Laura Lee

Assistant News Director for Talk

Laura Lee is WUNC’s Assistant News Director for Talk. Born and raised in Monroe, North Carolina, Laura returned to the Old North state in 2013 after several years in Washington, DC. She received her B.A. in political science and international studies from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2002 and her J.D. from UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law in 2007.

Laura briefly strayed from her Tarheel allegiance in 2011 to obtain a masters degree in journalism from the University of Maryland where she was an Eleanor Merrill Fellow.  Prior to WUNC, Laura worked for NPR on the Washington desk, All Things Considered and Talk of the Nation.

Ways To Connect

Edward Snowden
Wikipedia

 

In 2013, former National Security Agency employee Edward Snowden released classified documents. His action prompted outrage; supporters hailed him as a hero while opponents called him a traitor and a criminal. A new book, After Snowden: Privacy, Secrecy and Security in the Information Age, (St. Martin’s Press/2015) examines the national security landscape in the two years since Snowden’s actions.

Wells
wikimedia

  A superior court judge in Wake County today halted fracking in the state. The court order prohibits the Mining and Energy Commission from accepting or processing fracking permits. The decision is a temporary legal victory for environmental groups across the state.Meanwhile, at the legislature, House representatives are preparing to debate a $22.2 billion spending plan. The initial proposal includes more money for teachers, state employees and incentives. Host Frank Stasio talks with WUNC reporters Dave Dewitt and Jeff Tiberii about the latest.

Grand Power K100
Wikipedia

A bill in the North Carolina House could change gun regulations in the state. Proponents say the measure would give more consistency to licensing. Opponents, including some law enforcement agencies, say the changes would allow private sellers to skip registration processes. Also in the headlines: yesterday, in federal court, Duke Energy pleaded guilty over charges stemming from the 2014 coal ash spill. The deal means the company will pay $102 million in fines and restitution. Host Frank Stasio talks with WUNC reporters Jorge Valencia and Dave Dewitt about the latest.

Missing Men
Pixabay

As a teenager in Maryland, Dwayne Betts showed promise. The high school student made the honor roll and demonstrated sharp wit.

But Betts grew up in an environment not conducive to success. He recalls three of his classmates being killed. Others went to prison.

“The expectation wasn’t necessarily that we would go to prison,” Betts said. “But we lived in a climate and an environment in which these things were happening every day and nobody was confronting what it meant.”

Airplane!
Wikipedia

From silent film to slapstick comedy, humor has been a staple of the silver screen since the dawn of modern cinema. Listeners share their favorite funny scenes from a wide range of movies from “Young Frankenstein” to “Airplane." Host Frank Stasio talks with North Carolina Museum of Art film curator Laura Boyes and North Carolina State University film professor Marsha Gordon about the funniest moments in film.

Image of Ken Rudin, the Political Junkie.
kenrudinpolitics.com

A federal appellate court declares phone data collection by the NSA under the Patriot Act illegal.

At the same time, North Carolina Senator and Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr calls for extension of the Patriot Act which is set to expire at the end of the month. 

Host Frank Stasio talks with political junkie Ken Rudin about the latest on the NSA and other political news around the state.

Potter Ben Owen, III, in his element.
Ben Owen Pottery

Pottery is one of the signature art forms of the Tar Heel State.

From the mountains to the coast, the unique clays of the Carolinas give potters creative materials to create exceptional work. 

Dig It! The Secrets of Soil, a new exhibition at the Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh, highlights the materials of pottery through the work of Seagrove potter Ben Owen III.

AOL founder Steve Case
Robert Scoble / Wikimedia Commons

Nearly two-thirds of the nation's venture capital goes to three states: New York, Massachusetts and California. 

But innovative ideas are not limited to these areas. Start-ups across the country are developing new solutions and a competition called Rise of the Rest seeks to reward these entrepreneurs. Local businesses compete for $100,000 today at the Carolina Theater in Durham at 3 p.m. 

Host Frank Stasio talks with venture capitalist, AOL co-founder and Rise of the Rest leader Steve Case.

Meet Al Buehler

May 4, 2015
Members of the men's track team pose with Coach Al Buehler.
Duke University Archives. Durham, North Carolina, USA.

Today's show is a rebroadcast of an interview with Duke University coach Al Buehler.

Domestic Garden

Apr 30, 2015
John Hoppenthaler's new book of poems is an exploration of age and marriage.
Annie Hogan / Carnegie Mellon University Press

When John Hoppenthaler wrote his newest book of poetry, Domestic Garden (Carnegie Mellon University Press/2015), he was experiencing change in his personal life.

The poet and professor at East Carolina University married just before turning 50 years old, and he also became a stepfather. At the same time, his mother’s health was declining. 

The transitions became the backbone of his intimate and vulnerable poetry.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Hoppenthaler about his life, work and poetry.

Pages