Radio Bilingüe, Inc.: Equal Voice for Change in the Central Valley Network

Fresno, CA | west
Grant amount: $120,000
Grant period: 24 months
Grant year: 01/01/2016
Contact Information
Phone: (559) 455-5757
Fax: (559) 455-5750
Focus area: community development, community organizing

Purpose of Grant

For general support.


Radio Bilingüe (RB), founded in 1976, broadcasts trusted sources of information and programming by and for the growing national Latino community. For years, RB served as the only Latino-controlled community radio station in Fresno, California, and it is currently the only national Latino public broadcasting network. RB leads public broadcasting’s production of national Latino‐oriented news and information. Its services include 12 full‐power, Latino‐controlled, noncommercial FM stations throughout California, Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado, and it reaches an estimated 500,000 listeners across the nation each week through these stations. Additionally, over 100 affiliates throughout the U.S. and Mexico carry music, culture, news and informational content that it produces and airs 24/7 via its satellite programming service. RB has been a foundation grantee since 2003.

Radio Bilingüe follows the vision of providing a voice that empowers a broad array of Latinos and other underserved communities that was set by its founders: farmworkers, students, teachers and artists from the barrios of the San Joaquin Valley and Los Angeles. Latino communities are not monolithic; this diverse, complex and multilingual Latino audience ranges from low‐income, Spanish‐speaking rural farm workers and recent immigrants to second- and third‐generation bilingual Latinos, who prize their connection to their language and culture. Most listeners come from households earning less than $25,000 a year and 47 percent have not completed high school. Many are recent Mexican immigrants working as migrant farmworkers or in other low-wage professions.

Radio Bilingüe was founded as a single non-profit station in California’s San Joaquin Valley by volunteer farmworkers, activists, artists and teachers as La Voz que Rompío el Silencio — The Voice that Broke the Silence. With its national breadth today, Radio Bilingüe continues to counter inequities in access to the public airwaves, prizing its role as a pivotal medium for reaching socially, economically, and linguistically marginalized populations.

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