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Faces behind the Voices
Host of New Focus: Mike DeRosa
Community Affairs Director

Hear "New Focus" Fridays, 12noon to 12:30pm

  Covering controversial issues for radio is Mike DeRosa's main mission at WWUH. As the host of New Focus, a weekly public affairs program airing Fridays at 12 noon, DeRosa regularly interviews people with opinions on how government and big business affect people's lives. Preparation is the key to putting on a successful show, according to DeRosa. "I usually do some research… then I identify someone who can articulate a point of view, and who has a knowledgebase about a particular subject."

  After conducting an interview, either in studio, or over the phone, DeRosa edits the interview down to fit in the 30 minutes reserved for each show. Archived copies of his New Focus programs are now available on his website at: newfocusradio.org.

  Not all interviews go as planned. DeRosa recalled an interview he conducted with a scientist who was an anti-nuclear activist, who objected to his line of questioning. The scientist said "This interview is over..." after hearing a question he didn't like. DeRosa was able to defuse the situation long enough to get his final question in, but the scientist "was not a happy camper."

  DeRosa, a political activist, himself, ran for the position of Secretary of State of Connecticut on the Green Party ticket last year. For the duration of the campaign, DeRosa temporarily removed himself from his role as WWUH's Director of Community Affairs programming, a position he has held since 1988, to avoid any appearance of impropriety.

  DeRosa says "...radio is the most democratic medium that exists in the country" because it allows programming to be created inexpensively, without a big staff or crew. He laments, though that "commercial interests have taken over this industry and turned it into their money cow". Alternative radio is important, he says, because for most of commercial radio, "ratings are king and crap is king" which limits the number of alternative viewpoints on the air.


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