Katie O'Reilly

Graduate Fellow -News

Katie is a first-year creative nonfiction student in UNCW's MFA creative writing program. A Chicago native, Katie graduated from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism in 2007, and has since worked for The Onion/A.V. Club, The Huffington Post, and as an English teacher in the Czech Republic. She most recently spent several years in Los Angeles serving as the managing editor of DAYSPA Magazine. As a long-time fan of the Atlantic Ocean and public radio, she is thrilled to be living in Wilmington and working with WHQR.

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Local - March 20
5:00 am
Fri March 21, 2014

City of Wilmington Planners Hit the Bars to Collect Public Input

Home Leisure Direct

The City of Wilmington is expected to gain 60,000 citizens by the year 2040. In anticipation, city planners have launched a comprehensive plan similar to that of New Hanover County. While the Wilmington plan also asks residents to describe their ideal community attributes, its public engagement process is less orthodox. In fact, city planners have been hitting the local bar scene to collect input.

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Local - March 19
5:00 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Candidate Profile: Michael T. Burns (R), NC Senate, District 9

Michael T. Burns grew up in western North Carolina’s Jackson County, and spent time living in Georgia, Idaho and Raleigh before calling Wilmington home. Burns manages a RadioShack in Wilmington, and is active within the local Mormon Church.

A political newcomer, he’s also running for the District 9 Senate seat soon to be vacated by Thom Goolsby. Burns, a Republican, says Goolsby has done a wonderful job, and that he hopes to continue his work. WHQR’s Katie O’Reilly spoke with the 20-year retail veteran about his plans to create local business--while cutting government spending.

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Local - March 14
5:00 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Wilmington Inching Closer Toward its Very Own Brand Identity

At a meeting last Friday, BILT members brainstormed overarching concepts they hope to encapsulate in Wilmington's eventual brand identity.

UNCW business experts seek to launch Wilmington into an elite class of locales with memorable branding slogans—such as “I love New York” or “Pure Michigan.” It’s part of a sweeping initiative to beckon businesses and people to the Cape Fear Region. After months of research, UNCW’s Brand Identity Leadership Team, or BILT, has identified this region’s most attractive quality.

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Local - March 14
5:00 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Assistance League of Greater Wilmington Opens Neighborhood Thrift Shop

Assistance League of Greater Wilmington

One area nonprofit is embarking on a brand-new funding stream this weekend. The Assistance League of Greater Wilmington—whose community volunteers provide school uniforms to children in need, prune hospital gardens, and moonlight as puppeteers bearing anti-bullying messages—is cutting the ribbon at its newest philanthropic venture, a thrift store. The operation is expected to pull in $100,000 to $200,000 annually.

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Local - March 7
4:07 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Planning Board Recommends Changes to SUP Application Process--Including More Public Hearings

Industrial businesses looking to call New Hanover County home may soon be required to hold public meetings as part of the special use permit -- or SUP – process. And the SUP is what they need to launch or expand operations. This is one among several changes that the county planning board unanimously recommended at last night’s public hearing on the most recent SUP draft—an update of a version that was tabled in January. And community stakeholders on both sides of the issue—business leaders and environmental advocates—say this new draft presents a compromise they can live with.

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Local - March 5
5:00 am
Thu March 6, 2014

Hampstead Citizen Group to Challenge NC Department of Transportation Over Proposed Bypass Plan

Hampstead's Chapel Pond, home to several types of birds and fish, would be destroyed under the DOT's proposed bypass plan.

A group of Hampstead citizens has organized to oppose a proposed interchange along Highway 17 that would bisect their town. Construction of this thirty-million-dollar ramp is slated to begin in 2023; however, the local group is already fighting the six-lane interchange, saying the project will disrupt local business and the environment.

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Local - March 3
1:15 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

In-Person Scams and Digital Fraud: Burgeoning Forms of Elder Abuse

Wikimedia Commons

Like most people, today’s elderly citizens are using Facebook, Craigslist, online dating sites and email—which leaves them more susceptible than ever before to scams and fraud. Nowadays, 1 in 20 older persons nationwide indicate some form of recent financial mistreatment.

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Local - February 28
2:52 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

New Hanover County Kicks Off Public Engagement Aspect of Comprehensive Plan

County representatives say the American Planning Association chose New Hanover to pilot this program because of its diversity and unique, coastal conditions.

By 2040, New Hanover County’s population is expected to match that of present-day Tampa. Which is why the county’s launching a first-ever comprehensive plan to address the future of local land use, resources, infrastructure and development patterns. As one of ten communities selected by the American Planning Association to pilot this program, the county is depending on citizen input to help chart the course—and more than 120 members of the community attended the recent public launch of the plan.

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Local - February 26
11:24 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Can Parks Drive Regional Economic Development?

Wilmington's Greenfield Park

As New Hanover County launches its comprehensive plan to accommodate the region’s projected growth, leaders are looking into the future of open spaces and parks. Tuesday night, the Cape Fear Economic Development Council, or CFEDC, assembled a panel of green space proponents from the county--as well as from the City of Wilmington--to discuss ideas for new and improved public spaces.

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Local - February 26
11:15 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Citizen Action to Propel Housing Authority's Choice Neighborhood Grant Application

WHA board members discussed committee activity during a Monday meeting at Wilmington's Houston Moore community.

In gearing up to apply for a ninety-million-dollar grant to revitalize a huge swath of the city, the Wilmington Housing Authority made a loud plea for citizen involvement. And it’s now being answered. Nearly one hundred people—from public housing residents to local business leaders—are volunteering to serve on sub-committees dedicated to making Wilmington’s application as competitive as it can be.

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