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GRANT LAUNCHES ARCHIVE PROJECT TO PRESERVE DECADES OF HISTORIC CONTENT FROM NEW JERSEY PUBLIC TELEVISION

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation provides grant for first phase of ongoing archive project to preserve valuable media assets for the state

November 27, 2012 – TRENTON, N.J. – WNET, its nonprofit affiliate Public Media NJ, Inc., operator of New Jersey’s public television network NJTV, and the New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority (NJPBA), announced a recent grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that has launched the first phase of a massive archive project to organize decades of programming and other materials from the former New Jersey Network.

The grant for the NJN Archives Project, which amounts to just over $380,ooo, will  fund the creation of  an initial  inventory of all NJN’s media assets, most specifically broadcast programming created by the former public television network and its related paper records.  To that end, a team of archivists and consultants, led by WNET in consultation with NJPBA and former NJN staff, will sort through estimated 80,000-100,000 videos and other media items. The NJN library includes 40,000-50,000 hours of recorded material, from nightly news programs and coverage of government events, arts, culture, health and wellness issues to general interest programming and documentaries. The team will work to prioritize those segments with the highest historical and cultural value and identify items that are at greatest risk of being lost due to age and condition.

“The NJN video archive is a unique historic and cultural repository that chronicles more than 40 years of New Jersey history,” said State Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff , who serves as chairman of the New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority that manages the state’s television assets.

“The grant from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has given us critical support for preserving this legacy for future generations,” the Treasurer added.  “As this work goes forward, we will continue to seek support from outside funders to complete this project by fully digitizing the archive and making its contents accessible to the public in the years to come.”

“As we move New Jersey public television into the future, having access to past footage will be invaluable,” said NJTV General Manager John Servidio.  “We are very grateful for the generosity of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for jumpstarting this archive project.”

The research and organizational work made possible by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant will provide a vital inventory of NJN’s media assets with which future project managers can plan, budget and carry out the preservation and digitization of the NJN materials. The complete digitization of the NJN media library is anticipated to be a long-term project that will require additional financial support as it proceeds.

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Press Contacts:

Debra Falk
NJTV Communications
973.233.8862 (office)
FalkD@njtvonline.org
Andrew Pratt or Bill Quinn
New Jersey Treasury Department
For New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority
609-633-6565

About NJPBA

The New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority (NJPBA) manages New Jersey’s television broadcasting assets. It operates as part of the New Jersey Department of the Treasury and holds the Federal Communications Commission licenses for WNJT-TV in Trenton, WNJB-TV in New Brunswick, WNJN-TV in Montclair and WNJS-TV in Camden, the four stations that make up New Jersey’s statewide television network. In July 2011, NJPBA entered into a Programming and Services Agreement with Public Media NJ, Inc. to provide public television programming and services on these stations under the name of NJTV and online at NJTVonline.org. NJPBA works to ensure that PMNJ provides high-quality, non-commercial programming that serves the needs and interests of the citizens of New Jersey and furthers NJPBA’s educational objectives. Such programming includes a weekday nightly news and public affairs program, live broadcast of the New Jersey State of the State and annual Budget Message, and lives coverage of New Jersey elections, as well as other cultural, educational, and inspirational programming.

About WNET
In 2012, WNET is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of THIRTEEN, New York’s flagship public media provider. As the parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to over 5 million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, Need to Know, Charlie Rose and a range of documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings available on air and online. Pioneers in educational programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state’s unique culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS, Reel 13, NJ Today and MetroFocus, the multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region.

For 50 years, THIRTEEN has been making the most of the rich resources and passionate people of New York and the world, reaching millions of people with on-air and online programming that celebrates arts and culture, offers insightful commentary on the news of the day, explores the worlds of science and nature, and invites students of all ages to have fun while learning.

About NJTV
NJTV brings quality public television programs and resources to communities throughout New Jersey and its Tri-state neighbors. NJTV’s broadcast schedule combines acclaimed national PBS series like American Masters, Nature, Charlie Rose, and BBC World News America with an array of state-focused news, arts and public affairs shows, including On the Record with Michael Aron,  One-on-One with Steve Adubato, Perspectives, Caucus New Jersey, Due Process and State of the Arts. The station’s week-nightly news broadcast, NJ Today, features stories from across the Garden State. NJTV complements its growing news staff by partnering with state-wide media and higher education institutions. The network actively solicits viewer news tips, story ideas and feedback, along with locally-produced film shorts and long-form documentaries, making New Jerseyans part of the network’s editorial team. The network’s website, www.njtvonline.org posts the latest local news, information and program schedules, and its Education section offers local educators free, classroom-ready, digital resources through VITAL NJ.

NJTV is comprised of WNJN, WNJS, WNJB, and WNJT, which collectively broadcast throughout NJ. Formerly New Jersey Network (NJN), NJTV is operated under an agreement with the state of New Jersey by Public Media NJ, Inc. (PMNJ), a nonprofit affiliate of WNET, parent company of award-winning New York public television stations THIRTEEN and WLIW21. Station sponsorships and partnerships are available.