Rebecca Martinez

Morning Producer

Rebecca Martinez produces WUNC’s broadcast of Morning Edition, and occasionally fills in as host.

Before coming to North Carolina, Rebecca was a reporter and host at Wyoming Public Radio, where she created the “Upstarts” entrepreneur profile series and reported on environmental and cultural issues. 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. As an intern at Team Group Media in DC, she was charged with ordering stage blood and vintage furniture for a documentary that aired on A&E.

A New Jersey native, Rebecca is a graduate of James Madison University’s School of Media Arts and Design. She plays roller derby. Yes, really.

Ways To Connect

A picture of two men working on a bike wheel.
Carol Jackson / WUNC

Giselle John of Cary has not had a bike in more than a decade, but that is not going to stop her.  For this weekend's activity, John's online Meetup group chose the ReCYCLEry in Chapel Hill. She decides to get her hands dirty bringing a slightly rusty old mountain back back into working order.

"I'm gonna ride it. I might need double helmets and lots of padding," John said.  "I don't even know if I have the balance yet. I'll try it. See what happens."

A picture of Bob Savino and some fresh mattresses.
Carol Jackson / WUNC

Off all the items that end up in a landfill, operators agree that mattresses are the biggest nuisance. So one Greensboro entrepreneur found a way to give new life to mattresses while turning a profit.

"Landfill operators hate mattresses, frankly. Mattresses don't compact well at all."

That's Gayle Wilson. He runs Orange County's Solid Waste Department.

A picture of lifeguards training in a pool.
PoolSafety / Flickr

Fewer teens are becoming lifeguards at local city pools.

Raleigh has had to cut hours at its city pools because it's fallen 40 slots short of its hiring goal. 

Raleigh Aquatic Director Terri Stroupe says fewer than half of the participants who signed up for a free lifeguard certification class last week passed the swim test.

A picture of Saunders Hall
Mr. Granger / Wikipedia

Trustees at UNC-Chapel Hill voted 10-3 this morning to drop the name from Saunders Hall.

The building was named in 1920 for Confederate Colonel and UNC alumnus and trustee William Lawrence Saunders. Saunders served as North Carolina Secretary of State from 1879 until 1891. Saunders was also a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

The Core design.
UNC-Chapel Hill

UNC-Chapel Hill is planning a performing arts lab, studio and theater on Franklin Street.

Chancellor Carol Folt says the University has committed $4 million in non-state funding to build the $5 million facility.

Folt says "The Core@Carolina Square" will allow university departments and the public better access to works in progress. But she says it won't compete with the existing performance spaces on campus.

"We bring symphony orchestras and ballet companies. They don't come and practice in front of our town's children," Folt says.

Tulane Publications via Flickr/Creative Commons

A baby born in Orange County can expect to live to be nearly 82 years old. That's according to health data analysis by the independent children's advocacy group NC Child.

But Research and Data Director Laila Bell says children in poorer counties aren't likely to live as long. A newborn in Rockingham County is unlikely to reach the age of 76.

A field of flags outside the Airborne and Special Operations Museum in Fayetteville, NC.
Gerry Dincher / Flickr/Creative Commons

It's Memorial Day: A holiday when many residents gather to remember those who died while serving in the US Military.

Communities across the state have their own way to honor the fallen.

Thomasville

Joe Leonard organizes the annual parade in Thomasville. He says they take the event one step further.

A picture of a hand holding a camcorder.
Peripitus / Wikipedia

A bill passed by the state legislature would allow business owners to sue employees who secretly record proceedings in the workplace or gain access to documents.

The Property Protection Act offer recourse against corporate espionage and organized retail theft. It would allow employers to sue for punitive damages of up to $5,000 per day.

The North Carolina Farm Bureau's Jake Parker says it would help protect pork and poultry producers from misrepresentation by animal rights activists working undercover at local operations.

A picture of a motor boat pulling a water skiier.
Fir0002 / Wikipedia

Law enforcement officials want North Carolinians to think twice before drinking and getting behind the wheel of a car or boat.

The State Highway Patrol and Wildlife Resources Commission are teaming up in a campaign called "On the road, on the water... Don't Drink and Drive."

Highway Patrol spokesman Sergeant Mike Baker says officers will be out around the summer's major holiday weekends.

A picture of a Triangle Transit bus.
Traingle Transit

Wake County has unveiled four options for its new transit plan.

The choices are divided between rapid rail and bus plans. One option in each category concentrates on frequent service for limited routes. The other option of each would expand coverage while sacrificing frequency. 

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