Megan Mack

Connections Producer

Megan Mack the producer of Connections with Evan Dawson and Unleashed: The Pet Show. She joined the WXXI News team from WHEC-TV, where she produced newscasts and The Olympic Zone, and from the University of Rochester, where she served as an assistant director of public relations. Her background extends to television sports and entertainment, and to communications and social media management for non-profits.

Megan earned her B.S. in Television-Radio-Film from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, and her B.A. in Italian Language, Literature, and Culture from the College of Arts and Sciences at Syracuse University. She is also a graduate of The Second City’s Conservatory program.

Ways to Connect

Research shows that spanking and other forms of corporal punishment for children do not improve behavior. Instead, the data indicates that physical punishment can lead to aggression, problems at school, mental health issues, and even child abuse by parents. Despite that, surveys show that about 65 percent of Americans approve of spanking.

This hour, we discuss the facts, why some parents believe in spanking, and what the experts recommend as the most appropriate methods for disciplining children. In studio:

Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the United States, and the CDC says that growing crisis is caused by opioids. Local leaders are joining together to help combat the epidemic.

This hour, we preview the Churches Combating Addiction Conference, which will bring together experts in law enforcement, hospitals, recovery agencies, and churches. Our guests share their insight and answer your questions about the opioid epidemic. 


First hour: Churches Combating Addiction Conference

Second hour: The effects of spanking and corporal punishment on children

Wendell Castle, an icon in the furniture design movement, has died. Castle had deep roots in the Rochester community, and leaves a storied career and legacy.

We discuss it with our guests:

One year after worldwide women's marches, thousands more took to the streets in western New York and across the country.

We discuss the issues central to the movement. We also discuss what it means to be active, beyond marching or protesting. Our guests:

  • Mercedes Mike, education organizer for Metro Justice/Alliance for Quality Education who attended marches in Rochester in 2017 and 2018
  • Stephanie Vargas, activist who attended the 2017 march in Washington, D.C.
  • Miriam Zinter, activist who attended the 2017 march in Washington, D.C.
  • Marta Driscoll, program and outreach manager at Causewave Community Partners who attended the 2017 march in Washington, D.C.

First hour: Discussing the Women's March, one year later 

Second hour: Remembering artist Wendell Castle

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 Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act;
  • Property tax assessments, with Paychex founder Tom Golisano;
  • "John Henryism" and mental health in the African American community;
  • "Making it" in the music industry, with Kate Lee O'Connor and Forrest O'Connor of the O'Connor Band.

A recent article in (585) Magazine aimed to cover the Rochester comedy landscape. The article was bolstered by many photos, and yet it featured almost entirely men. Why? Women in comedy responded, saying this is rather typical of how women tend to be dismissed in this field.

We discuss women in comedy, and the challenges they can face. In studio:

*You can read the follow-up piece to (585)'s initial article here.

Rochester did not make the cut for Amazon's HQ2. The final 20 cities were revealed on Thursday. It's a disappointment for the team that put together Rochester's proposal, but they point out that all of the finalists were large-market areas.

We discuss their bid, and the plan for economic revitalization now that the Amazon dream has died. Our guests:

  • Bob Duffy, CEO of the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce
  • Matt Hurlbutt, CEO of Greater Rochester Enterprise
  • Alex White, local activist, organizer, and small business founder

First hour: What's next for Rochester after the failed Amazon proposal?

Second hour: Challenges faced by women in comedy