Wed Feb 19th, 2014
The Southern Ute Drum
KSUT Public Radio announced on Tuesday, Feb. 11 it will honor one of its longtime friends, Southern Ute elder Eddie Box Sr., with the name of its forthcoming building.
The Eddie Box Jr. Media Center will be the radio station’s new home following a fundraising campaign to renovate the existing structure, just south of the tribal campus on the east side of State Road 172. Box, currently the information services manager for the tribe’s Department of Natural Resources, has a long history with the station, including 37 years of service on its board – 28 of those as president.
Steve Williams, current president of the KSUT board and director of the tribe’s Property & Facilities Department, commented on the decision during an event in the Southern Ute Indian Tribal Council Chambers in which the council made the honor official with a resolution.
“We wanted to do something great,” Williams said. “We have been working on gathering support for building a new facility. Who better to name it after than one of our most prominent members that has supported the station for years?”
Family and friends gathered inside the Council Chambers to congratulate Box. Box expressed thanks to everyone in attendance.
“This is surprising,” Box said. “I appreciate this and will continue to do what I can. I love music, all types. … That’s where my heart has been.”
Bruce Campbell, KSUT’s development director, gave details on the progress of the building in an interview.
“In 2010, we identified the move into a new building as a top priority for our five-year strategic plan,” Campbell said. “It’ll house the operations for KSUT Public Radio for the foreseeable future. It will include adequate and modern broadcast equipment, production facilities, and an indoor-outdoor performance space that is capable of hosting, broadcasting, and recording drum groups and non-Native artists.”
As the project proceeds, KSUT is still looking for donations to make the building ready.
“Currently, KSUT is seeking major gifts and large donations to help us renovate the building and purchase the proper broadcasting equipment,” Campbell said. “There will also be a Native American Media Center, where Native musicians can record their music and demonstrate to other tribes who are interested in taking a step into the media realm.”
Campbell said the honor is well-deserved.
“We’re all very happy that Eddie is receiving this honor,” he said.
Box said a love of music has kept him involved over the decades.
“I started on the board of directors in 1975,” he said. “I like when people enjoy what you’re playing. You play for them, not for yourself. It’s our livelihood to play what the customer wants to hear.”
Listeners can listen to Box during his live broadcast on Klub KSUT every Wednesday from noon to 1 p.m on 91.3 FM in La Plata County or 89.7 FM in northwest New Mexico.
To donate to the new media center, visit www.ksut.org.