Todd Hatton

Morning Edition Host, Producer

Todd Hatton hails from Paducah, Kentucky, where he got into radio under the auspices of the late, great John Stewart of WKYX while a student at Paducah Community College. He also worked at WKMS in the reel-to-reel tape days of the early 1990s before running off first to San Francisco, then Orlando in search of something to do when he grew up. He received his MFA in Creative Writing at Murray State University. He vigorously resists adulthood and watches his wife, Angela Hatton, save the world one plastic bottle at a time.

Ways to Connect

Library of Congress, Harris and Ewing Collection

One of the few complaints, if not the only one, about the 1979 biography Dear Alben: Mr. Barkley of Kentucky was that people wanted more.  And in 1979, author Dr. James Libbey agreed, setting out to provide a more comprehensive look at the Commonwealth's most prominent political icon of the 20th century.

But, as it sometimes can, life got in the way.

"In 1981," Libbey said, "I was an academics administrator, so my plate was full, and I then had major surgery which, at the time, just knocked the stuffing out of me."  However, in 1986, Libbey returned to the classroom and decided to resume work on the biography of the man he calls "one of the most popular politicians of his time."

Matthew Brady / National Archives and Records Administration

If you're familiar with the American Civil War, you likely know the names Ulysses S. Grant, James Longstreet, and William Tecumseh Sherman.  They were among the men whose decisions and strategies charted the course of the war and ultimately, that of American history.  Charles Ferguson Smith is arguably no less important, but considerably less well-known.  And Plano, Texas history professor Allen Mesch is out to change that.

Kentucky Chautauqua / Kentucky Humanities Council

In their book "A New History of Kentucky," historians Lowell Harrison and James Klotter called Madeline McDowell Breckinridge the most influential woman in the Commonwealth.  Breckinridge was a descendant of some of Kentucky's most prominent families, and she used the resources her name provided to advocate for women's suffrage.  She's also the subject of an upcoming Kentucky Chautauqua this Wednesday at the Glema Mahr Center for the Arts in Madisonville.  Todd Hatton speaks with Kelly Brengelman, who brings the progressive reformer to life.

Art & Design at MSU, via Facebook

Murray State University history professor Dr. Duane Bolin joins Todd Hatton on Sounds Good to talk about the historical significance of the WPA (Works Progress Administration) on our region; and the Murray State all-day Symposium Friday that features a holistic, interdepartmental approach to the WPA Federal Arts Project, coinciding with the WPA art, photo, and other exhibits across campus this month.

Murray State University

With the Kentucky General Assembly 2016 session nearing its end next month, Murray State University and other institutions across the commonwealth are waiting for the final verdict on the next state budget. MSU President Bob Davies speaks with Todd Hatton on Sounds Good on how the university is tightening its belt to accommodate anticipated funding cuts.

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

Since its discovery in a population of bats in a New York cave in 2007, white nose syndrome has become one of the gravest threats to American and Canadian bats.  White nose is a fungal infection that disrupts the bat’s hibernation cycle and has resulted in the death of approximately 6 million bats in North America.  Kentucky has not escaped the infection’s spread; it first appeared in the Commonwealth in 2011 and has been detected in bats in western Kentucky’s Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area.

Four Star Records, Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain

February 3, 1959 is often called "The Day the Music Died" but it isn't the only day that can make that unfortunate claim.  The phrase is often associated with the deaths of rock and roll pioneers Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. "Big Bopper" Richardson, but March 5, 1963 would prove as devastating to country and western music. 

U.S. Library of Congress / Wikimedia Commons

Seventy years ago, Brooklyn Dodgers General Manager Branch Rickey decided to bring a young player up to the majors from one of their farm teams.  However, one thing made this unprecedented: the Montreal Monarchs second baseman in question was African-American.  Approval to transfer Jackie Robinson to the Dodgers could only come from the commissioner of Major League Baseball, former U.S. Senator, Kentucky Governor, and Henderson county native, A.B. "Happy" Chandler.

Matt Markgraf / WKMS

Former Kentucky 6th District U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler says he still hasn’t ruled out a return to politics.

Chandler held that seat from 2004 to 2012 before losing a re-election bid to Republican Andy Barr.

Murray State University

As legislators debate Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed budget, which includes a 9-percent cut to higher education funding, university leaders are working to convince lawmakers of the impacts the cuts would have. Meanwhile, education officials are contemplating a switch to a performance-based funding model.

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