Lori Townsend, Alaska Public Media

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Lori Townsend is the News Director for Alaska Public Media. She has worked in print and broadcast journalism for nearly 30 years. Radio brought her to Alaska, where she worked as a broadcast trainer for Native fellowship students at Koahnic Broadcasting before accepting a reporting/host position with APRN in 2003. APRN merged with Alaska Public Media a year later. 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. 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. 

LISTEN: Future sustainability of the permanent fund

Lawmakers are still grappling with how to settle on a budget plan for Alaska's future and permanent fund earnings are at the center of the debate. What's the best way forward to ensure the sustainability of the fund and a dividend, while also providing vital state services?
TV host talks to guest via Zoom.

Fire officials talk preparedness amid a changing landscape | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/k4c3qUffya8 Spring is finally here and as the snowpack recedes, wildfire becomes a concern, especially before greenup. What’s the outlook for this year’s fire season and how...
smoke billows from a spruce forest, seen from above

LISTEN: Fire season is getting longer. How can Alaskans better prepare?

Better coordination between state and federal agencies can not only help with responding to fires, but preventing them too. How are the experts planning for the coming summer?

Farm advocates discuss agriculture resources and sustainability | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/H6TbUgQRBGA Farming in Alaska has changed and expanded in recent years. As seasons lengthen and innovations in farming techniques advance, advocates for eco-friendly farming see big potential....

LISTEN: Former foster youth in Alaska push for repayment of benefits

An investigation by NPR has highlighted that many states, including Alaska, take the dependent child’s social security benefits, often leaving them with no money to help them when they turn 18 and age out of foster care.
A female teacher points to a word projected on a white board in a classroom with three students sitting a tables facing the front of the classroom

LISTEN: How are school districts planning to support students this summer?

School districts have worked hard to piece together in-person and distance learning curriculum for students. Now that the end of the regular school year is fast approaching, what are the plans for summer school to help students catch up?
A man sits in the cockpit of a small plane.

Here’s how small airlines in Alaska are surviving the pandemic travel slow-down | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/I6QdijNawtY Air travel came to a halt last year as the pandemic caused closures across the country. In rural Alaska, where planes are a lifeline for many...

LISTEN: Alaskans asked to weigh in on Arctic Research Plan

Researchers are planning out what the next five years of scientific investigation in the Arctic will look like, and they want Alaskans to weigh in.
Show host talks to guest over Zoom.

How the pandemic has further strained recovery resources | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/q_bf9W7LDPA Surviving the covid-19 pandemic has consumed the attention of many of us over the past year, but another killer has continued to claim lives. Overdose deaths...

LISTEN: The other epidemic

Overdose deaths are on the rise, and the need for resources in Alaska is pressing. How have recovery programs around the state adjusted their services to meet the demand amid the pandemic?

Alaskans discuss some of the state’s biggest boondoggles | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/8GsvzcdAvws Alaskans have dreamed and schemed some big tourism and economic ideas for the 49th state through the decades. Everything from a giant styrofoam igloo lodge, to...
Show host talks to guests via Zoom.

PBS American Portrait on Alaska Insight | Special LIVE Episode

https://youtu.be/6KDT0KwaJOE Alaskans have a lot of can-do spirit and a deep sense of connection to Alaska. In this episode of Alaska Insight we explore some of what...
a nurse administers a vaccine to a patient

LISTEN: Medical professionals answer Alaskans’ questions about the COVID-19 vaccine

Alaska is leading the nation in COVID-19 vaccination rates, bringing us closer to the herd immunity needed to return to normal life. But some people still have concerns about getting the shot and other questions.

LISTEN: Alaskans discuss the power of storytelling

What do you love about living and working in Alaska? The PBS American Portrait series invites people to submit videos and narratives on a range of issues, and Alaskans responded.

Alaskans address violence against Asian Americans and racial bias in tech | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/PrnY6aHNirU Racial bias permeates government policy and justice systems. It's also ubiquitous in the technology that we engage with on a daily basis. Artificial intelligence uses data...

Sexual assault survivors advocate for change in Nome and statewide | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/mO6gXVhTn7w The high rates of sexual assault and violence against women in Alaska are long-standing problems. In Nome, survivors have been speaking out about how law enforcement...
A white man in a black suit

LISTEN: Gov. Mike Dunleavy discusses pandemic recovery

Economic recovery from the pandemic and long term budget stability are some of the big tasks in front of state leaders during the current legislative session. How closely aligned are the Governor’s priorities with state lawmakers?

LISTEN: As Alaska grapples with high rates of sexual assault, what can we learn from Nome?

High rates of sexual assault and violence against women have plagued Alaska for decades. The collective damage affects entire communities. Survivor advocates and journalists have helped uncover how widespread the problems are. In Nome, some advocates are working to raise awareness and push for change.

Recognizing women’s contributions in Alaska | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/t-d0XNPfcl0 The accomplishments of Alaska women are as varied as they are wide ranging. From CEOs running major corporations to vessel captains to community leaders.

Alaska businesses look for relief to make it through another dry tourism season | Alaska Insight

https://youtu.be/oguUTuFv1O8 Business owners, workers and communities reliant on tourism are facing another summer without cruise ships. Will the latest federal relief package be enough to keep them...