Catherine Welch

News Director

Before her arrival in Rhode Island, Catherine was news director at WHQR in Wilmington, North Carolina. She was also news director at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri 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 North Carolina Press Association, Missouri Press Association, and Missouri Broadcasters Association.

She files regularly for NPR’s All Things ConsideredMorning Edition and Weekend Edition.  In 2008 she was part of an NPR series on America’s Battalion out of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, 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.

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

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RI Economy
1:00 am
Mon April 15, 2013

URI Prof: Uptick in RI Economy has Slowed

The state’s economy cooled down in the first two months of this year. That’s according to a University of Rhode Island economist. The slowdown comes just as the state’s economy was starting to get its mojo back.

URI professor Len Lardaro said a wide swath of the state’s economy was starting to cook during the back half of last year. But in January and February, that growth cooled off. Lardaro said sluggish retail sales and an uptick in unemployment claims have him worried.

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Business
3:20 pm
Thu April 11, 2013

Electric Boat Looking to Expand at Quonset

Electric Boat is looking to expand its footprint at the Quonset Point shipyard. Electric Boat spokesman Bob Hamilton said discussions are preliminary at this point, but he said space will be needed for the construction of two, Virginia-class submarines and other work for the U.S. Navy.

“We expect to need some space for the Navy’s Moored Training Ships, which we’re involved with,” said Hamilton, “as well as the Ohio replacement, which is the next class of submarine.”

Hamilton said sequestration cuts will have a minimal impact on Electric Boat’s submarine building work.

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Made in Rhode Island
1:11 am
Thu April 11, 2013

Made in RI: Making Rugs at Colonial Mills

Colonial Mills in Pawtucket makes braided rugs for major retail outlets across the country.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Flip through catalogs for J.C. Penney, Restoration Hardware or Pottery Barn and you could see a braided rug for sale. You might assume that rug was made overseas, but there’s a good chance it was made in Pawtucket. As part of our on-going series, Made in Rhode Island, Catherine Welch visited Colonial Mills where thousands of braided rugs are shipped out of Pawtucket to major chain stores across the country.

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RI Film Industry
3:21 pm
Wed April 10, 2013

Movie Shoot Expected to Drop About $5M into RI Economy

The head of Rhode Island’s film office said tax credits helped lure an independent film production starring Mark Ruffalo. The movie will be shooting around the state until mid-May.

The film, “Infinitely Polar Bear” is based on the life of its director, who happened to have spent time in Rhode Island. Head of the state’s film office, Steven Feinberg, said Massachusetts and New York were courting the production, but Rhode Island landed the film thanks to tax credits and some unique locations.

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RI News
8:31 am
Mon April 8, 2013

EZPass Will Save Drivers Money on the Sakonnet Bridge

The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority is working out how much it will charge drivers to cross the new Sakonnet River Bridge. The authority will charge less for drivers with an EZPass.

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Environment
5:04 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Sen. Reed's Bill Puts RI on Fishery Board Managing Squid

Credit Senator Jack Reed's Office

Senator Jack Reed is trying to get Rhode Island a seat on the management board that oversees squid and other species caught by Rhode Island fishermen.

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Gun Control Legislation
4:46 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Sen. Jack Reed: Background Checks Need to Stay in the Bill

Senator Jack Reed says he thinks background checks would be effective in curbing gun violence. The New York Times reports that opposition to background checks is holding back federal gun control legislation.

Reed says he hopes background checks stay in the bill. “You know if we can’t get the background checks through there’s not much we’re doing in response to one of the great tragedies of recent years,” says Reed.

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Rhode Island Veterans
1:11 am
Tue April 2, 2013

West Warwick Veterans Home Named After Fallen RI Marine

A housing facility for disabled veterans will be dedicated Tuesday afternoon to a fallen Rhode Island Marine.

Seven years ago today, Marine Sgt. Brian St. Germain was riding in a truck across Iraq when it rolled over in a flash flood. The Rhode Island chapter of Operation Stand Down is honoring St. Germain’s life and service, by putting his name on its West Warwick facility for homeless and disabled veterans.

Operation Stand Down’s Tony DeQuattro says this is part of a push that started two years ago to rename all of their facilities after fallen troops. 

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Rocky Point Land
11:51 am
Thu March 28, 2013

RI Now Owns Remaining Piece of Rocky Point Land

The state now owns the remaining parcel of land in Warwick that was home to the Rocky Point amusement park. The land will be turned into a coastal state park.

The state closed on 82 acres of land at Warwick City Hall, using $9.6 million of a $10 million bond passed a little more than two years ago.

It’s going to take a while before the public can enjoy the park. The Department of Environmental Management says it needs to clean up the site and remove safety hazards, but the DEM will open up sections of land over the next year.

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RI News
1:39 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Several Tips but No Solid Leads on Missing Brown Student

Sunil "Sunny" Tripathi has been missing since March 16th,
Credit Tripathi Family Photo

The family of a missing Brown student says while tips are pouring in, there are still no significant leads. The 22-year-old has been missing since March 16th.  Providence Police had said that the family thought Sunil Tripathi committed suicide, but the family is now ruling that out.

The father of Sunil “Sunny” Tripathi  says every day the family calls homeless shelters, hospitals and is plastering fliers up in areas his son liked to visit, hoping that someone knows where he is.

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