Evan Dawson

Connections Host

Evan Dawson joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.

Evan is also the author of Summer in a Glass: The Coming Age of Winemaking in the Finger Lakes and is the managing editor/Finger Lakes editor for the New York Cork Report, a web site that offers independent news, reviews, and commentary about the New York wine industry.

He has written freelance articles on topics including politics, wine, travel, and Major League Baseball.

Ways to Connect

Weekend Connections is a collection of some of the most noteworthy moments from the week on Connections with Evan Dawson. This episode includes conversations about:

  • The new documentary, Defying the Nazis, and if another figure like Hitler could rise to power. Our guest is a Holocaust survivor;
  • Mental illness and recovery with actor Richard Dreyfuss;
  • Poverty in Rochester;
  • The impact this summer's drought has had on regional farms;
  • How satire can affect public sentiment.

Connections: Read Local

Sep 23, 2016

Like the local food movement, Read Local is a program that seeks to get readers to enjoy books grown right in their own back yard. It is a book club and event series, highlighting books published by publishing houses based right here in Rochester. The idea is to read the book, meet the author, and support local businesses along the way. 

We meet author Josefine Klougart, and we discuss a range of issues, including translations and foreign books, the health of publishing, and more. Our guests:

Recently, we heard from Nazareth College President Daan Braveman, who wanted to stress the point that the cost of college is not rising as quickly as many people seem to think. That's because the sticker price is not the same as the actual price most students pay.

But University of Rochester graduate and author Kevin Connell counters that there is indeed a crisis in higher education. His new book, Breaking Point, is being released, and Connell is back in Rochester for a book talk. First, he joins us on Connections to discuss the problems he sees, along with possible solutions.

First hour: College at the breaking point?

Second hour: Read Local

A brand new report on poverty is out, and it shows almost no improvement in our region. To be fair, the Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative is a 15-year plan. No one said things would flip in a year or two. But what can we learn from the newest numbers? Our guests will sort it out. In studio:

  • Ann Johnson, ACT Rochester senior director
  • Ed Doherty, author of the original poverty report
  • Henry Fitts, City of Rochester Innovation Team

Forget the presidential election. Why don't Americans get more involved in local politics? Why don't they vote in primaries, or organize, or care about down-ballot races?

The presidency gets most of the attention, but the down-ballot races impact our lives on a daily basis. So maybe it's time to change the fact that many Americans don't know who represents them in various levels of government. Our guests:

First hour: Why don't we care more about primaries and down-ballot races?

Second hour: Understanding the new poverty report

81 percent of Americans say they can handle their money well, but only 37 percent can pass a basic financial literacy test. Oops.

ESL is teaming up with Rochester Young Professionals and hosting a listening party at WXXI studios on September 29. Targeted to young professionals. the topics include how to build a better job, the trend of home buying among young professionals, and strategies for dealing with student loan debt. The debt piece is particularly timely given that in the fall, student loan repayments will kick in for many recent graduates. But wait: as the aforementioned study shows, it's not just about young adults. It's all of us. Our guests:

Is American satire dead? Author Malcolm Gladwell says it is.

Think Tina Fey was great as Sarah Palin? Gladwell calls it "toothless." Jimmy Fallon as Donald Trump? Pathetic, made even worse by Trump's repeat appearances on the show. Gladwell says the best satire is not just about an accurate portrayal; it's about making a point, and moving the public. But is Gladwell being unfair? Are there great satirists working today?

Our panel discusses the value of satire, and why we don't see nearly as much satire as other forms of comedic expression. In studio:

  • Kerry Young, director, teacher, and veteran on the theater scene
  • Tim Ryan, Geva Comedy Improv
  • Tom Proietti, resident scholar in media at St. John Fisher College

First hour: Is American satire dead?

Second hour: Is American financial literacy dead?