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Kannapolis: Collapse Of A Mill And Rise of Biotech

Research Center Kannapolis, NC


When the textile mill closed in Kannapolis, NC in 2003, more than 4,000 workers lost their jobs. The effects on the small community outside of Charlotte were devastating.

But investment by a California billionaire began to turn the town from a lost textile center to a biotech research center. But as citizens trade in their genetic information for gift cards, questions remain about the ethics of the research. Host Frank Stasio talks with reporter Amanda Wilson about the changing tides and the effects of those changes in Kannapolis. Her latest article appears in the Pacific Standard. Her work on this project was supported by the Investigative Fund and the Fund for Investigative Journalism.

Laura Lee was the managing editor of The State of Things until mid February 2017. Born and raised in Monroe, North Carolina, Laura returned to the Old North state in 2013 after several years in Washington, DC. She received her B.A. in political science and international studies from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2002 and her J.D. from UNC-Chapel Hill School of Law in 2007.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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