Ian Donnis

Political Reporter

Ian Donnis has been the political reporter for Rhode Island Public Radio since 2009. The Washington Post has repeatedly named him as one of Rhode Island’s best political reporters. In addition to other tasks, Ian tweets frequently at @IanDon, hosts RIPR’s weekly Political Roundtable, and contributes to the station’s On Politics blog. He was for many years a regular panelist on WPRI/WNAC-TV’s Newsmakers, and remains an occasional guest on RI-PBS' A Lively Experiment. Ian previously worked for the Providence Phoenix, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, and The Associated Press. His reporting has been recognized by the Associated Press, the New England Press Association, the Rhode Island Press Association, and Rhode Island for Community & Justice.

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On Politics
3:14 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Channel 12′s Howell, Abouzeid promoted to new assignments

Kudos and congrats to Jay Howell, the longtime president/general manager at WPRI/WNAC-TV, who has gotten a promotion to VP for regional television with the stations’ parent company, LIN Media. Also moving up is news diretor Joe Abouzeid, to a new role as president/GM of WDTN-TV and WBDT-TV in Dayton, Ohio.

Howell will remain in Providence, while Abouzeid has already set off for the Buckeye State.

Here’s the word on Howell’s successor, via a news release from Channel 12:

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On Politics
11:23 am
Wed October 17, 2012

Diossa has apparent lead with $22K war chest in run-up to November 6 election in Central Falls

City Councilor James Diossa has by far the largest war chest among the 4 Central Falls mayoral candidates who have filed updated campaign finance reports. Five hopefuls are set to square off November 6.

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On Politics
3:28 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Chafee reinforces his support for a long-term approach to economic development

With a series of organizations calling for more urgency in jolting Rhode Island’s under-performing economy, Governor Lincoln Chafee says the state needs to remain focused on a long-term approach. 

Speaking during a news conference highlighting $110 million in federally-backed improvements at T.F. Green Airport, Chafee said:

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On Politics
2:41 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Tomorrow at RIC – What’s the political influence of talk radio in RI?

Yours truly will be part of a panel discussion at Rhode Island College tomorrow (11 am, Room 110, Alger Hall) examining the local political impact of talk radio.

The chat, sponsored by RIC’s American Democracy Project, is entitled, “Does talk radio still rule?” The lineup for the panel includes WPRI.com reporter Ted Nesi, WPRO evening host Matt Allen, Josh Fenton from GoLocal, and Tim Staskiewicz from CBS Radio Boston. The moderator is Gene Valicenti from WJAR-TV.

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On Politics
1:44 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Six things to watch for in Tuesday’s CD1 debate between Cicilline and Doherty

WPRI’s debate this evening between Congressman David Cicilline and Republican challenger Brendan Doherty comes as the First Congressional District race remains up for grabs. Just consider last week’s Brown University poll: it showed Cicilline with a lead of slightly less than 6 percentage points.

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On Politics
5:00 am
Mon October 15, 2012

Five qualify for special mayoral vote in Central Falls on November 6

Five mayoral candidates have qualified for the November 6 mayoral election in Central Falls, according to the office of Secretary of State Ralph Mollis.

Here’s the order of the hopefuls as they appear on the ballot:

Bruce M. CORRIGAN

James A. DIOSSA

Thomas LAZIEH

Joseph P. MORAN, III

Tia RISTAINO-SIEGEL

On Politics
2:00 am
Mon October 15, 2012

Raimondo is using a new name, Empower RI, to ramp up her financial literacy initiative

State Treasurer Gina Raimondo is focusing attention on her newly branded financial-literacy initiative, “Empower RI,” starting with an event tomorrow at the Comprehensive Community Action Program in Warwick:

Via news release:

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On Politics
1:00 am
Mon October 15, 2012

Providence start-up touts itself as “a tool to facilitate democracy”

Lovegov, a Providence startup with three employees, is looking to link would-be political supporters with actual candidates and causes. As MassHighTech.com reports:

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On Politics
5:00 am
Sun October 14, 2012

Can Rhode Island elect some blue-collar people to Congress?

Former Rhode Island congressman Edward Beard gets a shout-out in today’s New York Times as an example of something quite rare: a one-time blue-collar worker who won election to Congress.

Nicholas Carnes, a professor of public policy at Duke University, uses his op-ed piece to argue that we really don’t get to choose whether we’re governed by the rich:

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On Politics
5:00 am
Fri October 12, 2012

TGIF: 14 things about Rhode Island politics + media

It’s time for the second rendition of my new Friday column. Thanks for reading, and as always, feel free to send me tips or thoughts at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org.

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