Rachel Lewis Hilburn

News Director, All Things Considered Host, CoastLine Host / Producer

Rachel Lewis Hilburn came to WHQR in the spring of 2011.  After serving as back-up host for Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Classical Music for a year, she was named News Director in July of 2012. 

She moved to Wilmington from Los Angeles, where she worked as a financial advisor for Morgan Stanley.  After joining the local ABC affiliate in Wilmington, she wrote and produced local TV newscasts, a 30-minute special program for the Cape Fear Museum showcasing its renovation and new exhibits, and independently wrote and produced a documentary on the lingering effects of the 1898 coup d'etat in Wilmington.   Before joining the staff, Rachel co-produced Stories, Wine, and Cheese - a series of local, live storytelling events which aired on WHQR.  

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New Hanover County’s Board of Commissioners has three open seats this year.  Here are the three Republicans vying for those spots – which carry four-year terms.

Guests in order of appearance:

Derrick Hickey, seeking first term

Patricia Kusek, seeking first term

Woody White, seeking second term

Segment 1

New Hanover County’s Board of Education has three open seats this year.   On September 7th, we met the Republicans.  On this edition of CoastLine, we meet the Democrats vying for those spots – which carry four-year terms.  All three are seeking first terms on what is currently an all-Republican Board.

Guests:

Sandra Leigh, seeking first term

Emma Saunders, seeking first term

Kevin Spears, seeking first term

This edition of CoastLine marks the beginning of our election-focused candidate interviews.  It also marks the return of CoastLine two days a week – Wednesdays and Thursdays with Sunday re-broadcasts of both.

New Hanover County’s Board of Education has three open seats this year.  Here are the three Republicans vying for those spots – which carry four-year terms.  Two of the Republican candidates are incumbents; one is seeking elected office for the first time.   

Guests:

Sandra Leigh

Sandra Leigh is one of three Democrats running for a seat on New Hanover County’s Board of Education.  If elected, it would be her first time holding elected office.  As a relative newcomer to Wilmington, the retired third-grade teacher and principal says she’d like to institute universal pre-school.           

Brunswick County Sheriff's Office

Update on Tropical Storm Hermine, Friday, September 2, 2016, 7:45 PM:

The center of Hermine was about 120 miles southwest of Myrtle Beach, according to Michael Caropolo, Meteorologist in Charge at the National Weather Service in Wilmington.  The rain we’re seeing now is definitely part of the Tropical Storm Hermine system – which will be moving through the Cape Fear region in the next couple of hours.

Kljania / Wikimedia Commons

Spring planting is embedded in our DNA – when the days get longer, the weather warmer, and we know it’s time to take stock of the greening of our piece of the garden.  When it comes to fall, some people are vaguely aware of pumpkins and gourds and, perhaps, cabbage, but there's a great deal more to take advantage of with the cooler, rainier weather.

Guests:

Barbara Sullivan, Author, Garden Perennials for the Coastal South

Rachel Lewis Hilburn

Republican Vice Presidential Nominee Mike Pence is known for his record as a conservative Republican and Tea Party supporter.  At a rally in Leland Wednesday afternoon, Pence explained his running mate’s sometimes-controversial off-the-cuff remarks. 

By James (scubadive67) from Boulder, USA - Flickr, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=63606

Alligators call North Carolina home – but it’s a cold home for them – and until recently the state was considered the northernmost part of their habitat in the United States. We find out on this edition of CoastLine whether that’s still the case. And we explore the implications of human encroachment on alligator habitat – how it’s affecting this species and whether it’s posing an increased risk of danger for humans, particularly in light of the June alligator attack at a Disney resort in Florida that killed a two-year-old boy.

www.tomvmorris.com

Tom Morris has written more than 20 books – most of which distill ancient wisdom from the Greek and Roman philosophers into practical ideas for living in the modern world.  Some of the titles you might recognize:  If Aristotle

Billy Hathorn

On the corner of Market and Third Streets, at the entrance to downtown Wilmington, there is a statue of George Davis.  He was the last Confederate Attorney General.  Third Street near Dock boasts a monument to soldiers of the Confederacy.

The StarNews recently wrote about streets in Wilmington’s Pine Valley neighborhood that are named after Confederate officers.  The namesakes include General Robert E. Lee, Lieutenant General Nathan Bedford Forrest, John D. Barry. 

Ildar Sagdejev / Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Department of Justice has visited Wilmington in response to at least two violent incidents between members of law enforcement and the community.  During those visits, DOJ officials evaluated local law enforcement practices and policies.  That scrutiny is occurring all across the United States, as it seems new cell phone videos showing excessive use of force by police – with people of color usually on the receiving end – seem to pop up with astonishing frequency. 

RLH

A 2015 assessment of cities in North Carolina with a population of 10,000 or more ranked Wilmington second after Asheville for crashes.  For every one minute a freeway lane is blocked due to a crash incident, four minutes of travel time are added.  About 30% of all crashes are secondary crashes -- caused after the initial crash -- possibly due to a sudden stop, distracted driving, or rubber-necking.  Those statistics are courtesy of Jessi Leonard, Division Traffic Engineer for the North Carolina Department of Transportation. 

Claudia Durand

Bald Head Island sits on the East side of the Cape Fear River – at the confluence of the river and the Atlantic ocean.  It is one of the wealthier municipalities within Brunswick County.  Only accessible by ferry, Bald Head Island’s popular reputation is that of an island playground for the affluent.  Golf carts, bicycles, and feet are the primary means of on-island transportation.  And although it’s largely a place of second homes, with the human population peaking in the summer months, estimates of the number of year-round residents range from 160 to 220 people. 

On the next CoastLine:  the Bald Head Island Conservancy marks the end of an era as Suzanne Dorsey closes the chapter on a decade of leadership.  But first, she joins us to explore what she's learned as a coastal scientist from both the turtles and the people of North Carolina.    

Listen for CoastLine Wednesday at noon on HQR News 91 3 FM.  You can ask a question any time by emailing coastline@whqr.org.  Follow us on Twitter at coastlinehqr.

 

Courtesy Martha Peterson

It was 1975 when Martha Peterson’s plane landed in Moscow and launched her assignment as an American case officer for the CIA inside Russia.  After training at CIA headquarters in Virginia, she would be one of the first women in U.S. history to embark on such a mission.  Less than two years after her arrival on a cold November day in Moscow, she would be ambushed at a drop site, arrested, and hauled in for questioning by KGB agents. 

By Miguel Discart from Bruxelles, Belgique (2014-04-07_20-23-08_NEX-6_DSC01281) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

The conversation about masculine and feminine expectations and how we socialize children has been going on in academic circles for decades.  But it’s only recently that a mass shooting like the one in Orlando launches a different narrative.  Of course, the predictable yet important debate about gun policy is re-engergized.  But the emerging profile of the shooter at the Pulse nightclub who killed nearly 50 people has also generated a wider, public conversation about the effects of hypermasculinity on boys and young men. 

Wikimedia Commons

The Orlando shooting has reignited talk of gun control measures… Republican U.S. Senators are grappling with whether and how to get behind the presumptive presidential nominee, Donald Trump.  And a three-judge panel is considering the legality of voting law changes in North Carolina… Could that case wind up in the Supreme Court? 

Language is widely considered to be as much a function of gender as any other gender expression – whether clothing, gender-normative interests such as interior decorating, or personality traits.  But is language so different between the sexes? 

Bonnie Monteleone

When you use a disposable diaper, some scientists would tell you the plastic in that diaper actually stays in the environment for hundreds of years.  The plastic bag you brought home from the grocery store?  Estimates vary, but some put the number of years it takes to decompose as high as one thousand.  Whether those numbers are accurate or more research needs to be done doesn’t change what we know about how plastics are showing up in oceans all over the world – and not only harming marine life – but becoming part of the human food chain. 

Wikimedia Commons

  North Carolina’s state legislature passed HB2 earlier this year, otherwise known as the “Bathroom Bill”, and unwittingly launched a broader, national conversation about how public policy impacts minorities – specifically people who are transgender.  Performers canceled concerts, companies shelved plans to move to or expand in North Carolina, and revenue from tourism dropped. 

By Bundesministerium für Europa, Integration und Äusseres (Arbeitsbesuch Mazedonien) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Syria’s civil war erupted five years ago in the summer of 2011.  According to Al Jazeera, it is the deadliest conflict of the 21st century thus far.  To put that into perspective, the United Nations estimated the death toll to be a quarter of a million people as of last August.  But that’s a fraction of the people who have fled the violence in Syria.  The BBC puts the number of displaced people at 11 million.  And all sides in this conflict have engaged in war crimes -- torture, rape, kidnapping… Public amputations of fingers, hands, feet – and gruesome executions are commonplace. 

We’ve spent week after head-scratching week following outrageous developments – often in the form of Tweets -- from Republican presumptive presidential nominee Donald Trump.  We’ve witnessed the convention-shattering roller coaster of the Hillary Clinton / Bernie Sanders contest.  And, as North Carolinians, we’ve enjoyed the national spotlight for several months thanks to the recent passage of HB2…

Today, we’re getting professional help.  In the form of laughter. 

Guests:

Photo: Rachel Lewis Hilburn; gardenia: Jeff Hunter

If we had an in-studio camera on this episode, you would have seen two people wearing headphones, a series of microphone set-ups, and sitting on top of a small, round table covered with a layer of green felt, you would notice a mason jar filled with a cutting from a Gardenia bush.  If you looked more closely at the jar, you would have observed tiny insects covering the petals of the white Gardenia blossom.  On this edition of CoastLine, we find out from plant and garden expert Tom Ericson what these bugs are and what to do about them. 


U.S. Department of Justice

On this edition of CoastLine, we shine a light on a criminal enterprise that has overtaken illegal gun trafficking as the second-most prolific crime around the globe for making money.  Human trafficking, which can include sex trafficking, is on the rise around the world and here in southeastern North Carolina. 

www.farms.com

Broilers, fryers, roasters, turkey, chicken – and eggs – those are the products of the poultry industry in North Carolina.   The Poultry Federation claims that it contributes more than $34 billion to North Carolina’s economy.   Statistics from the North Carolina Poultry Jubilee are a bit more moderate:  they claim an economic impact to the state of $12.8 billion.  They don’t disagree so much, however, on the number of jobs this business creates:  between 109,000 and 110,000 people make their living bringing birds and eggs to the table.     

Summer Saunders / Interfaith Refugee Ministry - Wilmington

Since October 2015, 71 people have arrived in Wilmington as refugees -- most of them from the Democratic Republic of Congo.  Another 20% are from Colombia, and half a dozen have fled Burma.  Over the previous fiscal year (October - September), nearly 100 people resettled in the Wilmington area.  Most of that group came from Burma; about a quarter arrived from Colombia. 

Bob Nichols, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

North Carolina is host to more than 9 million hogs.  According to the North Carolina Pork Council, the industry generates about $11 billion a year and supports about 46,000 full-time jobs. 

Kenneth C. Zirkel / Wikimedia Commons

One more high-profile performer has cancelled plans to appear in North Carolina due to the controversial new HB2 law – otherwise known as the “Bathroom Bill”.

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Larry Bonney thought he would launch his professional career as a school psychologist.  But life, as it often does, had other plans -- or more specifically, the Federal Bureau of Investigation – which was doing some heavy recruiting at the time. 

The Bureau hired Larry Bonney 46 years ago; now the decades spanning 1970 to 2000 hold stories of an airplane hijacking, the siege at Waco, Texas on the Branch Davidian compound, and a stint as a youth minister in California. 

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