Michelle Keenan

Membership Director

Michelle Keenan is the Director of Membership at WCQS. She began volunteering for the station in 1996 and has been a full-time staff member since 1998.

The daughter of a pilot, Michelle grew up in many places but chose Western North Carolina as her home more than 20 years ago. Michelle has a BA in History from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Shortly after college Michelle realized what she really wanted to be when she grew up was a philanthropist. Sans silver spoon, she channeled that energy into raising money and a fundraiser was born. Michelle believes deeply in public broadcasting and is proud to be a member of the WCQS family.

Michelle enjoys many creative outlets, traveling and spending time with two and four legged family members and good friends.

Ways to Connect


We all knew the day was coming, now it's almost here! After 42 years as host and creative force behind A Prairie Home Companion, Garrison Keillor will hang up his red shoes July 2nd. We know you'll want to tune your radio and listen during your Independence Day weekend celebrations.

If you'd like to take the celebration up a notch, you can host your own Listening Party. Our friends at A Prairie Home Companion have assembled a Listening Party Starter Kit, complete with:

WCQS will add three new programs to the Sunday afternoon line-up: Fresh Air Weekend, The New Yorker Radio Hour and Reveal. The three-hour block of programming will air from 2 to 5 p.m. beginning June 12.

Fresh Air Weekend collects the best cultural segments from the week’s programs and crafts them together for great weekend listening. Award-winning journalist Terry Gross hosts the show, which will air air Sundays from 2 to 3 p.m.

WCQS will host an opening reception for the paintings of Jackson County Artist, Laura John on June 3rd from 5 - 7 p.m. Light refreshments will be served. This is also the evening of the Downtown Asheville Arts District First Friday Art Walk. 

WCQS General Manager, David Feingold, is delighted to have the station participate in the vibrant art scene, "Western North Carolina is a rich cultural and artistic tapestry and we hope to showcase parts of that fabric with a rotation of exhibits of artists from throughout the region." 

NPR’s very popular news program, Morning Edition, heard daily on WCQS, is inviting listeners to create their own versions of the program's longtime, iconic theme music composed by Asheville’s BJ Leiderman. Regular Morning Edition listeners have heard the familiar theme every weekday morning since the show's first broadcast in 1979.

Tune in Saturday at 3 for We'll Be Here All Night: Stories for Passover - a Passover special from Table Magazine's National Magazine Award-winning podcast, Vox Tablet. The special features funny, poignant, and thought-provoking stories and conversations that touch on the plagues, on slavery, on food, on the act of story-telling and more. The special is hosted by Sara Ivry and Jonathan Goldstein, with stories from Etgar Keret, Sally Herships, Debbie Nathan, Michael Twitty, and Jonathan Groubert.

Tune in Tuesday morning at 10 and Thursday night at 8 for the broadcast of the Asheville Symphony Orchestra's March concert, "Romeo & Juliet".  The concert featured Elgar's "Chanson de Matin and Chanson de Nuit", Mozart's "Piano Concerto No. 21," featuring guest pianist Shen Lu. The program concludes with Berlioz's "Romeo and Juliet."

WCQS had a big day in Hendersonville on April 5. The day began with a meeting of the WCQS Community Forum and was capped off that evening with a reception for longtime donors and business supporters.

The Community Forum was held at St. James Episcopal Church. The meeting was well attended. Among the topics discussed was the possibility of a joint project with Carolina Public Press to cover the issues of health care in Western North Carolina.

Classical Music host Josh Jourdan took a leave of absence from WCQS last year to serve active duty with the US Navy. Josh is a Petty Officer 2nd Class. He is currently working in military intelligence overseas. 

We recently heard from Josh when he had a rare couple of hours to himself. He said he's extremely busy but that he misses everyone terribly. When we asked if we could provide an update to listeners, he said, "Sure. Please tell them I'm tired but fine, and I'll be back as soon as I can and look forward to reconnecting with them." 

Last fall WCQS tried a new approach to fundraising - raise the goal without interruption to programming. The response was overwhelmingly positive! You helped us eliminate the traditional On-Air Membership Drive by responding to brief reminders during regularly scheduled breaks. Now it's time to turn the page on 30 years of interruptive fundraisers forever and prove that last fall wasn't a fluke. Let's work together to make this the new, smart-model for fundraising. 

Listen Tuesday, March 15 at 8 pm for special live coverage of the Florida, Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina, and Ohio primaries anchored by NPR's Ari Shapiro and Rachel Martin.

Coverage on WCQS will also include live updates on the NC Bond Issue, Buncombe County Commission Races and more.

That's this Tuesday at 8 pm on WCQS.

The 'Fifth Beatle' legendary record producer George Martin died March 8, 2016 at the age of 90. This weekend we'll remember him with a special appreciation from PRX. Radio Producer Paul Ingles mines his many documentaries on Beatles albums for a few stories that show off producer George Martin’s contributions to Beatles records.

After 30 years of service, WCQS News Director David Hurand is set to leave March 31, 2016.

David joined WCQS in 1986 when it was still a start up. In the years since, the station has become a trusted and respected source of news and information in Western North Carolina.

Jason Beaubien

Last November NPR staffers rescued a chicken outside the network's Washington, D.C. headquarters from a busy city street. Adam Cole, who runs NPR’s Skunk Bear YouTube channel and Tumblr, first spotted the chicken. Apparently, after resolving to pluck the chicken from danger, a chase ensued and some minutes later Cole emerged with grass stains on his knees and chicken in hand (although not before said chicken managed to cross the road, begging the proverbial question . . . ).

The Knights, a critically acclaimed orchestral collective, will be featured on WCQS on February 22 and 23. WCQS Music Director Dick Kowal will interview members of the group Monday at 1 p.m. The ensemble will also be featured on The State of Things on Tuesday, February 23 at Noon.