Paul Shapiro: KCRW’s January 2012 Volunteer of the Month!

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Where did you grow up and are you an only child?
I grew up in the great state of New Jersey and I have an older brother and sister.  After meeting my wife Janice at the University of Delaware, I moved to LA (she had already moved) and have lived in Santa Monica since 1995.

What is your current occupation?
I am a CPA working as a CFO/Controller consultant for technology start-ups.  I started this specialty at almost the same time I started volunteering at KCRW (see mid-life crisis below).

What is your fantasy occupation?
Center Fielder for the Dodgers…or astronaut.  Ironically when I was 15 I wrote to the Columbia School of Broadcasting for a brochure.  They called my house and one of my parents answered, not knowing anything about my interest.  I think I was too young to attend anyway and didn’t pursue it.  Many years later, I’m at a radio station and can’t imagine being on-air.

When did you first discover KCRW?
In 1987 when I was sharing an office with a guy who listened to the Iran Contra hearings AND Tom Schnabel.  They were both fascinating, but Tom turned me on to more great music.  Then I found Deirdre O’Donoghue and SNAP and I was hooked for good.

How did you find your way to our station for volunteering?
In the midst of a small mid-life crisis in 1994, I had some extra time on my hands (I also did a few pledge drives prior to that).  After spending six months in the office I was given the opportunity to work with Chris Douridas on MBE.   My daughter Jessica also started helping out in 1996, when she was only four.

What’s your current volunteer position and how long have you been at it?
I’m the Tuesday guy on MBE and have been since 1995 (not always Tuesday though).   I’ve had the pleasure of working with most of the music folks at KCRW over the years, including the last three MBE hosts – Chris, Nic and now Jason  – and of course, Ariana.

Favorite volunteer moment?
Hmm..could it be meeting Brian Wilson, Robbie Robertson or Leonard Cohen??  All thrilling, but no it was actually sitting next to Neil Finn while he played live in Master Control – the performance studio was prepping for a pledge drive.  Then I got to see him that night at the Wiltern with a full band.

If you could get on the mic and say one sentence on the air, what would it be?
Sure, we can spend time together after the show, but first would you like to play some more songs for our listeners, Mr. McCartney?

What song have you hit repeat on lately?
Belle Brigade – can I say the whole album?

Favorite book, movie?
Book – Lord of the Rings
Movie – Diner although Annie Hall has a special place too.  We watch Diner every Christmas Eve – try it sometime!

Favorite thing to do outside the station (hobbies, recreation, etc.)?
Biking instead of driving, going to movies and plays, time with family.  I wish I had more time to listen to the records you can see in my picture.

What does KCRW mean to you?
It’s been my radio companion at home, work and in the car for almost 25 years.   It’s my main source of information and music, and it’s a rare community asset.  I haven’t found anything else quite like KCRW, and I’m so proud to be a small part of it.

You could set your watch to Paul.  You could also set your outlook on life to Paul!  Underneath his accounting exterior, he is a fighter with a passion for music, the outdoors, and helping others.  Every year he helps his daughter with Team Jessica in the fight against type 1 diabetes by raising funds for the JRDF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation). Go Paul!