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.

Ways to Connect

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Rhode Island will get $45,248 in federal funding to help low-income students take Advanced Placement exams.

The U.S. Department of Education announced a round of grants for more than 30 states on Wednesday. Connecticut,  Massachusetts and New Hampshire were also among the states receiving funding.

The grant amounts were based on state estimates of how many AP tests would be taken by low-income students. Federal officials said the program is intended to pay for all but $12 of the cost of each test, although states can require students to pay more.

Emily Wooldridge / RIPR

State Department officials are meeting with artists at the Rhode Island School of Design this week for a series of workshops on design and public policy.

RISD head of continuing education Greg Victory said good designers consider a variety of perspectives. He thinks that approach that might improve things like public policy and legislation.

“Often times the times the process doesn’t really include for lack of a better term the user, until late in the game, and at some points, that’s too late.”

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

Rhode Island’s New Education Commissioner Ken Wagner started work this week with a visit to a public school in Providence. He stopped by Rhode Island Public Radio to talk about test scores and the state of Rhode Island Public Schools with Rhode Island Public Radio’s Elisabeth Harrison.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you. news@ripr.org

Don Borman

Rhode Island House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello said Monday he's hopeful an agreement will emerge in the near future for a plan to build a new PawSox stadium in downtown Providence.

"Since I don't have a finalized set of terms at this point, I can't predict," Mattiello said. "But in the near future. I would like to see something come out within the next few weeks, several weeks."

Mattiello said the intention is to arrive at an agreement for a revenue-neutral proposal and solicit feedback from the public.

John Bender

Rhode Island's new Education Commissioner Ken Wagner officially begins his tenure on Saturday, August 1st, although he is not expected in the office until Monday.

The Rhode Island Department of Education says his first day on the job will include meetings with students, parents and teachers. Wagner is also expected to meet with his new staff.

A former deputy education commissioner in New York State, Wagner has moved to Rhode Island with his family.

He succeeds Deborah Gist as Rhode Island's education chief.

It might sound something like this spot-on satire from Key & Peele.

Keep watching for the car commercial at the end.


Elisabeth Harrison

Two experimental high schools scheduled to open in Providence this fall will be known as 360 High School and Evolutions High School.

Both schools will be located inside larger, existing high schools. Evolutions will be inside Mt. Pleasant High School, and 360 will be at Hope High School.

Elisabeth Harrison

After the release of a video showing a Texas traffic stop that escalates into an arrest for Sandra Bland, an African-American woman who was later found dead in a prison cell, some Rhode Islanders say they are disturbed, but not surprised. Rhode Island Public Radio’s Elisabeth Harrison has our story.

In a patch of shade across the street from Pawtucket City Hall, Dwayne Adams sighs deeply and says yes, he has heard about Sandra Bland.

Transportation officials reopened the Park Avenue Bridge in Cranston six days ahead of schedule. Repairs began in late June due to replace an aging wooden deck that supports the bridge. RIDOT Director Peter Alviti calls the repair a short-term solution.

“A $400,000 project that allowed us to put a temporary fix while we design and build a permanent replacement to this bridge,” said Alviti.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Three senior transportation officials have been placed on administrative leave, but it has nothing to do with the sudden closure of the Park Avenue Bridge in Cranston, according to Governor Gina Raimondo.

Rhode Island’s ranking for child well-being has dropped from last year, according to a new report from the child advocacy group Kids Count. 

Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner is weighing in on the legal challenge to the settlement over the state pension overhaul, whether he is considering a run for the governor’s office, and more.

Magaziner sat down with Rhode Island Public Radio News Director Elisabeth Harrison and RIPR Political Analyst Scott MacKay.

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

The uphill battle to improve Rhode Island's economy, an appeal of the state pension settlement, and the mysterious explosion on Salty Brine Beach. That's all part of the conversation this week on Political Roundtable.

Rhode Island Public Radio’s Elisabeth Harrison hosts; Ian Donnis is away. We're joined, as always, by URI political science professor Maureen Moakley and RIPR's political analyst Scott MacKay.

RIPR File Photo

Sen. Jack Reed has not decided whether he supports President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran. On the one hand, Reed calls the agreement historic. On the other hand, he points out that failure would mean nuclear capabilities for Iran, which could spread to neighboring countries.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Authorities have ruled out the possibility that a cable underneath the beach might have caused the blast, which knocked a woman into a jetty on Saturday.

Updating reporters on their investigation, state police reported few new details in the case that has left officials and residents scratching their heads.