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.

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Environment
8:19 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Winter Weather Freezes The Triad

Ice has built up on trees and roads in North Carolina, and it's especially heavy in the Triad.
Credit David Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on 27 Dec 2009. / Wikipedia Creative Commons

A low-pressure system moving up from the south brought rain and sleet to Central North Carolina, and high pressure air from the North is keeping cold air in the area. The result has been freezing temperatures and icy roads.

A winter weather advisory is in effect for most of the state west of the Interstate 95 corridor until noon.

Ryan Ellis is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Raleigh. He says ice is especially bad in the Triad.

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Education
5:00 am
Mon March 10, 2014

New RTI Center Studies Gender And Imbalances Of Power Globally

RTI International has created a Global Gender Center to connect exports working to help women and lessen the impact of power-imbalances around the world.
Credit RTI International

RTI International has recently created a Global Gender Center to study and find solutions for imbalances of power against women around the world.

Wendee Wechsberg directs the new organization and is doing field work in South Africa. She said many universities have researchers who study individual communities but the Global Gender Center will work to connect those experts. Priority issues include HIV, domestic violence and economic development.

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Health
4:00 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

UNC Is Considering Hour Cuts, Other Options To Pay For Health Coverage

Under Obamacare, UNC will have to offer health insurance to employees working 30 hours a week or more, including graduate teaching assistants and visiting faculty.
Credit Wikipedia

Individuals are enrolling in health care through the federal online marketplace, but thousands of North Carolinians might find themselves with employer-sponsored health plans next year.   

In January, the Affordable Care Act will require businesses to offer health insurance to full-time employees working 30 hours a week or more. This would now include graduate teaching assistants and visiting faculty at the University of North Carolina.

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Health
9:31 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Hospitals Weather Flu Season Despite An IV Drug Shortage

A national shortage of saline intravenous drip bags has stressed area medical facilities during the recent flu season.
Credit Harmid / Wikipedia

Medical facilities are facing a national shortage of intravenous drugs, especially saline IV drips. Saline is used to treat dehydrated patients.

Manufacturers are stepping up production to meet need, but the shortage has presented problems to hospitals since December, when flu season began.

Zack Moore is an infectious disease epidemiologist with he North Carolina Division of Public Health. He said this is an especially bad time of year to have a limited saline supply for two reasons.

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Health
8:27 am
Thu March 6, 2014

“Playbook” For Local Health Professionals To Lower Health Care Costs

Public heath advocates say doctors should work more closely with health departments to solve systemic health issues in their area and lower medical costs.
Credit jasleen_kaur / Flickr

A new online guidebook aims to help connect doctors with public health agencies to fight chronic illnesses like diabetes.  Those illnesses make up 80-percent of health care costs today, compared to only 20-percent in 1900.

Duke's Department of Community and Family Medicine partnered with the de Beaumont Foundation and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to launch "Public Health and Primary Care Together: A Practical Playbook.” It suggests ways primary care and public health providers can better manage chronic disease and combat rising health care costs.

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Politics & Government
8:39 am
Wed March 5, 2014

“Kitten Season” Is Coming, And Animal Services Says That’s A Problem

March through November is 'kitten season,' a time when animal shelters are inundated with newborn litters that need homes.
Credit Jeffrey W www.flickr.com/photos/jeffreyww/4544016041/ / Flickr

Orange County Animal Services is looking for ideas from the public to handle the pet-overpopulation problem.

Director Bob Morotto said many cats are "unaffiliated" with a specific owner and haven't been spayed. They have high mortality rates and can spread disease to domesticated cats.

Morotto said the coming warm weather means "kitten season" is around the corner.  That's when cats begin having litters on litters, causing the population to spike.

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Black Ice
8:18 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Black Ice Makes For Slippery Roads, Closes Schools

The National Weather Service is warning of black ice on roadways this morning.
Credit Danielle Scott http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielle_scott/ / Flickr Creative Commons

Temperatures dropped into the teens across the Piedmont overnight, freezing yesterday's rain and snowfall. Now roadways are covered with black ice.

Gail Hartfield is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Raleigh. She says temperatures will be in the 20s all morning and won't warm to freezing or above until lunchtime.

“Just encouraging people to take it easy this morning,” Hartfield said. “If you can postpone travel until after noon, that's great and better. You'll see road conditions much improved over what they'll be this morning.”

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Environment
8:13 am
Mon March 3, 2014

The Triangle Could Get Caught Up In A Wintry Mix Today

The National Weather Service says the Triangle should expect a wintry mix today.
Credit David Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on 27 Dec 2009. / Wikipedia Creative Commons

Updated 10:48 a.m.:

A cold front is moving into the Triangle and creeping eastward toward the coast. Temperatures are expected to drop into the 20s later today.

Scott Sharpe is a senior forecaster at the National Weather Service in Raleigh. He said a wintry mix is expected across the region sometime after lunch.

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Environment
7:58 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Why Do NC Fishermen Want To Pay More To Fund Regulation?

The US Fish and Wildlife service requires that North Carolina pay observers to check commercial fishing gillnets and make sure they don't entangle endangered sea turtles.
Credit Pedro Ramirez, Jr. / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A trade group of North Carolina commercial fishermen has proposed that the General Assembly raise their fishing license fees to pay for regulatory measures.

Flounder fishermen sometimes get endangered sea turtles caught in their gillnets, so federal law requires that the state hire trained "observers" to check nets regularly. The General Assembly only funded the observer program until next summer, but if there's no observer at all, the state will be required to stop all gillnet fishing.

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Business & Economy
8:55 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Durham-Chapel Hill Light Rail Project: Where Those Rails Might Go

Federal regulators have given the Triangle Transit Authority the green light to begin developing a light rail line between Chapel Hill and East Durham.
Credit Triangle Transit Authority

The Federal Transit Authority (FTA) has given the green-light to begin the first steps of a 17-mile light rail project connecting Durham and Orange Counties.

The decision authorizes Triangle Transit to begin development on the project, by studying the potential environmental impact of two proposed rail routes.

Triangle Transit has put together this video "fly-through" of the proposed light rail route:

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