Capital Public Radio is honored by the support of many individuals throughout our listening area. CapRadio Champions is our opportunity to share their stories.
When asked what motivates them to give, Brian and Paige Brokaw said “we listen every day, so we want to support what we think is by far the best news source available. But to be totally frank, it gets us off the hook from feeling guilty during the fund drives!” Brian and Paige Brokaw have been monthly donors since 2007, when Paige gave Brian a membership as a Hanukkah present. In addition to being NPR super-fans, the Brokaws are extremely busy parents to their fiery two-year-old daughter Alex, and their two-month-old son Ben.
Paige describes her background as pretty ordinary. She grew up in Pleasanton, in a family of four and as the younger of two kids. “I did not grow up in a home where we discussed politics or current events, at least not at the dinner table, and it wasn’t until college that I started to get interested and pay close attention to the news.” Brian was raised in Sacramento, attended Rio Americano High School and left the area to attend college and work on political campaigns around the country.
Paige and Brian met their junior year while at University of California, Berkeley and they moved to Sacramento together in 2005. It was at Cal that Paige first “picked up the NPR habit,” and it has continued ever since. Of Brian and Paige’s relationship, Paige said “we knew it was fate when we discovered we both had fathers named Barry (pretty random), our mutual favorite ice cream is peanut butter and chocolate, and that we were both huge NPR nerds.”
Capital Public Radio has been a part of the Brokaw’s life for as long as they have been in Sacramento. They primarily listen to 90.9 KXJZ and have the NPR app on their phones, allowing them to listen to Capital Public Radio and other NPR stations and programs from around the country. According to Brian, “It seems like I've been listening to Capital Public Radio daily for as long as I can remember, but I know that's not really the case. I think I started listening right around when I started training for my first (and only) marathon back in 2005, and I realized that I enjoyed running to Morning Edition rather than music. It's been my morning (and often daytime and evening) routine ever since."
CapRadio and running seem to be an ongoing theme in the Brokaw household. “We are ardent morning listeners, so Morning Edition is a staple with our coffee every day or on our morning runs," Paige said. "Some people need music, but we both listen to Capital Public Radio.” Listening has also benefited their professional lives as well. “We both work in politics and need to keep tabs on what’s going on with the Legislature and State offices, so we appreciate getting the scoop in the morning on news around the Capitol,” Paige explains.
It is not only the news and political programs that keep Paige and Brian tuned in. They both love This American Life, Story Corps, Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me! and Car Talk. Brian also enjoys streaming Only a Game and It’s All Politics. When asked if there was a specific public radio moment that has stuck with them through the years, Paige said “there have been many times Car Talk and Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me! has had me laughing out loud while listening on my Walkman (I’m old school) out and about in public. But some of the most memorable moments have been during Friday Story Corps; I can think of several stories that have had me in tears, while on a long run before work. I have thought about how silly I must have looked – running, sweaty, and crying!” Brian says with a boyish smile “ditto, I am the man in tears during Story Corps.”
In addition to listening to Capital Public Radio, Brian and Paige spend much of their time playing with their kids, their trusty pup Diego, and, of course, running. Paige says, “my favorite pastime is making cookies, eating lots of them and then running them off.” Paige has completed 8 marathons, most recently and notably the Boston Marathon where she finished with an extremely fast time of 3 hours and 39 minutes, a mere 7 weeks after giving birth to their son. We think her speed can be attributed to all the running that she does while listening to Capital Public Radio.