After serving as local host of NPR’s Morning Edition on KSJD Community Radio since 2016, Austin Cope is leaving the station this June to begin work at a nonprofit in northern India.
The station is now seeking a replacement morning host and reporter to produce news content and serve as the live, on-air host of the morning news program, KSJD said in a news release on Tuesday.
“Leaving KSJD won’t be easy for me,” Cope told listeners Monday morning. “I have gained a lot from my time here, and I have really enjoyed getting to know you and spending my mornings with you,” he said.
He said will be taking a two-year Shansi Fellowship, a program offered by his alma mater, Oberlin College, in Ohio. He plans to spend the time in Rakkar, India, working with the Jagori Rural Charitable Trust, a nonprofit that promotes women’s rights in northern India.
Cope said he has enjoyed his time at KSJD, especially his “Outdoor Report,” in which he talked about nature and wildlife. One of his favorite interviews, he said, was at the 2016 Montezuma County Fair, where he interviewed a young girl about how to bathe a chicken. But he said the opportunity for the fellowship was too good to miss.
“I grew up in Cortez, I’ve left town a few times, and I want to see the world,” he said.
He said he hopes his replacement will be “someone who really cares about the Southwest.”
The new host will be on the air for two hours each weekday morning and manage the station’s radio and digital news content. They will also conduct on-air interviews and produce stories covering news and issues around the Four Corners.
“Being the morning host at KSJD means you are truly the voice of the station,” said Tom Yoder, KSJD’s programming and media director. “It’s the first voice that many of us hear in the morning, bringing weather, local news and information to keep us up-to-date about what is happening in our communities.”
Cope’s last day at the station will be June 15.
KSJD is a community radio station in downtown Cortez that serves a listening area of four states and about 30,000 people, according to a news release from KSJD. Its parent organization is Community Radio Project.
The station also is searching for an executive director, who will oversee operations at KSJD and the neighboring Sunflower Theatre. More information is available at http://ksjd.org/employment.