Mark Rumsey

Community Engagement Coordinator/All Things Considered Host

Mark Rumsey grew up in Kansas and got his first radio job at age 17 in the town of Abilene, where he announced easy-listening music played from vinyl record albums.   

Later stops in his radio career found him reporting and anchoring local news at stations in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Charlotte.

Mark joined the world of public radio in 1997 as News Director at WFAE.  Today, he continues to serve as local host for All Things Considered and produces WFAE’s Public Conversations, an ongoing series of community forums.  

If Mark turns up missing on a nice autumn day, you might find him on the hiking trails at North Carolina’s Stone Mountain State Park.   If he disappears for a week or two – check  the Tel Aviv airport.  Perhaps he’s found a way to again pursue his passion for traveling to the Holy Land.

Ways to Connect

www.ncwd.uscourts.gov

There was a big gang round up Thursday morning in North Carolina and a handful of other east coast states. Eighty-three people, accused of belonging to the United Blood Nation gang, face federal charges involving murder, racketeering, credit card fraud, and bank fraud.

Most are from the Charlotte region, including Shelby and Gastonia. U.S. Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose said the crackdown should serve as a warning to others.

Former F. W. Woolworth Co. store in Greensboro, North Carolina, the site of a now-famous "sit-in" protest by black college students in 1960.
By dbking from Washington, DC (Greensboro, NC "Sit In" 1960) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

The International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro may have its power cut off if it can’t resolve an $18,000 bill that Duke Energy says it owes. The museum is at the site of the historic 1960 sit-in at a segregated F.W. Woolworth lunch counter.

Form N.C. governor Jim Martin
Tom Bullock - WFAE

Science, and religion. Are they mutually exclusive? Former North Carolina governor Jim Martin doesn't think so. 

"It's a new interpretation that science and religion are not only different domains of truth, but they...harmonize."

A new report from the left-leaning group Democracy North Carolina alleges that former governor Pat McCrory's campaign and the state Republican Party generated "false charges" of voter fraud in last November's election.  In the report released Tuesday, the group says Republicans engaged in a "coordinated legal and publicity crusade to disrupt and potentially corrupt" the election process.

More participants in a pilot program for industrial hemp farming in North Carolina could  be chosen on Monday afternoon. North Carolina's Industrial Hemp Commission, created two years ago, adopted temporary rules in February to allow farmers and universities to grow hemp and research its uses. 

One week ago, House Bill 2 was repealed and replaced by House Bill 142. And a lot has happened since then.

The NCAA and ACC have each said championship games can again be played in North Carolina. But in the case of the NCAA, its decision was a "reluctant one."

That’s because the compromise law that ended HB 2 also essentially blocks LGBT discrimination protections in North Carolina until [at least] December of 2020.

Charlotte  transgender activist Lara Americo is among the disappointed. She thinks House Bill 2 was borne of ignorance among lawmakers. Not so with the HB 142 compromise.

“There’s been a lot of education about what the transgender community in North Carolina looks like," Americo says. "Now with HB 142 being passed, they know who we are and what we’re about, but they still refuse to give us the protections that we need.” 

Americo spoke to WFAE’s Mark Rumsey about the new law, and what life has been like since the passage of House Bill 2.

Legislation that could eventually lead to changes in National Weather Service radar coverage in the Charlotte area has been approved in Congress.  The House Tuesday approved an amendment that requires the federal government to study gaps in its network of NEXRAD Doppler radars. 

A National Weather Service NEXRAD Doppler radar site.
NOAA/National Weather Service

Across the U.S., the National Weather Service operates 122 Doppler radars. These Next Generation or 'NEXRAD' systems, installed in the 1990s, give forecasters powerful tools to track weather conditions including tornadoes and other severe storms.

NEXRAD radars are located in Raleigh, Columbia, and in Greer, South Carolina, west of Spartanburg - but not in or near Charlotte. Some say, that leaves a dangerous gap in radar coverage for the Charlotte region. Legislation now moving through Congress  could lead to a change down the road.  

Last week, British Prime Minister Theresa May formally launched Britain's departure from the European Union.  The official pronouncement brings a fresh note of certainty for the British people, be they for or against the move known as BREXIT. 

"Yes, it is a psychological moment," says Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford, the British Consulate -General for the southeastern U.S., including North Carolina. "BREXIT will now happen - the process has begun, there is no way back."

During a recent visit to the WFAE studios, Pilmore-Bedford spoke with WFAE's Mark Rumsey about Britain leaving the European Union, and other issues.

The site of the former Eastland Mall on Central Avenue at Albemarle Road.
Davie Hinshaw / Charlotte Observer

Charlotte City Council members will vote Monday evening on a potential next step in the ongoing effort to redevelop the old Eastland Mall site.  The mall was once a retail and social hub in Charlotte, but major anchor stores started leaving the mall about a decade ago.

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