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.


The State of Things
12:32 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Questions About Informant Payments By Durham Police

Steve Schewel, Durham City Council Member
Credit City of Durham/


Two local advocacy groups released documents showing the Durham Police Department made payments to informants in criminal matters.

Read more
The State of Things
12:17 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Growing Dissent On Teacher Tenure Law

Credit Wikimedia commons


This week, Cumberland County and Charlotte-Mecklenburg school systems passed measures opposing a new law that eliminates teacher tenure and replaces it with a system that rewards the top 25 percent of teachers. The law addresses the complex and challenging issues of teaching evaluation and teacher pay.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Eric Guckian, senior education advisor to Governor McCrory, and Larry Nilles, an eighth grade social studies teacher and president of Wake North Carolina Association of Educators.

Read more
4:06 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

The Unexpected NBA MVP Of 1994

Credit mvongrue via Flickr/Creative Commons

Daniel Vermeer grew up in Iowa with a passion for basketball. When his academic studies took him to Nepal, he discovered an interesting influence of American cable television: local love for the Atlanta Hawks.

"So you can imagine," says Vermeer, "[I'm] in this little hut in Kathmandu, watching TV and an Atlanta Hawks game came on.  With these enormous guys, jumping through the roof, slamming the ball..." 

Read more
The State of Things
12:44 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Kurt Cobain: New Music 20 Years After His Death

Kurt Cobain
Credit Flickr user: QuicheIsInsane

  Kurt Cobain, lead singer of the band Nirvana, died 20 years ago at the age of 27. In his short life, the rock icon composed music that many said gave voice to their generation.

Now a new composition by two professional musicians reconfigures Cobain’s gritty voice and sounds into a electroacoustic work. Perfume will be performed this evening at Duke’s Music department.

Read more
The State of Things
10:32 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Meet Daniel Vermeer

Dan Vermeer Executive Director of the Center for Energy Development and the Global Environment
Credit / Center for Energy Development and the Global Environment

Meet Daniel Vermeer, director of the Center for Energy, Development, and the Global Environment at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business


When he graduated from college, Daniel Vermeer did not want a job. He wanted only to wander through Asia and continue learning about world religions. But his adventures led him to some unexpected destinations, including corporate America. He led water sustainability projects for Coca-Cola and advised Fortune 50 companies on their water policies. 

Read more
The State Of Things
11:48 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Mardi Gras Sounds With Children Of The Horn

Children of the Horn
Credit Children of the Horn

This coming Fat Tuesday, the streets of downtown Durham will be filled with the sounds and celebrations of Mardi Gras. The Durham Mardi Gras parades and parties will be accompanied by the sounds of local bands including Children of the Horn. But first, they perform live in studio. Host Frank Stasio talks with band members Wayne Leechford, Bryan McCune, Robo Jones, John Simonetti, Drew Lile and Todd Proctor.

Read more
The State Of Things
10:10 am
Thu February 27, 2014

The Triangle's Chances For Google Fiber

Google Fiber in Kansas City, MO
Credit UCFFool on Flickr


Google recently announced nine metro areas under consideration for its latest internet technology: Google Fiber.

Read more
The State Of Things
12:47 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Political News Round Up with the Junkie

A wake county jury says United States Senate candidate Greg Brannon misled investors. How will it affect his race? And Governor McCrory’s shopping trip ends with an employee being fired. Host Frank Stasio talks with Political Junkie Ken Rudin about these issues and other political news around the state.

Read more
The State of Things
12:28 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Federal Prosecutors Subpoena State Agency Employees

A federal investigation into Duke Energy’s coal ash spill expanded this week to include more employees of the state’s Department of Energy and Natural Resources. The agency’s head, Secretary John Skvarla, defended their work and their relationship with Duke Energy. Host Frank Stasio talks with WUNC reporter Jeff Tiberii about the legal case and on-going debate about the clean-up.

The State Of Things
5:11 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Movies On The Radio: Unconventional Love In The Movies

King Kong (1933)
Credit Wikipedia

Love can be strange, complicated and even downright bizarre. The portrayals of romance on the silver screen are no exception. Just in time for Valentine's Day, Host Frank Stasio talks with Marsha Gordon, film professor at North Carolina State University and Laura Boyes, film curator at the North Carolina Museum of Art, about unconventional romance in the movies. 

Here are some of their picks and your favorites:

Read more