Timeline

Important Events for UALR Public Radio:

1972 – In plans for the new Metropolitan Vocational Education Center, the Little Rock School Board votes to include a radio station to train high school students for broadcasting careers.

1973 – KLRE FM 90.5 signs on the air at 3,600 watts mono. The station's director is Ruth Steele. KLRE broadcasts only on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Students in Metropolitan's radio classes do most of the operations.

1975 – KLRE expands its broadcast day with a start time at 6:30 a.m.

1976 – Madison Hodges, a former anchor for KTHV-TV, is named General Manager.

1977 – The Friends of KLRE is founded by listeners to support the station's programming. A grant helps KLRE begin broadcasting evening symphony programs. The University of Arkansas at Little Rock applies for an FCC license.

1978 – KLRE begins broadcasting on weekends. John Bortel is named General Manager. The Arkansas Broadcasting Foundation files for the same frequency as UALR.

1979 – KLRE expands to 16 hours weekdays and 14 hours weekends. Adventures in Good Music with Karl Haas premieres on KLRE.

1981 – The Friends of KLRE broadcasts its first on-air fundraiser, Promenade '81, telling listeners they will help support the station's efforts to increase power and become a member of National Public Radio. The Arkansas Radio Reading Service for the Blind begins using KLRE's sub-carrier. UALR withdraws from its original application and applies for a newly available frequency.

1982 – KLRE increases power to 8,600 watts and begins stereo broadcasting. UALR receives a construction permit for a station at 89.1 MHz.

1983 – KLRE increases power to 40,000 watts. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting informs KLRE it will receive a federal grant.

1984 – KLRE becomes a member of National Public Radio. Among the programs that begin broadcasting on KLRE are All Things ConsideredMorning Edition and A Prairie Home Companion.

1986 – The Little Rock School District and UALR form a partnership to co-license the University's new station. The Board of Overseers is formed to supervise station management, with board members chosen from the School District, the University, the Friends Board and the community. KUAR signs on the air at 100,000 watts, simulcasting KLRE's programming. The licensees decide to maintain both frequencies.

1987 – Regina Newby Dean, KLRE's Director of Development, is named General Manager. The Friends of KLRE/KUAR conducts its first spring on-air fund drive.Performance Today premieres on the stations. Studios move from Metropolitan to UALR's Stabler Hall.

1988 – Whad'Ya Know replaces A Prairie Home Companion on Saturday evenings. KLRE and KUAR begin broadcasting separate programming during the daytime. KLRE broadcasts all classical music. News, jazz and variety programs move to KUAR, with classical programming during middays and evenings. New programs include Weekend Edition on KUAR.

1989 – Car Talk premieres on KUAR.

1991 – Marketplace premieres on KUAR.

1992 – The Public Telecommunications Facilities Program awards a grant to build translator stations in four Arkansas communities.

1993 – Translators are signed on in Monticello, Forrest City, Batesville and Hope. The Little Rock School Board votes to end the licensing of KLRE and KUAR in two years. The stations celebrate public radio's 20th anniversary.

1994 – Fresh Air premieres on KUAR.

1995 – A Prairie Home Companion returns to KUAR. Ben Fry, KLRE/KUAR's Program Director, is named Station Manager. UALR becomes the sole licensee of the stations, and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences begins a partnership with UALR to support the stations.

1996 – KUAR expands news programming with the premiere of Talk of the Nation andThe Diane Rehm Show. KUAR sponsors a live broadcast of Whad'Ya Know at Little Rock's Central High School.

1997 – Construction project begins to install new digital audio equipment at UALR Public Radio. The Board of Directors of the Friends of KLRE/KUAR adopt revised bylaws creating a combination of elected and ex-officio directors. The stations sponsor a trip to Vienna.

1998 – NPR's Carl Kasell is the special guest at the 25th Anniversary Celebration. KUAR begins The Sunset Project: Living in the Light of Death, a two-year grant-funded program about end-of-life issues.

1999 – The Friends Annual Meeting expands into a special event with music and other entertainment at the River Market Pavilion.

2000 – This American Life premieres on KUAR. The Book Guys record two nationally broadcast shows at the Central Arkansas Library System's Main Library. KUAR expands jazz programming to weekday evenings and overnights.

2001 – KUAR receives the Sweepstakes awards from the Arkansas AP Broadcasters Association for its local news programs. Arkansongs and Live at Acoustic Sounds Cafépremiere. Susan May receives the first annual Beverly Ann Lacefield Award for Outstanding Service.

2002 - KUAR is named Best Radio Station in the Arkansas Times Readers Poll.

2003 - KUAR receives the Sweepstakes award from the Arkansas AP Broadcasters Association for its local news coverage. KLRE/KUAR launch Friends for the Future to recognize major donors.

2004 - KUAR hosts Arkansas's first-ever live performance of A Prairie Home Companion when Garrison Keillor brings his weekly radio show to Hot Springs.

2005 - KUAR and KLRE relocate from Stabler Hall to newly repurposed space at University Plaza. The move results in nearly 3 times as much space as was had in Stabler Hall. The Friends of KLRE/KUAR receives the Philanthropic Organization of the Year Award from the Arkansas Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.Tales from the South and Biography Arkansas premiere on KUAR.

2006 - For the first time since KUAR signed on the air, KLRE hires its own program director to work strictly for the classical station. KUAR welcomes StoryCorps to Little Rock.

2007 - KUAR begins broadcasting in HD. Arkansas Flyer, an annual variety show funded by the Department of Arkansas Heritage for Arkansas Heritage Month, premieres on KUAR. 

2008 - KATV donates space on its new tower for use of UALR Public Radio, and a capital campaign begins. KUAR hosts a national broadcast of Michael Feldman's Whad'Ya Know. UALR Public Radio welcomes the Board of Directors of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to Little Rock.

2009 - KUAR begins a colloboration with other public radio stations serving Arkansas to share news stories. KLRE begins broadcasts of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra's 2009-10 concert season with candidates for the ASO's music director's position.

2010 - A special fundraising event with Diane Rehm in March and an on-air campaign in December complete the Tower Campaign. Not Necessarily Nashville premieres on KUAR. KLRE broadcasts concerts from several local organizations including the Arkansas Symphony, the Conway Symphony, the Hot Springs Music Festival and the Arkansas Chamber Singers.