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Donna Apidone finds her purpose as Morning Edition Host in California’s state capital

Published: May 25, 2022 Author: Cheri Russo

Sacramento’s Capital Public Radio Morning Edition Host Donna Apidone says she remembers the day clearly that she understood her career had a purpose. “A listener told me that I was their partner in the morning and their comfort during a crisis, and I realized that is what I do for a living. And I developed many of the skills to be able to do that at Ohio University and WOUB.”

Apidone grew up in northeast Ohio in Chagrin Falls near Cleveland. When she graduated from high school in 1974, she knew she wanted to work in media.

“At the age of 14, we visited a family friend who was on the air at a radio station in Cleveland, and I knew that I wanted to be in radio,” said Apidone. “So, by the time I graduated high school, I had learned that Ohio University had one of the strongest programs for media, and after visiting the campus with my parents, I knew I wanted to go there.”

Apidone learned about WOUB during that visit.

“They took us on a tour of the Radio and Television Building, and I saw WOUB,” said Apidone. “I knew I wanted to get involved at WOUB.”

Even though Apidone is an on-air personality now, she was a radio and television major who was focused on production while in college. So when she was working at WOUB, she focused on learning the production side of the operation.

“I was on the TV floor crew for NewsWatch and worked in master control,” said Apidone. “I did some audio production work for afternoon and evening radio shows. But I was never on the air at WOUB.”

However, Apidone did do some on-air work for ACRN, the student run All-Campus Radio Network. She isn’t sure why she didn’t pursue on-air work at WOUB, but knows she still learned vital skills that she is using in her career today.

“During my senior year at WOUB, I worked my way up to an associate producer role on a public affairs television show we produced called Lock, Stock and Barrel, and I also had an opportunity to work on the music TV program called Hocking Valley Bluegrass,” said Apidone. “I developed a sense of self at WOUB. It was in that environment that I learned a little bit more about my abilities, capabilities, and interests. I was able to do so many things and figure out that I liked this but didn’t like that.”

Apidone’s first job after she graduated from Ohio University in 1978 was in Athens. She was an announcer on WATH/WXTQ for about three years. Then she made a couple of other stops at WGAR in Cleveland and WKSU in Kent, Ohio before landing at her current station, the NPR member station in Sacramento, California. Apidone came to Capital Public Radio in 1998 and has hosted Morning Edition since 2001.

“I enjoy the audience. I enjoy that connection with the people who are listening,” said Apidone. “Even though we don’t connect at that moment because it’s radio, I always try to talk to just one person when I am on the air. I always know who that one person is in the morning, and I’m always talking to that individual, and that person is an image in my mind.”

Apidone volunteers with the board of directors of a national animal rescue organization and, as an ordained minister, she works with a half dozen interfaith organizations. She also enjoys her work as a certified life coach and seminar facilitator. It’s a life Apidone said wouldn’t have been possible without her start at Ohio University and WOUB.

“WOUB prepared me for this. I didn’t know much about public broadcasting before WOUB,” said Apidone. “I was also able to learn about audio production and that still holds up. I learned a lot about how to produce a show and the pieces you must put into it and the time involved. Just being able to be a part of it added to my knowledge and understanding.”

To learn more about WOUB, visit woub.org.