Diane Orson | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

Diane Orson

Managing Editor/Host

Diane Orson is WNPR's local host for Morning Edition.  She's also a reporter and managing editor 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.

Kevin Kuhl, CT Public

One of the most recognizable sounds of country music comes from an instrument that’s often overlooked: the pedal steel guitar. And one of the nation’s top pedal steel players lives - no, not in Nashville - but in Connecticut.

John Widgren has performed with recording artists including Jonathan Coulton, Patty Loveless, Martina McBride, Toby Keith and others. He’s played on Broadway, done hundreds of commercials and been a guest instrumentalist with the Boston Pops Orchestra.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A federal appeals court in New York City heard arguments Tuesday centering, in large part, on whether Immigration and Customs Enforcement has the right to deport an immigrant for past crimes, even though she’s been granted a full and unconditional pardon by the state of Connecticut. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A federal appeals court in New York City will hear arguments today on whether Immigration and Customs Enforcement has the right to deport an immigrant for past crimes, even though her record has been cleared by the state of Connecticut.

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong is expected to defend the legitimacy of the state’s pardons.

Cimafunk.
La Pistola de Moník

Despite ongoing tensions between the U.S. and Cuba, the music of Cimafunk reaches out and connects the sounds of Africa and Cuba with the rhythms of black America. Cimafunk performs Thursday in Hartford.

Leamond Suggs has seen pedestrians and drivers looking up at the banners. "People are moved by it," he said.
Lauren Smith / Connecticut Public Radio

Walk or drive around downtown New Haven and you can’t miss them: large-scale banners on the sides of buildings, in windows and on vacant storefronts featuring compelling photos of city youth.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A federal appeals court in Boston heard arguments Tuesday centering on whether Immigration and Customs Enforcement can deport immigrants even though they’ve been granted a state pardon for past crimes. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A federal court in Boston hears arguments Tuesday that will center, in part, on whether Immigration and Customs Enforcement has the right to deport immigrants for past crimes - despite a state pardon.

Lauren Smith/CT Public Radio

The man accused of a hate crime against a Connecticut church may have been in great theological distress – according to the church’s pastor.

Rev. Kristina Hansen is senior pastor at Mary Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church in downtown Milford, which has been openly defying the regulations of its governing body with its public affirmation of the LGBTQ community.

United States goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher saves a penalty shot taken by England's Steph Houghton during the Women's World Cup semifinal soccer match between England and the United States, at the Stade de Lyon, outside Lyon, France, Tuesday, July 2, 2019.
Alessandra Tarantino / Associated Press

The United States was up 2-1 against England in the semifinals of the Women’s World Cup on Tuesday. In the 84th minute, all eyes were on England’s Steph Houghton who could tie the match with a penalty kick. The only person stopping her was U.S. goalkeeper -- and Stratford, Connecticut native -- Alyssa Naeher.

Lauren Smith / Connecticut Public Radio

Despite President Donald Trump’s recent announcement that he would delay large-scale raids nationwide, immigration advocates say that in Connecticut, detentions of undocumented residents by Immigration and Customs Enforcement are still happening.

Courtesy: CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

There’s increasing concern over a chemical spill into the Farmington River that happened earlier this month. An accident June 9 at Bradley Airport released 50,000 gallons of firefighting foam containing chemicals known as PFAS -- and a substantial amount of it made its way from the sewer system into the waterway. In the days since, it’s become evident that it’s going to be very hard to contain and remove the chemicals from the spill. 

Gov. Ned Lamont delivered his first budget address to the legislature on February 20, 2019.
Tucker Ives / Connecticut Public Radio

Music by the Hevreh Ensemble blends Western classical flutes, oboe, clarinet and keyboards with an array of indigenous instruments including Native American flutes. They’ll be performing this weekend in West Cornwall. Here's our audio postcard.

Nir Paldi (left) and George Mann are creators of "No Kids."
Alex Brenner / Ad Infinitum

The question of if or when to start a family is something many adults ask themselves at some point in their lives.

Courtesy: Palestinian Museum

Classical musicians of Palestinian origin live and perform throughout the world.

Palestinian/Japanese soprano Mariam Tamari and Palestinian pianist Fadi Deeb present a recital this weekend in Connecticut as part of a three-city U.S. tour. The program includes a wide range of musical styles, from Puccini to Debussy to original settings of Palestinian poetry.

Kiara Matos and Domingo Medina came to Connecticut Public Radio to discuss the political crisis in Venezuela, their home country.
Tucker Ives / Connecticut Public Radio

Two Connecticut residents from Venezuela are calling for continued sanctions and stepped-up pressure from the international community to end the crisis in their native country.

Renée H. was a child during the Holocaust. Her story is part of the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale University.
Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies

Security has been stepped up at Jewish synagogues around the state. Thursday is Yom Hashoah - Holocaust Remembrance Day - and as people gather to honor the 6 million lives lost, they’ll also remember those killed in shootings at synagogues in California and Pennsylvania.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

People in Nicaragua took to the streets today to mark one year since deadly protests there. Events in solidarity are planned in cities around the U.S. later this week. 

Patrick Skahill / Connecticut Public Radio

Three teenagers were charged this week with first-degree arson in connection with the fire that destroyed the historic Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford. A lawyer representing one of the young men told Hearst Connecticut Media that the teens will likely be charged with at least four other recent fires in the area. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

A staged reading of the courtroom drama 12 Angry Men takes place this weekend in Connecticut. 

Gregory Bull / Associated Press

President Trump threatened on Friday to close the southern border unless Mexico stops migrants from entering the U.S. illegally.

“Mexico’s tough. They can stop ‘em, but they chose not to," he said. "Now they’re gonna stop ‘em. And if they don’t stop ‘em, we’re closing the border”.

Among those people entering the country are children and teens.

Sage Ross / Flickr

Connecticut-based consumer rights advocate Ralph Nader lost his grand-niece in the recent crash of a Boeing 737 Max jet in Ethiopia. Now he’s gunning for the planemaker and federal safety regulators who allowed the aircraft to be certified. 

When it was announced on Friday that Robert Mueller had submitted his report to the Justice Department, Connecticut's congressional delegation began calling for that report to be made public. Now, Attorney General William Barr has released a four-page letter with his conclusions -- but Democrats still want the Mueller report to be released, including Senator Richard Blumenthal who joins us.

"An Gorta Mór" by Robert Ballagh (2012).
Ireland's Great Hunger Museum / Quinnipiac University

Museums that tell the stories of tragic world events can be sobering, thought-provoking – and often poignant and uplifting. Nestled in Hamden, Connecticut is an art museum that centers on a defining moment in Ireland’s history –  the great famine of the mid-19th century.

Ariana Cubillos / Associated Press

As the Trump administration tries to end Temporary Protected Status for countries such as El Salvador, Honduras and Haiti, thousands of immigrants fleeing the economic and political crisis in Venezuela are looking for humanitarian protections under TPS, so they won’t be deported. 

Jeff Chiu / Associated Press

Thousands of Salvadoran, Haitian, Sudanese, and Nicaraguan immigrants in New England are breathing a sigh of relief after an announcement that the Trump administration will extend their Temporary Protected Status to next January. TPS allows immigrants from countries deemed unsafe to live and work legally in U.S. Once TPS ends, these people are especially vulnerable to deportation.

Rachael Warten makes handmade soaps, scarves, and ties.
Diane Orson / Connecticut Public Radio

Artisans and staff with Chapel Haven Schleifer Center’s UARTS program have a new storefront in the Westville neighborhood to create and display their weavings, hand-marbled silk scarves, and other items.  

Some 16 years ago, New Haven’s fire department was roiled by a controversy over race and promotions. Supposedly race-neutral tests were administered to determine who would move up in rank to captain and lieutenant. But no black firefighters scored high enough to gain promotion.

Harriet Jones / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has laid to rest a long controversy over land in the eastern half of Connecticut. He declared that he’s scrapping plans to build a new state police firearms training facility in the town of Griswold.

The open enrollment period for 2019 health insurance in Connecticut wrapped up Tuesday. We're joined by James Michel, chief executive officer of Access Health CT, to talk about how things went – and the state of the state’s health exchange.

Frankieleon (Flickr) / Creative Commons

Nearly 9,000 children and teens have died from opioid poisonings since the epidemic began in the late 1990s, according to Yale epidemiologist Dr. Julie Gaither. An earlier Yale study found that about 30 kids a year died in hospitals, but this time her team analyzed data on deaths in all settings.

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