Former state lawmaker named president, executive director of KBB - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Former state lawmaker named president, executive director of KBBG-FM

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The Afro American Community Broadcasting Inc KBBG-FM has announced retired Iowa State Representative Deborah Berry as its next president/executive director. 

Berry will become the third president of the 40-year-old organization and Iowa's oldest African American owned and operated radio station. 

The position was held by Dr. Scharron Clayton until her death on Sunday, June 11, 2017.

Berry holds a MA in Mass Communications. As an accomplished professional, Berry brings more than 25 years experience in media and public relations, nonprofit management, corporate, and government policy. She was Vice President of Operations for a Chicago based company, Assistant Development Director and later, Corporate Funding Director at KBBG. She was elected to the Waterloo City Council in 2000 representing Waterloo's Fourth Ward. In 2002, she was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives representing House District 22 (later redistricted to House District 62). She served honorably for 14 years until retiring from office in 2016. Berry's appointment is effective July 24, 2017.

"We believe Deb Berry is the right person for the job. She has a long history and knowledge of the organization and has been an active leader in the very community KBBG serves," says N. Jean Hayes, Board Chair of KBBG.  "With more than 10 years with the KBBG organization, 16 years in public office, we are confident Deb has the skills necessary to advance the KBBG mission to the next level" she adds.  

"My career has focused on effecting change by serving the public through policy, empowerment and information communication, my true deepest passion," Berry said. "I'm incredibly proud of what KBBG had prepared me for early in my career. KBBG Founder and CEO Jimmie Porter saw in me ambition and a thirst for knowledge. He opened the door of opportunity to me through broadcasting. Mrs. Louise "Lou" Porter took me under her wings, fine tuning my abilities in marketing and community relations which were a pivotal catalyst into the next phase of my career; politics. To them I am forever grateful. Dr. Clayton set in motion a platform for a new direction."

In July 2014, Berry was inducted into the Iowa African American Hall of Fame.  On Thursday, September 7, 2017, Berry will receive the 2017 History Maker award during the African American Museum of Iowa's 2017 History Maker Gala. The acknowledgement states, "Among your peers, you are considered a trailblazer in your field, a change agent in your community, a role model for all people, and are a legacy in your own time".

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