Founded in 1948 by Dorothy Stimson Bullitt, Classical KING FM 98.1 is among the longest-running classical radio stations in the United States. Today, it is consistently ranked as one of the top 5 American classical radio stations.
Since transitioning in 2011 to a classical public radio station, Classical KING FM has a stronger operating model, richer programming, and more focus on community partnerships. Thanks to the non-commercial format, the station plays an additional three hours of music every day. Longer pieces can be played without interruption, and nearly 100 live and local broadcasts can be aired annually.
KING FM supports more than 100 regional arts organizations with on-air, online, and onsite promotion, from the Seattle Symphony and Bellevue Art Museum to ACT Theatre and the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra. Through the popular Instrument Petting Zoos and the annual Young Artist Awards competition, KING FM provides support for arts education and additional educational programming through on-air programs such as NW Focus LIVE, KING FM Insights, and Explore Music.
KING FM continues to be at the forefront of technology, reaching a global audience with five online channels garnering more than 80,000 streaming sessions each week. KING FM also offers a free app for mobile phones and tablets.
Classical KING FM invites the community to join them by becoming supporting members, solidifying our public radio operating model, and bringing the richness of classical music to an expanding audience in our region.
Facts about Classical KING FM
- Founded in 1948
- Founder: Dorothy Stimson Bullitt
- Classical KING FM is listener-Supported
- Members: 13,500 as of April 2013
- 65% of our budget depends on donations from listeners
- Operations structure: three non-profit entities: Beethoven, Classic Radio and Classical 98.1
- A Board of Directors oversees Classical 98.1 and also holds board positions on the other two governing entities
- Coverage: Greater Puget Sound region, as far south as Olympia and north to Vancouver and Victoria B.C., Canada
- Listeners: An average of 300,000 terrestrial radio listeners per week
- Underwriting support provides additional revenue
CEO: Brenda Barnes
Program Director: Seth Tompkins
Human Resources: Sabina Koziel
What’s your preference? Family friendly classical music? Relaxing music? Intellectually stimulating music? Modern classical? Classical music in the Northwest? Click one of these links for content curated for you.