Album 88 Alumni receives non-profit status

With the change in status to a non-profit organization, Album 88 Alumni (A88A) is now capable of making all donations tax-deductible, according to a press release from the organization.

A88A was created in response to the May 5 partnership formed between Georgia State and Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) that would allow the company to broadcast over the university’s radio station, WRAS 88.5 FM, 14 hours a day.

The release states A88A’s goal is to return the station back to its previous student-run status.

With its new status, the group will begin applying previously made donations to donors’ 2014 returns, according to A88A’s president Zachary Lancaster.

“From now on we will be able to make that tax-exempt statement about all donations that come in,” he said in the release.

This step for A88A was spearheaded by Lee Morin, the corporate Secretary and board member for A88A.

“This recognition by the IRS validates our mission to educate the public about the value of student-controlled, college radio programming, not only for the educational opportunities such activity affords Georgia State University students, but also for the rich cultural impact such programming has upon the community and music industry as a whole,” Morin said in the release.

Reid Laurens, A88A board member and former WRAS 88.5 FM student, said the change will help further the organization’s plans in upcoming months.

“We expect this new tax-exempt status to reinvigorate our volunteers and potential partners as we firm up our plans for the next several months,” he said.

Laurens said the organization will continue to advocate for student control over the station.

“We will continue to press for WRAS’s FM broadcast signal to be programmed by students 24 hours a day, every day — just as it was done for the first 43 years of WRAS’s history,” he said.

Promotions Directory at WRAS 88.5 Lauryn Christy said she’s excited about the non-profit status for A88A.

“I’m really excited about the recent non-profit status for Album 88 Alumni. The group has some big things planned to help students network with alumni and hopefully reclaim some of the opportunities that have been lost or limited due to the GPB deal,” she said.

She also said the new status can help expand the potential for Album 88.

“The group also aims help preserve Album 88 in every way possible. Tax-deductible donations can help bring these projects to fruition, and expand the potential for future projects,” Christy said.

There may be an additional push for WRAS by A88A this upcoming winter, according to Laurens.

“At this time we are not ready to reveal our plans for the winter push. We are waiting on commitments from possible partners and volunteers before we finalize those plans,” he said. “Now that our volunteers and potential partners know that we are a 501(c)(3) non-profit, it will help us move forward with those plans.”

On Oct. 29, WRAS students met with GPB CEO Teya Ryan for the first time to discuss the changes made at the station on June 29, according to Laurens.