Public radio visionary, Bill Siemering, who conceived NPR’s mission, discusses his recent activities of developing community radio services in third world nations as a way to give people a voice and to heal conflict. His work in Burundi, Kosovo, Mongolia, and Sierra Leone has helped develop an understanding among warring factions. These groups now have an opportunity to gain insight and abolish prejudice by hearing different perspectives on the same issues. His knowledge gained from founding NPR has helped him give a voice to those without a voice and spread valuable information to the most rural and impoverished areas of the world.
One of the great values of radio is its ability to bridge. You can bond with people who are similar but then you can also bridge by going to different neighborhoods. Going to places you wouldn’t ordinarily go. And that’s what I believed public radio could do.”