WHRO gets two gifts totaling $2.5 million
Norfolk-based WHRO Public Media has received two gifts totaling $2.5 million.
Hampton Roads philanthropist Jane Batten has given WHRO $1.5 million while former Norfolk Southern Corp. CEO David Goode and his wife, Susan, have contributed $1 million.
WHRO includes four public television and eight public radio stations in Hampton Roads. It is owned by 19 Southeastern Virginia school divisions.
Using $1 million from Batten’s gift, WHRO plans to expand eMediaVA, an online digital library.
The other $500,000 from her gift will form a challenge fund to encourage other contributions to offset the loss of state financial support for public broadcasting since 2011.
Batten also gave WHRO a gift of $3 million in 2012 to make eMediaVA available free to teachers and students across the state under a contract with the Virginia Department of Education.
Batten is the widow of the late Frank Batten Sr., the former chairman and CEO of Norfolk-based Landmark Communications (now Landmark Media Enterprises) and co-founder of The Weather Channel.
The Goodes’ recent gift to WHRO will fund the recording of local arts performances for rebroadcast on television and radio.
The purpose of the project is to enhance the visibility of arts programs in Hampton Roads and make them available free to educators for use in schools.
WHRO provides online educational and new media services to 286,000 students and 25,000 educators per month.