NPR Board Welcomes Newly Elected Directors


NPR Headquarters in Washington, DC on April 9, 2013.

Stephen Voss/Stephen Voss

NPR Headquarters in Washington, DC on April 9, 2013.

Stephen Voss/Stephen Voss

September 17, 2021; Washington, D.C. – NPR welcomes the election of A. Rima Dael from WSHU in Fairfield, CT (first term); Jennifer Ferro an incumbent from KCRW in Santa Monica, CA (second term); Maria O’Mara an incumbent from KUER in Salt Lake City, UT (first term); and Tina Pamintuan an incumbent from KALW in San Francisco, CA (first term), who were elected as Member Directors of the NPR Board of Directors in the 2021 NPR Board elections, with three-year terms beginning in November 2021. Maria O’Mara and Tina Pamintuan were previously filling unexpired term vacancies and have now been elected to initial three-year terms.

NPR also is pleased to report that the Membership confirmed the Board’s election of Carlos Watson and Neal Zuckerman to their second three-year terms as Public Directors beginning in November 2021.

On a separate ballot, PRSS representatives ratified the Board’s election of Patricia Deal Cahill to a three-year term as a Non-Board Distribution/Interconnection Committee member beginning in November 2021.

NPR’s 23-member Board of Directors is comprised of 12 Member Directors who are managers of NPR Member stations and are elected to the Board by their fellow Member stations, 9 Public Directors who are prominent members of the public selected by the Board and confirmed by NPR Member stations, the NPR Foundation Chair, and the NPR President & CEO.


A. Rima Dael is General Manager of WSHU, Fairfield, Connecticut. She has over 25 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations in Public Media, Arts, Education & the Human Service sectors. She came to WSHU from New England Public Radio, where she was the executive director of development & major gifts. Dael is passionate about the essential role of public media in our communities and the transformational power of the arts.

Originally from the Philippines, Dael spent her early years in Old Greenwich, CT, and in several Southeast Asian countries. Rima received her bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Theatre Arts from Mt. Holyoke College. Her master’s degree is in Nonprofit Management from the Milano School of Management & Urban Policy at the New School University where she was a Community Development Finance Fellow.

Jennifer Ferro is president of KCRW, where she has worked to transform the institution from Southern California’s flagship public radio station to a worldwide community that connects through the discovery of music, news and culture, both in person, online and on the air.

Under her leadership, KCRW completed a $50 million capital campaign and moved into its first-ever, stand-alone, state-of-the-art facility in early 2019. KCRW’s presence includes podcasts, original content features, live events, streams, a vibrant social networking community and successful mobile app.

Ferro joined KCRW in 1994 and has been involved in many areas from production to development. Prior to that, in college, she spent years as a KCRW volunteer.

Currently Ferro is the co-founder of the Major Action Coalition, a group of public media organizations working to enhance the public radio system in a time of major transformation. She is a board member of the Los Angeles chapter of the International Women’s Forum and also a creator of LA’s Women in Culture roundtable that brings together the leaders of LA’s major cultural institutions.

Ferro also serves as a Senior Fellow for the Luskin School of Public Policy at UCLA where she is an active mentor to graduate and undergraduate students. In 2018, Ferro was awarded the UCLA Award for public service.

Ferro earned her Bachelor’s degree from UCLA in Psychology and Political Science. An active soccer player, she spent years as a youth soccer coach and is co-founder of the Women’s Coach Initiative to get more women youth soccer coaches on the field.

Maria O’Mara is executive director of KUER where she oversees both KUER, Utah’s statewide public radio station broadcasting from Salt Lake City, and PBS Utah, also licensed by the University of Utah, as the stations’ executive director. Three years ago, she returned to lead the public radio station where she started her career as a reporter in the 1990s. Under O’Mara’s leadership, KUER has experienced growth in listenership and fundraising, increased the size of its newsroom, opened news bureaus in southern Utah and embarked on an ambitious expansion of its terrestrial and digital footprints.

O’Mara’s return to KUER in 2017 followed two decades in reporting and news management roles at the Salt Lake Observer, Deseret News and NBC affiliate KSL-TV. The Utah native and U of U alum also worked in external communications positions with the University of Utah and Rocky Mountain Power.

Tina Pamintuan is General Manager of KALW. She has spent over 20 years in public media as a journalist, educator, and leader. As the General Manager of KALW in San Francisco, she helms the station’s fundraising, operations, programming, and editorial teams. This multifaceted role also includes being the liaison for the station’s FCC license holder, the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), and the newly established 501c3, KALW Public Media. Pamintuan will remain at KAWL until the end of November 2022, when she will move to become CEO of St. Louis Public Radio. She is also a Sulzberger fellow at the University of Columbia.

Before moving to the San Francisco Bay Area, Pamintuan made her home in cities along the east coast. In New York, she created and directed the audio journalism program at The Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY where she taught radio writing and reporting, news magazine production, audio documentary and oral history. She now enjoys hearing former students on-air reporting from stations across the country, launching their own investigative series and podcasts and producing and hosting for nationally syndicated programs.

In 2011, Pamintuan traveled to the Philippines on an International Center for Journalists’ fellowship to report on climate change and biofuel use in rural areas. In 2012, she produced an audio documentary on Occupy Wall Street hosted by Alex Chadwick. She’s a former Nieman Visiting Fellow and Scholar-in-Residence at the Tow Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism. In 2015, she organized a seminar on Native American media and community radio for the Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Study at Harvard. She was honored to receive the Philippine American Press Club’s 2019 Ocampo-Henry Memorial Award in Radio, but even more delighted when her mother, who always wanted to become a journalist, accepted the award on her behalf.

Pamintuan began her career at National Public Radio after graduating from Georgetown University. She lives in Berkeley, California, with her husband Gijs and has recently discovered the joys of her local community garden and food security project.

Carlos Watson was born to teachers in Miami, and has an insatiable appetite for learning that’s led him to an Emmy-winning journalism career and to found two companies — including OZY. Things didn’t always look so promising: Young Carlos was so rebellious that he was kicked out of kindergarten. But he went on to find his academic stride, earning degrees from Harvard and Stanford Law School. Now he’s a journalist and television host who’s earned praise for his ability to persuade high-profile guests to open up about a wide range of topics on camera — interviewing everyone from presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush to Jameela Jamil, Heidi Klum and Bill Gates.

In 2013, Watson flexed his entrepreneurial side and co-founded OZY Media, a daily digital…


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