Brent Wolfe

News Director

Brent Wolfe grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and majored in American Studies at Tufts University outside Boston. In college, Brent was inspired by the narrative journalism style of J. Anthony Lukas' "Common Ground," the story of school desegregation and court ordered busing in Boston. After college, he donned a ranger hat with the National Park Service to tell visitors the story of Boston's African American community in the 19th century. Brent eventually made his way to public radio- learning the basics at WBUR in Boston and doing political reporting at KQED in San Francisco. He moved on to report for WILL in Champaign-Urbana and then Minnesota Public Radio in Rochester where he covered stories from medical research at the Mayo Clinic to a gopher catching festival. Brent joined WUNC's reporting staff in March 2000, became news editor in February 2003, and News Director in 2011.

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Environment
10:16 am
Mon June 10, 2013

State Officials Warn Of Dangerous Rip Currents

A swimmer on the Carolina coast.
Credit Billy Hathorn, Creative Commons

Safety officials on the coast are trying to make beachgoers more aware of rip currents. Those are the narrow channels of waves that can pull swimmers dangerously far offshore. Signs along North Carolina’s coastline advise visitors to ‘Break the Grip of the Rip.’

Spencer Rogers is with the governmental research organization North Carolina Sea Grant. He estimates that rip currents account for 80 percent of drowning and says the currents happen almost every day on North Carolina beaches, but are not always dangerous.

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Environment
5:00 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Coastal Plain Counties Praised For Conservation Efforts

Coastal plain counties where groundwater levels are improving.
Credit NC Division of Water Resources

Officials with the state Division of Water Resources say a new report shows great improvement in groundwater levels over a 15-county area in eastern North Carolina. According to state officials, deep-well, freshwater aquifers in the coastal plain have to stay above full capacity to keep from mixing with saltwater.  If they were to mix, cities would have to spend money to filter out saltwater to make their water is safe to drink.

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Award Entries
4:18 pm
Sat February 2, 2013

WUNC Overall Excellence Entry 2013 Murrow Awards

Rundown for WUNC-FM’s Overall Excellence Entry

This entry contains examples of the best work of WUNC-FM. Some of the stories are excerpted in order to meet the category’s time limit.

0:00-4:46         Coverage of the DNC in Charlotte

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Health
10:03 am
Mon November 26, 2012

Poverty Having Impact On Child Health

Children's advocates say poverty continues to be a problem when it comes to kids' health. The non-profit Action for Children North Carolina is out with its annual Child Health Report Card. The state scored a D in child poverty, with more than 25% of children under 18 living in poverty. Action for Children's Laila Bell says that affects the health statistics.

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Education
5:45 pm
Tue September 25, 2012

American Graduate & The Monti: Patty Chase

Patty Chase

School can be hard -- and often it's not the academics that makes it so challenging. As a part of our weeklong American Graduate series of stories about education -- we hear from Patty Chase of Durham. In this story told live at The Monti, she remembers one life changing moment from elementary school.

Education
5:45 pm
Mon September 24, 2012

American Graduate & The Monti: Bill Kenyon

Bill Kenyon

This week public radio stations across the country are taking part in American Graduate Week. It's a Public Media initiative that looks at the drop out crisis and other issues in the public schools. As a part of our coverage, WUNC partnered with the performance story-telling group The Monti for a series of stories about school. Our first one comes from Bill Kenyon -- he's a teacher from Hillsborough -- he told his story, without notes, in front of a live audience at The Monti.

Health
1:10 pm
Thu December 22, 2011

UNC Seeks to Improve Physical and Mental Health

Doctors at UNC Chapel Hill want to improve the physical health of patients with severe mental illness. U-N-C's Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health has received a grant from the Duke Endowment to create a "health home" for patients with mental illness. Director John Gilmore says people with serious mental health issues like schizophrenia sometimes have trouble tending to their physical health. Gilmore says psychiatrists treating patients at the center will look out for other problems as well.

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Science & Technology
5:40 am
Fri August 26, 2011

Irene to Test Flood Prediction System

An experimental flood forecasting system will get a test with Hurricane Irene. Scientists have been experimenting with computer models since Hurricane Floyd produced heavier than expected flooding in 1999. The models are designed to predict how fresh water stream flow, ocean tides, and storm surge will interact. Suzanne VanCooten is a research hydro-meteorologist with the National Severe Storms Laboratory. She says one thing that's different this year from the lead-up to Hurricane Floyd is that many eastern North Carolina counties have been in a drought.

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