NPR Board Welcomes Newly Elected Directors
September 14, 2020; Washington, D.C. – NPR welcomes the election of John Decker, an incumbent from KPBS-FM in San Diego, CA, Myrna Johnson from Iowa Public Radio in Des Moines, IA, and Nico Leone, an incumbent from KERA in Dallas, TX, who were elected as Member Directors of the NPR Board of Directors in the 2020 NPR Board elections, with three-year terms beginning in November 2020.
NPR also is pleased to report that Erika Pulley-Hayes of WMFE in Orlando, FL, has been elected to fill an unexpired term vacancy on the Board. She was elected as a Member Director on September 11, 2020, and the term continues through November 2020. The Governance Committee also has nominated Ms. Pulley-Hayes as a Member Director candidate for a three-year term beginning in November 2020, subject to election by the Membership in a ballot that opens October 2, 2020 and closes November 2, 2020.
In addition to the Member Director election, NPR welcomes the election and Membership confirmation of Dr. Judith Segura to her first three-year term and Fred Dust and Jeff Sine to their second three-year terms as Public Directors of the NPR Board of Directors beginning in November 2020.
On a separate ballot, PRSS representatives ratified the Board's election of Mollie Kabler to a three-year term as a Non-Board Distribution/Interconnection Committee member beginning in November 2020.
NPR's 23-member Board of Directors is comprised of 12 Member Directors who are managers of NPR Member stations and are elected to the Board by their fellow Member stations, 9 Public Directors who are prominent members of the public selected by the Board and confirmed by NPR Member stations, the NPR Foundation Chair, and the NPR President & CEO.
John Decker is Director of Programming for KPBS in San Diego, where he has been instrumental in increasing the public service mission through local news, information, and programming. Recognizing the extreme importance for local stations to reflect the diversity of their community through high quality content, John has significantly increased KPBS' local programming through the creation of the content curation project KPBS Explore that has brought over 30 multimedia program series and more than 500 individual episodes to life including Ken Kramer's About San Diego, Crossing South, for television, Only Here and San Diego News Matters podcasts, and Where I Come From Facebook series. During his tenure, KPBS Radio is consistently the top-rated station in San Diego and KPBS TV is the most-watched public station in the country. John has been executive producer of numerous award-winning local programs including These Days (now KPBS Midday Edition), A Way With Words, and KPBS/arts. You will often see and hear John on KPBS television and radio as pledge host and announcer.
Before joining KPBS, John worked in programming and operations at Wisconsin Public Radio. He worked for Robert Greenwald Film Productions and West Coast-East Coast Productions in Los Angeles, and as a production coordinator for Lance Benefield Company in Milwaukee. He joined KPBS as All Things Considered host in 1995, became the Radio Program Director in 1998 and began overseeing television programming in 2009.
John is currently a member director on the NPR Board of Directors. He has a Master's in Telecommunications and Media Management from San Diego State University and earned his Bachelor's in Communication Arts from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
John enjoys spending time with his daughter Karolina and wife Malin. His hobbies include running, motorcycle building, traveling, and lounging in the backyard.
Fred Dust works at the intersection of business, society and creativity. As a designer, author, educator, consultant, trustee, and advisor to social and business leaders, he is one of the world's most original thinkers, applying the craft and optimism of human-centered design to the intractable challenges we face today. Using the methodology in his forthcoming book Making Conversation, he has been working with The Rockefeller Foundation to look at the future of global dialogue; and with The Einhorn Family Fund and other foundations to host constructive dialogue with leaders ranging from David Brooks, Reverend Jenn Bailey, and Vivek Murthy to rebuild human connection in a climate of widespread polarization, cynicism and disruption.
As a former Global Managing Partner at the acclaimed international design firm IDEO, Fred works with leaders and change agents to unlock the creative potential of business, government, education, and philanthropic organizations.
Fred is a frequently requested speaker, advisor, and lecturer. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Sundance Institute, the Board of Directors for NPR, the Board of Directors at The New School. He was a founder and trustee for IDEO.org, IDEO's non-profit that designs solutions to global poverty. He lectures widely on various topics, including design methodology, future trends, and social innovation.
Fred writes frequently for publications such as Fast Company, Metropolis, and Rotman Magazine. His books include Extra Spatial (Chronicle Books, 2003), which discusses the design of spaces, and Eyes Open: New York and Eyes Open: London (Chronicle Books, 2008), city guides that view exceptional experiences through an urban lens.
Nico Leone is President and CEO of KERA serving North Texas.
Previously, Leone served as General Manager of KCUR in Kansas City, Missouri. Under his leadership, KCUR became one of the most collaborative public radio stations in the country. Nico managed the transition of Harvest Public Media from a grant-funded startup into a self-supporting collaboration of five partners. He transformed the Kansas News Service from a stand-alone digital news operation into a collaboration of four public radio stations covering health, education and politics in Kansas.
Under Nico's direction, KCUR's newsroom more than doubled in size, the digital audience tripled, the broadcast audience grew by 35% and community financial support of KCUR doubled.
Nico serves on the board of NPR, the Station Resource Group and Public Radio in Mid-America. Before coming to KCUR, Nico was the Co-Executive Director of KDHX in St. Louis where he oversaw the public-facing operations, managing programming, development, marketing and community outreach. During his time at the station, he oversaw development of major programming and funding strategies. Nico led KDHX through several significant CPB-funded initiatives, including the Station Renewal Project and Leadership for Philanthropy and launched the station's first capital campaign to fund a new home in Grand Center.
Prior to KDHX, Nico led strategic planning and outcomes-based evaluation for the St. Louis Children's Agenda, a collaborative network of non-profits, government agencies and businesses focused on child, family and maternal health in St. Louis. Before moving to St. Louis, he worked in a research group at Human Code, a digital media company based in Austin, Texas.
Myrna Johnson has been Iowa Public Radio's Executive Director since January 2014. In this role, Johnson oversees all aspects of IPR's 26-station network. Under Johnson's leadership, IPR has experienced growth in fundraising, reach and audience. IPR membership revenue has increased 60%, and half of membership revenue is now from sustainer support. Her initiatives have included increasing IPR's news team statewide, establishing a western Iowa bureau, adding beat reporters, increasing community engagement and building both a digital team and digital services, including podcasts, music videos, newsletters and streaming services. Johnson's public radio experience includes working in the government affairs office of NPR for eight years (1987-1995), and serving on the Friends Board and then Board of Directors of KUNCFM in Greeley, Colorado (1997-2005). While at KUNC, Johnson was involved in the successful 20-day $2 million campaign to purchase KUNC's license from the University of Northern Colorado, and was the board lead on the strategic planning process that outlined the plan for transitioning KUNC from a University licensee to a Community licensee. Johnson's roles prior to joining IPR include serving as Vice President of Government Affairs for the Outdoor Industry Association, as Managing Director of the National Forum on Children and Nature, and as Executive Director of the Boston Schoolyard Initiative, an initiative by the City of Boston to revitalize and green Boston's schoolyards. Johnson currently serves on the board of Public Radio in Mid-America (PRIMA), as a tri-chair of the Cultural Capital Committee of Des Moines Capital Crossroads Initiative and on the President's Advisory Council for Wartburg College. She is a member of the NEXUS Executive Women's Alliance and the Des Moines Rotary Club. Johnson grew up in northwest Iowa. She has a B.A. from Wartburg College and a master's degree in public administration from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
Erika Pulley-Hayes joined WMFE/WMFV in January 2020 as president and CEO after a long tenure at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) where she served as radio vice president. In this capacity, she provided strategic leadership to the public radio system by developing initiatives designed to drive innovation and advance public media service. She has worked to enhance local service and sustainability by identifying new business opportunities and operating models that engage audiences across platforms and increase organizational capacity. She was instrumental in the development of journalism collaborations among public media organizations in local regions. She was also responsible for developing the policies that govern CPB's Community Service Grant program which, as public media's largest funding source, supports over 400 organizations operating public radio stations nationwide. Erika began her career at a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical company, where she worked under the general counsel and corporate secretary. In this role, she worked closely with the board of directors, negotiated corporate agreements for commercial transactions, and ensured political and regulatory compliance. Erika later managed legal operations of a small clinical research organization overseeing risk management, corporate housekeeping and commercial contracts generating approximately $40 million annually. Erika serves on the board of directors of 826 National, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping students improve their expository and creative writing skills in nine cities across the United States. She is also a member of the Alliance of Women in Media. Erika holds an MBA and an MS in Nonprofit Management.
Dr. Judith Segura is a lead thermal architect and expert in thermodynamics at Apple, Inc. A PhD graduate of Stanford, Dr. Segura has helped Apple build its most innovative products over the last decade from the iPhone and iPads to the Apple Watch and AirPods Pro.
One of nine children born to immigrant parents, Dr. Segura is a first generation American and the second person in her family to graduate from college. Originally a French major at California State University Fullerton, she quickly discovered that she loved science as much as she loved language, perhaps even more. With a deep curiosity for how the world works, Dr. Segura completed her bachelor's degree in physics and mechanical engineering and then pursued ground breaking research at Stanford that helped advance turbulence modeling of multi-phase flow.
Prior to Apple, Dr. Segura also helped build innovative products at Cisco Systems and Spray Cool, Inc. A winner of the Ford Foundation doctoral fellowship, Dr. Segura has been awarded three patents across various disciplines with several more pending.
Over the last three decades, Dr. Segura has been an active public servant, helping to mentor young female engineers and students of color. She is a former leader of the Mexican American Engineering Society and the Society of Women Engineers and has spoken at more than a dozen national conferences and universities.
Dr. Segura and her husband live in the Bay Area. She is an intrepid traveler and has visited some 30 countries over the years from Sri Lanka to Burkina Faso. A lover of music and the arts, Dr. Segura is a longtime supporter of SF Jazz, Berkeley Playhouse, MOAD and KQED.
Jeffrey Sine is co-founder and partner of The Raine Group, a global merchant bank focused exclusively on the technology, media, and telecommunications industries.
In addition to his role as co-founder and partner of The Raine Group, Sine is a board member of each of Raine's growth and venture equity funds and its hedge fund. He is also a board member of Margaritaville, Reigning Champs Inc., Blackbird and System1, which are all portfolio companies of Raine.
Prior to founding Raine, Sine was Vice Chairman and Global Head of Technology, Media & Telecom Investment Banking at UBS Investment Bank. He joined UBS in 2001. Before that time, Sine was Global Head of Media Investment Banking at Morgan Stanley since 1991. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley, Sine was an attorney at Sullivan & Cromwell in New York and London.
Sine is a member and past Chair of the Board of Trustees of American University, licensee of NPR Member station WAMU, in Washington, DC. He also is a current or past board member of The Manhattan Theatre Club, The International Radio and Television Society, The Museum of Television and Radio Media Center, ITHAKA, and Educational Testing Service as board chair. He also has produced many plays and musicals over the past two decades on Broadway and in London's West End, and is a three-time Tony Award winner.
He earned a B.A. from American University, and a J.D. from the University of Southern California.
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About the NPR Board of Directors
The NPR Board of Directors is responsible for the governance of our 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. The Board sets the policies and overall direction for NPR management, monitors the performance of NPR, and provides financial oversight.
Ben Fishel, NPR Media Relations
Email: mediarelations (at) npr.org