WXXI AM News

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

First hour: The documentary, Lake of Betrayal 

Second hour: ROC Believers explore revitalization in Rochester's neighborhoods

Fans and critics of Kanye West are reacting to the rapper's recent comments about political figures and slavery. West has tweeted about his support for President Trump and right-wing figures, and has said slavery was a "choice."

In a piece in the Atlantic Monthly, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates argues that West wants a "white freedom," and is distancing himself from blackness. West argues that he's a "free thinker."

We talk to local musicians, music writers, and music lovers about West's comments, the criticism, and whether West has lost touch with his roots. In studio:

Sports gambling could soon be legal in New York State. This comes after the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday decided a 1992 federal law prohibiting sports betting was unconstitutional. Casinos and race tracks are celebrating the news; owners say the lift on the ban will generate revenue and a source of entertainment. But organizations like the National Council on Problem Gambling say making sports betting legal could lead to higher rates of gambling problems. 

We discuss what the ruling means on all sides of the issue. Our guests:

SUPREMECOURT.GOV

First hour: The future of sports betting in New York State

Second hour: Has Kanye West lost touch with his roots?

We talk to teens involved with Rochester Teen Court. The program is in its 21st year and gives nonviolent teen offenders alternative sentencing in order to keep them out of the criminal justice system. Teen jurors recommend that sentencing for their peers.

Our guests discuss the program, youth incarceration, Raise the Age, restorative justice, and more.

  • Judge Frank Geraci, Jr., Chief United States District Judge
  • Jahne Robinson, teen juror with Rochester Teen Court
  • Francis Pellegrino, teen attorney with Rochester Teen Court
  • Kendra Drake, program manager for Rochester Teen Court

The debate over a proposed redevelopment project at Cobbs Hill Village continues, after Rochester City Council tabled a vote on the issue last week. Mayor Lovely Warren submitted an amended version of legislation to Council last Thursday.

Developer Rochester Management wants to replace the current 60 apartments with 104 new units. Supporters say upgrades are needed, and the amended legislation would increase affordability of those new units. Those who oppose the project say the changes don’t go far enough, and redevelopment will result in a shortage of affordable housing options for senior citizens. They’ve filed a lawsuit against the city and the developer, among others, in state Supreme Court.

This hour, we talk to people on both sides of the issue. In studio:

ROCHESTERMANAGEMENT.COM

First hour: The debate over redevelopment at Cobbs Hill Village

Second hour: Keeping teenagers out of the criminal justice system

A group of local churches is concerned about the health of caregivers, and they're imploring caregivers, "You don't have to do it alone." It's a series of four events designed to help provide support and resources for caregivers.

Our guests discuss it:

  • Biagio Zarcone, community care manager at Senior Options For Independence
  • Ellen O'Connor, director of community services at Fairport Baptist Home
  • Tim Alexander, senior pastor of Perinton Community Church
  • Cathy Little, caregiver

Three-quarters of American college professors are adjuncts, according to various recent studies. The Atlantic Monthly framed the issue in terms of a battle for not just working professors, but the quality of higher education; the magazine explored the question, "Can a budding labor movement improve the lives of non-tenured faculty - and, in the process, fix higher education?"

We discuss the move toward unionization among adjuncts, and what that might mean for professors and students. Our guests:

  • Colleen Wolf, adjunct lecturer in music at Nazareth College
  • Jake Allen, organizer for SEIU-Faculty Forward at Nazareth College
  • Pat Domaratz, labor relations specialist employed by NYSUT
  • Paul Ciminelli, Second Amendment expert and attorney at Ciminelli & Ciminelli, and adjunct professor in homeland security management at Monroe Community College

First hour: Discussing adjunct professors' efforts to unionize

Second hour: Caring for caregivers

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