Petra Mayer is an associate editor and resident nerd at NPR Books, focusing on genre fiction. She brings to the job passion, speed-reading skills, and a truly impressive collection of Doctor Who doodads.

Previously, she was an associate producer and director for the weekend editions of All Things Considered. She handled all of the show's books coverage, and she was also the person to ask if you wanted to know how much snow falls outside NPR's Washington headquarters on a Saturday, how to belly dance, or what pro wrestling looks like up close and personal.

Ashley, born in Manila, Philippines, was adopted and raised in Western Kentucky. She is a 2010 University of Kentucky graduate with a B.A. in Journalism and Political Science. She also attended the University of Maryland for graduate studies in Journalism for one year. Ashley interned with Morning Edition at NPR Headquarters in Washington, DC, in 2011 and was hired afterward as a temp production assistant. In March 2012, Ashley started her reporting and hosting career at WRKF. She is also a member of the Center for International Journalists 2013 International Reporting Fellowship Program.

Clay Masters is a reporter for Iowa Public Radio and formerly for Harvest Public Media. His stories have appeared on NPR

TVA
10:44 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Inspector General’s Report Clears TVA Chair of Conflict-Of-Interest Charges

Credit epw.senate.gov

  A report by the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Office of the Inspector General has cleared TVA Board Chairman William Sansom of several allegations that his financial interests violate conflict-of-interest laws and policies.  The report also found a nepotism charge levied against Sansom was simply a case of mistaken identity.

Read more

Anna King calls Richland, Washington home and loves unearthing great stories about people in the Northwest. She reports for the Northwest News Network from a studio at Washington State University, Tri–Cities. She covers the Mid–Columbia region, from nuclear reactors to Mexican rodeos.

The South Sound was her girlhood backyard and she knows its rocky beaches, mountain trails and cities well. She left the west side to attend Washington State University and spent an additional two years studying language and culture in Italy.

TN: Human Trafficking
4:00 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Tennessee Among Top States For Laws Against Human Trafficking

Credit http://www.polarisproject.org/index.php

The 4th annual report from the non-profit Polaris Project puts Tennessee among 32 Tier 1 states: those that have passed the most legislation to counter sex and labor trafficking.

Read more

Diane Orson is a reporter and producer for WNPR and a contributor to National Public Radio. Her stories are heard on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition and Here And Now. She began at WBUR in Boston and came to Connecticut in 1988.

Education
3:59 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Proposed Teacher Licensing Changes Draw Fire

Credit Christine Jessel

The Tennessee Board of Education is scheduled to vote Friday on a proposal that would tie teacher licenses to teacher evaluations, but the proposal’s drawing fire from the Tennessee Education Association.

Under the new policy, teachers would need to get higher scores on licensure tests - and a portion of that process would also be based on TVAAS scores, or measures of student academic growth as shown on state tests.

Read more
Education
4:08 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

Tennessee Department Of Education Gives Local Districts $8 Million

Credit tn.gov/education

The Tennessee Department of Education is giving individual school districts a share of $8 million dollars in the last major grant coming out of Race to the Top funding.  Eighty-three school districts in Tennessee will get a part of that $8 million dollar pot of money, allotted according to district size. But to get it, districts had to agree to implement one of three specific initiatives in teacher evaluation, Common Core testing, or reworked student classroom assignments.

Read more
Government
6:00 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Knox County Audit Committee Meeting Turns Heated

Knox County Auditor Richard Walls.
Credit J. Miles Cary, Knoxville News Sentinel

An effort to remove Knox County's internal auditor took a dramatic turn Tuesday, when an audit committee member resigned and a county commissioner lambasted the committee's leader.

In July, the county audit committee recommended removing auditor Richard Walls. At the time, committee head Joe Carcello said he had concerns about the quality and quantity of Walls' work. Specifically, Carcello indicated Walls spent too much time auditing unimportant matters and failed to reconcile his findings before issuing a report.

Read more

Pages