Northern Spirit Radio was founded by Mark Helpsmeet in 2005 with the support of the Eau Claire Friends Meeting to provide programming for WHYS, Eau Claire's then-newly-licensed low-power FM station. The first episode of Spirit in Action aired on July 31 of that year, followed by the first episode of Song of the Soul on August 14. The ECFM provided support to Northern Spirit Radio for the first year of operation, before transferring that responsibility to an anchoring committee from Northern Yearly Meeting, ECFM's parent organization. NYM continued in this role until 2013.

Northern Spirit Radio began syndicating its programs in 2007, starting with stations WDRT, WIDE-LP, KLOI-LP, and WKNH, among others. Starting in 2008, Northern Spirit Radio began offering its programs to download through the Pacifica AudioPort.

In 2012, Mark Helpsmeet and the NYM anchoring committee met and decided to move forward with incorporating Northern Spirit Radio, a process which was completed on May 17, 2013. At that time, responsibility for supervising Northern Spirit Radio passed to its new Board of Directors. In July of 2014, the IRS granted Northern Spirit Radio status as a 501(c)(3) organization.

Today, Northern Spirit Radio continues in its mission, with programming syndicated on more than 20 stations.