Best Spanish-language News Radio Station (2001)
This non-commercial station on the left end of the dial -- KNAI, known as La Campesina -- spent much of the '90s with a virtual monopoly on the listening tastes of Spanish speakers in the Valley. In the last three years, an explosion of Spanish-language stations has cut into KNAI's ratings, but it continues to be the Latino community's most influential voice on the airwaves. Part of a farm workers' radio network created by the late Cesar Chávez, KNAI offers a mix of news, talk shows and traditional conjunto music, and can be counted on to weigh in on the big issues affecting Valley Latinos. When protesters gathered outside the Capitol to advocate drivers' licenses for undocumented immigrants, La Campesina was there, broadcasting live. And when Chandler police rounded up suspected illegals in 1997, KNAI made the controversial action the focus of its coverage. Even as local Hispanic media grow, La Campesina stubbornly remains their political conscience.