Will Michaels

Producer, "The State of Things"

Will Michaels is a fan of news, sound and story. He started as an intern at WUNC when he was a student at the University of North Carolina. As a part of his internship, he worked for a semester on the daily national show, The Story with Dick Gordon. Will concentrated on radio while at college, studying under veteran NPR reporter Adam Hochberg. He began as a reporter for Carolina Connection, UNC's radio news magazine, and then became an anchor and managing editor for the program in 2009, when it was named the best college radio news program in the country by the Society of Professional Journalists.

Will came back to WUNC in 2010 as the producer for Morning Edition for a couple of years, rising before the sun to help morning host Eric Hodge gather and present the news. In 2014, he produced WUNC's My Teacher series, part of the North Carolina Teacher Project. He is now a producer for The State of Things.

Ways To Connect

The Holocaust Memorial in Berlin.
David Melchior Diaz / Flickr Creative Commons

In 1944, Nazi soldiers sent Zev Harel and his family to the Auschwitz concentration camp. He was 14 years old.

and his family to the Auschwitz concentration camp. He was 14 years old. Harel stayed alive by lying about his age, and he endured a 400-mile trip to the Ebensee concentration camp in Austria where he was forced to build underground storage tunnels for Nazi weapons.

    

The Suffers are a Gulf Coast Soul Band out of Houston, Tx.
Daniel Jackson

The Suffers, a 10-piece band out of Houston, Tx., features a horn line, rhythm section and the gigantic soulful voice of front woman Kam Franklin.

The Suffers draw their inspiration from the diversity of their hometown of Houston. While the overall effect of their music harks back to the soul greats of the 1960s and 1970s, diverse elements, including gospel, cumbia and reggae, give their songs a fresh, eclectic feel.

Speech-language pathologist Peter Reitzes produces the StutterTalk podcast.
StutterTalk.com

The stigma of stuttering forces many people who have the speech disorder to avoid talking at all costs.

And for millions of people, the act of trying to suppress stuttering simply amplifies it, so the idea of stuttering on purpose in public seems out of the question.

But that's how stutterer and speech-language pathologist Peter Reitzes faced his demons.

He openly broadcasts his stutter in the weekly podcast, StutterTalkwhich he produces from his home in Carrboro. 

Need we say more?
Memegenerator.net

Since ancient Greece, rhetoric has been a powerful form of speech used to persuade and impress an audience.

Today, the wittiest among us sometimes exchange the most chuckle-inducing form of rhetoric: the pun. That battle of wits is now a competition in the Triangle where 24 contestants will fight for the title of Pun Master of Durham. A champion will be crowned at Motorco in Durham on Monday at 7 p.m.

During Sunshine Week the media celebrates open government and transparency in public records.
Holley St. Germain / Flickr Creative Commons

Media outlets mark Sunshine Week as a time to celebrate and promote open government laws and free access to public records.

Soldier saluting
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Today's segment is a rebroadcast of Understanding And Treating PTSD In The Military.

    

Nearly one in five veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will be diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

That’s a sobering statistic for the researchers and psychologists who are trying to understand and treat PTSD. It also means more veterans than ever are suffering from PTSD’s debilitating symptoms.

Fire Pink Trio recently released their first album, "Poetry in Motion."
Melanie Hatton / Firepinktrio.com

The classical music group Fire Pink Trio gets its name from the vibrant mountain wildflower that grows throughout North America.

They bring the same energy and creative force to their work, from the classics of Brahms to the contemporary pieces of North Carolina composer Dan Locklair. And their experience as educators allows them to pass on the sound to the next generation of classical musicians. The trio released a debut album last month: Poetry in Motion: Music for Flute, Viola, and Harp. 

A picture of a coal ash pond.
Waterkeeper Alliance

    

This week, Duke Energy has paid $171 million to shareholders and the state of North Carolina.

The first bill was for $146 million to settle a lawsuit that claimed the company misled shareholders when it agreed to a merger with Progress Energy in 2012. The other $25 million was a fine from the state for spilling coal ash at a power plant in Wilmington.

Meanwhile, the conversation continues about how to dispose of the coal ash sitting at 14 sites across the state.

Guest host Phoebe Judge gets an update from WUNC environment reporter Dave DeWitt.

Gov. Pat McCrory
Governor's Office

    

Gov. Pat McCrory filed new forms with the State Ethics Commission that show previously undisclosed travel expenses. 

The governor now says outside groups paid for seven of his trips in 2013, totaling more than $13,000. The money comes from appearances at national governors' conferences, including four backed by the Republican Party. 

The governor says it is appropriate for those groups to pay for his travel. Critics say failure to show the expenses on the original form follows a pattern of nondisclosure at the governor's office.

"The Last Barn Dance" tells the story of North Carolina dairy farmer Randy Lewis.
Ted Richardson and Jason Arthurs

    

Randy Lewis' dairy farm has been a gathering place for the people of Eli Whitney, N.C., for more than 50 years.

His family's annual barn dances are living relics of simpler times in North Carolina's agricultural industry.

But the Great Recession forced farmers to find new ways to save those traditions. Many went out of business. Lewis and a handful of others stopped falling further into debt by bottling their own milk. But it remains to be seen whether cultural traditions like the barn dance will stay alive.

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