When Matthews based physician Will Conner decided to go to Haiti to help in any way he could, he literally answered a prayer. When Charlotte Observer reporter Franco Ordonez decided to tag along, he found out that there was such a thing as hope and joy amidst the ruins of the earthquake ravaged country. Both men share their stories and we hear from a native Haitian who is a local expert on International relations. Join us for a doctor’s journey to Haiti.
Dr. Will Conner – Owner/Physician, Conner Family Health Clinic
Franco Ordonez – Staff Reporter, Charlotte Observer
Eddie Souffrant – Professor of Philosophy, UNC Charlotte
- Video | Haitian patients break into song as Dr. Will Conner works on a patient
- WFAE | Charlotte Observer’s Ordonez tells of his time in Haiti
- WFAE | Following the money from cell phone text to Haiti
- Charlotte Observer | The names, faces behind Haiti’s pain by Will Conner
- Charlotte Observer | Doctor sees suffering, but also luck, hope in Haiti
- Charlotte Observer | Matthews doctor gently cares for Haiti’s desperate
We’re joined by members of the WFAE News Team to discuss some of the biggest news stories of the month for the Queen City and the surrounding region. We’ll take a look at Charlotte’s big banks and earnings, scandals at CMPD and with the ABC Board and Mecklenburg County Commissioner Park Helms, an update on several issues within the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, and many other issues around the region.
Lisa Miller – Reporter, WFAE News
Simone Orendain – Reporter, WFAE News
Julie Rose – Reporter, WFAE News
- WFAE News page
- WFAE | Wells Fargo success has much to do with Wachovia
- WFAE | Jackson’s personnel file won’t be made public
- WFAE | Soldiers from NC’s largest guard unit coming home
- WFAE | Report: wide range in per student funding at CMS schools
A conversation about the struggles – religious, social, and psychological – of growing up gay in America. We’ll meet Mitchell Gold, a successful furniture company owner from Alexander County who has put together the stories of 40 people from across the country and their experiences of coming to terms with their sexuality. We’ll talk about the common themes of depression, fear, anxiety and loneliness that appear through the stories and book and how Mr. Gold thinks this book will help gay kids in the future.
Mitchell Gold – Owner, Gold + Williams Furniture & Editor, Crisis: 40 Stories Revealing the Personal, Social and Religious Pain and Trauma of Growing Up Gay in America
- Crisis book website
- Faith in America website
- Event | Gold will be interviewed by CNN’s Soledad O’Brien Jan. 28th at 7pm at Lenoir Rhyne University for their Visiting Writers Series
- Event | Gold will speak Feb. 25 at 6pm at Myers Park Baptist Church and at 8pm at Petra’s Piano Bar
We’ll explore new trends in war and what ethics and laws apply to engaging unmanned weapons. We’ll talk to author and US defense expert Peter W. Singer about the future of war and the US defense system and about current US defense needs and priorities. These topics are outlined in his book Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century.
Peter W. Singer – US defense expert, Brookings Institution and Author, Wired for War
Part One: CMPD Hiring Scandal
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg police hiring story has taken many twists and turns but two journalists, among others, have followed the trail for weeks. WFAE’s own Lisa Miller and Charlotte Observer reporter Christopher Kirkpatrick join us to examine the anatomy of the scandal.
Lisa Miller – Staff Reporter, WFAE
Christopher Kirkpatrick – Staff Writer, The Charlotte Observer
Part Two: Grey Gardens The Musical
The Queen City Theatre Company presents the regional premiere of the Tony Award Winning Grey Gardens: The Musical. We’ll talk about the two eccentric Edith Beales (Big Edie and Little Edie) and their links to the Kennedy family and about their “rags-to-riches” story at the Grey Gardens mansion, and how the story has gone from documentary to musical to movie. We’ll be joined by members of the cast and one of the last living people who knew both of the Beale women.
Glenn Griffin – Director of Grey Gardens: The Musical
Alyson Lowe – Actress, plays one of the Edies (Edith Beale)
Jerry Torre – Knew both of the Edies
A discussion about where North Carolina stands in terms of the prevalence of birth defects. The state ranks high, as 1 in 33 infants in North Carolina have a birth defect. We’ll talk with a professor at UNC Charlotte who studies birth defects and the effort to prevent them, along with other experts, to find out why the rate of birth defects in North Carolina are so high and what people here and nationally are doing to improve the health of infants across the country.
Anna Bess Brown – State Program Director for the NC Chapter March of Dimes
Dr. Cynthia Cassell – Ph.D., Asst. Professor, Public Health Sciences at UNC Charlotte
Susan Lynch – Parent of a child with birth defects
States all over America have experienced historic budget shortfalls during the current recession. Some of those states tapped into rainy day funds but those reserves of financial resources are not without controversy. There is a healthy debate regarding the pros and cons of rainy day funds in state budgets. We’ll look at how rainy day funds work, where the money comes from and how it’s used.
Dr. Benjamin Russo – Professor of Economics, UNC Charlotte
Elaine Mejia – Project Director, NC Budget and Tax Center
Joseph Coletti – Fiscal and Health Care Policy Analyst, John Locke Foundation
President Barack Obama has praised the United States’ relationship with India as “one of the defining partnerships of the 21st century.” We’ll meet the Indian Ambassador to the United States, Meera Shankar. India and the US share interest in important issues like climate change, the war on terror and stabilizing Afghanistan, among others. We’ll have a conversation about US-Indian relations, how our relationship with India developed and what role it plays in the world today.
Ms. Meera Shankar – Indian Ambassador to the United States
- Embassy of India website
- Event | Ambassador Shankar speaks Jan 21st at noon at the Westin Charlotte. The event is currently full. To be added to the wait list, call (704) 687-7762. More info.
If your health insurance policy has ever looked as if it were written in an alien language, don’t miss this edition of Charlotte Talks. The co-author of a booked titled The Healthcare Survival Guide, and other experts, join us to simplify the often complicated process of understanding insurance benefits, finding physicians and making claims. In advance of Thursday’s WFAE Public Conversation on the same topic, we’ll help you decipher health insurance.
Martin Rosen – Co-Author, The Healthcare Survival Guide
Chris Magryta – Physician and Business Manager, Touchstone Health Associates
Jen Algire – Executive Director, Community Health Services
- Join WFAE for a Public Conversation on “Deciphering Healthcare” Thursday at Matthews Community Center at 7pm. (We’ll be giving away a limited number of The Healthcare Survival Guide to attendees) More info.
- The Healthcare Survival Guide website
Our series on ‘the politics of farming’ continues with a look at the dairy industry in our region. There are dairy farmers throughout the area and they range from small, independent farms to co-ops serving large commercial producers. We’ll explore the day to day operations of a dairy farm, the policies that regulate the industry and the push by local farmers to more directly connect with residents who want their milk. Join us for a look at the politics of farming and the dairy industry.
Chester Lowder – Livestock Director, NC Farm Bureau
Jim Price – Owner, Lakeview Farms Home Delivery Inc.
Charlie Payne – Dairy Farmer