KALW is rooted in the Bay Area and inspired by the world.
We create and curate programming that is informative, innovative, inclusive, and entertaining.
We nurture new and underrepresented voices.
Our goal is to engage the individual and strengthen the connections between us.
KALW Studios: 500 Mansell Street, San Francisco, CA 94134
(Directions to our studios)
(415) 841-4121 (office)
(415) 841-4134 (on-air studio)
(415) 841-4125 (fax)
THE BIRTH OF FM (AND KALW)
We began broadcasting on September 1, 1941 — a full thirty years before the creation of NPR. Our broadcast license was obtained and continues to be held by the San Francisco Unified School District.
TRAINING IS IN OUR DNA
KALW created the first FM broadcast training program in the country and it trained women in radio broadcasting during World War II. KALW continues this tradition with the Audio Academy, a 10-month, tuition-free journalism training program, as well as its summer podcast academy for teens and its Uncuffed radio training program inside San Quentin and Solano State Prisons.
EARLY ADOPTERS FROM THE START
KALW has a track record of programming innovation: it was the first station in the Bay Area to air Fresh Air, This American Life, Snap Judgement and The Daily. It was also the first station to air the BBC in the Bay Area, and was for decades the BBC’s station of record in San Francisco. KALW is also the birthplace of 99 Percent Invisible and Radio Ambulante, andSnap Judgement’s Glynn Washington recorded his show’s demos at KALW’s studios. The origins of Ear Hustle can also be traced to KALW’s volunteer program at San Quentin State Prison.
BUILDING ON A LEGACY OF MUSIC DISCOVERY
The station has been at the forefront of high-quality, socially minded radio from its inception. It remains deeply rooted in the Bay Area and its culture. The expansion into KALW@25thStreet in Oakland for the new DJ lineup is a testament to its dedication to all nine Bay Area counties where it broadcasts. KALW believes in creating and broadcasting stories that are social-justice minded and solutions-oriented.
SHAPING THE FUTURE OF PUBLIC RADIO
With its diverse leadership and staff, and the voices of the communities we serve, KALW Public Media is on a mission to inspire audiences and tell the human story in all its breadth and richness. Justice, equity, and community creation are at the heart of everything KALW does.
The station is shaping public media’s future by building upon its legacy for innovation and what’s next, as well as by training, nurturing and amplifying local voices and makers. The station will continue to seek out and showcase the best from around the globe, and serve as an essential and trusted source for news, music, culture, podcasting and digital media.