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March 2002

Excerpts from the Chairperson's Report by Wheldon Thornley
KCR Annual General Meeting

KCR FM has achieved many important milestones this year. We conducted several successful outside broadcasts, including coverage of the opening of the Bendigo Bank in Forrestfield, the 2001 Carols by Candlelight in Stirk Park, the Zig Zag Community Arts Festival, and 2 broadcasts from the Midland Gate shopping centre.

At each of these events the hardworking team of volunteer presenters, producers and coordinators rose to the occasion, executing each broadcast with total professionalism. We have showcased our potential to the community by working as a team and delivering community broadcasting and community services.

The strong spirit of volunteerism is the foundation that has built KCR FM from the dream of a few to transmission equipment, a building, a temporary licence, studio equipment, studio design and installation, administration systems and slowly, in our recent history, live-to-air programming.

I pay tribute to all founding members of this organisation, many of whom have since moved on. I hope that our new recruits to KCR FM respect and maintain [their] vision. It has not been easy; it has taken nearly ten years. Personalities and politics aside, all contributors to KCR FM should be recognised and respected.

It is hard to realise when people see a [community] radio station how much hard work and selfless commitment there has been from the members before them. There has been significant costs to these people in terms of personal time, social and business commitments. There has been the stress and heartache of personal and beaurocratic dispute, common when people are passionate about realising a dream. This is the reality of creating a community organisation. These members will be remembered and respected for their contribution to our community.

Cooperation and hard work from people of all ages have created the reality of KCR FM, by working together, and debating many of the concepts and ideas of community radio for our region. I hope that no-one in our membership ever loses sight of this.

This organisation is not based on capitalist rationalism - we are founded on social expressions of generosity, creativity and ingenuity. KCR FM is a community based, non-profit group. We do not limit our ideals to mainstream commercial values. On the contrary, we must value and promote ourselves as unique.

The cost of running a full radio station seven days a week is a huge challenge, but we have managed to do it without a break since 1998. It has not been an easy 12 months financially, but KCR has never had a financially easy time. In reality the growth of the station can not be measured on the profit and loss statements - our growth in professionalism, confidence, dedication, creativity, individualism, generosity, devotion and unity cannot be measured. It is growth in these areas that will ensure that KCR FM will continue, despite all scepticism.

We utilise our facilities nearly 24 hour a day, seven days a week, and our income has risen only slightly in the last 12 months to meet our increased expenditure. However, the station has never been close to closing its doors ... this committee has continued to manage the financial miracle that is KCR FM. With enthusiasm and hard work, specifically in the areas of sales and community development, this station will continue operations in our region for many years to come.

Through the hard work and commitment of our volunteer presenters, producers, technicians and administrators, through better communication and teamwork, and most importantly, through the belief of our membership in [our] management systems, KCR FM will prove to the whole of Australia that we are the most successful, original, creative and innovative community broadcaster in the country.

That is the goal, and we can reach it together!

The 2002 AGM saw Wheldon Thornley stand down from the Committee of Management after serving six consecutive years in key, active roles. The incoming Committee wish to thank Wheldon for the enormous contribution he has made both to KCR and to the spirit of community broadcasting in Australia.

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