1 Union Station

Providence, RI 02903

Broadcasting 24/7/65

(401) 351-2800 main

(401) 351-2244 news

Broadcast Signals

WELH 88.1FM Providence

WCVY 91.5FM Coventry

WRNI-FM 102.7FM Narragansett Pier

WRNI(AM) 1290AM Providence (leased to LPR)

Format/Network Affiliation(s)

24/7 News and Talk

National Public Radio

Public Radio International

BBC World Service

American Public Media

Public Radio Exchange

Social Media



Rhode Island Public Radio is the NPR member radio network for the state of Rhode Island. Its studios are located in the historic Union Station in downtown Providence. The network airs a format of news and talk from NPR, such asMorning Edition, On Point, and All Things Considered, as well as extensive local news coverage:

  • Political Roundtable with Ian Donnis, Scott Mackay & Maureen Moakley.
  • Scott MacKay's Weekly Commentary on politics in the Ocean State.
  • The Bottom Line with Dave Fallon & Mark Murphy, a weekly look at the local business climate.
  • This I Believe: Rhode Island with Frederic Reamer. A local take on the famous This I Believe series of essays.
  • Made in Rhode Island an ongoing occasional series looking at manufacturing in the state.
  • One Square Mile an annual special week-long series, taking an in-depth look at one city or town in Rhode Island. Previous OSM series include: Central Falls, Bristol, Woonsocket, West Warwick, Block Island, and Newport.
  • Policy & Pinot an ongoing occasional series taped live at the Providence Athenaeum Library focusing on various topics.

RIPR also has full-time beat reporters covering  Politics (Ian Donnis and Scott MacKay), Health Care (Kristin Gourlay)Education (Elisabeth Harrison), the Environment (Ambar Espinoza), and reporters covering general news (John Bender and News Director Catherine Welch) and Arts & Culture (Bill Gale and Frederic Reamer).

Broadcast Signals

RIPR can be heard on different frequencies in different regions of the state, as well as via online webcast:

  • 88.1FM (WELH) for Providence, Pawtucket and northern RI.
  • 91.5FM (WCVY) for Coventry and West Warwick.
  • 102.7FM (WRNI-FM) for Newport, South County, Aquidneck Island and East Bay.

RIPR also owns 1290AM WRNI in Providence and leases it 24/7 to Latino Public Radio.


WRNI was originally owned and operated by Boston University's WBUR, in conjunction with Friends of Ocean State Public Radio, beginning in 1999.  In September 2004 there was much controversy over an unexpected attempt by WBUR to sell the license on the open market.  It eventually led to an investigation by the RI Attorney General, and the sale was first delayed, then cancelled in June 2005.  The general manager of WBUR, Jane Christo, resigned in late 2004 in part because of the negative publicity from the attempted sale.   Ultimately the 1290AM license in Providence, 1230AM license in Westerly (WXNI) and related studio property were sold to "Rhode Island Public Radio" (formerly FOSPR) in March 2007.   A few months later, RIPR also purchased 102.7FM in Narragansett Pier/South County and sold WXNI.  

In October of 2011, RIPR entered a long-term lease with The Wheeler School for WELH 88.1FM's new 4000 watt signal in Providence, and leased 1290AM to Latino Public Radio (who was leasing 12hrs/day on WELH's older, smaller FM signal), both for 24/7 operation.  Earlier that summer, RIPR had also entered into an agreement to fill most of the broadcast day on WCVY 91.5FM from Coventry High School.

In February of 2013, RIPR began leasing 102.7-HD2 to MVYradio to relay content to FM Translator (repeater) station W243AI, broadcasting 55 watts on 96.5FM from Newport Hospital.


RIPR has won over thirty Associated Press Awards for news coverage, seven Public Radio News Directors Inc Awards, and five prestigious RTDNA Edward R. Murrow Awards.

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