Leoneda Inge

Changing Economy Reporter

Leoneda Inge is WUNC's Changing Economy Reporter. She came to North Carolina in 2001 and has spent most of that time tracking job loss and other major changes in the state's Tobacco, Furniture, and Textile industries. In 2006, Leoneda and a team of journalists won an Alfred I. DuPont Award from Columbia University for the series - North Carolina Voices: Understanding Poverty.  

Leoneda has won several other first place awards - including three Gracie Awards from the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television, several Associated Press Awards and a Salute to Excellence Award from the National Association of Black Journalists.  

Leoneda has worked in commercial and public radio for many years and has produced reports for news magazines on NPR, Marketplace, and Voice of America.  Leoneda is a graduate of Florida A&M University.  In 1995, Leoneda was named a Michigan Journalism Fellow at the University of Michigan.  In 2008, she received her Masters degree in Journalism from Columbia University where she was a Knight-Bagehot Journalism Fellow in Business and Economics.  In 2009, Leoneda traveled to Tokyo, Japan as a fellow with the Foreign Press Center.

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Arts & Culture
10:00 am
Fri April 15, 2011

Raising Renee

Beverly McIver
Credit Leoneda Inge

  Many of us may have made a promise to go home and take care of parents or other family members when they need us the most.  But do we all keep our promise? The new documentary titled – Raising Renee – looks at one such life-changing promise.  The film centers on Durham-based artist Beverly McIver and her sister Renee McIver.  The U.S. premiere ofRaising Renee is today at the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham.    

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Business & Economy
8:00 am
Thu April 14, 2011

Jobless Benefits Tied to Budget Fight

Republican and Democratic leaders are playing hard-ball with the state budget.  And extended unemployment benefits seem to be the latest pawn.

Republicans are tying additional unemployment benefits for 37-thousand people to a provision that would have state government operate at lower funding levels if a budget is not approved by June 30th.  Governor Bev Perdue calls the legislation “extortion.”  House Speaker Thom Tillis.

Thom Tillis:  "Ideally what she’ll do is take seriously our budget proposal which will come to her the first week of June and sign it."

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Arts & Culture
7:30 am
Thu April 14, 2011

Full Frame Opens

The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival kicks off today in downtown Durham.  There are more than 100 screenings for enthusiasts to see.

Two Sundance Film Festival winners will be shown – How to Die in Oregon and Hell and Back Again about a soldier’s return home from Afghanistan. Sadie Tillery is director of programming at Full Frame. She says all levels of talent and experience make the festival.

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Business & Economy
6:27 pm
Wed April 6, 2011

Jobless Rates Down Across State

Every corner of the state is experiencing a decline in its unemployment rate.  The largest decline was in Graham County.

Politics & Government
10:00 am
Wed April 6, 2011

NC Extended Jobless Benefits to End

The state’s extended benefits program for the long-term unemployed is about to end. About 37-thousand people will lose their benefits.

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Arts & Culture
5:00 am
Fri April 1, 2011

High Point Gets Ready for Market

The Super Bowl of the home furnishings industry gets under way this weekend in High Point. For the next week – High Point can expect some 80-thousand visitors.  The High Point Market is the largest home furnishings industry trade show in the world.  Buyers, leading retailers, journalists and analysts come from 110 countries to check out the latest styles.

Brian Casey is president and CEO of the High Point Market Authority. He says they can tell the economy is getting better:

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Business & Economy
6:00 am
Thu March 31, 2011

Garner Loses Slim Jim And 600 Jobs With It

Slim Jim
Credit Wikimedia Commons

The town of Garner in Wake County is preparing to lose its largest employer, ConAgra Foods.  The company employed about 600 people in its Slim Jim plant there until the summer of 2009 when a fatal natural gas explosion killed four works and injured 67. But instead of rebuilding the plant where the explosion took place, ConAgra announced last year that it would be cheaper to close its Garner plant and move its operation to Ohio.

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Arts & Culture
5:45 am
Thu March 17, 2011

No More Dillard's BBQ

The owners of Dillard’s Bar-B-Que in Durham have announced – “its season is up.” The long-time family restaurant will close Friday.


The cafeteria-style line to get food at Dillard’s Bar-B-Que has been a place to catch up with friends and to get a home-cooked hot meal. And Bar-B-Que makes up just a small part of the menu – which also includes fried fish, smothered chicken, an assortment of greens and more.  But Wilma Dillard says the business has run its course:

"We just closing it down.  We just closing it down."

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Business & Economy
5:30 am
Tue March 15, 2011

Public Forum On Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Some of the top innovative thinkers in the country will gather this morning at U-N-C Chapel Hill. The Obama Administration chose this spot to kick-off a series of public forums on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. 

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Arts & Culture
8:30 am
Mon March 14, 2011

Crook's Corner Restaurant Honored

Crook's Shrimp & Grits
Credit Leoneda Inge

Crook's Corner restaurant in Chapel Hill has been honored with the American Classics distinction from the James Beard Foundation- a Hall of Fame type award in the food world.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when the “food scene” in the Triangle went from good to great! But we’re there now and the rest of the country is taking note. Some of the most prestigious awards for restaurants and chefs come from the James Beard Foundation in New York. The tops in the food world will soon celebrate their James Beard Awards in “Oscars-like” style.  And that will include the crew at Crook’s Corner restaurant in Chapel Hill.

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