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, 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 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 with Cab Calloway remains the strangest one she’s ever done, and 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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The Bottom Line
4:00 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

The Bottom Line: Gambling In New England

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

This week Catherine Welch fills in for Dave. She and Mark talk with Clyde Barrow, director of the Center for Policy Analysis at UMass Dartmouth. They discuss how gambling in Massachusetts affects Rhode Island’s gaming locations, and ask, at what point does the New England casino industry reach saturation?

When to Listen

You can hear The Bottom Line each Friday at 5:50pm.

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RI News
8:47 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Families Remember The Station Nightclub Tragedy Eleven Years Later

Site of the former Station Nightclub in West Warwick.
Credit Flo Jonic / RIPR

Thursday marks eleven years since the Station nightclub fire that killed 100 people and injured 200.

At 18 years old, Nicholas O’Neil was the youngest victim. His band, Shryne, was going to open for Great White the following night, so he was at the club on February 20th, 2003 to check out the place. O’Neil’s dad, Dave Kane, said he thinks about his son every day.

“It’s interesting people say to me, ‘oh geez, I hope I’m not bringing up a bad memory.’ Like I forgot. I mean, we have this every day, the knowledge of what has happened and the aftermath, we live it every day.”

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RI News
1:09 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Gas Prices Up In RI & MA

The average gallon of regular unleaded in Rhode Island is at $3.44, that's higher than the national average of $3.36.
Credit file

Drivers in Rhode Island and Massachusetts will find gas prices a bit higher this week – up by two cents in Rhode Island. Gas prices in both states are higher than the national average.

Even though prices at the pump took a bigger jump in Massachusetts, on average Rhode Island drivers are still paying more. The latest survey out of AAA Southern New England finds Ocean State drivers paying $3.48 for the average gallon of regular unleaded, while Massachusetts drivers are paying $3.44.

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RI News
3:53 pm
Sun February 16, 2014

RI DLT Expands Hours At Unemployment Call Center

The DLT unemployment insurance call center will be open Monday and Tuesday 8:00 am - 3:00pm, closed Wednesday, open Thursday and Friday 8:00 am - 3:00pm.

Starting Monday the Department of Labor and Training is expanding the hours of its call center handling unemployment insurance.

The DLT call center used to take calls for two full days and three half days, but now it will take calls every weekday except Wednesday, said Assistant Director, Bob Langlais.

“We thought it was better for customer service we be open four full days, we won’t be any half days,” said Langlais, “and then they’ll have a full day for our staff to do their back office.”

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RI News
3:43 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

RI Pension Deal Details Unveiled, Pension Board OKs Plan

State treasurer Gina Raimondo and Retirement Board member Michael Robinson announce the 6-1 vote on the proposed pension settlement.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

The state retirement board voted in closed session Friday afternoon to approve a proposed pension settlement. The board met in executive session for nearly an hour, ending in a vote of 6 – 1, with 5 abstentions.

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Business
1:11 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Strong Chocolate Sales This Valentine’s Day For RI Chocolatier

Making chocolates at Jennifer's Chocolates.
Credit Courtesy Jennifer's Chocolates

One local chocolatier says this has been a busy Valentine’s Day. Jennifer Dowell owns Jennifer’s Chocolates in Wakefield. Sales this year are way ahead of last year, she speculates that maybe the bad weather prodded couples to get their Valentine’s orders in early.

The big sellers this year are smoked sea salt caramels, truffles, and chocolate dipped strawberries – lots of chocolate dipped strawberries. “We have about a million orders for strawberries,” Dowell said. “Strawberries have to be eaten and dipped on the same day so, we have ah … we’re doing a lot of strawberries.”

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RI News
2:58 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Beloved Woonsocket Athletic Director Dies After Taking A Fall

Students and faculty at Woonsocket High School are mourning the loss of athletic director George Nasuti. He died Tuesday night, the school community received the news Wednesday morning.

Nasuti’s family said he was refereeing a basketball game in Burrillville Friday night when he fell and hit his head on the court.  The Woonsocket Call reports that Nasuti then went into a coma.

Woonsocket Superintendent Giovanna Donoyan sent out a statement to the school community notifying them of Nasuti death, “we are all better people for having George in our life.”

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RI News
2:54 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

DOJ Files Lawsuit Over Hiring Practice at RI Dept. Of Corrections

The U.S. Justice Department is suing the state and the state corrections department, claiming employment discrimination. The Justice Department claims employment practices for hiring entry-level corrections officers violate the Civil Rights Act.

The lawsuit challenges the hiring practice at the Rhode Island Department of Corrections requiring applicants to take a written and video exam. The Justice Department claims that those exams do not help identify qualified candidates, but instead disproportionately screen out black and Hispanic candidates.

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Politics
1:06 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Dem’s In RI Governor’s Racing Hammering Out A People’s Pledge

Campaign managers of the three main democrats running for governor met Monday to start hammering out a pledge to limit outside spending in the race. John Marion, president of the good government group, Common Cause, facilitated the two-hour meeting.

The so-called People’s Pledge made headlines in the Massachusetts senate race between Scott Brown and Elizabeth Warren. In that race the candidates agreed to discourage outside spending on TV, radio and the internet, but not direct mail.

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Politics
2:04 pm
Sun February 9, 2014

Gun-Rights Supporters Out Spent in Exeter Recall

Town Clerk's office in Exeter.
Credit Wikimedia Commons / RIPR

Campaign finance records show that gun-rights supporters were outspent during the recall of four Exeter town council members back in December.

Back in December there was a special election to recall four Exeter town council members for their support of a move to take gun permitting out of the hands of the town clerk and let the attorney general’s office do the permitting.  

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