGITAL CENTER OF INNOVATION
PBS North Carolina Will Work with Member Stations to Develop Up to 15 New Digital Series Focusing on Diverse Voices and Stories
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC, 1/28/2022 — PBS Digital Studios announced this week the three member stations selected as Regional Digital Centers of Innovation. Over the next two years, PBS North Carolina (PBS NC), Houston PBS (KUHT) and Rocky Mountain PBS (RMPBS) will develop original digital series in partnership with PBS Digital Studios. Made possible by a $3 million grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), the three stations will deepen their digital production capacity, source creators and stories in each station's highly diverse regions and foster fellow PBS member stations' digital fluency. The regional centers will also focus on content that elevates the voices of diverse content creators both in front of and behind the camera.
The three selected stations serve robust international, indigenous, and academic communities through creative local and national programming. Based in Research Triangle Park, PBS North Carolina was selected because of the diverse market it serves in collaboration with many academic communities within the state. As a regional center, PBS North Carolina will add important voices and original content to PBS digital programming across the country.
Together, the centers will oversee the production of up to 15 new digital projects for PBS digital platforms over the next two years with subgrants to other member stations in their regions. The first shows will be rolled out across digital platforms including YouTube, Facebook, TikTok, and/or IGTV later this year. Each regional center will be led by a Digital Executive Producer who will foster and manage new partnerships with local, diverse digital content creators within each region. Additionally, PBS Digital Studios will bring on a Consultant for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, to support each station with content development, digital workshops and training to ensure that the content produced is authentic and inclusive of all audiences. This consultant will work closely with Cecilia Loving, Senior Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI), and her team at PBS.
“We’re thrilled to partner with each of these three PBS member stations to expand our digital-first programming strategy and create an expanded pipeline of diverse talent and content,” said Sylvia Bugg, PBS Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, General Audience Programming. “As part of our ongoing commitment to elevating more diverse voices, these regional centers of innovation are a key part of our multiplatform content strategy and we look forward to delivering new stories that will educate, inform, and inspire all Americans.”
"We are beyond excited for this unique opportunity to create not just one, but multiple digital series for PBS over the next two years," says Rachel Raney, Director of National Productions at PBS North Carolina. "With this grant, we'll deepen the station's digital expertise, amplify authentic Southern voices across the country, and expand our pipeline of talented, diverse content creators."
As a result of the grant, PBS Digital Studios seeks to create fresh, insightful and responsive content for a fast-moving, diverse society. Content will primarily be available on PBS.org, the PBS Video app and the PBS Digital Studios YouTube themed channels, with a few additionally available on Facebook, TikTok and IGTV.
About PBS Digital Studios
PBS Digital Studios produces original, digital programming for YouTube and Facebook, designed to engage, enlighten, and entertain online audiences. The PBS Digital Studios network has more than 27 million subscribers, generating an average of 50 million views a month and has acquired more than three billion lifetime views. Currently, the Studio has 20 original series streaming online, including eight series from PBS member stations. Series include the Webby Award-winning IT’S OKAY TO BE SMART, SOUND FIELD and CRASH COURSE, the Daytime Emmy-award winning PRIDELAND, as well as popular series such as TWO CENTS, EONS and PBS SPACE TIME.
About PBS North Carolina
As North Carolina’s statewide PBS network serving the country’s third-largest public media market, PBS NC educates, informs, entertains and inspires its statewide audience on-air, online and in-person. Through its unique partnership of public investment and private support, the statewide network includes in-person engagement, digital-first social and online content delivery, and four over-the-air channels—PBS NC, the North Carolina Channel, Rootle 24/7 PBS Kids and the Explorer Channel. Its transformational events and content spark curiosity and wonder for all North Carolinians. Additionally, PBS NC serves as the backbone for North Carolina’s state’s emergency services. Visit pbsnc.org and join the conversation at facebook.com/MyPBSNC and @MyPBSNC on Instagram and Twitter.
Kathleen Kramer, PBS North Carolina Marketing & Communications