Morning Edition Host and Reporter Travis Bubenik is leaving West Texas in January for a reporting position at Houston Public Media, where he’ll cover energy and environment issues in Texas. We asked him to share a few thoughts on his time at Marfa Public Radio/West Texas Public Radio as he departs.
Let me just start by saying I am so. dang. proud. to have contributed to this bootstraps reporting effort that has now become an award-winning newsroom. Since I came on board in 2014, with the tireless help of our Fronteras Desk Correspondent Lorne Matalon and former General Manager and KRTS founder Tom Michael, the station you flip on every morning has become more professional almost every single day. We’ve covered stories nobody else has, and broadcast sounds and scenes from West Texas that might have never been committed to tape without this station being here (and without your support of it, of course!)
Change is never easy. I’m definitely going to miss looking out from our big street-front studio windows as the skies over Marfa burst into colors with the sunrise. I’m going to miss the guy who calls in regularly in the depths of winter with a temperature report (“17 degrees at Mitchell Flat!”) And I’m going to miss being able to tell people, “well, we have a wide range, but our audience is mostly cattle.”
Most importantly, I’ll miss talking to you! But here’s the thing: you’ll probably hear me again. The public radio system in Texas is an increasingly collaborative team effort: you’ve heard many stories from Houston here in West Texas, and I’m sure the reverse will be true going forward. On a personal level, I’m extremely excited to be moving forward in my career in a way that allows me to keep my finger on the pulse of West Texas, and that keeps me serving the state as a whole.
So ’till you hear from me again, thanks for listening, and thanks for making this funky little miracle of a radio station possible.