Megan Harris

Digital Editor / Producer

Megan Harris writes, edits, produces, curates web content and consults on social engagement for 90.5 WESA.

Previously, Megan covered K-12 education and bicycle and pedestrian planning for The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, education at The Messenger-Inquirer in Owensboro, Ky., and crime and breaking news for The Commercial Appeal in Memphis, Tenn. She worked for a film production crew near Nashville, Tenn., and covered Division I sports at the University of Memphis.

In her free time, she camps, climbs and lifts heavy things. She loves jazz, basketball, interactive graphics, criminal justice reporting, urban planning reports and muttering under her breath about Excel — not always in that order.

Ways to Connect

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

  The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority is defending its newly hired executive director, a county administrator from Virginia who reportedly parted ways from a similar post in South Carolina under less-than-ideal circumstances.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Perched in the shadow of the Homestead Grays Bridge, Pittsburgh Public Schools teacher Tom Higgs flicked his index finger up and down a cracked Android screen.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

 

On a windy June day, Don Smith is proudly giving a tour of a former Jones and Laughlin steel mill site in Pittsburgh. 

Matt Nemeth / 90.5 WESA

When Dakila arrived last year, Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium doctors decided something wasn't quite right.

Megan Fair / 90.5 WESA

 

Pittsburgh police added five new officers of color on Thursday, inching closer to city leaders' goals for minority representation.

Nearly 26 percent of the bureau's newest officers were men of color, including four black males and one Hispanic male. Mayor Bill Peduto said late last year he wanted to increase minority representation to a number more closely reflecting the city's citizens. According to the U.S. Census, that's up to 34 percent.

Trump Takes On Trade Deals In Pennsylvania Speech

Jun 28, 2016
Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Republican Donald Trump took aim at U.S. free trade deals in a speech delivered in Western Pennsylvania Tuesday that painted his likely Democratic rival Hillary Clinton as a champion of the kind of globalization that has pushed manufacturing jobs overseas.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Two men ambushed a backyard cookout near Pittsburgh, killing a pregnant woman, her 8-month-old fetus and four other adults, because they wanted retribution for the 2013 slaying of a friend, authorities said Thursday.

Robert Thomas, 27, and Cheron Shelton, 29, both face five counts of criminal homicide, one count of homicide of an unborn child, three counts of aggravated assault, three more of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, six counts of reckless endangerment and one count of criminal conspiracy to commit murder. 

WTAE

Former WTAE anchor Wendy Bell filed a federal lawsuit Monday claiming wrongful termination and racial discrimination against the television station she said encouraged her to post her opinions to social media.

Bell was fired in late March for violating journalistic ethics and the station's standards for what was deemed a racially insensitive Facebook post after five adults and an unborn child died in a mass shooting during a backyard cookout in Wilkinsburg. Police haven't charged anyone with the shooting.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

The Pittsburgh Penguins turned around a once-disappointing season and fired a coach before winning a fourth Stanley Cup, adversity that seemed to make Wednesday's city-wide celebration that much sweeter.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Hillary Clinton went on the offensive against Donald Trump in a campaign speech on Pittsburgh’s South Side on Tuesday, denouncing the Republican presidential nominee’s response to the Orlando shooting.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

  Pittsburgh Public Schools' new pick for superintendent defended his resume to his hometown newspaper on Friday after press suggested he made "misstatements of exaggerations" about his accomplishments leading Palm Beach County schools.

Joseph Kaczmarek / AP

  Attorney General Kathleen Kane's longest-serving press secretary left after handling what he called "an unfolding series of crises that were just never-ending."

Chuck Ardo, a $10,000-a-month contract employee, was Kane's seventh spokesperson since she took office in 2013. His last day was Tuesday.

The tipping point, he said, came after he gave a routine office tour to a reporter.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

The Stanley Cup chase has prompted a little friendly fire between Steel City and San José institutions.

Alan Levine / Flickr

 

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board granted nine more beer sales licenses to gas stations on Wednesday, including three in Western Pennsylvania. 

Greensburg's Palace Theatre Celebrates Its 90th Anniversary

May 16, 2016
Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

In 1926, the Manos family opened the Palace Theatre in Greensburg. The family of candy makers took an interest in theater following the rise of vaudeville in the 1920s. Now, the Palace Theatre is operated by the Westmoreland Cultural Trust, which works to maintain its legacy. Palace Theatre director of operations, programing, and marketing Teresa Baughman says so far, they've invested 10 million dollars in renovations.

In 1680, English nobleman Edward Coke codified his country's common law regarding fetal homicide.

"[T]his is a great misdemeanour, and no murder," Coke wrote of the intentional death of a fetus in utero "by Potion, Battery, or other cause."

Charlie Neibergall / AP

Well, of course. But it's been a long time.

Pennsylvania has become a fairly solid blue state since then-candidate George H. W. Bush won the Republican presidential nomination in 1988, but that didn’t stop GOP hopeful Donald Trump from winning a substantial number of votes on Tuesday.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Two lawyers from Pennsylvania's Montgomery County will face off in November to replace Attorney General Kathleen Kane.

Democratic contender Stephen A. Zappala, who won 74 percent of his home county but only 37 percent of the state overall, said he goes back to work Wednesday as Allegheny County District Attorney.

"We’re not going to win this race," Zappala said, conceding. "We’ve got too much ground to make up. I’ve called the commissioner, and I’ve congratulated him on what happened tonight."

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Democrats in Pennsylvania chose their party establishment's choice for a U.S. Senate candidate and rejected an ex-congressman who six years ago nearly won the office.

Katie McGinty, who spent more than a decade as a state and federal environmental policy official, got millions of dollars from the party and its allies that helped her side heavily outspend her rivals. She received endorsements from top Democrats, from President Barack Obama on down.

Mel Evans / AP

Attention will shift from the campaign trail to the voting booths as Pennsylvanians cast ballots on presidential primary contests and races for Congress and state offices on Tuesday.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz made his first Pittsburgh-area campaign stop Saturday, becoming the last major presidential candidate to stroll through the Steel City ahead of Tuesday's Pennsylvania primary.

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County prosecutors executed search warrants Wednesday as part of an investigation into a state-created authority appointed to oversee Pittsburgh's failing finances a dozen years ago.

Steven Senne / AP

Democratic presidential hopefuls -- and their spouses -- have added more campaign stops in Pennsylvania ahead of next week's April 26 primary.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Republican John Kasich became the latest presidential candidate to make a stop in the Steel City with a quick appearance in Market Square on Tuesday.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

 

At least 80 police officers from multiple agencies were called Downtown to control hundreds of protesters outside the David L. Lawrence Convention Center during Donald Trump’s campaign stop Wednesday night.

“It could have gone better, but it wasn’t police who made it escalate and I feel good about that,” Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay said. “The officers showed restraint.”

Two officers were injured by pepper spray, one in a minor scuffle and another was kicked in the hand, according to police. McLay was initially unsure if any officers used mace.

Terry Renna / AP Images

A pair of Pennsylvania natives foresee big things for NASA’s current crop of astronauts.

“I think we’re going to see (Mars) in our career,” said Lt. Col. Andrew R. Morgan, of New Castle, who joined the space program in 2013.

Veteran astronaut and Emsworth native Michael Fincke orbited Earth for 363 days between 2010 and 2011, setting a record for longest cumulative time in space before fellow astronaut Scott Kelly surpassed it late last year. Like Kelly, Fincke began training in 1996.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton told Pittsburghers on Wednesday she wants to create clean energy jobs, repair aging infrastructure and give students better options for financing their educations.

More than 2,000 packed the Skibo Gymnasium at Carnegie Mellon University after hours waiting in the chilly afternoon sun. 

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Emily Ahlin said three years ago, no one at the University of Pittsburgh really talked about sexual assault. 

“But I helped lead orientation week this year,” said Ahlin, a junior. “One of the things we had the kids do was a bystander intervention training. That didn’t exist my freshman year, and that exists now.” 

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

The National Aviary’s sloth is now 5 months old and finally has a name.

Aviary officials said he was named Valentino by an anonymous donor who bid for the naming rights.

“I mean, look at that adorable face. It’s just very Valentino to me,” said Cathy Schlott, curator of behavioral management and education, who works with Valentino. “How can you not fall in love with that face?”

Valentino, a two-toed sloth purchased from a breeder in Florida and acquired in February, also had his 5-month checkup this week.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders is the first candidate of either party to visit Pittsburgh this election cycle. About 8,500 people filled the Downtown convention center to hear the Vermont senator give his usual stump addressing affordable education and accountability on Wall Street.

But Sanders visit to the Steel City appeared to have one strong focus: “Together we are going to rebuild the trade union movement in this country.”

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