Catherine Welch

News Director

Catherine Welch is news director at Rhode Island Public Radio. Before her move to Rhode Island in 2010, Catherine was news director at WHQR in Wilmington, NC. She was also news director at KBIA in Columbia, MO where she was a faculty member at the University Of Missouri School Of Journalism. Catherine has won several regional Edward R. Murrow awards and awards from the Public Radio News Directors Inc., New England AP, North Carolina Press Association, Missouri Press Association, and Missouri Broadcasters Association.

Now that she manages a full newsroom she files less regularly for NPR’s All Things ConsideredMorning Edition and Weekend Edition.  In 2009 she was part of an NPR series on America’s Battalion out of Camp Lejeune, NC following Marine families during the battalion’s deployment to southern Afghanistan. And because Wilmington was the national test market for the digital television conversion, she became a quasi-expert on DTV, filing stories for NPR on the topic.

Catherine got her start in radio at her family’s radio station in Florida with her weekly jazz show "Catherine Keeping You Company." Her very first interview was with Cab Calloway, and it remains the strangest one she’s ever done. She will gladly tell you the story should you ask.

Before joining the public radio family, Catherine worked in television at KTVU in Oakland, CA and at the cable technology network formerly known as TechTV.

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Economy
9:29 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Rhode Island's Jobless Rate Declines For 16th Straight Month

Rhode Island's jobless numbers declined for the 16th month in a row.
Credit Aaron Read / RIPR

Rhode Island’s jobless rate edged down to 7.1 percent in November. It’s still above the national rate of 5.8 percent. The jobless rate has dropped two percentage points so far for the year.

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RI News
4:14 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

European Companies Look To Open Shop In Rhode Island

Representatives from the five businesses laid out their plans during the announcement at the Statehouse.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Five European companies are looking to set up shop in Rhode Island. Gov. Lincoln Chafee said the announcement is part of an economic tide rolling in to Rhode Island.

At an announcement at the Statehouse, the five companies said they have plans to put down stakes here. SCORE, an encryption technology firm, will locate a data processing center. REIOS designs efficient lighting systems and will build an assembly plant. Italian restaurant chain Galivm will open at least one location. And Furniture maker Monaghan Brothers out of Ireland said it will open a show room.

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RI News
3:08 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Packed Hearing As RI PUC Ponders National Grid 24 Percent Requested Rate Hike

Resident Steve Anderson tells the PUC that if more natural gas pipeline is needed, then build it. Anderson spoke at a hearing on National Grid's proposed 24 percent rate hike.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

In a packed hearing room, the state’s Public Utilities Commission listened to testimony for much of the day on National Grid’s proposed 24 percent rate hike.

The increase would kick in January 1st, how long it will last is another matter. The PUC heard testimony both for and against stretching a lower rate out over twelve months as opposed to the requested six months.

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RI News
8:38 am
Tue December 16, 2014

RI Residents To Voice Opinions On Proposed Energy Rate Hikes

Residents will get a chance Tuesday to tell the state’s Public Utilities Commission how they feel about a proposed 24 percent rate hike from National Grid.  If approved, the rate hike would kick in on January 1st .

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Politics
5:45 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Gov. Chafee: I Couldn’t Have Done Anything Differently To Save 38 Studios

Gov. Lincoln Chafee at his exit interview at the Rhode Island Public Radio studios.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Gov. Lincoln Chafee said one of his biggest regrets is not getting his first budget passed. That budget proposed lowering the sales tax but expanding it to other items and services.

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RI News
8:46 am
Mon December 15, 2014

State Police To Host Forum Addressing Community Relations

State Police Captain Steven O'Donnell
Credit RIPR FILE

Rhode Island State Police and a number of organizations are holding a public forum Monday to discuss the gap between law enforcement and minority communities. 

Col. Steven O’Donnell said it’s a chance for law enforcement to explain how they do their job and in return residents can reflect on how police are perceived. “There’s so much that we do that people really don’t know, and I think it’s important that they know what we’re doing. We’re not always going to be perfect, but if we engage that community there’s a better understanding of how we do business,” said O’Donnell.

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RI News
2:09 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Santander Pledges $24M Loans To Providence Low & Moderate-Income Residents

Mayor Angel Taveras announced back in May the lawsuit against Santander for limiting loans in minority neighborhoods. That lawsuit has been dropped.
Credit File / RIPR

Providence mayor Angel Taveras said he’s thrilled with a pledge from the bank Santander to make millions of dollars of loans to low and moderate-income residents.

The city sued the bank last May claiming it deliberately limited loans in minority neighborhoods. That lawsuit was dropped, and in return Santander gave Providence $1.3 million in grants and now promises to make $24 million in loans over the next three years.

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RI News
12:02 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

RI State Police Hitting The Road Looking For Drunk Drivers

Rhode Island State Police will add troopers to patrols for the holiday starting Friday.
Credit File / RIPR

More troopers will be out on the roads starting Friday cracking down on drunk drivers.

State Police will roll out two initiatives. The first one starts Friday with troopers looking out for aggressive drivers, drivers who are texting, seatbelt violations, and drunk or impaired drivers. That runs through New Year’s Day.

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RI News
9:16 am
Wed December 10, 2014

New Data Released On The State's Homeless Population

Last month, hundreds of volunteers fanned out across the state to survey the state’s homeless population. They checked shelters, walked the streets and combed the woods; seeking out homeless residents and asking questions about their health and needs. The data were then compiled and analyzed by homeless advocates. Jim Ryczek executive director of the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless shared what they found with Rhode Island Public Radio’s Catherine Welch.

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RI News
2:32 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Gas Prices Continue To Fall In RI, MA & CT

Rhode Islanders are paying an average $2.86 for a gallon of regular unleaded, that's down 63 cents from a year ago.
Credit File / RIPR

Prices continue to fall at the pump, drivers in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut are all paying less for an average gallon of regular unleaded.

In Rhode Island, it will cost you $2.86 a gallon, that’s a seven-cent drop from last week. Drivers in Massachusetts are paying an average $2.78 a gallon, and Connecticut drivers are paying $3.01, nine cents lower than last week.

This is the 14th straight week that the AAA survey found prices dropping in the Ocean State. A year ago, Rhode Islanders were paying 63 cents more per gallon.

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