Wednesday, September 14, 2016

A Lively Experiment Announces Jim Hummel as New Moderator, Effective September 23

Launching its 30th season as the flagship political affairs program on WSBE Rhode Island PBS, A Lively Experiment announces today that Jim Hummel will be the show’s new moderator. A Lively Experiment will also introduce a modified format. The changes begin Friday, September 23, 2016.

"We are excited to have Jim as the program’s new host," said WSBE President David W. Piccerelli. "Jim’s award-winning background in investigative reporting and his inquisitive nature will stimulate lively debate and thought provoking conversation."

The show’s freshened format will now include two to four panelists discussing local politics. New to the format will be introduction of a pre-produced interview or story package featuring content to be discussed by the panel.

"I’m excited to be an integral part in the next chapter of A Lively Experiment’s nearly 30-year history," Mr. Hummel said. "Our team will continue to produce a must-see weekly premier political affairs program and, with the new format, more in-depth discussions to build on what makes Lively so unique."

"We have found that our viewers want the show’s focus to be on Rhode Island politics and stories,” said WSBE Executive Producer David Marseglia. "The changes we are implementing will favor a broader range of local stories over national ones, giving viewers more of what they want to see. We believe the new format will benefit from Jim’s deep-rooted understanding of the Rhode Island political landscape," Mr. Marseglia added.

Jim Hummel is executive director and senior investigator of The Hummel Report. Known for his WLNE-TV/ABC6 You Paid for It segments, Mr. Hummel spent 13 years as chief reporter for ABC6, and 13 years at The Providence Journal. In his career, Mr. Hummel earned the Radio and Television News Directors Association’s prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting.

Mr. Piccerelli also recognized outgoing moderator Dyana Koelsch in his remarks. “We sincerely thank Dyana for her role in guiding the show for the past five years. We appreciate her time and effort, and the professionalism and experience she brought to the show each week. We look forward to her continued insight and expertise as a guest on the panel," he said.

"I have enjoyed being part of A Lively Experiment and look forward to returning as a panelist," said Ms. Koelsch. "The show has a proud history of informing and creating uncensored dialogue around the important issues impacting our state – something that is critically important given today's economic and political climate."

Jim Hummel is only the fourth permanent moderator in the show's 29-year history. Radio broadcaster Steve Kass moderated the show from 1987 until 2005, when he accepted a position in then-Governor Donald Carcieri’s administration. James Hagan, former president of the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, moderated the show from 2006 until Dyana Koelsch took over in 2011.

A Lively Experiment airs on WSBE Rhode Island PBS (36.1) Fridays at 7 p.m., with rebroadcasts on Saturdays at 7 p.m. on WSBE Learn (36.2), and Sundays at noon on WSBE Rhode Island PBS. Episodes of A Lively Experiment are available online on the Rhode Island PBS YouTube channel, usually the next business day. Viewers can also find A Lively Experiment on Facebook.

WSBE Rhode Island PBS transmits standard-definition (SD) and high-definition (HD) programming over the air on digital 36.1; on RI cable: Cox 08 / 1008HD, Verizon FiOS 08 / 508HD, and Full Channel 08; on MA cable: Comcast 819HD and Verizon FiOS 18 / 518HD; on satellite: DirecTV 36, Dish Network 36.

WSBE Learn transmits over the air on digital 36.2; in Rhode Island on Cox 808; Verizon FiOS 478; Full Channel 89; and in Massachusetts on Comcast 294 or 312.

About A Lively Experiment
Since 1987, A Lively Experiment has provided fast-paced analysis of the week's political events in spirited debate, opinion, and commentary by news makers and opinion leaders. Representing independent and partisan viewpoints, a revolving panel of television, radio, print, and online journalists, political scientists, pundits, economists, elected and appointed officials, and other Rhode Island personalities examine local and state issues. A Lively Experiment’s popular segment, “Outrage of the Week,” typifies the essence of the show’s political commentary. This segment features an eclectic collection of each guest's single most significant issue, often under-reported failings and foibles of Rhode Island officials. 

About Rhode Island PBS 
WSBE Rhode Island PBS is operated by the Rhode Island PBS Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, established in 1987 as a public charity to raise funds and provide support services for Rhode Island’s public television station. WSBE-DT is a viewer-supported member of the PBS network of public broadcasting stations, and transmits on three channels: Rhode Island PBS (digital 36.1), Learn (digital 36.2), and Spanish-language programming on Vme (36.3). Committed to lifelong learning since 1967, WSBE Rhode Island PBS uses the power of noncommercial media to educate, engage, enrich, inspire, and entertain viewers of all ages in Rhode Island, southeastern Massachusetts, and eastern Connecticut. For more information about the programs and education services at WSBE, visit