creative:impact - Expression And Connection Through Community Television Network in Ann Arbor

Oct 9, 2018

Melissa Bondy, assistant manager for community engagement & education for CTN Ann Arbor
Credit Carter Sherline / Frog Prince Studios

Public radio and television are essential in the artistic community.  Yet, there's another form of broadcasting that helps get the artistic word out.  In this week's "creative:impact," WEMU's David Fair and Arts Alliance president and CEO Deb Polich talk to Melissa Bondy, Community Television Network's (CTN) assistant manager of community engagement and education, about the process of making quality, and impactful,  community television.

Deb Polich, President and CEO of the Arts Alliance

Creative industries in Washtenaw County add hundreds of millions of dollars to the local economy.  In the weeks and months to come, 89.1 WEMU's David Fair and co-host Deb Polich, the President and CEO of The Arts Alliance, explore the myriad of contributors that make up the creative sector in Washtenaw County. 

About CTN Ann Arbor

Credit Courtesy Photo / CTN Facebook

Since 1973, CTN has provided free television production workshops to residents and non-profit organizations and created local cable programming about our community.  CTN is one of the oldest access television operations in the country and has experienced a dynamic  and productive existence.  Today, CTN offers a variety of media workshops to community members and local programming on Comcast cable channels 16, 17, 18 and 19, live online streaming and video on demand content. 

CTN is funded via cable franchise fees, which are the compensation paid to the local franchising agency (the City of Ann Arbor) for use of rights of way which is used in the deployment of the cable system. Franchise fees are capped at 5 percent by Federal law, however, the Federal law also allows for additional fees that can be used for Public, Educational and Government (PEG) channels and communication services.  In the City of Ann Arbor, the PEG fee paid by cable operators is 2 percent.  CTN does not receive City of Ann Arbor general fund revenue.

Great Adventures in Parenthood Show with Dependable Dogs: Training for Success with Both Ends of the Leash
Credit Courtesy Photo / CTN Facebook

Franchise agreements between the City of Ann Arbor and cable operators are non-exclusive, therefore, any cable provider may negotiate with the City of Ann Arbor to offer cable service.  Currently, AT&T and Comcast have franchise agreements to offer cable service in Ann Arbor.   

About Melissa Bondy

Melissa Bondy
Credit Courtesy Photo / We Love Ann Arbor

Melissa has over 15 years in public, government and educational television, hosting and producing TV programs.

She worked for the cities of Farmington, Farmington Hills and Novi for 10 years producing programs for the communities, hosting over 200 shows and teaching the public all aspects of how they can produce their own TV shows.  Melissa currently works for the city of Ann Arbor at CTN where she is the assistant manager of Community Engagement, Education and has been with CTN just over 6 years.

She’s a graduate of Rochester College with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications & Public Relations and holds a certification from The Specs Howard School of Media Arts.

Melissa has won two Philo T. Farnsworth Awards and was a 2010 Michigan EMMY Nominee as a producer on “The Works”.

Melissa Bondy
Credit Courtesy Photo / CTN Facebook

She and her husband have a two-and-a-half year-old daughter, who keeps them enjoyable. 


CTN Ann Arbor

Melissa Bondy

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— David Fair is the WEMU News Director and host of Morning Edition on WEMU.  You can contact David at 734.487.3363, on twitter @DavidFairWEMU, or email him at