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Greater New Orleans Foundation Partners with WWNO to Launch Cokie Roberts Fund for Local Journalism 


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                 
Paul Maassen, WWNO General Manager,, 504 280 7003
Ronald Biava, WWNO Development Manager,, 504 280 7001
Jeff Schiffman, Greater New Orleans Foundation VP for Communications & Public Affairs,, 504 239 3178

A new fund in the Greater New Orleans Foundation will honor the memory of pioneer NPR news reporter, PBS and ABC television reporter and anchor, and Louisiana native, Cokie Roberts, and will build a permanent funding source for radio station WWNO’s local news reporting.  The Cokie Roberts Fund for WWNO Local Journalism was created with a leadership  gift from Cokie Roberts’ family.  WWNO aims to raise $1 million in additional donations for the Fund to augment the listener contributions and other revenues that will continue to be vital for the station’s service to south Louisiana.
“When WWNO began broadcasting fifty years ago, its radio program schedule was almost entirely music,” said WWNO General Manager Paul Maassen. “Over the years, despite her demanding schedule, Cokie Roberts stayed in touch, listening regularly to WWNO and supporting the station as a member. In 2012, when WWNO began to assemble a local news staff, Cokie came to New Orleans to introduce our first news director.
“Today, with grants from local and national funders, and in collaboration with WRKF in Baton Rouge, our news staff has grown to thirteen reporters, producers, editors, and program hosts—all serving listeners in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and surrounding south Louisiana parishes.

“Trustworthy news and information is key to our vision of a vibrant, sustainable, and just regional community here in New Orleans and south Louisiana,” said Greater New Orleans Foundation President and CEO, Andy Kopplin.  “We are proud that Cokie Roberts’ family has chosen the Greater New Orleans Foundation as the home of this fund to honor her and support the work of the public radio reporters who keep our residents informed and who tell our region’s stories to the nation and the world.”
More information about the Cokie Roberts Fund, and how to donate to the Fund, is available from Ronald Biava at WWNO (, 504-280-7001) or Holly Robbins Hermes at the Greater New Orleans Foundation (, 504-620-5264). To contribute to the Cokie Roberts Fund by credit card, use the Greater New Orleans Foundation's dedicated donation form here

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About WWNO New Orleans Public Radio is the NPR member radio station serving New Orleans and thirteen parishes of Southeast Louisiana.  WWNO broadcasts news, information, and cultural programs on 89.9 FM, 24-hour classical music on 104.9FM and other stations, and 24-hour jazz on WWNO HD3. WWNO’s diverse and growing audience ranks it among the top radio stations in the region, and an award-winning leader in radio news.  WWNO’s entire schedule plus podcasts and digital content are available around the world at
About the Greater New Orleans Foundation
With roots extending nearly 100 years, the Greater New Orleans Foundation serves the 13 parish region of Southeast Louisiana including Assumption, Lafourche, Terrebonne, St. Charles, St. James, St. John, St. Tammany, Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, Tangipahoa, and Washington. Over 965 nonprofits from the region participate in its annual online giving day, GiveNOLA Day, which has raised over $47 million for nonprofits in the last nine years. The Greater New Orleans Foundation has responded to every disaster since Hurricane Katrina, when it led the Unified Community Planning Effort and a $23 million affordable housing fund. The Foundation distributed nearly $7 million in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and has distributed over $5 million in response to Hurricane Ida.

Copyright © 2022 Greater New Orleans Foundation, All rights reserved.

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