Karen Holp

KGOU General Manager

Karen earned her Master (1974) and Bachelor (1972) degrees from the University of Akron in Ohio, and has worked as Program Director at WMRA-FM, James Madison University in Harrisonburg Virginia and WUIS-FM, University of Illinois at Springfield. She moved to Las Cruces, New Mexico in 1979 to become General Manager of KRWG-FM.

Karen became an Oklahoman in 1988 when she came to the University of Oklahoma as the General Manager of KGOU Radio. Karen also holds the rank of Adjunct Assistant Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications and teaches Radio News each semester that results in Assignment: Radio, heard biweekly on Sundays at noon during the regular semesters. She is also faculty of record for other practicum and internship opportunities through OU School of Journalism.

Karen is very active in public radio affairs: she has served a six-year term on the Board of Directors of National Public Radio from 1988-1994, and has been a participant on a wide variety of panels and committees for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, NPR and others. Karen is the past Treasurer of Western States Public Radio and currently Chair of the Board of Rocky Mountain Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Karen also serves on the Board of Directors of Freedom of Information Oklahoma, an organization that works to preserve the First Amendment. She is a long-time board member of Jazz in June, Inc. in Norman that presents free jazz concerts each June.  She previously has served on the board of Neighborhood Alliance, Inc. in Oklahoma City.

Of late, KGOU joined with the other public broadcasting entities in Oklahoma to form the Oklahoma Public Media Exchange.  Karen was elected Chair for fiscal year 2012 and remains in that position. OPME is working to collaborate on projects of mutual interest that further the public service mission of public broadcasting.

Karen was recognized in 2004 by the Norman Arts Council as "Businessperson in the Arts and Humanities."  In 2005, Karen received a Governor's Arts Community Service Award, which recognizes individuals for significant contributions to the arts in specific Oklahoma communities in the areas of leadership and volunteerism. Karen was recognized by the Oklahoma Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists as "Teacher of the Year" in 2014. In 2015, Freedom of Information Oklahoma presented Karen with the Marian Opala First Amendment Award.


Ways to Connect

October 9, 2016

This is from the former Manager’s Desk.

Yes, I’m still here, volunteering for the fall fundraising drive. We are celebrating the voices of KGOU. Of course there are the voices of the staff, and of the various programs that you hear all the time. But there are new voices to hear as well.

We have new programs – Freakonomics, Ask Me Another and The Ted Radio Hour.

Soon, we’ll have a decision on a new manager, and theirs is a voice you will want to get to know.

Karen Holp, KGOU General Manager.
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

September 25, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

Well, that is nearly the last time I’ll say “from the manager’s desk” because this is my last week of employment here at KGOU Radio.

But after that, I’ll say, “from the former manager’s desk” because I’m sticking around a bit as a volunteer -- to help with the membership drive, to announce the new manager when that happens, and to keep an eye on things until then. Old broadcaster are frankly hard to get rid of.

September 18, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

Reading about media trends can be a little scary. There are always forecasts of doom and reports of innovations that will change the world, and concerns about how to pay for it all.

For me, public radio’s long time funding model works well. KGOU produces and delivers as much quality content as the budget will allow, and you get it first without having to pay.

Then you make donations based on how well we’ve done. The more people donate, the more we can deliver in the future.

September 12, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

This fall, KGOU is celebrating 20 years with a primarily news and information program schedule. It was 1996 when we made that very important decision after careful consideration.

Today, I listen to familiar voices from the programs hosts that have been on the air since 1996, and new voices that joined the schedule over the years, and some as recently as this summer.

Karen Holp, KGOU General Manager.
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

September 4, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

I want to celebrate the growth of KGOU Radio over these many years, so I am inviting you to a party.

Come to my celebration on Thursday, September 29th from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Sam Noble Museum. We’ll have some music from Mary Sallee, refreshments, and good words for each other. I’ll have an update about our capital campaign to replace the KROU transmitter.

August 28, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

It is time to recognize our students at KGOU for the fall semester.

Taking Practicum this semester are Ethan Barton and David Ransom. These two will be working on a variety of items behind the scenes – editing audio, preparing promotional announcements, and making sure the operations go smoothly.

Karen Holp, KGOU General Manager, standing next to a part of the broadcast antenna for KROU was that installed in 2011.
KGOU Staff

August 21, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

A couple of weeks ago, I said I was going to retire later this fall after 28 years at KGOU.

But there is something I want to get started before I go.

I want to start a small, informal fundraising effort to help pay for the replacement of the KROU transmitter and related equipment.

KROU at 105.7 FM serves Oklahoma County and went on the air in June of 1993. That makes the transmitter 23 years old, and it is going to need replacing soon.

August 14, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

This Saturday, August 20, is National Radio Day and KGOU is holding an open house from noon to 3 p.m. here in our studios.

We invite you to come for a little or stay for a while. We’ll have some meeting time with our news reporters so you can ask them about their work. 

Karen Holp, KGOU General Manager.
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

August 7, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

This week, I have something very personal to tell you. After 28 years at KGOU, and 41 years in the public radio business, I have decided to retire later this fall.

Together we have grown KGOU to a significant service. There are many to thank – from the administration of the University of Oklahoma and OU Outreach, to the marvelous staff of KGOU who work hard every day, to you who have listened and supported KGOU these many years.

KGOU Is Everywhere!

Jul 17, 2016
made with Google Earth maps

July 17, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.   

Every once in a while I like to look at the number of communities and zip codes of our members.  We have over three thousand members from two hundred zip codes within Oklahoma.

There are KGOU listeners in Woodward, Seiling and Moreland, listeners in Ada, Seminole, Wewoka, and Holdenville.  There listeners from Chickasha, Anadarko and Tuttle.  And I have to say there are some members so far away that they must be listening to the online audio stream.

Capitol Steps / Capitol Steps

July 10, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

There are a few tickets left for the Oklahoma City performance of the Capitol Steps, this Saturday at 8pm at the OCCC Performing Arts Center. There’s a link to the tickets on the KGOU web page, and I hope to see you in the audience.

Happy New Fiscal Year!

Jul 3, 2016
Merlin2525 / Creative Commons/Google Images

July 3, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

Happy New Fiscal Year 2017!!

That is Auld Lang Syne because we closed the books on last fiscal year.

In the last twelve months,

June 26, 2016

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

This week’s end to the broadcast of Whad’Ya Know? presented a challenge to KGOU.

We wanted to fill that space in the program schedule with something engaging and equally valuable to you. And we needed to do that within the current budget crunch that is affecting KGOU, by way of current cuts to state agencies.

We looked at a listener survey, program ratings and at fundraising patterns. And we considered carefully.


June 19, 2016

This is from the Manager's Desk.   

This Saturday will mark the end of an era because it is the last national broadcast of Whad’Ya Know? (Not much, you?)

Earlier this year, Wisconsin Public Radio announced the program’s end, and all of a sudden, the end is here. It has been an incredible 31 year run for Michael Feldman and Whad’Ya Know? (Not much, you?)

June 12, 2016

This is from the Manager's Desk. It is a busy time at KGOU so I want to highlight a couple of things this week.

First, don't forget that the Jazz in June concerts and clincis run this Thursday through Friday. Come visit us at the KGOU booth at the concerts.