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

Who's Happy, Mad And Meh On N.C. Tax Overhaul?

Jul 17, 2013

Taxes in North Carolina are going to change. The North Carolina House and Senate on Tuesday tentatively passed tax overhaul legislation, and Governor Pat McCrory says he'll sign it.

As lawmakers have considered multiple approaches to changing the state's tax system over the past few months, a variety of people and organizations have swooned over or screamed against the proposals.

So now that Republican leaders have agreed on a final plan, who loves it, who hates it, and who's mixed on it? 


You may have assumed that a convicted felon who is serving time in a North Carolina prison would not be found hanging out at home or on a golf course on some weekends.   But each year, hundreds of state inmates - including some convicted murderers - are granted weekend leaves under a long-standing program designed to help minimum-security prisoners transition back into society.   The News & Observer in Raleigh published details of the program on Friday, and WFAE's Mark Rumsey spoke with reporter Craig Jarvis.


Joshua Katz / Department of Statistics, NC State University

How do you pronounce "crayon?"  When you were a kid, did you chase "lightning bugs" or "fireflies?"  If you stepped outside and someone said, 'The devil is beating his wife,' would you know what that meant?   WFAE's Mark Rumsey talks with an NC State student researcher whose color-coded "Dialect Maps" have become an Internet sensation.

See all the maps. 

N.C. Considers Three Tax Proposals

May 31, 2013

North Carolina lawmakers and Governor Pat McCrory are considering three different bills to overhaul the state's tax system. Republican leaders in the Senate introduced the latest and most ambitious one Thursday. There's also a bipartisan Senate plan and a Republican House plan.

Tasnim Shamma

A Senate confirmation battle appears to be brewing over President Obama's choice of North Carolina's 12th district congressman Mel Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency.   That's the office that oversees government-backed mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.   Some Republicans are already opposing the President's choice.   WFAE's Mark Rumsey spoke with Rep. Watt about the Administration job, and his confirmation prospects in the Senate. 

CaroMont Health is standing by its choice of a new system-wide slogan, which was unveiled along with a change in name for Gaston Memorial Hospital.  The hospital will now be known as CaroMont Regional Medical Center.   WFAE's Mark Rumsey spoke with CaroMont's vice president of Marketing and Communications, Penny Cowden about the slogan "Cheat Death."

It used to be that learning to write in cursive style, was just a part of growing up.  But in this age of keyboards, keypads and tablets -- many people are asking, ‘is cursive writing still relevant?’   A set of common curriculum standards adopted by North Carolina and 44 other states since 2010 does not mention cursive writing.   But a bill introduced in the state legislature would require public schools to teach cursive writing.    WFAE’s Mark Rumsey looked into the issue.

Bytemarks/Flickr

A bill to drastically cut unemployment benefits and slightly raise business taxes has cleared its last major hurdle in North Carolina. Republicans behind it say it's going to be painful, but it's necessary to pay back the $2.5 billion the state owes the federal government for help paying unemployment insurance.

How did the state build up such a massive debt?

Jennifer Lang

WFAE's Public Conversations Series examined the current debate on guns and gun violence in America. Panelists and audience members discussed recent proposals designed to reduce gun violence. Moderated by WFAE's Ben Bradford, the forum also addressed Second Amendment issues, enforcement of gun laws, underlying causes of gun violence, and the politics of the gun control debate.  

North Carolina Sheriffs' Association

Groups representing police chiefs and sheriffs from major U.S. cities and counties were in Washington for meetings this week.  Like the rest of the country, those law enforcement leaders are divided on recent proposals for reducing gun violence.   Mecklenburg County Sheriff Chipp Bailey attended the meetings, and he spoke with WFAE's Mark Rumsey.

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