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July 24, 2012

ULM's Willer to 'hang up the headphones' after 30 years of service

University of Louisiana at Monroe Director of University Broadcasting, Joel Willer, is retiring at the end of July, after 30 years of employment within the University of Louisiana System.

Willer joined the faculty of the then-Department of Communication Arts at ULM in 1984 and was named faculty supervisor of student radio station KXUL in 1985.

He took on the title of Director of University Broadcasting in 2008, when he assumed additional responsibilities as the general manager of KEDM Public Radio.

Early in his ULM career Willer assisted with much of the preliminary planning and grant preparation for KEDM, which first began broadcasting in 1991.

Since formally joining the KEDM staff, Willer has supervised the expansion of the station’s coverage through a power increase to 100 kilowatts, has overseen KEDM’s transition to three channels of digital transmissions, and has begun the design process for a new radio studio facility.

Over the years, Willer has contributed extensively to student broadcasters nationwide.

He served as chairman of an ad hoc committee that planned a national organization for student-operated electronic media, College Broadcasters, Inc.  Accolades include multiple commendations from CBI.

He is also a recipient of the Reid H. Montgomery Distinguished Service Award, a Distinguished Four-Year Broadcast Adviser, and has received a presidential citation from the College Media Association.

He previously served on the Executive Board of Directors and on the Faculty-Staff Advisory Board of the former National Association of College Broadcasters.  Willer has been a frequent presenter at student media conferences.

Willer also has been an active representative of college webcasters for copyright royalty issues involved in the digital performance of music, having participated in proceedings of the Copyright Royalty Judges of the Library of Congress, the Register of Copyrights, and in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

He presented written testimony to committees of both houses of the U.S. Congress.

Willer participated in the setting of negotiated and statutory copyright royalty schemes for noncommercial educational webcasters for each of the years spanning from 1998 through 2015.

Before coming to ULM, Willer served two years on the faculty of Southeastern Louisiana University and while there worked with campus radio station KSLU.

He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Kent State University.

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