Joseph Haefeli (he/him)
President, Board Member
Joseph Haefeli was formerly the Director of Technology (including radio) for the College of Performing and Visual Arts of the University of Northern Colorado. Since his arrival as a volunteer in 2014, he has been a dynamo around the station. He has played a key role in the design and renovation of WRFI’s Studio B, the overhaul and reorganization of our signal chain, the installation of a new IP telephone system, as well as numerous other improvements.
John Young (he/him)
Treasurer, Board Member
John caught the radio bug as a student, when he became a regular DJ and served as Assistant Engineer and board member at KRLX-Northfield (Minnesota), the voice of Carleton College.
As a professional musician, he has performed or been featured on national programs such as NPR’s Weekend Edition and World Café, as well as on many local stations across America. As a writer and researcher on the global environment and related issues, he has made hundreds of appearances on radio networks around the world, including NPR, Voice of America, Deutsche Welle, and the BBC. When he’s not on the radio, he’s probably listening to it.
Bryan Roberts (he/him)
Bryan M. Roberts is the associate dean in the Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College. Trained as a media researcher, Bryan studies the impact of sexual and violent media on a wide array of age groups. Bryan is also very active with the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research where he is committed to advocacy, philanthropy and clinical trial participation.
Bryan grew up in Eastern Long Island and holds his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Communication Science from the University of Connecticut. Prior to his position at Ithaca, he worked at Purchase College, SUNY for several years in both teaching and administrative capacities. His first job ever in media was as an intern for a local Long Island radio station.
In his free time, he enjoys watching the Mets and UConn Huskies, reading books on political history and hitting baseballs. Bryan resides in Ithaca with his daughter, Avery, and two terribly behaved cats.
Chantal Thomas (she/her)
Chantal’s experience in radio began in Montreal, Quebec, at the Canadian station CKUT, a nonprofit, campus-community radio station affiliated with McGill University where Chantal studied political science as an undergraduate.
Upon moving to Ithaca, Chantal returned to radio broadcasting as WRFI volunteer and co-host of WRFI’s “Human Rights and Social Justice” program. In 2022 Chantal launched a new program at WRFI, "The Scene" featuring long-form interviews with scholars, authors, and experts in a variety of fields.
She has made media appearances with other local and national outlets, such as WVBR, NY1 News, C-SPAN, and PBS Newshour. Her daytime gig involves teaching at Cornell Law School, where she is Professor of Law and also directs the Clarke Initiate for Law and Development in the Middle East and North Africa. Previously, Chantal chaired the Law Department of the American University in Cairo, and has consulted internationally for USAID and the US State Department’s Advisory Committee on International Law.
Theresa Lyons, Phd (she/her)
Dr. Theresa Lyons has her Ph.D. in chemistry from Yale University. She loves to translate cutting-edge autism research into actionable steps that parents and organizations can easily take to improve the health and happiness of those with autism. Her world instantly changed forever when Dr. Lyons’ daughter was diagnosed with severe autism, and she asked the question, "Ok, so now what?"
Part of the answer to that question was to create Navigating AWEtism, a company that organizes the entire world’s scientific information on autism and makes it accessible and easy to use.
Dr. Lyons grew up in NYC and loved listening to the radio! She even had a small battery-powered karaoke-style radio that she would take everywhere with her so she could sing and dance no matter what adventure she was on in NYC.
Joe Romano (he/him)
Joe Romano was the Marketing Manager at GreenStar Natural Foods Market for over a decade. Before his tenure at GreenStar, Joe played out in five bands in NYC and worked in film and television in NYC for 20 years. Before that, he taught English Literature and Creative Writing at the City University of New York. He has a wife, a daughter and two cats, (in that order), and currently resides in Ithaca, NY.
Amie Herman (she/her)
Amie Herman has spent most of her 30-year career in marketing, organizational development, and non-profit management, serving in several senior leadership roles. Most recently Amie acted as the Senior Director of Marketing, Development and Organizational Advancement for a large regional YMCA in New Jersey where she was responsible for the direction and implementation of the Y’s development strategy and for the execution of a significant multi-year capital expansion campaign.
Amie founded an independent consulting practice in 2012 and has worked with a wide variety of corporate and non-profit organizations on key strategic efforts which have included crafting mission-forward impact messaging and branding, designing development plans, and acting as an expert facilitator to help align leadership teams to support organizational change. She received her bachelor’s degree in East Asian Studies from the University of Virginia.
Amie and her husband Tom have made Ithaca their hometown after living in their self-designed and self-built campervan for 13 months. They spent an “adult gap year” exploring the US -- hiking, biking and kayaking, and seeking out great food, drink, and live music. (blog: https://amie.substack.com) Of the many places they explored, Ithaca had the perfect combination of things they loved most, including thriving independent radio.
Carlos Gutierrez (he/him)
Carlos was born in Chile. He received a BA in Sociology from Colorado State University and MPS from Alfred University, NY. After working for NYS – Office of Children and Family Services. He worked for the Tompkins County Workers’ Center as an Occupational Safety and Health Trainer and Immigrant Advocate. Carlos has participated in several community organizations’ boards such as Cornell Cooperative Extension, The Leadership Team at the Tompkins County Workers’ Center, The Latino Civic Association and the Mid-State Council for Occupational Safety and Health. Carlos has developed strong roots in the Ithaca community. For the last five years Carlos has hosted Alcance Latino a radio program in Spanish at WRFI.
Robin Elliot (she/they)
Talaya Centeno (she/her)
Talaya Centeno’s roots in radio began locally at WICB, where she was a local DJ and Programming Director while receiving her degree from Ithaca College in Photojournalism. A native of Manhattan, Ithaca has always been a second home where she spent summers as a child with family.
Talaya began her career as a Fashion Photographer in NYC, joining Conde Nast where she spent over ten years developing a rich portfolio of work.
Always having a passion for medicine, Talaya decided to pursue a medical career and returned to school to become a Physician Assistant. She joined the Mount Sinai Cardiothoracic unit and worked tirelessly, taking care of patients in a COVID ICU, at the height of the pandemic.
Talaya resides in Ithaca with her partner and three children, and is always happy to hear the local freight train rumble by her house.
Peter Bakija (he/him)
Fred Balfour (he/him)
Corinne Shanahan (she/her)
Recent Board Meeting Minutes
WRFI Board Meeting 9/13/22 Commence at 6:00 pm. In Attendance. -Bryan Roberts -Peter Bakija -Joseph Haeleifi -Corrine Shanahan -Fred Balfour -Carlos Gutierrez -Robin Elliot -John Young -Joe Romano -Felix Teitlebaum Motion: Approve consent agenda. Vote 8-0. Pass. -President Report: Godfrey has resigned from board. New Bumper Stickers: Shiny and holographic. Joseph encouraged everyone to get…
WRFI Board Meeting June 14, 2022: 6-8pm Present: Felix Teitelbaum John Young Bryan Roberts Godfrey Simmons (first half) Joe Romano (joined at 6:13pm) Robin Elliott Carlos Gutierrez Not Present: Chantal Thomas Alex Ackert Smith Joseph Haefeli 6:00pm 6:10 Introduction of Peter Bakija and Fred Balfour as new potential board members 6:10 Motion…
WRFI Board Meeting May 10, 2022: 6-8pm Present: Felix Teitelbaum Alexandra Ackert-Smith Carlos Gutierrez John Young Chantal Thomas Bryan Roberts Joe Romano (joined at 6:13pm) Not Present: Godfrey Simmons Robin Elliott Joseph Haefeli 6:00pm 6:07pm: Quorum achieved 6:10pm: Arrival/welcome/special welcome of Bryan as new board member 6:10-12 pm Committee report outs (governance,…
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