Leaving town: Jim Clark, host of Jazz Nightly on South Dakota Public Radio:
On Thursday, August 8th Jim Clark (“Uncle Jimmo”) submitted his resignation as host of Jazz Nightly, effective immediately. We were surprised by this decision, but we respect his choice and wish him the best in the future.
SDPB’s decades-long commitment to Jazz music will continue. We know you are steady listeners of Jazz Nightly. We thank you for your support and hope you’ll stick around for the next chapter [South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Jazz Nightly Facebook post, 2015.08.10].
Clark had spun disks for South Dakota since 2001, with a nine-month Daugaard-induced hiatus in 2011 and 2012. Following that 2011 budget/culture cut, SDPB managed to raise Clark’s pay from $15.93 an hour to the closing wage listed on Open.SD.gov, $18.12 an hour… which, if we assume full time running the boards and other tasks at the Vermillion office, sums to four thousand dollars less than the average teacher salary in South Dakota. (But you know, hosting Jazz Nightly could be the perfect moonlighting job for a Lower Missouri Valley music teacher trying to pay the mortgage!)
I expressed my appreciation for the value Clark added to public broadcasting in South Dakota when Governor Daugaard’s miserliness forced him out in 2011. Jim Clark epitomized South Dakota Public Broadcasting’s highest purpose: to bring South Dakotans programming unlike anything found in the vast desert of commercial radio. Market-groomed country twangers are our audio cactus; preachers and praise bands, our scaly lizards; oldies rock and whiny teen pop, our mirages. Jazz Nightly, World Café, American Routes—those programs make South Dakota Public Radio our oasis.