Calvin Bader, FundRaiser Champion, is the engineer at WJIE Christian Radio. “I work a lot on the technical side of things, not just the broadcast but also the equipment and computers. I enjoy the challenge. There is something different every day and that keeps me motivated and interested.”
On any given day, he might find himself doing a wide variety of jobs. “I might help one of the DJ’s in getting a new song or spot loaded into the automated system, which is fairly routine.”
Another part of Calvin’s job is to get things ready for the intense fundraising pledge drives that the station runs. “If it is time for one of our fundraisers -- we have one in spring and one in fall-- I make sure that all the phone systems are working to take calls and that all computers are functioning at their peak to take the donations,” says Calvin.
“FundRaiser Software is not time-consuming for me. There are times when things happen, but most of the time, it is not what keeps me occupied. I am the trouble shooter, not doing data entry. I am here to help with the technical side of things.”
In that respect, Calvin says that FundRaiser has made their life a lot easier. “In the past, with our previous program, it was extremely difficult to enter new pledges. There is still work involved with Fundraiser but it is not that intense, like it used to be. In the past there was a ton of stuff we had to deal with and we were pulling our hair out. Now that we use FundRaiser, if we do have a problem, help is just a phone call away to FundRaiser Technical Support. With our previous systems, it was hard to get support."
He is also the one who is responsible for keeping the station up-to-date on technology. “We always try to look forward to what technology is coming up and what new things we can implement to help our listeners and to allow them to interact more with us. That is a team effort, but I’m usually the one who makes the initial suggestion. I’ll present that to the general manager and a couple of other guys and we hash things out. The general manager is a great leader in making the station work, and he relies on me for the technical side of things. We are a good team. If you don’t realize the strengths and weaknesses in yourself and others, and then match people up to make a good team, then your organization is going to fail. It is about all of us as team, not just one person.”
Once the team decides on implementing new technology, Calvin sets it up. “Recently we set up a new system that displays an artist’s name and the song title to people on their car radios. That took a lot of troubleshooting to get it functioning the way we wanted.”
The radio station is a noncommercial educational station through Evangel Christian School. In addition to the work challenges, Calvin also likes working at WJIE because he likes working for an organization that shares his own personal values. “I like that we reach out to the community and people around us and make a difference in the lives of the people who are listening to the station,” he says.
When Calvin isn’t working, he loves to spend time at home. “We live on about 30 acres so there are always things to do. We cut our own firewood for heating, care for a few small farm animals and there are always improvements to make around the house. I like spending time at home working on things around the property.”
It isn’t all work, though, and that is growing more important for Calvin. “We also love to go camping-- my wife, three children and me. We love doing that together. I say camping loosely. We have a travel trailer. Lately, I’ve heard what we do called ‘glamping’ which is ‘glamorous camping’. We do that on a fairly regular basis. That is when I can unplug and relax. It doesn’t bother me to just sit and watch the fire or watch the kids play. It’s nice to get away, because when I am home, I always have the feeling that I need to be doing something. I’ve learned how important it is to be together as a family, instead of off doing our own thing.”
Calvin’s vision for the future includes more relaxed time with his family. “In the past it has been a lot of work, work, work. I have been very focused on my career. I do love that side of my life, but I realized in the last few years how important family really is. I am interested in really growing the relationships with family and friends.”
To allow that transition to more freedom in his life, Calvin is looking to become more specialized in his career and get to a point where he can choose his jobs. “I started out as a more general engineer. Then I began to focus in on the technical aspects of broadcast, and I love that. I’ve been working with a more diverse range of clients, not just with WJIE but also doing contract work with other stations. I’m enjoying building a relationship with more than just one group. Ultimately my goal is to be in a position to work with groups I want to and be in a position to help a wide range of people."