Whitney Jones

News Reporter

Whitney grew up listening to Car Talk to and from her family’s beach vacation each year, but it wasn’t until a friend introduced her to This American Life that radio really grabbed her attention. She is a recent graduate from Union University in Jackson, Tenn., where she studied journalism. When she’s not at WKMS, you can find her working on her backyard compost pile and garden, getting lost on her bicycle or crocheting one massive blanket.

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Environment
4:42 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

Kentucky Doesn't Have Any More Working Union Coal Miners

Credit Frankie Steele/Louisville Public Media

 

For the first time in about a century, no union coal miners are working in Kentucky. The state’s few remaining union miners were laid off New Year’s Eve when Patriot Coal’s Highland Mine in Western Kentucky shut down, the United Mine Workers of America confirmed.

“Appalachia was always a really tough nut for the union to crack, and I think maybe Kentucky was the toughest nut of all,” said labor historian James Green, author of a new book about West Virginia’s mine wars.

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Business
10:29 am
Tue February 24, 2015

Kentucky Crafts Beverage Conference Encourages Makers to Continue Growing Industry

Dry Ground brewery in Paducah.
Credit Whitney Jones

A local college is backing what may become a bolstering industry in the region. West Kentucky Community and Technical College is hosting a meetup for regional craft brewers, vintners and distillers to discuss the industry and form potential partnerships as several microbreweries open across the region. 

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Education
12:30 pm
Mon February 23, 2015

Todd County Schools Continue Lessons During Snow Days

Credit Todd County Schools / Facebook

Though Todd County schools remain closed until Wednesday, students are still getting in their daily lessons. Their district was one of 13 the Kentucky Department of Education approved last fall to count up to 10 non-traditional instruction days so they don’t have to make up snow days later on.  

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Education
6:45 am
Mon February 23, 2015

No Decision Yet on Fate of Farley Elementary Property

Credit Facebook

At a McCracken County Board of Education meeting last week, members deliberated without making a decision on whether to sell or lease the Farley Elementary School building after it closes later this year.

McCracken County Schools spokeswoman Jayme Jones said there was much deliberation during the closed door meeting last Thursday.

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Government
3:36 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

Paducah Officially Received Riverfront Development Funding, Still Waiting on State Approval

Credit Flickr Commons

Paducah is closer to starting an expansion project for Schultz park near the riverfront with help from a nearly one-million dollar grant.

The city had budgeted for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Grant which it officially received yesterday.

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Environment
2:35 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Tennessee State Representative Operated Hog Farm Without Permit for Years

Credit Tennessee General Assembly / http://www.capitol.tn.gov/

A Nashville television station is alleging Tennessee State Rep. Andy Holt has committed violations and contaminated a creek while farming hogs in Weakley County. But state regulators haven’t taken any action against him.

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Education
3:59 pm
Fri February 13, 2015

Glenn Denton First Western Kentuckian to Lead CPE

Credit http://www.cpe.ky.gov/ / Council on Postsecondary Education

Paducah attorney Glenn Denton is the next Council on Postsecondary Education Chair, and the first western Kentuckian to lead the group.

CPE’s board elected Denton to the position today at its meeting in Frankfort as well as naming Joe Graviss of Versailles vice chair.

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Education
4:51 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

CPE's Aaron Thompson on His Appalachian Upbringing, Integration, Achievement Gaps

Credit Chad Lampe / WKMS

Aaron Thompson talked with Chad Lampe on Sounds Good about his upbringing during integration and struggles schools and teachers face today. Listen to the full interview below.

 


  Aaron Thompson is an outlier. The eastern Kentucky native is the son of an illiterate coal miner father who, he says, signed his name with an X. Thompson's mother held the highest level education in his family. She graduated from the eighth grade. But now, Thompson has risen through the academic ranks to be the chief academic officer for Kentucky's Council on Post-Secondary Education.

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Government
2:47 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Hopkins County Working to Appeal $50K Bill for Pension Spiking

Credit http://401kcalculator.org / Flickr (Creative Commons License)

The Kentucky Retirement Systems billed Hopkins County more than $51,000 last month for so-called pension spiking, or artificially raising employees’ wages to increase their benefits, but county officials are disputing the matter.

Hopkins County Attorney Byron Hobgood said the Kentucky Retirement System bill is for a retiree who lost wages during a long medical leave and then received a pay increase the following year when he returned to work.

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Environment
11:17 am
Mon February 9, 2015

Two County Leaders Critical of Land Management Techniques at Land Between the Lakes

Map of LBL with proposed landscape work.
Credit Wade White/Facebook

Two western Kentucky Judge Executives are concerned about the U.S. Forest Service’s land management activities at Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area.

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