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Local radio station’s ambitious future

Cowichan Lake’s community radio station, CICV 98.7 FM, has a new executive, and a new direction.
Local Radio station CICV 98.7 FM founders Karl Dalskog and Brian Simpson

Cowichan Lake’s community radio station, CICV 98.7 FM, has a new executive, and a new direction.

The changes were made during the Cowichan Valley Community Radio Society’s Annual General Meeting, Friday, January 14.

During the meeting, Mike Bishop was elected as the society’s chair, and Ron MacKenzie was elected as co-chair, by the nine-person board of directors.

MacKenzie brings with him an extensive history with the radio station, as he helped found it with outgoing chair and co-chairs Karl Dalskog and Brian Simpson.

With the election of MacKenzie, Bishop said, “A lot of knowledge and experience from the early days will carry on.”

Bishop brings a history in radio himself, having worked as a radio newscaster in Nova Scotia in the early ‘70s.

“I’m probably more comfortable behind the scenes,” he said.

Bishop hopes to bring more community focus to the station, during his tenure as chair.

“I want to have it more pro-active in the community,” he said. “To have more of a presence in the community.”

Another major goal includes becoming more financially viable.

As interim treasurer Andrew, of the Paterson family (who was elected treasurer during the AGM) noted during the meeting, they’re behind on bills, and don’t have enough money coming in.

The upping of frequency, at the cost of a $10,000 engineer report, will also be looked into – if not for this year, next. Bishop also hopes to look into government grants, in order to employ summer students.

Also elected to the executive was Frank Magrin as secretary.

The station’s new program director, Randy Liboiron, shared with the board what he’s been up to in the past couple of months.

“We had a pirate station as a result of the perceived oldness of the station,” he said.

As such, he’s incorporated a younger general playlist, while maintaining a midddle-of-the-road style of agreeable music. Niche playlists have also been fine-tuned.

The goal, he said, is to further tighten up the playlists, and to incorporate more live DJs.