Elisabeth Harrison

News Director

Elisabeth Harrison's journalism background includes everything from behind-the-scenes work with the CBS Evening News to freelance documentary production.

She joined the WRNI team in 2007 as a Morning Edition producer and freelance journalist. In 2009, she became a full-time reporter, and became the Morning Edition host in 2011.  She was promoted to full-time News Director in June of 2015.

Harrison's education is as wide ranging as her work at Rhode Island Public Radio. She has a B.A. in English and French from Wellesley College, and a joint M.A. in Journalism and French Studies from NYU.

A native of Los Angeles, Harrison loves good food and good movies.

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Elisabeth Harrison

Millions of Americans will jump in their cars this Labor Day weekend, according to AAA Northeast. The non-profit auto club is expecting the largest number of Labor Day travelers since 2008, fueled in part by decreases at the gas pump and improvements in the U.S. economy.

An estimated 35.5 million people will travel 50 miles or more away from home, says AAA, a 1 percent increase over last year. The vast majority will travel by car, which may make for some pretty clogged roadways in New England.


Newport teachers wrapped up two days of training Thursday before the new school year starts after Labor Day. But their contract talks remain at an impasse. National Education Association of Rhode Island President Larry Purtill said there is still time to return to the bargaining table.

“Right now there’s nothing formally set up or any formal discussion but I would hope that would take place very quickly,” said Purtill.

The main sticking point is a contract provision that provides extra pay when class sizes go over the limit.

Rhode Island Department of Corrections

A third letter allegedly threatening the lives of three correctional officers has surfaced at the medium security prison in Cranston. The discovery prompted a lockdown on Wednesday as authorities searched the John J. Moran Medium Security Facility.

As of 5 p.m. prisoners remained confined to their cells and certain areas, and all personal visits were suspended. Rhode Island Department of Corrections spokesman Cory Cloud said State Police are involved in the investigation.

Mark Turek

Trinity Repertory Company, which has also been named the State Theater of Rhode Island, has selected Tom Parrish as its new executive director.

Parrish comes from a similar position at the Geva Theater Center in New York, according to the official announcement of his hiring. 

RIPR file photo

Cardoso Construction has agreed to pay more than $730,000 to settle allegations from the State Department of Labor and Training.

John Bender

Little information is available about what caused a steel structure to collapse Tuesday morning at Bryant University. But officials at Rhode Island Hospital say six workers transported there were all in good condition.

taylor.a/creative commons license

The University of Rhode Island has won $500,000 from the National Science Foundation to launch a graduate center focused on science writing.

The program will include workshops and classes to train students in the sciences  to write more clearly and persuasively. University officials said the program is part of a trend on college campuses, as researchers increasingly recognize the importance of communicating beyond academia.

In a unanimous vote, the Coventry School Committee has adopted a resolution calling for the reversal of a new HPV vaccine requirement.

The resolution asks Governor Gina Raimondo to reconsider the rule, which requires incoming seventh graders to be vaccinated against HPV.

The committee voted after several of its members commented that parents are angered by the mandate. In a video posted on YouTube, a member of the audience expressed similar sentiments.

College students from Salve Regina University are searching for the site of a significant battle in the Revolutionary War. The project, which has garnered federal grant funding, seeks to uncover parts of Middletown's colonial history.

The Salve Regina history department said the students will overlay historic maps and modern, aerial photos to try and pinpoint the exact spot where Colonial and British forces built fortifications in the Siege of Newport in 1778.

In that battle, the colonists joined forces with the French to attack the British, on land and from the sea.

Elisabeth Harrison

A judge has declined to stop a new charter school from opening in Woonsocket. City officials sought an injunction to block RISE Prep, a special type of charter school called a Mayoral Academy. They argued it would take taxpayer money away from local schools. Rhode Island Mayoral Academies Spokeswoman Katelyn Silva disagrees.

“If there are small areas where we can tweak the funding formula to feel more equitable on all sides we are behind that 100 percent,” said Silva. “Until then, I do think that money follows the child is the fairest way to fund public education.”

Elisabeth Harrison

Students and teachers are returning to classrooms across Rhode Island, including Central Falls, where a new superintendent has just taken charge. 


New details are emerging about compromised email information from the University of Rhode Island. URI said the data came from a Gmail system used by the entire university.

The beach affected nearly 3,000 email addresses and passwords, belonging to both current and former students. The vast majority of the account-holders are women.

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment The Bottom Line.  

Our guest this week is Rhode Island Energy Commissioner Marion Gold. She discusses a controversial plan to open a natural gas plant in northern Rhode Island, and what the future may hold for renewable energy and energy prices.

University of Rhode Island

The University of Rhode Island has urged students to change their passwords after a security breach,  involving nearly 3,000 current and former student email accounts. 

Katherine Doherty

Governor Gina Raimondo has cleared her schedule for a family vacation. 

After a busy summer, Raimondo's office says she plans to spend a few days in New Hampshire with her husband and two children.

Raimondo's activity over the summer included a task force to reduce the cost of health care, and another task force to tackle the drug overdose crisis.  

In July, she responded to an audit that revealed serious financial mismanagement at the Department of Children Youth and Families.