July 7, 2010
Anna Christopher, NPR




July 7, 2010; Washington, D.C. – NPR has appointed Deborah A. Cowan, senior vice president of finance at Radio One, Inc., as its Chief Financial Officer. In this senior management role, Cowan will lead NPR’s financial and administrative operations, strengthen its financial management team and ensure financial awareness and understanding throughout the organization.

She will report to SVP of Strategic Operations and Finance Debra Delman, and will work closely with Delman and the executive team to meet NPR’s goals – expanding NPR’s independent journalism, growing its service on digital platforms, improving the effectiveness of its operations and helping NPR become a leader in diversity. Cowan will join NPR on August 2, 2010, and succeeds former CFO Jim Elder.

“I am thrilled to have Debbie join the NPR team,” said Delman. “Her financial expertise, radio and media experience, and her passion for the NPR brand will be a tremendous asset to the organization and will contribute to our future success.”

As SVP of Finance for Radio One, Inc., the $275M broadcast/media company, Cowan managed its financial operations, and was a key member of the leadership team that grew the organization through mergers and acquisitions and organic growth, handling many complex strategic and financial issues.

Prior to joining Radio One in 2001, she served as a senior financial manager with IBM for many years where she held several increasingly responsible CFO positions for significant divisions. During her tenure with IBM, she developed and instituted new financial policies and procedures and was instrumental in building IBM’s start-up government consulting practice. Prior to that, Cowan worked for Coopers & Lybrand, performing audits for large and medium-sized nonprofit and for-profit companies.

“As a financial professional with a passion for and commitment to this industry, I look forward to joining this prestigious media organization,” said Cowan. “These are exciting times for NPR and I am enthusiastic about taking part in its strategic initiatives.”

Cowan is a Certified Public Accountant, and she holds a Bachelor’s of Business Administration in Accounting from Howard University and a Master’s of Business Administration in Finance and International Business from Columbia Business School. She is active on nonprofit boards such as the National Education Association Foundation where she is the chair of the audit committee and a member of the investment committee. She is also a past DC metro chapter president and past national board chair for the National Association of Black Accountants, and a board member of Media Financial Management. For several years Cowan has served on the board of Radio Music License Committee (RMLC).

About NPR:
NPR is an award-winning, multimedia news organization and an influential force in American life. In collaboration with more than 880 independent public radio stations nationwide, NPR strives to create a more informed public – one challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and appreciation of events, ideas and cultures.


*To obtain headshot, please go to: http://www.npr.org/about/press/2010/070710.CowanPhoto.html