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

Image of Michelle Miller, the author of 'The Underwriting,' a corporate satire of Wall Street and Silicon Valley.
Sasha Israel

Michelle Miller’s life has taken her from her hometown of Asheville to the depths of two important economic engines in America – Wall Street and Silicon Valley.

She studied business at Stanford, got a job at financial giant JP Morgan, and then gave it all up to become an author. She wrote a 12-part online serial last year, drawing on her experiences from the financial and tech worlds.

Image of Darren Hanlon, who will open the Back Porch Music on the Lawn concert June 11.
Darren Hanlon

Darren Hanlon grew up in a small town in Queensland, Australia with American legends like Kenny Rogers playing on the turntable.

His early musical education, a month in the Australian desert, and an Amtrak trip through the American South informed the kind of artist he is today; a roots music singer-songwriter with a passion for lyrical and narrative tracks. 

Image of tools in doctor's office
Morgan via Flickr/Creative Commons

The Affordable Care Act is still attracting big enrollment numbers in North Carolina.

Nearly 500,000 people in the state have coverage, but premiums could rise by as much as 40 percent next year for some health plans.

   

And the Obama administration says more than 300,000 people still are not covered because the state did not expand Medicaid. 

Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) talks with WUNC's Frank Stasio
Andrew Tie / WUNC

U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) quickly ascended from a seat on the parks and recreation commission in Cornelius, N.C., to speaker of the North Carolina House in 2011, and finally U.S. Senator.

In his first five months, Tillis has taken a particular interest in the military with seats in the Committee on Armed Services and the Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Tillis about national security, deregulation, immigration and other issues in Washington.

National Security

Image of Songs of Water, an orchestral indie band that just released its latest album, "Stars and Dust."
Songs of Water

North Carolina's own Stephen Roach started the band Songs of Water more than 10 years ago as an instrumental experiment. The group's first release was a collection of flowing, cinematic pieces.

Today, Songs of Water is producing lyrical songs with six multi-talented musicians.

Host Frank Stasio talks with Stephen Roach on vocals and dulcimer, Luke Skaggs on vocals and guitar, Greg Willette on vocals and guitar, and Elisa Rose Cox on vocals and strings, and they play live.

Image of Sepp Blatter, who said Tuesday he will resign as president amid the controversy surrounding FIFA.
The Sport Review/Flickr creative commons

The soccer world is reeling from a corruption scandal at the highest levels.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter said Tuesday he's stepping down. Meanwhile, top soccer executives face $150 million in bribery charges and one of the accused has ties to the Carolina RailHawks.

Jonathan Howes
UNC-Chapel Hill

Former Chapel Hill Mayor and North Carolina public servant Jonathan Howes died Sunday.

Howes, 78, held several prominent government positions at the local, state and federal levels. He served in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development during the Kennedy administration, he was Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environment, Health and Natural Resources under Gov. Jim Hunt, and he spent 23 years as director of the Center for Urban and Regional Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Image of geovisualization of potential inundation due to sea level rise in the Albemarle- Pamlico Estuarine System.
East Carolina University (Brent Gore, Matt Carey, Travis Hill and Michelle Covi)

A few weeks ago, the ocean washed away a 200-foot stretch of Highway 12 in Kitty Hawk.

It wasn’t destroyed by a hurricane or a Nor'easter. It was just another storm. Geologists say it is one more example of how life is changing along the North Carolina coast, thanks in part to the rising sea level. 

John Pemble / Flickr Creative Commons

Part of U.S. President Andrew Jackson's reputation is that of a man who helped the country expand in the early 19th century, but it came at a terrible cost.

Jackson sparred with American Indian tribes for decades, culminating in the infamous Trail of Tears, a forced relocation that killed thousands of them.

A lesser known part of that history is centered around Cherokee chief John Ross, who was doing all he could to peacefully assimilate his people, including a long, personal battle with Jackson.

A Duke Energy power plant and coal ash ponds outside Asheville.
Zen Sutherland

Duke Energy Progress says it will convert another power plant from coal to natural gas.

Duke Energy's plans for the facility at Lake Julian in Asheville are another indication that the energy giant is increasingly relying on natural gas, in part because of its falling price. 

The utility calls the transition for Asheville a "win-win:" cleaner energy and more jobs. Environmentalists say natural gas has its own negative consequences.

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