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

The State of Things
12:55 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Education And Medicaid Spending Still At Issue In Budget Negotiations

Credit NC General Assembly

  

It’s a new fiscal year as of Tuesday, but the legislature has yet to reach an agreement on budget adjustments. 

The House and Senate are still at odds over how to spend money on education and Medicaid. 

Lawmakers are also trying to sort out a coal ash regulation bill, public records rules for charter schools, and higher penalties for prison inmates who get a hold of cell phones.

Read more
The State Of Things
12:13 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Supergluing Your Face For Science

Julie Urban, scientist at the Museum of Natural Sciences, shows host Frank Stasio how to view face mites under a microscope.

A project at the Museum of Natural Sciences pulls samples of face mites from subjects’ faces which can be examined under a microscope.

The research is one of several projects that bring scientists and North Carolina teachers together through funding from the National Science Foundation.

Read more
The State Of Things
11:19 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Letters To The Unborn

Byrd book cover
Credit dzancbooks.org

A conversation with author Kim Church

After a whirlwind reunion with a childhood friend, Addie Lockwood finds herself unexpectedly pregnant. Never aspiring to motherhood, she chooses adoption without telling the father. But even before the child is born, Addie feels compelled to write letters to him.

The story is the premise of Byrd (Dzanc Books/2014), a new book by Raleigh-based author Kim Church.

Read more
The State of Things
11:24 am
Tue July 1, 2014

State Department Documents Show Threats From Blackwater During Investigation

Blackwater helicopters in Iraq
Credit Heath Powell / Flickr Creative Commons

    

During the early years of the Iraq War, the North Carolina security firm Blackwater received billions of dollars from government contracts with the State Department and the CIA. 

But the business began to suffer in 2007 when Blackwater contractors opened fire in a public square in Baghdad, killing 17 Iraqi civilians. The incident severely damaged American relations with Iraq. Today, four Blackwater guards are on trial. 

Read more
The State of Things
11:07 am
Tue July 1, 2014

The Art of Drag

Vivica C. Coxx
Justin Clapp

  Drag performance has a rich history and a lively culture that is increasingly more mainstream. Drag queen Vivica C. Coxx has performed in drag shows for more than a decade, regularly hosting events at The Pinhook in Durham.

Read more
The State of Things
11:07 am
Tue July 1, 2014

A Fictional Trilogy Explores Nature's Secrets

"Authority" is the second book in The Southern Reach Trilogy by Jeff Vandermeer

Host Frank Stasio talks with author Jeff VanderMeer

    

Author Jeff VanderMeer dreamed he was walking down a tunnel where words were appearing on the wall.

Read more
The State of Things
12:08 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Meet Randall Williams

Randall Williams
Credit Randall Williams

  

North Carolina native Randall Williams says he knew he was going to be a doctor when he was four years old.

Unlike many who think they know their career path, Williams never changed his mind. He started working in the emergency room of his hometown hospital in Burlington as a teenager. He served as everything from a candy striper to an orderly before going to medical school.

He is now a Raleigh physician who has taken 11 trips to Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Palestine for medical missions. He ran for mayor of Raleigh in the latest election.

Read more
The State Of Things
12:06 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Reflections From Former Chapel Hill Mayor Howard Lee

Buttons from Howard Lee's campaign for Congress
Credit Ken Rudin

When Howard Lee was elected as mayor of Chapel Hill in 1969, he made history. Lee was the first African American elected to run a majority white city in the south since Reconstruction. The post marked the beginning of Lee’s long career in public service. Host Frank Stasio talks with Howard Lee and political junkie Ken Rudin.  A timeline from UNC-TV traces Lee's long career in North Carolina politics and policymaking.

Read more
The State of Things
12:00 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Folk Songs From The Soul

Skylar Gudasz
Credit Marie Killen

For Skylar Gudasz, a whisper can resonate louder than a shout. The Carrboro folk singer has toured with national musicians in Big Star Third and collaborated locally with Spooky Woods. She showcases her soft, but powerful vocals and elegant songwriting in her upcoming solo album, Oleander.  

Read more
The State of Things
12:05 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Mapping Inequality: How Redlining Is Still Affecting Inner Cities

The original Home Owners' Loan Corporation map of Durham, dated July 23, 1937. Red areas were largely African-American communities, and considered to be too risky for new home loans.
National Archives

After the stock market crash of 1929, Americans across the country were in danger of losing their houses to foreclosure. 

The federal government stepped in, providing bonds for homeowners to refinance their mortgages as part of the New Deal. But in larger cities, the government drew boundaries between neighborhoods that were eligible and ineligible for new loans. 

Read more

Pages