Photo by Willow Haley.

WWOZ Program Director Dwayne Breashears Resigns

Dwayne Breashears, WWOZ ‘s Program Director and a longtime member of the community radio station’s 20-member staff, has resigned, effective April 1.

“It’s been an incredible 18-year journey,” he said. “I’ve loved what I’ve done at the station and the friends I have made. Many of the people I have met while at OZ are now my family.”

Breashears’ resignation comes at a crucial point in OZ’s operating year, as he was a key person in putting together programming during Jazz Fest. He resigned as the station has made various internal changes, including the hiring of an Interim COO, Arthur Cohen, and the hiring of Pamela Wood as Chief Development Officer.

  • camellia

    WWOZ has failed so much of its intern movers and shakers. What’s going on over there? They lost their top money raiser, their top marketer, and their top programmer. After a while it can’t be the crew. It has to be the captain and the ship.

  • goldenunicorn

    I have recently become a member of wwoz. I’ve been enjoying the station a lot! I am from outside Albuquerque, NM. My hometown public radio station is kunm.org.

    Back in the late 80’s KUNM went through a struggle for control of the station. Long term staff members and volunteers from those days are still around. At the low point the response of the volunteers was an 18 month strike, with strong community support. I hope wwoz’s problems are resolved before things get that bad.

    Excerpt from the Wikipedia article:

    Role of Volunteers at KUNM

    KUNM is a hybrid station combining characteristics of a public station, complete with National Public Radio and other nationally-syndicated programming, with day-time and evening prime time local programming produced by an active base of volunteers from the local community as well as the University of New Mexico student body. Volunteers at KUNM have played a central role in the functioning of the station over the years, and at times conflicts have emerged generally between the station management on one hand, and volunteers and the broader community on the other. For example, in 1987 recently-hired Station Manager Tim Singleton made it known that the station’s Morning and Afternoon Freeform programs were to be replaced with more standard NPR-style jazz and classical programming, including nationally-syndicated programming produced outside of New Mexico. The response of the volunteers was an 18 month strike, with strong community support, and accompanying first amendment and other legal actions against the University of New Mexico. A settlement was reached in the Fall of 1988, that included a re-vamped Radio Board with a significant amount of say on programming changes, and a Volunteer Agreement that clarifies volunteer rights at the station.

  • Homer Averbuck

    This is a metamorphosis caused by the General Manager who has lost touch with the unique soul of WWOZ and its funky music. The problem has become systemic and Camellia you are right, the best hearts and minds of WWOZ have left over the last year — six of the finest paid staff have gone in addition to some special volunteers and deejays. I predict more of the excellent long time staffers will also be leaving.
    The General Manager’s new staff hires are normally out of area and fail to understand WWOZ’s special mission. Morale as at an all-time low.
    Oz will last, but it is being morphed into an unrecognizable entity that is beginning to sound like so many other radio stations.

  • cd

    Oh how I long for the WWOZ days of the past. The roots don’t seem to be the same. Mispronunciations of local sites, names, etc. by “newbies” just demonstrates that the station has turned a corner to somewhere besides NOLA. Of course there were issues but it wouldn’t be New Orleans without issues, and we should learn to embrace uniqueness and not try to homogenize everything to be like everything else. What a loss we are experiencing in all of our culture, WWOZ included 🙁

  • PeazantBoy

    they’ve been on a downhill slide over there for some time now. i tuned out for good about 6 or 7 years ago and my dial is pretty much oxidized into 91.5 nowadays as my tastes have evolved past the nostalgia music that is the bedrock of ‘OZ (daytime anyway, maybe there’s some cool stuff still brewing overnite..?? i wouldn’t know, no longer a night owl)…that, in addition to the milquetoast daytime jazz programming, incessant new orleans worship, certain local musician types doubling as dj’s who take themselves way too seriously, the self-reverential “greatest-station-in-the-universe” bs that they constantly regurgitate and the dearth of quirky on-air personalities that used to be in abundance.

    that said, i am grateful to 90.7 for broadening my musical horizons from the moment i moved here in 1996 and for the many friends and acquaintances who i met doing volunteer work there in the late 90’s/early aughts that continue to inhabit my life to this day.