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William J. Marrazzo named WHYY President...

Philadelphia (October 29, 1997) -- William J. Marrazzo, 48, a senior executive, who has served as President and CEO of Roy F. Weston, Inc., an environmental consulting firm in West Chester, PA, and as Water Commissioner of Philadelphia, today was named President of WHYY, Inc.

Marrazzo assumes his post as CEO of TV12 and 91FM, the prime public television and radio stations in the region, on November 3, 1997. He succeeds Frederick (Rick) Breitenfeld Jr., Ph.D., 66 , who has served as President of WHYY for 14 years and announced his intention to step down last March.

Announcement of Marrazzo's selection, after a six-month national search, was made by WHYY, Inc. Board Chairman Francis Van Kirk, Managing Partner of the accounting firm Coopers & Lybrand. "Bill Marrazzo is an exceptional choice to lead WHYY into the next century," Van Kirk said.

"A key reason Bill was selected to head WHYY," Van Kirk said, "is his belief that the stations can play an even more significant role in the economic development of the Delaware Valley through the innovative use of emerging broadcasting technologies to support and enhance this region's lifelong learning programs.

"Bill understands the dynamics of the private and public sectors and has a proven track record of bringing them together to create value. During the past 26 years, Bill has earned an impressive reputation as a business leader of integrity and commitment to the well being of the Delaware Valley. He is widely regarded as an exemplary public servant, having spearheaded several major Listen Live! for area nonprofit groups.

"Throughout his career, Bill has successfully led organizations whose customers and clients were challenged by the reshaping of their markets as a result of federal regulatory initiatives. These experiences will ensure his smooth transition to the telecommunications industry -- currently facing the same challenges and opportunities."

"WHYY," Marrazzo said, "is in strong financial and organizational shape, thanks to the leadership of Rick Breitenfeld and the work of the stations' dedicated staff. WHYY's future is bright. I'm delighted to be part of that future and to build on the direction WHYY has set for itself: 'to provide telecommunication services to the community, which contribute to the quality of life through education, information, entertainment and inspiration.'"

"WHYY is an important provider of exceptional public television and radio programming to the region," Marrazzo said. "In the new and expanding telecommunications era, these exceptional services will continue and expand as will WHYY's role as a provider of educational services through a variety of media."
Marrazzo said that WHYY currently has a variety of education services that reach everyone -- from daycare providers to part-time students receiving college credits through telecourses; from math teachers seeking to improve their teaching skills to inner-city high school students learning to use computers for the first time.

Marrazzo said that these and other educational services will play an even more important role in lifelong learning for the community, and in the economic development of the region.

In 1971, Marrazzo joined the Philadelphia Water Department as an engineer. He was named Water Commissioner in 1979 and remained in office until 1988, when he joined the environmental consulting firm, Roy F. Weston, Inc. in West Chester as a Divisional Vice President. Two years later he was named Chief Operating Officer and in 1991 he became President and CEO, remaining there until 1997.

He is a member of the board of trustees of several public and private institutions including The Free Library of Philadelphia, The Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation, where he is instrumental in raising $35 million for a Listen Live!. He is a member of the Board of the Philadelphia Gas Works, the American Water Works Association, the Pennsylvania Environmental Council and the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce.

He earned a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware, at Newark, in 1971 and he completed graduate course work for a master's in chemical engineering at Villanova University in 1976.

He and his wife, Randi, who is an opera singer, live in the West Mount Airy section of Philadelphia. They have two children: Jeffrey, 19, a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania, and Claire, 18, a freshman at the University of Delaware.

Marrazzo's selection as WHYY's new President was headed by a search committee chaired by WHYY Vice Chair Molly Dickinson Shepard. The Philadelphia executive search firm headed by Judith von Seldeneck, Diversified Search, Inc., handled the national search.

WHYY, Inc. is an independent, nonprofit corporation that operates TV12, a community public television station licensed to Wilmington, DE, and 91FM, a community public radio station licensed to Philadelphia, PA. WHYY has studios in Philadelphia on Independence Mall and in Wilmington at Sixth and Orange Streets. Since its inception more than 40 years ago, WHYY has provided noncommercial radio and television services to the Greater Philadelphia region, the entire state of Delaware and southern New Jersey.

WHYY's purpose is to serve the community through telecommunications by contributing to the quality of life through education, information, entertainment and inspiration.

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