Rebecca Martinez

Morning Producer

Rebecca Martinez produces WUNC’s broadcast of Morning Edition. She reports breaking news as well as feature stories and interviews about a range of subjects, including immigration enforcement and environmental sustainability. She knows a lot about municipal solid waste.

Rebecca is also the co-creator and founding producer of The Civilist with Steven Petrow. The podcast is a partnership between WUNC and PRI, and it explores how people can talk respectfully about controversial and awkward topics.

Before coming to North Carolina, Rebecca was a reporter and host at Wyoming Public Radio, where she created the "Upstarts" entrepreneur profile series. She won a PRNDI award for soft feature reporting in 2012 and has edited and produced several PRNDI award-winning stories and episodes of "Open Spaces." Rebecca has reported on agriculture and community issues at The News Leader in Staunton, VA. She spent two years cutting tape, booking interviews and running scripts at NPR's Washington, DC headquarters. Her reporting has aired on NPR, the BBC, PRI, Marketplace and National Native News.

She lives in Durham, where she volunteers on the crisis line at Durham Crisis Response Center. She also occasionally leads bike tours of the city’s murals.

Ways to Connect

Drought Map as of June 21, 2016.
North Carolin a Drought Monitor

Summer has brought moderate-to-severe drought conditions to 14 counties in the southwest corner of the state.

The area usually sees about an inch of rain per week, but not so this year, according to State Climatologist Rebecca Ward.

pottery remains
National Park Service / Fort Raleigh National Historic Site

Archeologists have found a rare Elizabethan-era medicinal jar near the site of the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island.

The National Parks Service Southeast Archeological Center recently excavated an area at Fort Raleigh Historic Site threatened by erosion.

A picture of the Vidant Health clinic in Belhaven.
Courtesy of Vidant Health

Vidant Health has opened a 24-hour urgent care clinic in Belhaven. It offers minor emergency and pre-natal care, a full lab, X-rays and a general family practice.

The Jayhawks
All Eyes Media

The Jayhawks' tour for their new album Paging Mr. Proust brings them to Carrboro today. With more than a few Americana classics under their collective belt, the Minneapolis natives sound energized and excited 30 years into their career.

Through that time, lead singer-songwriter and guitarist Gary Louris has been a driving force behind the band's success. He stopped into WUNC's Chapel Hill studio this week.

The cover of the 2016 Kids Count Data Book
The cover of the 2016 Kids Count Data Book

Health and education indicators are improving among North Carolina children despite spotty economic recovery, according to an annual report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

The 2016 Kids Count Data Book ranks North Carolina 34th in the country for overall wellbeing, which is up one spot from the year before.

photo of Wildin Acosta
Courtesy of the Acosta family

Officials at the Stewart Detention Center in Georgia have released an undocumented Durham teenager from restrictive housing after nine days.

A drawing of Alabama.
Julienne Alexander / Criminal

Convicted criminals can sit on death row for many years after the crime scene is cleaned up and packed away.

In this week's Criminal Podcast, host Phoebe Judge interviews attorney and activist Bryan Stevenson of the Equal Justice Initiative in Alabama, a state with one of the highest execution rates in the country.

Stevenson started out at Harvard Law School, but was ambivalent about his career choice until an internship sent him to Atlanta to inform an inmate that his execution date wouldn't come within a year.

A picture of a gavel on a table.
Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons

A local distributor of Anheuser-Busch products has pulled unauthorized ads using the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina's logo.  Now the tribe is suing the brewer and wholesaler.

Hollerin Road street sign in Spivey's Corner, N.C.
Badagnani / Wikipedia

The organizers of the National Hollerin' Contest are canceling their annual hollerin' contest, which began 47 years ago as a fundraiser for the Spivey's Corner Volunteer Fire Department.

Contest organizers say hollerin' was a long-distance form of vocal communication developed long before telephones and sirens.

A picture of Skylar Gudasz.
dukeperformances.duke.edu

Update: Due to anticipated thunderstorms, tonight's Skylar Gudasz show has been moved to Motorco Music Hall.

The Music In The Gardens series is underway at the Sarah P. Duke Gardens in Durham. This year's performers include several luminaries from North Carolina including Mount Moriah and Skylar Gudasz.

Two maps show new boundaries for Wake County Schools starting in 2016.
Wake County Board of Education

Candidate filing begins today for the Wake County Board of Education, and all nine seats will be on the November ballot.

Board-member turnover is likely, since all but one of the school board members will find themselves in the same district as another incumbent.

A picture of a laptop.
Kristoferb / Wikipedia

The Wake County Board of Education has voted to update its discipline policy.

The changes will limit the number of students in long-term suspension, according to Bren Elliot, Wake's Assistant Superintendent for Student Support Services, adding that principals will have more discretion to transfer students to an alternative web-based education track called SCORE.

Durham County Detention Facility
Ildar Sagdejev (Specious) / Wikimedia

A federal review of the Durham County Detention Facility recommends creating a separate unit for inmates with mental health diagnoses.

Drawing of faces and organs.
Julienne Alexander / Criminal

On this week's Criminal podcast, we hear about a mystery surrounding the death of a horse thief.

Host Phoebe Judge and Elana Gordon of WHYY's "The Pulse" tell the story of John Frankford, a notorious horse thief from Pennsylvania in the mid-to-late 1800s.

Frankford also frequently got arrested.

Let’s Move! Executive Director and White House Senior Policy Advisor on Nutrition Sam Kass speaks at a 2013 event with the National Parks Service and the Department of the Interior.
Tami A Heilemann / U.S. Department of the Interior

North Carolina has lost more than 2,600 farms in the last decade. To fight that trend, the Center for Environmental Farming Systems and the WC Breeze Family Farm are hosting their annual fundraiser. The Farm to Fork Picnic supports beginning farmer training programs.

Durhamites gathered at the LGBTQ Center to write letters.
Rebecca Martinez / WUNC

Nearly a dozen people are hunched over a long table at the LGBTQ Center of Durham on a recent evening.

They're scrawling hopeful sentiments on brightly-colored pieces of paper. The letters of support are headed to six young men arrested in North Carolina in targeted immigration enforcement actions in January.

Julienne Alexander / Criminal

This week's Criminal podcast examines the history of the 1979 clash in North Carolina now known by many as the Greensboro Massacre, which left five people dead and nine more injured.  Host Phoebe Judge spoke with Civil Rights activists Nelson Johnson and Signe Waller Foxworth about their run-ins with the Ku Klux Klan and the American Nazi Party.

An image of Sammy Bananas playing at Moogfest in Asheville, 2014
Moogfest

Moogfest -- the event that celebrates music, art and technology from around the world -- is expected to attract thousands to the Bull City this weekend.

Moogfest combines panels and exhibits on creative technology in the music industry with concerts featuring Moog synthesizers, named after the electronic music pioneer Robert Moog.

A picture of lights on a police car.
Alejandro Mejía Greene/JubiloHaku / Flickr Creative Commons

The Greensboro Police Department will now require a report with an explanation every time someone is charged with resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer.

Deputy Chief James Hinson says this comes after community focus groups pointed out racial disparities in the prevalence of these RDO charges.

Rev. William Barber
NAACP / http://www.naacpnc.org/president

The North Carolina NAACP says Harnett County Sheriff's Office targets poor, rural residents. Now, the organization is calling on the U.S. Department of Justice for a thorough investigation.

The DOJ is already looking into the killing of a man by a deputy intending to search a home without a warrant, and the possible mishandling of another murder investigation.

A red wolf
Joan Lopez via Flickr/Creative Commons

An endangered red wolf pup has been born at the North Carolina Zoo.

The sole pup is the sixth litter of red wolves born at the zoo, but the first since 2010.

Songs In The Key Of Animals album cover
Merge Records

Charlotte native Benji Hughes has a fun, funky new album from Merge Records called Songs in the Key of Animals.

An image of artwork for the Criminal Podcast
Julienne Alexander / Criminal

This week's episode of Criminal examines the legal battles of a man who made it his mission to give the middle finger to every law enforcement officer he saw. Robert Ekas's story raises questions of  how "flipping the bird" fits into free speech. Criminal is a podcast recorded at WUNC and hosted by Phoebe Judge.

A n illustration of Rogers' Cessna over the Sierra Madre mountains.
Julienne Alexander / Criminal

In this week's episode of Criminal, a murder mystery is solved by some surprising sleuths: a married pair of accountants.  Host Phoebe Judge spoke with Texas-based CPAs Hugh and Martha Gardinier about how an audit unraveled a complicated criminal case. Criminal is a podcast recorded at WUNC.

Author John Claude Bemis.
Jen Bauldree

Author John Claude Bemis may live in Hillsborough, but he spends much of his time in an imaginary world where myths and legends come alive. 

Bemis created the Clockwork Dark Trilogy, which weaves American folklore with the fantasy genre.  In his new book, "The Wooden Prince" Bemis has completely overhauled the classic story of Pinocchio, and introduces us to a magical place called Abaton.  

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