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

A longtime voice in the effort to protect and improve the Catawba River basin is stepping down. Rick Gaskins, the executive director of the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation, leaves in June. Gaskins is a Charlotte attorney who started as a volunteer with the group shortly after it formed in 1998. Gaskins remembers spending his summers as a child, playing in creeks. Today, he has a more complex understanding of the Charlotte region's system of rivers and lakes.

Michael Tomsic

The Charlotte Knights opened their new season Thursday night at home against the Norfolk Tides. This is the team's second season in BB&T Ballpark, where the Knights relocated last year from their former home in Fort Mill. In 2014,  the Triple-A Knights led the minor leagues in season attendance. An average of about 9,700 fans attended each of 71 home games. The team hopes to attract big crowds to BB&T Ballpark again this season. WFAE's Mark Rumsey discussed the outlook for that with Erik Spanberg, who covers the Knights for the Charlotte Business Journal.   

Union County Jail

A Union County woman Tuesday pleaded guilty in the case of an 11-year old foster child who was found shackled to a porch, with a dead chicken tied around his neck. Wanda Larson and her longtime boyfriend, Dorian Harper were arrested in November, 2013 after a sheriff’s deputy investigating a loose dog complaint found the boy shivering on the porch. Larson was a Union County social services supervisor at the time. 

If you venture to the coastal Carolinas or Georgia, you might still overhear some people speaking in a dialect that reaches back more than three centuries, to the arrival of slaves from West Africa. Slave descendants in the region became known as Gullahs, or in some places, Geechees. In 2006, Congress designated a National Heritage Corridor established to help preserve the Gullah-Geechee culture, including its language.  

"It is what's known as an English-Creole," or, a mixture, says South Carolinian Sharon Cooper-Murray. She has studied the Gullah culture for more than 30 years. Cooper-Murray adds that when Africans arrived in Carolina, they may have brought more than 100 languages and dialects, creating the need for a common dialect.  

Health care 'advance directives’ – such as a living will - have been around for several decades. But, surveys show that most adults in the U.S. have not put their wishes regarding end-of-life medical care in writing.   Advocates of advance directives say that in North Carolina, state law currently makes it harder for some people to sign those documents. But a bill expected to be filed Monday in the state legislature is intended to simplify the process. 


You know Mark Rumsey as WFAE’s All Things Considered host. He’s also WFAE’s Public Conversations coordinator. In this episode, Mark talks to News Director Greg Collard about what emerged from WFAE’s most recent Public Conversation on End-of-Life Planning and Choices.

Democratic party activists in North Carolina last weekend chose former legislator Patsy Keever of Asheville as the new chair of the state party. She takes the helm as North Carolina Democrats face fundraising struggles and a continued Republican “super-majority” in the General Assembly. Keever will no doubt hear from a recently-formed coalition of House and Senate lawmakers who've dubbed themselves the N.C. Main Street Democratic Caucus. They promise to push for “centrist” and “pro-business” policies in the legislature.  Senator Joel Ford of Mecklenburg County is part of the caucus. He says, Democrats in the state have gotten distracted by focusing too much on issues like same-sex marriage, abortion and the environment.

Steve Hillebrand / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The North Carolina Wildlife Commission is recommending that the federal government end its program in eastern North Carolina designed to help preserve endangered Red Wolves. WFAE’s Mark Rumsey reports.

Chiquita's decision to leave Charlotte has been big news in state government – and rightly so.  After all, the state put up much of the roughly $22 million incentives package that convinced Chiquita to move from Cincinnati to Charlotte a few years ago, although most of those incentives have not been paid to the company.  

WFAE's Mark Rumsey discussed Chiquita's decision - and the state's use of incentives - with John Lassiter, a former Charlotte City Council member who now chairs the state's Economic Development Board.

If you watch ESPN, you’re surely familiar with Stuart Scott. You don’t forget his style. Here he is giving highlights from a 1998 game between North Carolina and Duke.