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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Business & Economy
8:28 am
Fri November 29, 2013

North Carolina Holiday Shoppers Are Careful With Dollars

Several big box stores and department stores now open on Thanksgiving Day, before "Black Friday."
Credit Jonathan Alcom, Reuters

Many holiday shoppers are already at the malls on this busiest retail shopping day of the year.  But a new poll says most North Carolinians are keeping a tight purse this season.

Retailers have been working especially hard to get shoppers in stores on this Black Friday.

Kenneth Fernandez is director of the Elon University Poll.  He says there are several reasons why one-third of North Carolinians plan to spend less money on gifts this year.

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Business & Economy
8:10 am
Tue November 26, 2013

The State Of The Turkey Industry In North Carolina

Woman sports her turkey hat at the 2013 Turkey Festival in Raeford, NC.
Credit Leoneda Inge

A lot of Thanksgiving dinners across the country will feature a turkey grown and processed right here in North Carolina.  Butterball is headquartered here and produces about 20-percent of the nation’s turkeys. 

But Butterball reports it’s coming up a little short this year with fresh orders. And in another part of the state, one of the largest turkey slaughter houses is shut down.

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Politics & Government
5:00 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Addressing Poverty In A Changing Economy

Gene Nichol, Director, UNC Center on Poverty, work and Opportunity
Credit UNC Law School

A group of public education, philanthropic and community leaders gathered at UNC-Chapel Hill yesterday to discuss ways to address growing poverty in the state. The conference was titled, "Poverty, Partnerships and the Public Good: A Call for Engagement by North Carolina Institutions."

The discussion was lively. Gene Nichol, Director of UNC’s Poverty Center commenced the group.

“Poverty is by any standard the largest problem that we face in North Carolina," said Nichol.

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Politics & Government
9:39 am
Wed November 20, 2013

There's A Megalopolis In North Carolina's Future

Aeriel snapshot of NW Charlotte, 2005.
Credit UNC Population Center

The Carolina Population Center at UNC is debuting a new unit this week that will focus on translating complicated Census data for businesses and the public.

The new unit is called Carolina Demography.  And the first project by Director Rebecca Tippett is dissecting current and future North Carolina housing units for a span covering 110 years.

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Politics & Government
6:10 am
Thu November 14, 2013

NC Metropolitan Mayors Coalition Talks Commerce

Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane chairs the NC Metropolitan Mayors Coalition.
Credit www.raleighnc.gov

North Carolina mayors from the mountains to the coast gathered in Raleigh yesterday to talk business and job creation in this tough economy.

The man of the hour actually wasn’t a mayor at all.  It was O’Hara Macken, an executive vice president and managing director of IPREO.

“Access to talent, culture, livability are all really important to us.  Raleigh offered all of that," said Macken.

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Politics & Government
7:14 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Durham Celebrates 50th Anniversary Of NC Fund

Howard Fuller helps lead a 1960s silent march in Durham.
Credit southerndocumentaryfund.org

Community leaders and residents are coming together this week in Durham to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the “North Carolina Fund.”

The “North Carolina Fund” was established by Governor Terry Sanford in 1963.  The idea was to create programs to help address the state’s vast disparities in housing, education and jobs.  It was North Carolina’s “War on Poverty.”

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Military
5:00 am
Mon November 11, 2013

Commerce Says Military Veterans And Economic Opportunity Equals Good Fit

Some 60,000 NC based military personnel are projected to leave the military over next five years.
Credit usmilitary.com

A report by the state Commerce Department highlights the economic impact of the military in North Carolina.

The Commerce Department says the state has a tremendous opportunity to grow the economy by helping military personnel find employment after their service ends. 

More than 60,000 people stationed in North Carolina are projected to leave the military over the next five years.  Commerce spokesman Josh Ellis says many of them will stay here.

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Code Switch
5:50 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Striking Harmonies With The Jubilee Singers' Past And Present

Soprano Nigia Hunt is a junior at Durham School of the Arts. She and others are singing for Paul Kwami, auditioning for a solo in the Duke Performances concert.
Leoneda Inge/NPR

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 6:51 pm

The Fisk Jubilee Singers are known worldwide for their flawless voices and stellar performances of Negro spirituals. They're from Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn., but they travel around the world to perform their music. Negro spirituals were originally sung by slaves and remain tightly linked to African-American culture. Paul Kwami, the choir's musical director, said singing these spirituals was a way for slaves to lament their servitude, along with the hope of being free one day.

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Politics & Government
5:17 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

SNAP! Residents To Get Less In Food Stamps

Residents across the country will see a decrease in SNAP benefits.
Credit Dept. of Agriculture

People on food stamps have been receiving a little extra in their monthly payments thanks to the economic stimulus package passed in 2009.

But Friday, November 1, those extra benefits end.

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Transportation
5:40 am
Tue October 29, 2013

Amtrak Corridor Between Raleigh And Charlotte Growing Quickly

Mercedes Alexander prepares to board the "Carolinian" Amtrak train in Durham.
Credit Leoneda Inge

The state Department of Transportation says the latest numbers show Amtrak train service between Raleigh and Charlotte is among the fastest growing corridors in the country.

The “Piedmont” and “Carolinian” trains transported about 480,000 riders in the past year.

Amtrak passengers with suitcases, pillows and smart devices started gathering their items as the attendant in the downtown Durham station made this announcement.

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