CKCU is pleased to announce that after a rigorous selection process it has hired accomplished policy maker, researcher, musician, and cultural leader Mr. Kwende Kefentse, as its inaugural Executive Director. Mr. Kefentse will manage all aspects of CKCU with a mandate for transformational growth including working with CKCU’s Board of Directors to develop and execute a new strategic vision for the organization, as well as responsibility for day to day operations at the station.
“We are thrilled to introduce Mr. Kwende Kefentse as our new Executive Director,” said Chris Ikonomopoulos, Chair of the Board of CKCU. “His track record of success in government, along with his deep breadth of expertise and relationships across the arts, music, broadcast, community, and academic sectors will be a great asset to the station and the communities we serve.”
Mr. Kefentse has a B.A. from Carleton University’s Directed Interdisciplinary Studies program, and a Masters of Research from UCL’s Bartlett School of Architecture where he innovated new methods for quantifying the spatial structure of cultural and creative industries in cities. His major achievements as Cultural Industries Development Officer and Music Lead at the City of Ottawa included being the driving force behind the development of the Ottawa Music Industry Coalition and leading the successful development, council approval, and execution of the Ottawa Music Strategy (2018-2020). Prior to that he co-led the development of the council-approved Renewed Action Plan for Arts, Heritage and Culture (2012-2018). As co-founder of the alternative club-night institution TIMEKODE, he has led and inspired thousands to explore new sounds on the dance floor over 15 years. In 2019, Mr. Kefentse was appointed to the Board of Directors of FACTOR as the inaugural Diversity and Inclusion observer, and Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board. He also sits on the Advisory Board of the Carleton University Art Gallery, and the Washington D.C. based Music Policy Forum.
“I’m honoured to be leading CKCU as its first ever Executive Director,” said Mr. Kwende Kefentse. “The unprecedented moment we’re in has recentered the role of broadcast media in our lives. Over the past 45 years, through grassroots grit and with community support CKCU established itself as a meaningful portal of discovery into the region for anyone interested in digging a little deeper. For communities and musicians outside of the mainstream it represents an important independent local platform to connect, make their voices heard, and make their presence felt here. This legacy of music, community, connectivity, discovery, independence, and championing alternative perspectives will be central to the way we reimagine Ottawa-Gatineau’s future media landscape and CKCU’s role in it. We plan to be making space for new voices and sounds in this community for another 45 years and beyond.”
Mr. Kefentse will begin his new role as of September 23rd, 2020.