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City Middletown, Ohio
Broadcast area Cincinnati, Ohio
Dayton, Ohio
Slogan Public Radio That Rocks
Frequency 105.9 MHz
First air date 1959
Format Adult album alternative (WNKU simulcast)
Audience share 1.8 (Sp'08 P2, R&R[1])
ERP 34,000 watts
HAAT 181 meters
Class B
Facility ID 54833
Transmitter coordinates 39°30′57.00″N 84°21′5.00″W / 39.5158333°N 84.3513889°W / 39.5158333; -84.3513889
Callsign meaning Northern KeNtucky University[2]
Former callsigns WPBF-FM (1985-1988)
WPFB-FM (1988-2011)
Affiliations National Public Radio, PRI, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Kentucky Public Radio
Owner Northern Kentucky University
Sister stations WNKU, WNKE
Webcast Listen Live
Website WNKU

WNKN (105.9 FM) (formerly WPFB-FM) is a radio station broadcasting an adult album alternative format. Licensed to Middletown, Ohio, United States, the station serves the Cincinnati and Dayton areas. The station is currently owned by Northern Kentucky University and is simulcasting WNKU 89.7 FM.[3][4]


WPFB-FM first signed on in 1959. WPFB-FM was the first FM station in Ohio and the 13th in the United States to broadcast in stereo. Like its AM sister WPFB (AM), WPFB-FM had several format changes over the years. It was a soul gospel music format in the late 1970s switching to soft adult contemporary WPBF "Mellow 106" in the early 1980s, then switching again to new rock in 1984, southern gospel in 1986 and bluegrass music in 1988 when the calls were switched back to WPFB-FM where it has maintained a country music format since.

Switch to Public Radio[edit]

Beginning on February 1, 2011; WPFB-FM, along with its sister station WPAY-FM 104.1 in Portsmouth, Ohio, began simulcasting the signal of Northern Kentucky University-owned WNKU. At that time, WPFB and WPAY switched from a country format to an adult album alternative (AAA) format.[5] The sale was approved by the FCC on June 20, 2011 and the station officially changed their call letters to WNKN on that date. In 2016 former sister station WPFB (AM) became a simulcast of Sacred Heart Radio stations WNOP (AM) and WHSS.[6]

2017 Sale of WNKU[edit]

In April 2016, citing state budget cuts to education, Northern Kentucky University announced that it would "explore the possibility of a sale of WNKU-FM and its assets." [7]On February 14, 2017, the NKU Board of Trustees voted to approve the sale of WNKU's license and transmitter site to the Bible Broadcasting Corporation for $1.9 million. In addition, the WNKE repeater was sold to the Educational Media Foundation for $750,000 plus 75% of the net sale proceeds of EMF-owned K-Love affiliate WEKV in South Webster, Ohio. At the time of the announcement, however, no decision was announced on the future of the WNKN repeater. All three stations will continue to be operated by NKU as WNKU until the sales are approved by the Federal Communications Commission and a final decision on the future of WNKN has been made. [8]


WPFB-FM logo.png

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