Rachel Lewis Hilburn

News Director, Host of CoastLine

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 in 2003 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 c0-produced Stories, Wine, and Cheese - a series of local, live storytelling events which aired on WHQR.  

Ways to Connect


Flip Schulke / Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Over the first weekend of 2016, federal immigration agents raided homes in Texas, Georgia, and North Carolina.  They detained people thought to be illegal immigrants – primarily from Central America.  The raids have prompted an outcry from Hispanic and Latino advocacy groups and a letter, signed by 130 Congressional Democrats, calling for an end to the raids. 

If you’re part of that 45% of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions in hopes of becoming healthier, more successful, more mindful, whatever it is – congratulations.  But here’s something to consider:  out of that group, only 8% are likely to succeed with their resolutions.

Comedian John Oliver recently had some fun with the fact that if you haven’t yet broken your resolutions, statistically, you’re about to... Along with that bit of New Year’s cheer, he offers some advice: 

The first New Hanover County Board of Commissioners meeting in 2016 started with the adoption of a code of ethics.  Commissioners also paved the way for a new subdivision in the northern part of the county.

Georgia Dept. of Natural Resources / NOAA Fisheries

Offshore wind is working its way to the mid-Atlantic – and specifically to areas off the North Carolina coast.  Broadly supported by environmental advocates, this form of energy exploration faces some resistance by coastal communities concerned about visual impacts on tourism and real estate values. 

Now that the Environmental Assessment is complete, the next step in the development of offshore wind is the publication of a proposed sale notice.   

Chalmers Butterfield

Health disparities between white America and racial and ethnic minorities are well-documented.  The American Psychological Association says those disparities continue into the senior years – with minorities less likely to get medical help – and more likely to face chronic diseases such as obesity and diabetes.   But race isn’t the only determining factor for seniors who struggle with access to adequate health care.

Kaiser Family Foundation

In the United States, 14.5 % of the population is 65 or older.  That’s according to the most recent census.  In North Carolina, the number of elderly people is a fraction of a percentage higher at 14.7%.  In New Hanover County, nearly 16% of residents are 65 or over.  And that number shoots to almost a third of the population in neighboring Brunswick County.

According to the American Psychological Association, the number of Americans over age 85 is increasing faster than any other group. Since 1900, the proportion of Americans age 65 and older has more than tripled.

The New Hanover County Board of Commissioners has a new chair:  Beth Dawson takes the helm after a narrow three-to-two vote at Monday's meeting. 

Skip Watkins nominated Woody White for Chair; White seconded the motion. 

Jonathan Barfield nominated Beth Dawson – as he promised publicly that he would a year ago.  This was widely expected after Dawson helped Barfield to the Chairmanship in a three-to-two vote last year.   The local Republican Party blasted Dawson last December for that move.

Open Blue

The United Nations Climate Change Summit is underway in Paris, and for the first time in years, world leaders are hopeful a global agreement is possible.  Without organized cooperation, NASA scientists say the Earth will see an escalation of catastrophic weather events – such as longer and more intense heat waves, more severe storms, flooding, sea level rise… the list goes on – impacting everything from human health to food production. 

Pages