- Online: 1,670 per program (up 60% from a year ago)
- Website: 43,000 total visits in May (up from 12,399 a year ago)
- Weekly e-mail list: 5,600
- Facebook universe: 5,000 on personal page, 5,050 on professional page
- KHOI 89.1 Ames, once a week, Wednesday at 7:00 pm (no data yet)
- KPVL 89.1 Postville, once a week, Tuesday at 5:00 pm (no data yet)
THE FALLON FORUM — “the fusion of politics and civility” — began in September, 2009 as a pioneering effort to bring local, progressive talk radio to Iowa. Host Ed Fallon is committed to providing a venue for civil discussion of all viewpoints on the political spectrum. For the past twenty years, the public airwaves have been dominated by national shock jocks, who feed the frenzy of increased polarization in American politics. During 2 1/2 years on 98.3 FM, the Fallon Forum saw a four-fold increase in audience size and provided a forum for discussion on issues largely ignored elsewhere on the public airwaves.
In 2011, 98.3 was purchased by Cumulus Broadcasting, the second largest radio conglomerate in the U.S. This forced Ed to find a different venue, and the Fallon Forum now broadcasts online – both video and audio – and airs from 6:00-6:30 pm live on this website, Monday-Thursday. Podcasts also available.
ED FALLON attended Marlboro College in Vermont for two years, after which he traveled the world for six years. He worked on two farms in Nova Scotia, hiked the Pilgrims Way in southern England, stayed for three weeks with Carmelite nuns at a monastery in Cairo, spent time on a kibbutz in Israel, and served as a Franciscan Volunteer on an Indian reservation in northern Wisconsin. In the mid 1980s, he attended Drake University, where he studied music, Spanish and received a BGS in religious studies.
From 1986 to 1992, Ed worked in the peace movement. He organized the Iowa stretch of The Great Peace March and founded Des Moines Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. Well-versed in the writings of Mahatma Gandhi, Ed traveled to India in 1995 to study ways in which modern Indians continue to use Gandhi’s ideas of non-violent action to address contemporary social and political problems.
From 1993 to 2006, Ed served seven terms in the Iowa Legislature, representing residents of downtown Des Moines, the surrounding neighborhoods and the City’s northeast side. Ed’s focus as a lawmaker was to champion the needs of constituency groups treated unfairly by government or neglected by the majority of policy makers. He also became a leader on land-use, the environment, reforming tax increment financing (TIF), marriage equality, prison reform, campaign finance reform, and opposing corporate welfare.
In 1998, Ed helped found 1000 Friends of Iowa, a land-use and anti-urban sprawl group. He served as executive director for five years. In 2006, he ran for governor in the Democratic Primary, receiving 26% of the vote. In 2008, he ran unsuccessfully for Congress against incumbent Leonard Boswell.
Ed is an accomplished musician on many instruments and speaks French and Spanish. He lived in the inner-city of Des Moines for nineteen years, and now lives in the Sherman Hill neighborhood. He is an avid gardener, raises chickens and produces much of his own food. Several years ago, Ed established a community garden in the inner-city and maintains strong connections to his family’s farm in Ireland, where he organized the planting of 25,000 oak trees in 2000.
Ed’s passion for justice inspires him, and his life is committed to working for a better world, both within and outside the political process. While Ed feels he has been able to accomplish much during his years as a state lawmaker and through other venues of public service, what gives him the most satisfaction is when someone says, “Years ago, you helped me and my family with a problem and our lives are better for it.”