Peter Franck, ‘Plan A’, a consensus structural change, 23Sep2018

Peter Franck, lawyer to the stars, has identified two options for Pacifica: “a consensus structural change (Plan A) or enact the ‘Friendly Divorce’, (Plan B)”. He published the proposals on the 10th anniversary of Pacifica Executive Director Nicole Sawaya’s parting shot, an open letter to the deceased Lew Hill. This is Plan A.

Copied, without alteration, from Mr Franck’s work website:



Pacifica will have to drastically revise its structure and by-laws in order to survive as a single organization: It will be necessary to develop a strong consensus around the Pacifica system around a plan. If there is substantial consensus on a new structure there are several routes to a By-Law replacement which are briefly discussed below. A simplified, more centralized plan with community input on programming could look like this:

1. We would roll the local Boards into the Community Advisory Boards (CABs, which are required by the Public Broadcasting Act);

2. Pacifica national board should be no more than eleven (11) people, nine (9) of whom would be elected by vote of the entire membership. They would serve no more than two three year terms before rotating off. In addition, there would be three (3) at large seats to be filled by the elected board to round out its skill set;

3. The board would appoint an Executive Director under an employment agreement whereby the board sets forth clear priorities and objectives, the employment of the Executive Director to be reviewed by the board annually measuring performance against stated objectives and goals.

4. Under the Executive Director’s contract, the board would not directly intervene in decisions, appointments, etc., made by the Executive Director or his staff except through a careful and stepped grievance/appeal process.

5. The CABs would appoint for each station, a Program Council. The Executive Director would be responsible for implementing recommendations of the Program council, so long as they are made by a 2/3 vote.

6. Under her/his contract, the Executive Director, would appoint station managers, but would also have direct personnel responsibility with respect to hiring, firing and disciplining of station staff, paid or unpaid.

** There could be several routes to enacting the new plan once there is system wide consensus, include:
A. Vote of the membership;
B. Action by the California Attorney General in Superior Court supported by Listener and Staff as amicus or as co-counsel by concerned listeners;
C. A planned voluntary Court appointed Trusteeship or bankruptcy with a pre-arranged trustee empowered to and agreeing to implement the consensus plan.


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