Lori Townsend, Alaska Public Media

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Lori Townsend is the News Director for the Alaska Public Radio Network. She got her start in broadcasting at the age of 11 as the park announcer of the fast pitch baseball games in Deer Park, Wisconsin. She has worked in print and broadcast journalism for more than 24 years. She was the co-founder and former Editor of Northern Aspects, a magazine featuring northern Wisconsin writers and artists. She worked for 7 years at tribal station WOJB on the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibway Reservation in Wisconsin, first as an on-air programmer and special projects producer and eventually News Director. In 1997 she co-hosted a continuing Saturday afternoon public affairs talk program on station KSTP in St. Paul, Minnesota. Radio brought her to Alaska where she worked as a broadcast trainer for Native fellowship students at Koahnic Broadcasting. Following her work there, she helped co-found the non-profit broadcast company Native Voice Communications. NVC created the award-winning Independent Native News as well as producing many other documentaries and productions. Townsend was NVC’s technical trainer and assistant producer of INN. Through her freelance work, she has produced news and feature stories nationally and internationally for Independent Native News, National Native News, NPR , Pacifica, Monitor Radio, Radio Netherlands and AIROS. Her print work and interviews have been published in News from Indian Country, Yakama Nation Review and other publications. Ms. Townsend has also worked as a broadcast trainer for the Native American Journalist’s Association and with NPR’s Doug Mitchell and as a freelance editor. Townsend is the recipient of numerous awards for her work from the Alaska Press Club, the Native American Journalists Association and a gold and a silver reel award from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. Townsend was the recipient of a Fellowship at the Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting in Rhode Island as well as a fellowship at the Knight Digital Media Center in Berkeley. She is an avid reader, a rabid gardener and counts water skiing, training horses, diving and a welding certification among her past and current interests. ltownsend (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  907.550.8452 | About Lori

The future of agriculture in Alaska

It's planting time for farmers and backyard garden enthusiasts. What's new with the changing ag scene in Alaska and what will it mean for raising more food right in our state? And how will a changing climate affect food production?

Federal policy in Alaska

Federal military policy will increasingly focus on the arctic region. How will U.S. tensions with Russia, North Korea and China affect Alaska? U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan joins us for the next Talk of Alaska.

6 months after 7.1

It's been 6 months since a 7.1 magnitude earthquake rattled southcentral Alaskans. Repair and recovery efforts are ongoing. What are the lessons learned?

The trades and workforce development for Alaska

Should young people today go to a 4 year university or enter the trades? Some students do both: Get a job through a technical program so they can make enough money to support their plan for college. Is there a best approach?

The first forensic nursing academy in the US

A new forensics program at the University of Alaska Anchorage will provide training for evidence collection for both types of abuse. The new program is the first in the nation.

Former state chief medical officer Jay Butler takes job with Centers for Disease Control

Alaska's former chief medical officer, Dr Jay Butler has accepted a job with the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta as the head of the office of infectious disease.
Bean's Cafe at Brother Francis Shelter in Anchorage.

The effort to end homelessness

The annual point in time homelessness count for Alaska has for years revealed that about 2000 people across the state, do not have their own home. Is it possible to get to zero?

The role of nonprofits in Alaska

Alaska has a high number of nonprofit organizations that assist communities with a wide range of services. What could state budget cuts mean for their funding and how will it affect their ability to provide services?

Alcohol awareness month

April marks alcohol awareness month, a time for public health and treatment advocates to highlight the dangers of excessive drinking. Alcoholism is a big problem in Alaska and recent public events have promoted having fun without having alcohol. Will the sans concept catch on?

The decline of sea ice in the Arctic

The decline in seasonal sea ice affects more than just arctic communities. That ice helps regulate world temperatures. Less ice means coastal communities are at risk of rising sea levels and coastal erosion.

The Governor’s permanent fiscal plan

Governor Mike Dunleavy says he wants a permanent fiscal plan for Alaska and he has proposed amendments to the constitution to keep future governors and lawmakers from changing the tax structure or the PFD formula without a vote of the people.

Lawmakers and the budget

The Dunleavy administration's budget plan has attracted a lot of attention and controversy. Now lawmakers are grappling with their role in addressing the flood of demands from their constituents while determining what state services are important and how it will all be paid for.

The race to Nome

One thousand miles is a long journey under the best conditions, but behind a dog team, through the wilderness in extreme weather is a daunting challenge. That's the essence of the Iditarod, bringing together tough human and animal athletes for the yearly race to Nome.

The Governor’s budget proposal

Governor Mike Dunleavy's budget proposal would cut more than one and a half billion dollars from state spending in one fiscal year.

Black business owners: the past and the future

Running a business that aims to serve a particular demographic can be a challenge. But sometimes it's borne of necessity.

The future of ANWR

Opening the 10-02 area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge or ANWR has been a dream of Alaska's congressional delegation and the oil industry for decades, but for Gwitch'in people and environmentalists, the idea is a nightmare.

Exploring the past and future of life in Alaska for Black residents

A lot of that diversity starts with the first people of the state but many people from other ethnicities came to Alaska for military or government service, to work in the oil industry, fisheries or for adventure. Black Alaskans fill roles in all these areas plus more.

The future of the Arctic

The arctic is changing and what that means for future development, travel, infrastructure and safety is on the minds of not only those who live there, but scientists, policy makers and business leaders.

The road back to accreditation

An ambitious plan to recruit and train more Alaskans for teaching positions hit a snag recently when UAA's teacher education program lost its national accreditation.

The 4th Federal Climate Assessment Report

The recently released National Climate Assessment is the fourth federal report examining the rate of change and the forecast for the future. Alaska has it’s own chapter in the massive document. The state is warming faster than any other. So what’s next? Working to understand the cultural, economic and health expense of mitigation and adaptation.