Carmen Baskauf | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

Carmen Baskauf

Producer, Where We Live

Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Carmen Baskauf is a producer for WNPR news-talk show Where We Live, hosted by Lucy Nalpathanchil. She has also contributed to The Colin McEnroe Show.

Carmen produces shows on a wide variety of topics for Where We Live; she especially loves producing shows about science and history. Some highlights include producing a full hour about menstruation (recipient of a national PRNDI award) and meeting a real-live glowing axolotl in studio for a show on bioluminescence and biofluorescence.

Originally from Nashville, Tennessee, Carmen now lives in New Haven, Connecticut. She has a B.A. in History from Yale University, where she studied nationalist movements in 20th-century North Africa and the Middle East, as well as international migration and human trafficking.

In her free time, Carmen likes reading about science, playing bridge, and learning new languages. You can sometimes find her riding to work on an electric scooter.

Ways to Connect

Pxhere / Flickr Creative Commons

Where does your food come from? Most of us go to the grocery store to buy produce, dairy, and meat. And these items aren’t necessarily local; they may come from hundreds or thousands of miles away.

This hour we hear how more people are getting involved in producing the food they eat. It’s called “modern homesteading.”

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Donald Collins first told his mom he was transgender when he was a senior in high school. His mother wasn’t totally sure what the word transgender even meant. From there, they began a difficult emotional journey as Donald began his transition.

This hour, we sit down with Donald and his mother, Mary Collins. They have written about their experience in the book At the Broken Places: A Mother and Trans Son Pick Up the Pieces. We ask them how they rebuilt their relationship and what lessons they hope to share with other families .

A woman riding a scooter in downtown Nashville.
WPLN

Electric scooters have taken over American streets from D.C. to Nashville, giving residents a speedy way to get around. But they're also causing headaches for drivers and pedestrians.

Did you know Connecticut lawmakers have passed legislation regulating these zippy rides? This hour, we’ll check in with New Haven on its proposed scooter program and we’ll hear about how New London is thinking of making public buses operate more like an Uber Pool ride.

United States' Megan Rapinoe scores her side's second goal from a penalty spot during the Women's World Cup round of 16 soccer match between Spain and US at the Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims, France, Monday, June 24, 2019.
Alessandra Tarantino / AP Photo

The Women’s World Cup is underway in France, as national teams pit it out for women’s soccer’s top prize.

This hour, we take a look at how the U.S. Women’s National Team has come to reign as an international powerhouse. And we talk about the battle women’s sports teams across the board have fought to gain recognition -- and pay.

Grendelkhan / Wikimedia Commons

What would you do with all that time if you didn't have to drive during your daily commute?

This hour: Like it or not, autonomous vehicles (AVs) will be a major part of our not-too-distant transportation future. We take a look at some of the promises and challenges of automating vehicles and ask what they will mean for the cities of our future.

BankingBum / Wikimedia/Creative Commons

In 2017, nearly 40,000 people died from gun violence in the U.S. according to the CDC.

Aswad Thomas is a survivor. A victim of a Hartford shooting outside a convenience store in 2009. He is also one of the people featured in the documentary The Sweetest Land, which looks at the epidemic of gun violence in the city of Hartford.

This hour, Thomas joins us along with the documentary’s director. What steps can local policymakers and public health take to effectively address gun violence? We take a closer look and we want to hear from you.

Amherst2005 / CreativeCommons.org

The idea of what a college education should be has changed over the years. This hour: what’s the value of a liberal arts degree in the twenty-first century?

We hear why tech giant Infosys has teamed up with Trinity College in Hartford to train and recruit new hires. Later, we learn how some colleges are bringing together the best parts of a liberal arts program with a focus on the skills needed in today’s workforce.    

DSNDR-Videolar / Pixabay

What efforts are underway -- both locally and nationally -- to help improve individuals’ access to housing?

This hour, we listen back to a panel moderated by Lucy Nalpathanchil in Hartford recently for the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness. We hear from policy and advocacy experts.

Later, we also learn about a "Net Zero" affordable housing proposal in the town of Norfolk.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

This hour we take a look at some of the environmental bills the Connecticut General Assembly passed this legislative session, including a new commitment to offshore wind power. We learn what this renewable energy source means for the state’s power grid—and its economy.

And we take a look at one essential component behind offshore wind power, a group of special metals called “rare earth elements”. What does the availability—and environmental impact—of harvesting these materials mean for our energy future?

Connecticut State Capitol / Wikimedia Commons

At midnight, the Connecticut General Assembly ended its regular session on time--and with a new two-year budget.

This hour, we look at what lawmakers accomplished and what’s still left on the table. Mark Pazniokas, Capitol Bureau Chief for the Connecticut Mirror, will join us with more.

A Fidelco guide dog wearing a harness
Tikeyah Whittle / Connecticut Public Radio

Read a transcript of  this show here.

This hour, guest host Ray Hardman takes you to Fidelco -- the guide dog school in Bloomfield, Connecticut where we meet some guide dogs in training.  And we talk with guide dog users about the impact these animals have on their lives.

We also speak with author and poet Stephen Kuusisto, who’s written a memoir about his first guide dog, Corky.   

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

As a senior in high school at Loomis Chaffee, J. Collins couldn’t keep a secret from her mother any longer: although J. had lived her whole life in a girl’s body, she’d come to realize that inside, she truly identified as male. “I basically said, ‘Hey Mom, I have something to tell you. I think I’m transgender,’” said Collins, who now uses male pronouns and the name Donald rather than J.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Donald Collins first told his mom he was transgender when he was a senior in high school. His mother wasn’t totally sure what the word transgender even meant. From there, they began a difficult emotional journey as Donald began his transition.

This hour, we sit down with Donald and his mother, Mary Collins. They have written about their experience in the book At the Broken Places: A Mother and Trans Son Pick Up the Pieces. We ask them how they rebuilt their relationship and what lessons they hope to share with other families .

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Investigators say that a devastating fire at the Diyanet Mosque in New Haven was the result of arson. This hour, we hear reaction from members of that mosque community.

This fire took place during  Ramadan, a holy month of fasting that Muslims around the world are observing. Later, we talk with Connecticut Muslims about how they celebrate this religious tradition.

By Amherst2005 (www.creativecommons.org)

The idea of what a college education should be has changed over the years. This hour: what’s the value of a liberal arts degree in the twenty-first century?

We hear why tech giant Infosys has teamed up with Trinity College in Hartford to train and recruit new hires. Later, we learn how some colleges are bringing together the best parts of a liberal arts program with a focus on the skills needed in today’s workforce.    

Chion Wolf / WNPR

When Rabbi Philip Lazowski was just eleven years old, the Nazis invaded his hometown and began the mass slaughter of Jewish residents.

This hour we sit down with Rabbi Lazowski, a Holocaust survivor and longtime leader in the Greater Hartford Jewish community, to hear his story. After witnessing one of the worst sides of humanity, how did he maintain his faith and find the strength to help others?

Almigdad Mojalli / Voice of America/Wikimedia Commons

Tens of thousands have died in Yemen as a Saudi-led bombing campaign continues to fuel a devastating civil war. And the U.S. has been fueling military efforts by Saudi Arabia in this four year conflict.

This hour, we ask Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy: what are the next steps to address this humanitarian crisis, now that the senate has failed to override the president’s veto of a resolution to end American involvement in the war?

Pete Beard / Flickr

They live underground and gorge themselves in dumpsters. This hour, we’re taking a long, hard look at creatures you’d probably rather not think about: RATS!

We hear about how the city of Hartford is fighting these unwelcome rodent residents, and we ask a researcher why are these scurrying creatures so successful at living alongside humans?

Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

Two recent officer-involved shootings have shaken communities across Connecticut.  This hour, we take a look at these two stories. We hear from Connecticut Public Radio reporters who’ve been on the ground in New Haven and Wethersfield.

We ask a lawmaker: Does Connecticut have in place strong enough laws for police accountability? And we take a look at de-escalation training for police.  How can this training serve officers in the heat of the moment?

Kelly Colgan Azar / Flickr

With the change in season, many birds that headed south over the winter are coming back to the northeast. This hour, we sit down with Connecticut’s state ornithologist. 

It’s the time of year birds are finding mates and raising chicks. What behaviors should we be on the lookout for?

Bruce Gillespie's illustrations of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments, framed on a wall.
Carlos Mejia / Connecticut Public Radio

After a terrible fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, the world is mourning damage to an architectural marvel and a holy space. This hour, we look at the interplay of religion and art. How can a physical structure like the cathedral carry such spiritual weight?

Measles, mumps and rubella vaccines are seen at the Rockland County Health Department in Pomona, N.Y., Wednesday, March 27, 2019.
Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Painful rashes, diarrhea, even possibly blindness or deadly brain inflammation -- these are all symptoms of measles. Before researchers developed a vaccine, this disease once affected millions in the U.S. and hospitalized tens of thousands every year.

Thanks to the vaccine, measles was eliminated from this country two decades ago. Yet today, communities in New York and Washington state are experiencing devastating outbreaks today. This hour, we ask why is a virulent, deadly, but entirely preventable disease reappearing in the U.S.?

Ryan Caron King / WNPR/Connecticut Public Radio

What’s it like to build a house, a family, a life… and then have a war take it all away?  

This hour we sit down with West Hartford, Connecticut residents Adeebah Alnemar and her son, Naji Aldabaan. They’re Syrian refugees who fled during the civil war, and came to Connecticut in 2016.

Their family is the subject of a 2018 Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoon series in The New York Times. We also talk with one of the people behind the cartoon series—New Haven-based journalist Jake Halpern.

Pxhere

Where does your food come from? Most of us go to the grocery store to buy produce, dairy, and meat. And these items aren’t necessarily local; they may come from hundreds or thousands of miles away.

This hour we hear how more people are getting involved in producing the food they eat. It’s called “modern homesteading.”

We hear from two Connecticut residents who’ve tried this practice. What drove them to pursue homesteading? And what barriers exist for Connecticut residents who want to live off the land? We find out.

Mark/flickr creative commons

With recreational marijuana on sale in Massachusetts, Connecticut lawmakers are looking at legalizing recreational cannabis more seriously than ever.

Pxhere

We all need fresh water to survive, yet it's so ubiquitous most of us barely spare it a thought in our daily lives. This hour we take a look at the state of water in our country, from rivers and streams to the water that comes out of our taps.

Carmen Baskauf / Connecticut Public Radio

Have you taken a ride on the bright red Hartford Line? The commuter rail service debuted last summer, a recent project of the Connecticut Department of Transportation.

But rail is just one mode of transportation in a state known for congestion and aging infrastructure.

This hour, we sit down with new DOT Commissioner Joseph Giulietti. Giulietti is a Connecticut native, who most recently served as President of Metro North.

View of a forest from above
Geran de Klerk / Wikimedia Commons

From dying coral reefs to fires and coastal flooding, the effects of climate change are already being felt around the world. And it will only get worse.

A 2018 report from climate scientists from around the globe found that some of climate change’s disastrous consequences will be in full force if Earth’s temperature rises past 1.5 degrees--something that could happen as early as 2040 at current emissions rates.

Pixabay

Today, there are 5.8 million Americans who are impacted by Alzheimer’s disease. That number is expected to grow by more than half.

Yet how do we know the right questions to ask to get a timely diagnosis in order to plan for the future? We hear from advocates who want to see additional training for primary care physicians so they recognize the signs of dementia earlier.

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