Frank Stasio

Host, "The State of Things"

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.

From there he went to National Public Radio, where he rose from associate producer to newscaster for All Things Considered. He left that job in 1990 to help start an alternative school in Washington, DC. Frank returned to NPR as a freelance news anchor, guest host of Talk of The Nation and other national programs, and host of special news coverage.

He also presents audio theater workshops for children and teachers and conducts radio journalism workshops for broadcasters in former Soviet-bloc countries. He lives in Durham.

Pages

State of Things
9:17 am
Thu January 12, 2012

The Woman in the Mirror

Cynthia Bulik
Credit www.med.unc.edu

As a seasoned researcher, the author of two previous books on eating disorders and the director of the University of North Carolina’s Eating Disorders Program, Cynthia Bulik was deeply familiar with the psychology of women between adolescence and menopause. Those are her patients as well as the subjects of her writing. But two encounters in locker rooms led her to worry about girls and older women. She was with some 6- to 8-year-old girls while they were changing to go swimming and she heard them complain about their bellies and being fat. Then she was with some women in their 70s and 80s in the locker room of a retirement facility and those women were also complaining about being fat and considering plastic surgery. And Cynthia realized that body image issues plague women from the cradle to grave. Her new book is an attempt to address this affliction. It's called,“The Woman in the Mirror: How to Stop Confusing What You Look Like With Who You Are” (Walker & Company/2011).

Read more
State of Things
9:57 am
Wed January 11, 2012

Free speech and license plates

At the end of November, a federal court in North Carolina granted an injunction against license plates with a choose life message. The state’s General Assembly approved the plate, but they denied opponents’ requests for a plate with a pro-choice message. The court ruled that the state couldn’t grant one without the other. It went against the rights of private speech, the court said.

Read more
State of Things
9:53 am
Wed January 11, 2012

Wine to Water

Wine to Water
Credit www.amazon.com

Raleigh bartender Doc Hendley woke one morning with a weird phrase lodged in his head. He scrambled for the pad he keeps by his bed and he wrote down the words “Wine to water.” He didn’t know what they meant then. But soon, he would turn those words into an organization that would help thirsty people around the world. Wine to Water is a non-profit that helps people in 12 different countries get access to clean drinking water.

Read more
State of Things
9:44 am
Wed January 11, 2012

Love and Superheroes

Burn Baby Burn
Credit www.amazon.com

James Maxey writes fantasy novels. You’re more likely to encounter magic and dragons in his books than the harsh reality of fatal illness. But when the woman he loved was diagnosed and died of cancer, James found a way to memorialize his struggle in writing. The result was his new e-book called “Burn Baby Burn” (2012). It is available already, but James has another novel called “Greatshadow” (Solaris/2012) coming out this month.

Read more
State of Things
9:05 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Pity the Billionaire

Pity the Billionaire
Credit tcfrank.com

Best selling writer Thomas Frank has a new book out that talks about how conservative politicians rewrote the script for the economic collapse of 2008 and turned it to their advantage. In “Pity the Billionaire: The Hard-Times Swindle and the Unlikely Comeback of the Right” (Metropolitan Books/2012), Frank takes us through the great recession that began at the end of President George W. Bush’s second term as president. Frank says the recession was the result of failed faith in the free market, and that by all rights, the public should have turned against Wall Street and looked to government for better regulation. Instead, Republicans hijacked the conversation and shifted the blame for the economy onto government.

Read more
State of Things
8:49 am
Tue January 10, 2012

Midnight Session

Laura Leslie
Credit www.wral.com

The North Carolina House made an unprecedented move last Thursday when it held a special 12:45 a.m. session to vote on a veto by Governor Bev Perdue. The legislature was scheduled to vote on Perdue’s veto of the Racial Justice Act only. Instead, the GOP also scheduled a vote on a veto of legislation that would prevent the North Carolina Association of Educators from collecting automatic payroll dues from teachers. The vote passed during the surprise session. Critics of the move are calling it unconstitutional. Host Frank Stasio talks to WRAL-TV Capitol Bureau Chief Laura Leslie about the unprecedented move.

Read more
State of Things
9:09 am
Mon January 9, 2012

Meet Orin Starn

Orin Starn
Credit www.golfpolitics.blogspot.com

Orin Starn’s first experience with a culture different from that of his parents came when his father, a historian of the Italian Renaissance, moved the family to Florence. Orin went to public elementary school there, learning about Catholicism, cigarettes and girls. Orin did everything he could to avoid getting a university education, including dropping out of two different colleges in the 1970s before wandering onto a Native-American reservation 
and working as a janitor and cook. His natural inquisitiveness about other people, their communities, rituals and customs, sent him back to school and into anthropology because it was the path of least resistance. As he learned about anthropology, his love for the science grew, and eventually he decided he wanted to be a part of a generation of anthropologists combining intensive study with engagement and action. He has since turned his anthropologist’s eye on political unrest in the Andes and Native-American issues in the United States. His newest book is called “The Passion of Tiger Woods: An Anthropologist Reports on Golf, Race, and Celebrity Scandal” (Duke University Press/2012) He reads tonight at The Regulator Bookshop in Durham, but first he joins host Frank Stasio to talk about sports, the cultures of sports and the new age of anthropology.

Read more
State of Things
8:00 am
Fri December 30, 2011

Frank's Favorites 2011

Frank with author Lee Smith at the Murphey School Radio Show

Host Frank Stasio wraps up this week of retrospectives with his favorite interviews of the year. In 2011, he particularly enjoyed talking to Sister Helen Prejean, author of “Dead Man Walking,” about why she believes the death penalty should be abolished. He also loved a conversation on restorative justice, the practice of bringing the victim and the offender together in an effort to heal rather than punish.

Read more
State of Things
8:00 am
Thu December 29, 2011

Amber's Favorites 2011

Amber and her adorable son, Sammy

The week of highlights from 2011 continues as host Frank Stasio chats with producer Amber Nimocks about her picks for the year's best shows. North Carolina author Clyde Edgerton jams out to James Brown, humorist Celia Rivenbark pitches a Southern version of "Prairie Home Companion," Mississippi writer Tom Franklin tells the saddest funny story of the year and Brian Hoyle, RBC Center announcer for the Carolina Hurricanes, tells us how to say "Woo!" in Finnish.

Read more
State of Things
8:00 am
Wed December 28, 2011

Lindsay's Favorites 2011

LFT rocking the mic at karaoke night

This year, the story of Biscuitville, a pair of baseball players and a Grammy-nominated band made the short list of “The State of Things” Managing Editor Lindsay Foster Thomas’ favorite segments of 2011. She joins host Frank Stasio to talk about why she especially loves fast food in North Carolina, athletes who also write books and The Foreign Exchange – the group that will go down in history for telling Stasio he has “swag.”

Read more

Pages