Diane Orson | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

Diane Orson

Host

Diane Orson is WNPR's local host for Morning Edition.  She's also a reporter for WNPR, as well as a contributor to National Public Radio. Her stories are heard on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition and Here And Now.  Diane began at WBUR in Boston and came to Connecticut in 1988 as a co-producer for Open Air New England. She shared a Peabody Award with Faith Middleton for their piece of radio nostalgia about New Haven's Shubert Theater. Her reporting has  been recognized by the Connecticut Society for Professional Journalists and the Associated Press, including the Ellen Abrams Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism and the Walt Dibble Award for Overall Excellence.

Diane is also an active professional musician. She lives in Hamden with her husband and two children.

Hank Bolden, Atomic Vet
Ryan Caron King/Connecticut Public

Hank Bolden is an 83-year-old undergraduate at the Hartt School of Music in Connecticut. He is also an atomic vet — one of thousands of soldiers exposed to secret nuclear weapons tests during the Cold War.

Bolden is one of only a few African-Americans still here to tell the story.

prison
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

As advocates continue to warn that overcrowded prisons and detention centers nationwide aren’t prepared to handle an outbreak of COVID-19, among the people affected by such conditions are those detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE. 

casino
Mark Pazniokas / CT Mirror

Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos have closed their doors amid concerns about the spread of the coronavirus. Connecticut Public Radio spoke with Rodney Butler, chairman of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation.

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.
NIAID-RML

There’s a lot that the medical community is still learning about coronavirus, but one thing seems clear: Older adults, especially those with chronic health conditions, are at higher risk for infection.

We spoke with Dr. Manisha Juthani, an associate professor at the Yale School of Medicine, to learn more. She’s an expert on infectious diseases in older people.

Thomas Hawk / Flickr

The state estimates that 200,000 legal immigrants in Connecticut and their children could be affected by the Trump administration’s “public charge” rule, which took effect Monday. 

Trinity College

Ugandan-American musician Samite Mulondo combines music and storytelling in his performances. This hour, Samite returns to our studios to talk about his newest piece, The Story Of Mutoto, which he performs at the University of Saint Joseph this weekend.

And  Hartford’s art house theater Cinestudio celebrates fifty years of showing films this week. We talk with Cinestudio’s founders, James Hanley and Peter McMorris.

Courtesy: The New Haven Museum

The New Haven Clock Company Factory opened on Hamilton Street in the mid-1800s. At its peak, it was the largest timepiece manufacturing facility in the world. Hundreds of Connecticut workers built clocks and pocket watches -- and later fuses during World War II. 

Ballake Sissoko kora instrument
B. Peverelli

Sherif Sissoko says it would have been one thing if his brother Ballaké’s car had been vandalized. But his musical instrument?

“He was traveling to India, to Israel, to China with this kora,” said Sissoko, who lives in Hartford and is also a musician. “It’s personal. It’s like a piece of yourself.”

Voting booth
Chion Wolf / WNPR

Presidential hopefuls have been flooding New Hampshire’s airwaves with ad buys ahead of Tuesday’s primaries. The Wesleyan Media Project in Middletown tracks political advertising in real time during elections. 

Co-director Erika Franklin Fowler spoke with Connecticut Public Radio’s Diane Orson for Morning Edition.

Hank Bolden is an 83-year-old undergraduate at the Hartt School of Music in Connecticut. He is also an atomic vet — one of thousands of soldiers exposed to secret nuclear weapons tests during the Cold War.

Bolden is one of only a few African-Americans still here to tell the story.

In 1955, Bolden was in his late teens and stationed in California. One day he was told he'd been chosen to participate in a special military exercise. "I had no idea what I was selected for," he said.

Nestled in the Irving S. Gilmore Music Library at Yale University is an audio and video collection featuring many of the major musical figures of our time. 

The Oral History of American Music includes interviews with a wide range of musical figures, from Charles Ives to Laurie Anderson.

In New Haven, Democratic nominee Justin Elicker won a lopsided victory over incumbent Mayor Toni Harp, who had continued her reelection effort after losing the primary in September.
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

The city of New Haven has a new mayor. Justin Elicker was sworn in Wednesday, Jan 1.

In his inaugural address, Elicker said the city is growing at a rate not seen since the 1920s.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The head of a statewide association of nonprofits is calling on Connecticut officials to increase payments to the organizations.

Gian-Carl Casa said right now nonprofits of all types are facing what he describes as “a perfect storm.”

Courtesy Jennifer Tavares

Frank Tavares -- known as “the voice of NPR” -- has died. For decades, his was the friendly but authoritative voice that told public radio listeners that “funding for NPR comes from Lumber Liquidators,” or “the Pajamagram Company.”

K-State Research and Extension / Flickr Creative Commons

Millennials now outnumber baby boomers in the population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. And though the millennial generation has been stereotypically seen as self-absorbed and buried in student loan debt, they are involved in charitable giving. But they’re doing it differently than their parents have done.

Courtesy of Access Health CT

A federal appeals court in New Orleans dealt another blow to the Affordable Care Act last week, saying the requirement under the law to have health insurance is unconstitutional. But the court sidestepped the question of whether the health law itself is invalid.

Courtesy: Thompson Family

State officials and immigration attorneys in Connecticut are welcoming a ruling last week by the federal Board of Immigration Appeals that clarifies its position on the state’s pardon power. The BIA says it will now honor Connecticut’s pardons. That means Hartford resident Wayzaro Walton will be able to regain her legal status and avoid deportation from the U.S. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

The federal Board of Immigration Appeals has indicated it will now recognize pardons issued by the state of Connecticut, according to the attorney for a Hartford woman previously threatened with deportation. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Plenty of school districts were closed or delayed Tuesday morning, and the roads were treacherous as Connecticut began the clean up after round two of a one-two wintry punch. The state saw a huge range of overnight snow totals, ranging from a foot of new snow in some towns to just a few inches in others. The storm is expected to move out, leaving afternoon sunshine.

kaboompics.com

Yale University is among the recipients of new grants from the Knight Foundation to fund research into the impact of technology on democracy. 

The House Intelligence Committee appears ready to compile its report on the impeachment inquiry after two weeks of public testimony. That’s despite the fact that several key witnesses who were subpoenaed to appear have declined to give evidence. Joining us to look back at the drama of the sessions to date, and to look forward to what’s to come is Rep. Jim Himes from Connecticut’s 4th District, who’s had the opportunity to question all of the witnesses so far.

Ryan Martins / Connecticut Public Radio

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday in a case that could be pivotal for hundreds of thousands of young people covered by the DACA program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. 

Courtesy: Cristian Padilla Romero

The United States Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a challenge to the Trump administration’s decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, a program that shields young immigrants from deportation and allows them to work legally in the U.S. 

Courtesy: Cristian Padilla Romero

The mother of a Yale University doctoral student is being sent back to a detention facility in Georgia after nearly being deported Sunday night by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Mr.TinDC / Creative Commons

AAA Northeast is warning drivers to watch out for deer.  

November is a particularly bad time for deer strikes because fall is mating season for white-tailed deer in New England. Also, with the end of daylight saving time, it’s often dark during the evening commute. 

Declan McEnroe / Connecticut Public Radio

Tens of thousands of homes in Connecticut lost power Thursday night as severe thunderstorms swept the eastern seaboard. Downed trees and power lines closed roads in cities and towns across the state, and dozens of school districts have delayed starts or canceled classes Friday.

Jeremiah Clapp and Calvin Leon Smith in a scene from On The Grounds Of Belonging, currently playing at the Long Wharf Theatre
Courtesy: Long Wharf Theatre

A big change is underway right now in American theater. More women and people of color are being appointed to lead theatrical institutions.

A recent survey called American Theater Leadership Change finds that of 85 artistic director positions that have opened since 2015, 41% have gone to women. People of color have been named to 26%. 

Wikimedia Commons

The Connecticut Supreme Court will hear arguments Thursday on whether one of two men convicted in a notorious 2007 home invasion and brutal triple-homicide in Cheshire should get a new trial. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The state of Connecticut is suing the Department of Homeland Security and other federal agencies over a refusal to honor the state’s pardon system when it comes to immigration. 

Courtesy: Live Well

About 75,000 people in Connecticut live with dementia. And in a stage production in Hartford, five of them are telling their stories. To Whom I May Concern is a readers-theater style performance – and part of an effort to invite those living with cognitive change to educate others about what they’re experiencing. 

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