rundown

Monday Rundown: Silent Cal and Other Presidential Tales

Feb 15, 2015
Cliff / Flickr

These topics air Monday February 16, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. 

Lincoln Gallery

The Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall in Carnegie is now home to a collection of 100 photos of President Abraham Lincoln. Opening today we’ll get a preview of this collection from Margaret J. Forbes, Executive Director of the Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall.

Silent Cal

What can you say about a man known for saying very little? Our guest New York Times bestselling author and journalist Amity Shlaes has quite a bit to say. She joins us for a look at the nation’s 30th president, Calvin Coolidge and we’ll even hear from Silent Cal himself.

Hail to the Chief

We’re all familiar with the tune "Hail to the Chief," as the President’s anthem. But what are the origins of the song? We’ll discover the history behind the president’s theme song with Deane Root, professor and curator for the Center for American Music at the University of Pittsburgh.

Mint Juleps with Teddy Roosevelt

The 2009 “beer summit” was probably the most famous pouring of alcohol at the White House in recent years. But, what were the drinking habits of our past commanders in chief? We’ll pose that question to journalist Mark Will-Weber author of the book, "Mint Juleps with Teddy Roosevelt: The Complete History of Presidential Drinking.” 

From the documentary (T)ERROR / Courtesy of Chicken & Egg Pictures

These topics air Friday February 13, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

(T)ERROR

We'll talk with the filmmakers behind a new documentary exploring the role of paid FBI informants in capturing alleged terrorists. The film focuses on a Wilkinsburg man, Khalifa Ali Al-Akili, arrested in 2012 on a gun charge following an investigation in which an FBI informant tried to goad him into conversations about Islamic radicalism. Our guests are David Felix Sutcliffe and Lyric Cabral, directors and producers of "(T)ERROR," winner of the special jury award for breakout first feature at the Sundance Film Festival.

Proposed Extraction Tax on Gas Drillers

Governor Wolf has proposed a 5 percent natural gas extraction tax that would be based on both the value and volume of gas extraction from natural gas wells. For its' part the natural gas industry has fought hard against such a tax in Pennsylvania, saying it will discourage continued investment. But is this myth or fact? We'll be joined in studio by Reid Frazier of the Allegheny Front.

WESA Celebrates Inventing Pittsburgh

The "Cloud Factory" is the whimsical name for Oakland's Bellefield Boiler Plant. An unsung giant of the utility world, the BBP keeps most of Oakland toasty and has since 1907. Margaret J. Krauss has the story.

President's Day Weekend Getaways

President’s Day weekend is upon us which means a three-day weekend for some. If you plan to get out of town, contributor Elaine Labalme who tweets about food and travel under the twitter handle New Girl In Town, is here with a few travel suggestions. 

David Shankbone / Flickr

These topics air Thursday February 12, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Fossil Fuel Divestment

Diplomats from all over the world are meeting in Geneva this week to draft a crucial plan to address climate change. For this reason, a worldwide fossil fuel divestment movement has marked February 13 and 14, Global Divestment Days. Locally, the Fossil Free Pitt Coalition and the Thomas Merton Center are holding a fossil fuel divestment rally and teach-in at the University of Pittsburgh. Nick Goodfellow, a student organizer with Fossil Free Pitt Coalition, and Gabe McMorland, an organizer at the Thomas Merton Center, talk with us about the local efforts to divest from fossil fuel industries.

Brian Williams' Suspension 

While NBC has suspended anchor Brian Williams for six months for misleading the public about his experiences covering the Iraq war, he could still return to the Nightly News desk later this year. But should he? We'll talk with Jeff Ritter, Chair of Communications, Media and Technology at La Roche College, and journalist Carmen Gentile, who has covered conflicts and unrest in the Middle East.

President's Day Weekend Getaways

President’s Day weekend is upon us, which means a three-day weekend for some. If you plan to get out of town, contributor Elaine Labalme who tweets about food and travel under the twitter handle New Girl In Town, is here with a few travel suggestions.

Martin Eckert / flickr

These topics air Wednesday February 11, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Mayor Peduto

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto makes his monthly appearance on the program. We'll discuss the new 'Safer Together' initiative that the mayor hopes will increase public safety and improve community-police relations, raising the minimum wage and ways to make downtown more livable.

WESA Celebrates Inventing Pittsburgh

The "Cloud Factory" is the whimsical name for Oakland's Bellefield Boiler Plant. An unsung giant of the utility world, the BBP keeps most of Oakland toasty and has since 1907. Margaret J. Krauss has the story.

Addiction in the Workplace

How do you address the growing trend of addiction in the workplace? How does it impact employers and co-workers? We’ll pose those questions to Rosa Davis, executive director of POWER, a Pittsburgh-based organization helping women in recovery. 

Tuesday Rundown: Is It Time To Do Away With Restaurant Tipping?

Feb 10, 2015
Luz Bratcher / Flickr

These topics air Tuesday February 10, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Dismantling Healthy PA

When Tom Wolf was campaigning for Governor, he said he would do away with then-Governor Tom Corbett's Healthy PA plan, to a full Medicaid expansion supported by the Affordable Care Act. This week Gov. Wolf officially announced plans to transition from Healthy PA to the Medicaid expansion. We'll talk about the implications of this change with Antoinette Kraus, Director of PA Health Access Network. 

Doing Away with the Tipping Culture

Last month Bar Marco, a trendy restaurant in the Strip District, announced that they plan to do away with tipping this Spring. There’s been an outpouring of interest, curiosity and praise from all over the country. Bar Marco Co-Owner Bobby Fry, and Events Coordinator Andrew Heffner talk about how they came to this decision and how they plan to make it work.

We’ll also look at the pros and cons of a no-tipping policy for owners, servers, and customers when doing away with tips with Meg Fosque, Policy Director for Restaurant Opportunities Centers United (ROC United), as well as Kevin Joyce, owner of the Carlton Restaurant in Pittsburgh and a member of the Western Pennsylvania chapter of the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association.

The Business of Black History Month

African American life, history and culture have become major forces in the United States and the world. Here to discuss the evolution, from both a social and economic perspective, of Black History Month is business contributor Rebecca Harris, Director of the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University. 

Thai Nguyen / Flickr

These topics air Monday February 9, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Combating Underage Drinking

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is working with four universities to combat underage drinking. One of the schools taking part is Indiana University of Pennsylvania. We’ll find out what the university is doing to address this problem with Ann Sesti, Assistant director for IUP's alcohol, tobacco and other drugs program in the Center for Health and Well-Being. Also taking part in the conversation is Ken Healy, alcohol education specialist with the PA Liquor Control Board Education Office.

Teaching Innovation and Technology

Aileen Owens is the Director of Technology and Innovation for the South Fayette School District. Last year she was the recipient of two national awards for Digital Innovation in Learning As part of 90.5 WESA’s Life of Learning Initiative, Ms. Owens joins us to discuss her approach to teaching technology.

Pittsburgh's Mood

Mood rings were a popular fad in the 1970’s. Flash forward and the concept of gaging our moods via a color is being applied to the Gulf Tower downtown. We’ll discover how an upcoming exhibit at the Carnegie Museum of Art will use the Gulf Tower Beacon to reflect the city’s mood. Joining us with a preview are Divya Rao Heffley, program manager for the Hillman Photography Initiative and Brad Stephenson, director of marketing for the Carnegie Museum of Art.

Friday Rundown: Moments of Clarity from Lee Camp

Feb 6, 2015
Lee Camp / Facebook

These topics air Friday February 6, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Lee Camp

Comedian Lee Camp’s writing credits include "The Huffington Post" and "The Onion." He also hosts the television program "Redacted Tonight" and the YouTube series "Moment of Clarity." Inspired by the comic stylings of George Carlin and Chris Rock, we’ll meet Lee Camp who's performing in Pittsburgh on Saturday night.

West of Sunset

In his latest novel "West of Sunset," author Stewart O’Nan chronicles F. Scott Fitzgerald’s final years as a screenwriter in Hollywood. Pittsburgh author Stewart O’Nan joins us in Studio A to discuss his work.

Rediscovering America’s First Folk Artist

A new exhibit spotlighting the work of folk artist John Kane has opened at the Westmoreland Museum of American Art. We’ll rediscover the artist whose paintings celebrate Pittsburgh with Judith Hansen O’Toole, director and CEO of the museum and Jane Kallir, co-director of Galerie St. Etienne in New York City.

Thursday Rundown: Nursing Home Caregivers Working Overtime

Feb 4, 2015
AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

These topics air Thursday, February 5, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

County-owned Nursing Homes Working Overtime

WESA content partner Public Source is reporting a problem in the nursing-home industry. Experts say frequent overtime is common and it has the potential to compromise the quality of care, leaving fatigued caregivers in situations that could have serious consequences. We'll discuss the issue with guest Halle Stockton, a reporter for Public Source. Also taking part in the conversation are Dennis Biondo, Director of County-owned nursing homes, the Kane Regional Centers and Joe Angelelli, a gerontologist and assistant professor at Robert Morris University.

Teaching Economics

Our guest, Robert Morris University Economics Professor Brian O’Roark uses pop music to make the subject more accessible to his students. He joins us in Studio A to discuss this innovative approach to teaching. 

Wednesday Rundown: Doing What's Best for Elephants in Captivity

Feb 3, 2015
Alanak / Flickr

These topics air Wednesday February 4, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

The Attorney General

Last week Senate confirmation hearings began for Loretta Lynch. President Obama’s nominee to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder. If confirmed, Ms. Lynch could become the nation’s first African American female attorney general. Joining us for a look at the role and responsibilities of the office is Pitt Law Professor David Harris.

Zoo to Review Use of Dogs to Control Elephants

Following complaints from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, a U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection has called into question the Pittsburgh Zoo's practice of using dogs to control elephants. The USDA report indicated dogs showing aggressive behavior that caused the elephants distress. We'll talk with Margaret Whittaker, Director of Elephant Care for The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Tennessee, the nation's largest natural-habitat refuge developed specifically to meet the needs of endangered elephants. She will share her insights about how elephants should be cared for. 

Cheltenham Democrats / Flickr

These topics air Tuesday February 3, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

McCord Charged

Now that former Pennsylvania Treasurer Rob McCord has admitted using the influence of his office to get money from prospective donors to his gubernatorial campaign, what happens next? And what does his resignation mean for the future of the state? We'll get the latest from capitol correspondent Mary Wilson.

Closed Captioning

When working out at the gym or sitting at a noisy bar, you’ve probably watched the scrolling text on the nearby TV screen to find out what’s being said. Closed captions have been available for TV since the early days of Julia Child. While the service caters to people with impaired hearing, it can be useful for anyone in any number of situations. Online, captions are mandated for some videos and you can even add captions when posting your own Facebook videos. But how does closed captioning work? Who or what brings the words to our screens? VITAC, a Pittsburgh based company, is responsible for at least half of the captions on the air nationwide, and a growing amount of our on-demand streaming. VITAC Chief Operations Officer Chuck Karlovits gives us a look inside the world of closed captioning.

WESA Celebrates Inventing Pittsburgh

The Fort Pitt Block House, located in Point State Park, is the oldest building in Pittsburgh. In more than 250 years of existence it’s weathered natural disasters, urban expansion and industrial growth. But it owes its survival mostly to a group of women who refused to yield.

Business Segment - Mexican War Streets

Cities are made up of a collection of neighborhoods with unique features and characteristics. On the first Tuesday of the month, business contributor Rebecca Harris will focus on one of the city’s neighborhoods. Today's focus is on the Mexican War Streets.

Monday Rundown: Is Fracking Going to Stop in Our County Parks?

Feb 2, 2015
Marcellus Protest / Flickr

These topics air Monday February 2, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Protect Our Parks

Tuesday, the Allegheny County Council is scheduled to vote on an ordinance to put a 2-year moratorium on further fracking in or under county parks. The ordinance was introduced by the volunteer organization Protect Our Parks. Joining us in Studio A are Joni Rabinowitz and John Detwiler, volunteers with the organization.

What’s Trending?

You can’t look at a website or magazine where they don’t address what’s trending. But, who are the trendsetters who determines what’s trending? And, how does a trend differ from a fad? We’ll pose those questions to Marty McGough, Vice President for market insights at Campos Research Strategy

Friday Rundown: Getting Set for Super Bowl Sunday

Jan 30, 2015
camknows / flickr

These topics air Friday January 30, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Super Bowl Sunday

In case you haven’t heard, the Super Bowl will be played this Sunday. While area football fans may have little interest in a game that doesn’t feature the Steelers our guest, Ron Dick, associate professor of sports marketing at Duquesne University, offers some reasons for tuning in to the big game.

Super Bowl Commercials

This year a 30-second Super Bowl spot sells for $4.5 million dollars. With so much money on the line, which advertising strategies are the most effective? How are advertisers changing tactics to get people's attention? And who are they targeting? We'll discuss this with Bob Gilbert, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Pittsburgh's Katz School of Business.

Deflategate

Did the New England Patriots make it to the Super Bowl by taking air out of footballs in the AFC Championship game? Are NFL executives dragging out the investigation to avoid having anything come out during Super Bowl week? Have the Steelers ever cheated? We'll put these questions and more to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette sportswriter emeritus Bob Dvorchak. 

David Trawin / Flickr

These topics air Thursday January 29, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Medical Marijuana in PA

Efforts to pass a medical marijuana bill in Pennsylvania have received a boost with the election of a new governor. But how can marijuana advocates sway skeptical House members who sat on the legislation last year? We'll talk with Patrick Nightingale of the Pittsburgh office of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws who says he's been engaged in a years long public education program.

On the Job - Procrastination

"Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today" is an apt quote, warning against procrastination. However, in this month’s On the Job segment, independent career consultant Sasha King addresses why procrastination might not be such a bad thing.

Travel Segment - Phoenix

This year’s Super Bowl will be played in Phoenix. If you can’t make it to the big game travel contributor Elaine Labalme still recommends a visit to the Valley of the Sun. She’ll fill us in on her food and travel recommendations for Arizona’s capital city. 

Wednesday Rundown: Statewide Coverage of the Heroin Epidemic

Jan 27, 2015
M / Flickr

These topics air Wednesday January 28, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Riding the Rush: Reporting on a Heroin Crisis in Pennsylvania 

The statement, “2014 was the year heroin became an epidemic” is prominent in a journalism project curated by our content partner, PublicSource. As news of an increasing number of heroin overdoses have made headlines across the state, newsrooms are making a coordinated effort to cover important angles of this public health crisis. Sharon Walsh is the editor of PublicSource, she joins us along with Dr. Neil Capretto, Medical Director of Gateway Rehabilitation Center, to talk about the compilation of media coverage and how PA communities are addressing the heroin problem.

WESA Celebrates Inventing Pittsburgh

Foxhunting came west over the Alleghenies with the region's earliest European settlers and took root in the Pittsburgh area. It built community and preserved land. Margaret J. Krauss reports that this piece of history is alive and well--sort of--at the Sewickley Hunt Club.

The Power of One Voice

In 2012 a symposium was held in Pittsburgh, at Chatham University and the National Aviary, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring. The documentary "the Power of One Voice" chronicles the environmentalist author’s life and humanitarian efforts. We’ll speak with producer/director Mark Dixon and Patricia DeMarco, former director of the Rachel Carson Institute at Chatham University--and a Rachel Carson expert.

Andy / Wikipedia Commons

These topics air Tuesday January 27, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Minority Report

Once touted as one of America’s most livable cities, a recent report by the University of Pittsburgh suggests otherwise when it comes to African Americans. The report highlights the racial disparities affecting the quality of life for Pittsburgh’s black community. We’ll address the report’s findings with Larry Davis, Dean of the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Social Work and director of its Center on Race and Social Problems.

Business Segment - Repurposing

Repurposing refers to finding new uses for items. Some enterprising entrepreneurs have even turned this into a profitable moneymaking venture. This week contributor Rebecca Harris looks at the business of repurposing. 

Islamic Center of Pittsburgh

These topics air Monday January 26, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Pittsburgh Muslims Speak Out

Pittsburgh area Muslims are challenging the message of the extremists involved in the Charlie Hebdo killings in Paris. We'll talk with Sheikh Atef Mahgoub, Islamic Center of Pittsburgh in Oakland. He says the killers in France were not defending the honor of Islam. He joins us in Studio A.

Friday Rundown: The "Great Scott" and Poet, Robert Burns

Jan 22, 2015
SummondByFellas / Flickr

These topics air Friday January 23, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Great Scott! 

Jarrett Stewart / Flickr

These topics air Thursday January 22, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

The Future of the Civic Arena Site

Negotiations between the city, the Penguins and the Hill District Community Development Corporation have resulted in plans to move forward with the development of the former Civic Arena Site. We’ll discover what could be next for the site with Hill District CDC President and CEO Marimba Milliones. 

Fit While You Sit

Headaches, carpal tunnel syndrome and joint pain are some work related injuries sending people to the chiropractor. What can be done to create a healthier work environment and reduce sick days? We’ll pose that question to Dr. Justin Foltz who will explain how we can be fit while we sit.

Travel Segment - Museums

From major metropolitan areas to smaller cities there are some interesting museums to be found. This week travel contributor Elaine Labalme suggests museums with great exhibits to enjoy on a winter’s day. 

Wrote / Flickr

These topics air Wednesday January 21, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Versatile Ph.D.

The Steel City is justifiably proud of its many universities, but with more education can come more problems. People graduating with Ph.D.s and other advanced degrees face an employment crisis in today’s university and the larger economy. Joining us to talk about their efforts in expanding the options for Pittsburghers with advanced degrees are Alexandra Oliver and anupama jain. They are local representatives for Versatile PhD, a business that fosters networking and professional development for people with graduate degrees who may want to explore non-academic work.

WESA Celebrates - Charles Kline

Textiles aren’t generally known for their career-ending power, but an expensive rug led to the downfall of the last elected Republican mayor of Pittsburgh and ushered in a new era of city government. Margaret J. Krauss has the story.

Inventing Pittsburgh

"90.5 WESA Celebrates Inventing Pittsburgh" is a new historically focused series which airs during "Morning Edition" and on "Essential Pittsburgh." Over the next year, producer Margaret J. Krauss will capture stories from Pittsburgh’s more than 250-year history, exploring how the city and region came to be what it is today. She joins us for a preview and an explainer of the project. 

Tuesday Rundown: The State of the Union and an Eye on Gas Prices

Jan 20, 2015
Chuck Kennedy / Official White House Photo Gallery

These topics air Tuesday January 20, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

The State of the Union

Tonight at 9pm, President Barack Obama will deliver the State of the Union address to Congress, the Senate and the rest of the country. But his office has already put forth many plans for the year. Before the president gives his address, we'll get some perspective on what he'll propose, from University of Pittsburgh presidential rhetoric and political communication professor Jerry Shuster.

Gas Prices

The word “staycation” seemed to enter the lexicon when gas prices were continually on the rise a few years back. Now, to the delight of consumers, gas prices are on the decline. Joining us for a look at how this is impacting the nation is Robert Morris University Economics Professor Brian O’Roark.

Business of the Arts

Whether it’s the theater, symphony or museums, the arts contribute a great deal to the city. This week contributor Rebecca Harris looks at the business of the arts in Pittsburgh. 

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Programming for Noon & 8pm

Jan 19, 2015
Heather McClain / 90.5 WESA

This program airs Monday January 19, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA.

Two leading scholars comment on three key speeches of the American civil rights leader and Nobel Peace Laureate Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Junior.

Dr. Clayborne Carson has been directing the King Papers Project since 1985, after being specially requested by Coretta Scott King. He also established the Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford University in 2005.

Dr. Vincent Harding is Professor of Religion and Social Transformation at Illif School of Theology in Denver, Colorado. He was also a friend and speech writing partner of King. 

Find out what they have to say about the following speeches written and delivered by King; "Selma to Montgomery," "Beyond Vietnam" and "I've Been to the Mountaintop."

Friday Rundown: Equality, Access and Solidarity

Jan 16, 2015
Mark Grapengater / flickr

These topics air Friday January 16, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Wheelchair Standards

There are 70 million wheelchair users worldwide. Our guests Dr. Rory Cooper and Dr. Jon Pearlman are helping to create new standards for the wheelchair bound. The doctors are co-directors of Pitt’s Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, and this month they’re launching the International Society of Wheelchair Professionals. They’ll join us to discuss how their work will impact wheelchair users around the world.

Increasing Accessibility

For the second year in a row the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts called the Art Works grant. The support provided by the NEA is helping to fund an Increasing Accessibility initiative for the arts. This initiative is designed to serve specific portions of the city‘s population. Here to tell us more about this initiative is Anne Mulgrave, manager of grants and accessibility for the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council.

Ending White Silence

Throughout the last 6 months of demonstrations and protests of police violence, activists all over the world have adopted the phrase, “Black Lives Matter.” In addition to that message, you may have seen the phrases, “I resolve to challenge racism” and “End White Silence.” In many cases, the people holding up signs with those phrases have been white. Recognizing that discussions of race and racism can be different when people of color are not present, WHAT’S UP?! Pittsburgh is a local group focused on promoting anti-racist action, and knowledge. Members such as etta cetera and Rose Lynd who identify as white, look at ways to challenge racism in their communities, among family and friends, even within themselves. They join us to discuss the ongoing work of WHAT’S UP?! Pittsburgh and the many ways they confront racial injustice. 

State Rep. Dave Reed / Facebook

These topics air Thursday January 15, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Follow the Leader

State Representative David Reed first entered politics as a registered Democrat. Last week he was sworn as the leader of the Pennsylvania House GOP. The Indiana County native joins us to discuss his vision for the future of the commonwealth and how he plans to work with a Democratic governor.

Harrisburg Sued Under New State Gun Law

Harrisburg was the first city to face a challenge to its gun laws under a new Pennsylvania law targeting gun measures. It comes from a gun rights group representing a state police corporal. City officials have been bracing for lawsuits in the wake of Governor Corbett's signing of legislation that allows gun owner groups to challenge local ordinances. Patriot News editorial page editor John Micek joins us to discuss the issue.

Airport Wildlife

Earlier this week, the WESA newsroom reported on the capture of a short-eared owl near the runway of the Pittsburgh International Airport. The medium sized owl is considered threatened in the state of Pennsylvania. So special care needed to be taken to retrieve, tag, and relocate the bird. Bob Mulvihill, an ornithologist with the National Aviary joins us to talk about this process. And we’ll talk with Bobby Hromack, a wildlife specialist for the airport and biologist with the USDA, about what goes into the management of wildlife around an airport runway. 

Jessica Nath / 90.5 WESA

These topics air Wednesday January 14, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Peduto in the Public Eye

It’s a new year, with a few new headlines for Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. He returns to studio A for his monthly live conversation. We’ll talk public safety, being in the public eye on Undercover Boss and the O’Reilly Factor, and his take on the public school task force.

Tuesday Rundown: Joe Wos on the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show

Jan 12, 2015
NVIDIA Corporation / Flickr

These topics air Tuesday January 13, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

From Ukraine with Love

University of Pittsburgh professor and Ukraine native Tim Mylovanov has recently returned from an eventful holiday trip to his home country. He joins us to discuss the situation there and his efforts to help create positive change in Ukraine amid economic challenges and conflicts with Russia.

Tomorrow Today

The International Consumer Electronics Show, held in Las Vegas, is history for another year. Our pop culture contributor Joe Wos was one of the many people in attendance and joins us in Studio A to fill us in on the next big gadgets that could be changing our lives.

Business Segment - Resilient Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Chicago, Dallas and Boston are just a few of the 35 cities selected to be part of the Rockefeller Award’s resilient cities challenge. Business contributor Rebecca Harris joins us this week to tell us about this honor and what it means for the Steel City. 

Office of the Attorney General / Office of the Attorney General

These topics air January 12, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002. 

The Rise and Fall of Attorney General Kathleen Kane

The political future of PA State Attorney General Kathleen Kane looks to be falling as fast as it rose. Evidence of wrongdoing has been found by the special prosecutor and grand jury who are recommending she be criminally charged. We’ll get an update on the current troubles of the beleaguered attorney general with John Baer, political columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News and Philadelphia Inquirer reporter Angela Couloumbis.

The Courier’s Crusade

The deaths of African American men, during encounters with white police officers, across the U.S., has sparked protests and demonstrations nationwide. However, where is the outrage regarding black on black crime? For ten years the New Pittsburgh Courier has been publishing a monthly report of these crimes. How is the community reacting? We’ll pose that question to Editor and Publisher Rod Doss, editor and Staff Writer Ashley Johnson.

Friday Rundown: 3D Printing and Searching for General Tso

Jan 8, 2015
John / Flickr

These topics air January 9, 2014 at noon and 8 pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12 pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

The Evolution of 3D Printing

Earlier this week, SpaceX had to delay the launch of an unmanned cargo ship headed for the International Space Station. Some of that cargo includes spare parts needed by the Space Station scientists. But very soon, because of 3D printing technology, people in remote locations, such as the Space Station will be able to create their own spare parts and tools, on the go. Last fall, the first zero gravity 3D printer was sent to the Space Station and test parts have been created based on digitally downloaded designs. This news, along with the announcement of a large General Electric additive manufacturing facility coming to the Pittsburgh area, highlights the major advancements in 3D printing technology and its role in the future growth of our technology base. University of Pittsburgh professor, Howard Kuhn is a well known researcher and consultant in the world of additive manufacturing/3D printing. He joins us to talk about the advancements and evolution of the industry.

Searching for General Tso 

The new food documentary The Search for General Tso takes viewers on a gastronomic journey. The film’s producer is New York Times writer and Splendid Table guest host Jennifer 8. Lee. She’ll clue us in on the origins of General Tso’s chicken and other Chinese dishes that enjoy worldwide popularity.

Celebrating Pittsburgh’s Jazz Legacy

This weekend will mark the launch of a new program celebrating Pittsburgh’s jazz history. Steel City Grooves: Celebrating Western Pennsylvania Jazz will chronicle the past, present and future of jazz in Pittsburgh. Joining us for a preview of this Senator John Heinz History Center Volunteer Ambassador Program is WESA jazz host Bob Studebaker.

SLB Radio Productions / SLB

These topics air Thursday, January 8, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Terrorist Attack on Free Speech

In the aftermath of the shooting deaths of 12 people at a satirical weekly in Paris, what concerns does this tragic event raise for political cartoonists here at home? We’ll discuss terroristic threats to freedom of speech with award winning political cartoonist Rob Rogers of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Randy Bish,editorial cartoonist for the Tribune Review.

Crossing Fences

Since 2012 the Crossing Fences project has been using audio and radio to connect generations. Their latest project helped African American males connect with leaders in their community. Joining us to discuss the project are Larry Berger, executive director and Chanessa Schuler, multi-media specialist of Saturday Light Brigade Radio. 

Winter Beaches

As the temperatures plummet, how many of us don’t pass some of our time dreaming of relaxing on a warm, sandy beach? Elaine Labalme, who tweets about food and travel under the Twitter handle New Girl in Town, joins us to suggest beach destinations you can escape to this winter.

Joseph / Flickr

These topics air Wedesday January 7, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Southwestern PA Water Quality

The good news is a new study by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection reports improved water quality in the rivers of Southwestern PA. The bad news is more needs to be done. We’ll talk with Deputy Secretary of Water Management Kelly Heffner about the condition of the region’s waterways.

A Re-Examination of Local Gun-Control Ordinances

Last November, Governor Corbett signed into law Act 192, which allows Pennsylvania gun enthusiasts and groups to sue communities that have "lost and stolen" ordinances, local laws requiring gun owners to notify police when a firearm goes missing. The law has supporters and critics. Post-Gazette reporter Chris Potter joins us to look at both sides of the issue.

McCarthyism in Pittsburgh

During the first week of January 1955, five employees at the Westinghouse Electric Corporation's East Pittsburgh plant were fired as "undesirable" following hearings in Washington held by Senator Joseph McCarthy's investigations and subcommittee. Historian and author Charles McCollester recalls the event. 

Tuesday Rundown: Exploring the Value of Diplomacy

Jan 6, 2015
Lorenia / Flickr

These topics air Tuesday January 6, 2015 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002.

Ohio Earthquakes

Researchers at Miami University in Ohio have concluded fracking was most likely the cause of earthquakes that have taken place in the state. Last March, 77 earthquakes occurred in Poland, Ohio a town near the PA-OH state line. Reporter Julie Grant of the Allegheny Front joins us to discuss this recent report.

Would You Like To Buy an Ambassadorship?

In 2014, a number of President Obama’s US ambassador appointees were confirmed by the Senate, despite their lack of diplomacy experience. Appointees such as Noah Bryson Mamet, the new ambassador of Argentina, have never visited the country where they will be stationed. While a president naming political appointees as ambassadors is not new, international policy experts such as Penn State International Affairs professor and retired U.S. Ambassador Dennis Jett are concerned. In his new book “American Ambassadors The Past, Present, and Future of America’s Diplomats” he looks at the various paths to becoming a diplomat. Joined by Dan Simpson, another former ambassador and a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist, they discuss the role of ambassadors in this ever more globalized world.

WESA Celebrates Al Condeluci

For more than 40 years, Al Condeluci has been instrumental in changing the lives of thousands of disabled people in the Pittsburgh area. His awareness and dedication started first hand, with his cousin Carrie, who had Down Syndrome.

Business Segment - Allentown

Cities are made up of a collection of neighborhoods with unique features and characteristics. On the first Tuesday of the month, business contributor Rebecca Harris will focus on one of the city’s neighborhoods. Today's focus is on Allentown. 

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