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 News
8:59 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Naval Station Newport Grapples with the Federal Shutdown

Operations at the Naval Station Newport are carrying on without hundreds of civilian workers caught up in the partial government shut down. The Naval Station Newport says about 800 civilians were furloughed. And over at the Naval War College, civilian instructors are staying home Wednesday and throughout the shutdown. Commander Carla McCarthy said that’s forced some classes to be suspended.

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RI News
8:48 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Providence Ban on Flavored Tobacco Upheld by First Circuit Court of Appeals

Providence's ban on flavored tobacco and cigarette coupons that went into effect in January 2013 was affirmed by the First Circuit Court of Appeals.

The City of Providence said it hopes more municipalities follow its lead and pass ordinances that curb the sale of flavored tobacco products. The First Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a pair of ordinances banning the sale of flavored tobacco products and some store discounts.

The ban went into effect last January. Peter Asen, director of Providence’s Healthy Communities Office, said it likely contributed to results of a new study showing low rates of smoking in 6th 8th and 12th graders

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Transportation
4:33 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

Gov. Chafee Inspects Old East Side Rail Tunnel

RIDOT workers at the tunnel opening at 101 N. Main Street
Catherine Welch RIPR

Gov. Lincoln Chafee said the old East Side train tunnel is in better shape than he thought it would be. Chafee made the comment after walking the mile-long old rail tunnel that runs underneath College Hill. The Rhode Island Department of Transportation said there are no plans for the tunnel, that this was just an inspection. But Chafee said he can imagine RIPTA buses using the tunnel.

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RIPR News
12:12 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

It's a Sweet America’s Cup Victory for Sail Newport

The latest America's Cup win could mean events like the World Series that sailed off Newport in 2012 could return to Rhode Island.
Credit Bradley Campbell / RIPR

Thursday is an especially sweet day for Sail Newport. It’s not only celebrating the Oracle Team USA win over New Zealand for the America’s Cup, but today is also Sail Newport’s 30th anniversary.

The public sailing center was formed almost immediately after America lost the cup to Australia in the waters off Newport. Sail Newport Executive Director Brad Read couldn’t be more thrilled with the timing of the America’s Cup win.

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Health Care
2:12 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

First Human Case of West Nile Diagnosed in RI

An Exeter man has been treated for the first human case of West Nile in Rhode Island this year.

The Rhode Island Department of Health said the 33-year-old Exeter man first started developing symptoms on September 11.  Two days later he was at South County Hospital, diagnosed with viral meningitis caused by West Nile Virus. He was released a few days later and is recovering at home.

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RI News
8:53 am
Mon September 23, 2013

New Life For Old Train Tunnel May Be in the Works

The state is looking at ways to use the old east side train tunnel that has sat closed up for decades.
Credit Aaron Reed / RIPR

Gov. Lincoln Chafee and the head of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation are planning to inspect an abandoned train tunnel in Providence to see how it could be used in the future. The tunnel was built in 1906 connecting the Seekonk River to the Providence River.

Gov. Chafee said he’d like to see if it could be opened and used for RIPTA buses. DOT director Michael Lewis said there are no firm plans for the old tunnel and the point of Thursday’s inspection is to see if it’s structurally sound.

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Business
2:00 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Group Will Promote the Tasty Side of RI’s Economy at Waterfire

This pig at Pat's Pastured is part of Rhode Island's growing farm to table economy.
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

There will be a tent set up at Saturday’s Waterfire to educate residents about Rhode Island’s growing food sector. The tent will offer samples from a wide variety of locally made foods and beverages. By luring people through their taste buds, project coordinator Melissa Withers said they can then show the public the diversity of expertise in the state’s food economy.

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Education
10:17 am
Thu September 19, 2013

Board of Education Chair Mancuso Not Commenting on ACLU Lawsuits

Board of Education chair Eva-Marie Mancuso, not currently commenting on the recent lawsuits brought by the ACLU.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

The head of the state’s Board of Education says she can’t comment on legal action taken against the board by the Rhode Island chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Board Chair Eva-Marie Mancuso says she’s going to let the legal process move forward. The ACLU took legal action this week saying a the board violated the open meetings law last week when it voted behind closed doors to reject a petition urging reconsideration of the NECAP testing requirement. 

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Environment
9:04 am
Thu September 19, 2013

North Kingstown Facing the Impending Impact of Climate Change

Residents and businesses in the North Kingstown area are invited to a free public meeting regarding the impacts of climate change, rising tides, and flooding in the coastal communities of Rhode Island.

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Affordable Care Act
2:28 am
Wed September 18, 2013

Explaining the Health Insurance Exchange to RI's Latino Community

A crowd gathered in Pawtucket to hear about HealthSource RI, the state's health insurance exchange
Credit Catherine Welch / RIPR

Representatives of HealthSource RI, the state-run health insurance exchange, are meeting with Latino business owners in Central Falls Wednesday. It’s part of a push to educate the state’s growing Latino community about the upcoming exchange. Rhode Island Public Radio’s Catherine Welch was at a similar meeting last week in Pawtucket, where she learned about the challenges of translating a complex health care system to non-English speakers.

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