Rebecca Martinez

Morning Producer

Rebecca Martinez is currently on leave. She has been producing WUNC’s broadcast of Morning Edition. She reports breaking news as well as feature stories and interviews about a range of subjects, including immigration enforcement and environmental sustainability. She knows a lot about municipal solid waste.

Rebecca is also the co-creator and founding producer of The Civilist with Steven Petrow. The podcast is a partnership between WUNC and PRI, and it explores how people can talk respectfully about controversial and awkward topics.

Before coming to North Carolina, Rebecca was a reporter and host at Wyoming Public Radio, where she created the "Upstarts" entrepreneur profile series. She won a PRNDI award for soft feature reporting in 2012 and has edited and produced several PRNDI award-winning stories and episodes of "Open Spaces." Rebecca has reported on agriculture and community issues at The News Leader in Staunton, VA. She spent two years cutting tape, booking interviews and running scripts at NPR's Washington, DC headquarters. Her reporting has aired on NPR, the BBC, PRI, Marketplace and National Native News.

She lives in Durham, where she volunteers on the crisis line at Durham Crisis Response Center. She also occasionally leads bike tours of the city’s murals.

Ways to Connect

Any other year, Americans would be gearing up for the big Thanksgiving travel weekend; traffic jams and long lines at the airport would just be a reality of life. But TSA is quiet at Raleigh Durham International Airport, where the pandemic has cut air travel by two-thirds. Tested host Leoneda Inge talks with passengers and an RDU spokesperson about the changed travel landscape.

Winter

Nov 17, 2020

The pandemic promises to claim many more lives as we head into winter. But, in one of our nation's most dismal times, we have elected a president who is poised to make science a factor in decision-making about this public health crisis. 

In this episode of Tested, host Dave DeWitt discusses the impact of that with Holden Thorp, editor-in-chief of the Science family of journals.

Robeson County has been frequently inundated by hurricanes and flooding. When COVID-19 hit that community, it hit it hard. As its residents navigated recent crises, they were also squarely situated on the presidential campaign trail this election season. President Donald Trump and Presidential-elect Joe Biden singled out the uniquely diverse rural county for political canvassing.

Host Dave DeWitt talks with WUNC's digital producer Laura Pellicer and data reporter Jason deBruyn about the pandemic, storm recovery, and why Robeson County increased its support for Trump this election.

We also highlight the significance of an annual Lumbee tradition, and how the tribe is adjusting amidst the pandemic.


You're not imagining it. Almost everyone is incredibly stressed out right now.

The American Psychological Association says the “2020 Presidential Election is a source of significant stress for more Americans than the 2016 Presidential race.” Not to mention COVID-19. And the economic downturn. And ongoing civil unrest.

Host Leoneda Inge examines our collective anxiety — what's causing it, how to recognize it, what to do about it — with Lynn Bufka, the APA's senior director of practice transformation and quality.

Then, Leoneda reconnects with an old friend, comedian Roy Wood Jr., who says it's never too soon to look for the humor in the heavy stuff, as long as you're making light of the right things. He's had plenty of practice as a political correspondent for The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.


Marchers made their way across downtown Durham on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 calling for all votes from Tuesday's election to be counted.
Jay Price / WUNC

As North Carolinians await final results in key political battles in an unprecedented election year, state officials say it's business as usual.

Raleigh Police Cruiser
PDpolicecars, via Flickr / https://bit.ly/2Q7UmMD

Raleigh police used expired tear gas on demonstrators during protests over the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, according to a report released Tuesday.

Raleigh Police Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown told the City Council there have been 106 arrests stemming from the protests and more warrants are still outstanding.

Kerwin Pittman, 33, of Raleigh, NC, is the founder of Recidivism Reduction Educational Program Services and a field organizer with Emancipate NC.
Kate Medley / For WUNC

Kerwin Pittman is a member of the governor's new task force examining racial inequities in the criminal justice system. He is also a field organizer for Emancipate N.C. and has helped post Black Lives Matter billboards in Raleigh and Pittsboro.

Playgrounds throughout Durham, N.C. city parks were closed March 26, 2020 after Mayor Steve Schewel issued a stay-at-home order for the city in an effort to battle the coronavirus pandemic.
Chuck Liddy / For WUNC

Five months after the pandemic forced many public places to shut down, playgrounds have reopened. It's welcome news for many parents, but not necessarily all. 

ECU
Brent Hoard via Flickr / https://bit.ly/2Ctqqrm

About 20 parties, including one with nearly 400 people in attendance, were shut down at East Carolina University in Greenville during the school's opening weekend, campus police said.

Image couresy of Kerwin Pittman

It's been less than a month since anti-racist activists posted "Black Lives Matter" on a billboard next to a large Confederate flag in Pittsboro. Now, the owner of that property says he wants the billboard removed.

Crystal Cavalier Keck stands for a portrait at her home in Mebane, N.C. on Thursday, July 30, 2020.
Ben McKeown / For WUNC

This summer, WUNC is meeting some of the North Carolinians who are "Calling for Change" in policing. Crystal Cavalier Keck is Indigenous and also of European and African descent. She is a member of the Occoneechee Band of the Saponi Nation and founder of "Missing Murdered Indigenous Coalition of North Carolina." The group runs a database and accepts reports of missing Indigenous people.

Zhang / Flickr/Creative Commons

Alcohol sales hours at restaurants, breweries and distilleries in North Carolina will have a curfew starting Friday night.

Mike Pence coronavirus Florida
Wilfredo Lee / AP

Vice President Mike Pence will travel to Raleigh on Wednesday morning in a push to encourage more K-12 schools to reopen with entirely in-person instruction.

Image couresy of Kerwin Pittman

A group in Pittsboro has erected a Black Lives Matter billboard to counter a Confederate flag that stands along U.S. Highway 64.

County of Dare/Flickr / https://bit.ly/2O0i6Bn

New federal flood maps have reclassified thousands of properties in Dare County from high-flood risk areas to lower risk ones called "shaded X zones."

Graham Protests
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

Activists in Alamance County are calling for policy overhauls to prevent police brutality, especially against Black people. And another group of protesters want a Confederate monument removed from downtown Graham, the county seat.

Rebecca Martinez / WUNC

Protesters have been camped outside the Durham Police Department since Monday night. That's when the Durham City Council approved a 5% increase in the police budget, bringing it to $70 million.

A child care subsidy for essential workers expires this weekend, but there's funding making its way through the General Assembly that could help.

The aid program was set up by the state health and human services department for workers like nurses and bus drivers after the governor issued his stay-at-home order.

PxHere / Public Domain

 North Carolina legislators are wading into Gov. Roy Cooper's business reopening decisions, as the state Senate voted Thursday to let bars serve customers again despite his recent executive order keeping them closed due to COVID-19.

A picture of LaShauna Austria working in a hoophouse on Benevolence Farm.
Ben McKeown / WUNC

A nonprofit in Alamance County is celebrating the second anniversary of its working farm. Benevolence Farm provides housing and jobs for North Carolina women as they leave prison.

Kadiza Sultana, left, Shamima Begum, centre and and Amira Abase
Metropolitan Police via AP, file

A new study from psychologists at North Carolina State University suggests that counter-terrorism experts miss an important piece of the puzzle when they focus on the process of recruiting men.

Research assistant and PhD candidate Christine Brugh is lead author of a new report, "Gender in the jihad: Characteristics and outcomes among women and men involved in jihadist-inspired terrorism."

A picture of Ojore, standing near a swimming pool wearing goggles on his forehead.
Kate T. Parker

Do you have a piece of wisdom you wish you could share with your younger self?

Creative Commons / pxhere

A nonprofit organization based in Durham has drummed up a new plan to get residents excited about cutting back on plastic.

A picture of Rick Lewis inspecting produce.
Ben McKeown / WUNC

Local grocers work hard to get the most beautiful fruits and vegetables onto market shelves. But a growing number of businesses worldwide are trying to cut down on food waste by selling the so-called "ugly" fruits and vegetables that would otherwise get left behind.

A picture of Chatham County Line.
Andy Goodwin / Chatham County Line

Chatham County Line is back with a record devoted to their fans.  For years the bluegrass band has included a well-chosen cover or two in their live shows.  Fans would often stop by the merchandise table and ask where they could find those songs.

Now there's at least a partial answer to that question.  Sharing The Covers contains thirteen songs written by artists ranging from Beck, to the Rolling Stones, to Wilco.

A picture of an American Robin.
Deja Perkins / NC State University

North Carolina State University researchers are seeking volunteers to help conduct a bird population survey in the Triangle's urban centers.

http://nancymcfarlane.com/2017-state-of-the-city-speech/

Raleigh's mayor says she will not run for another term. Independent Nancy McFarlane's fourth term in office expires later this year.

A picture of Erin Lawrimore with a pint of beer.
Jiyoung Park / UNC Greensboro

When you imagine someone who brews beer for a living, who do you picture? A chill guy in jeans and a baseball cap? He's probably white, maybe he has a beard.

Creative Commons / Via pxhere

In an effort to cut down on recycling contamination, the Town of Aberdeen has begun refusing to collect from curbside containers that hold dirty or non-recyclable materials. Town Manager Paul Sabiston says those bins will receive a red rejection tag, urging owners to remove garbage and other misplaced items before the next pick-up.

A photo of Maya De Vitry.
Laura Partain

After spending several years collaborating with her band mates in The Stray Birds, singer-songwriter Maya de Vitry set out to find a different voice. What transpired were a lot of walks in the woods, traveling to meet friends old and new and mustering the confidence to sing her own songs in her own voice. The result is Adaptations

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