Kyle Norris

Reporter/Producer

Kyle Norris got her start in radio as a Michigan Radio intern. Her features have appeared on The Environment Report, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, Marketplace, The Splendid Table, World Vision Report, Justice Talking, and The Health Show.

In 2008, she won a Division A (News Staff of 5 or more) first place award from Public Radio News Directors Incorporated for best investigative journalism.

Norris is endlessly fascinated with people and their struggles. She's also fascinated with the figurative beating of the human heart. She loves public radio because it gives her the chance to explore all of those things.

In her downtime she enjoys soccer, yoga, and coffee. Her website is at kylenorris.wordpress.com.

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Arts & Culture
9:13 am
Sun September 29, 2013

Electronic musician inspired by family & place

"If I couldn't make music, I would not be a happy person."
Shigeto/Facebook

Michigan has a history of some pretty sweet music. One surprising genre that is Pure Michigan is techno. The art form was invented by three young men from Belleville in the 1980s (specifically Kevin Saunderson, Derrick May, and Juan Atkins, aka the Belleville 3, and you can listen to some classic Detroit techno here).

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Arts & Culture
7:35 am
Fri September 27, 2013

Laughing matters at Arab-American comedy festival in Dearborn

A new festival will feature comedians from Arab-American and other minority backgrounds. 

The 1001 Laughs Dearborn Comedy Festival happens September 27 and 28 at the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn.

Amer Zahr is the festival's producer and he'll also be performing a few sets.

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Arts & Culture
7:40 pm
Sun September 15, 2013

Finding beauty & camaraderie in the woods, in the old-school ways

A sample of Jim Miller's bark baskets
Jim Miller

Jim Miller does not wish he was alive several hundred or even several thousand years ago. But he loves the old-school ways. And Miller teaches people, as he likes to say, "about the skills of our ancestors."

Miller teaches adults and children how to make fire by friction (which is not an easy thing to do); how to take the bark from a tree without killing it and create bark baskets. There's also the chance to learn primitive pottery, hide tanning, beaver trapping, and how to turn stone chips into arrows and spears.

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Economy
3:56 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Manufacturing a commuter bike in Detroit

Commuter bike by Detroit Bikes
Detroit Bikes Facebook

There are a couple of relatively new companies making bikes in Detroit.

Shinola makes them (along with watches, leather goods, and journals). Detroit Bicycle Company makes 'em.

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Arts & Culture
10:29 am
Mon July 29, 2013

A Saginaw artist tries to make things better, and the town responds

Doug Coombe

An artist makes art and a city responds

The entire city of Saginaw is a canvas for 37-year-old artist Eric Schantz. But the reverse of that statement is also true. Schantz’s body is a canvas for this city that struggles with poverty, unemployment, and violence.

He’s got a giant tattoo with the words “Saginaw Proper” scrawled onto his muscular right forearm, in red lettering with blue embellishments.

“It reminds me every day to make something beautiful out of the pain this city has caused me. The red letters represent the blood that has been shed and reminds me of all the friends I have lost to this city’s violence. Or the suicides and overdoses that are a result of the depressed nature of our reality.”

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Environment & Science
1:34 pm
Sun July 21, 2013

More algae in Lake Erie

Satellite image of 2011 bloom (one of the most severe in decades).
Credit MERIS/NASA

A significant amount of blue-green algae is expected in the western basin of Lake Erie this summer. This year’s algal bloom will be about 1/5 as bad as what happened in 2011.

2011 was one of the worst years on record for the explosions of algae growth.

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July 4th Profiles
11:52 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Iranian-American works with war refugees, knows it could have been her

Linda Steinke emmigrated from Iran in the 1970s with her family.
Mark Brush Michigan Radio

In honor of July 4th, we asked immigrants across Michigan what America means to them. Linda Steinke shared her story with us.

Her family came to the U.S. from Iran in the 1970s when her father had the opportunity to work in the auto industry.

Steinke is petite, with striking, honey-brown eyes. And these days she works as interpreter at medical appointments.

"I not only interpret the language, but I interpret the culture," Steinke explains.

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Politics & Government
9:45 am
Wed June 12, 2013

This week in Michigan politics: Medicaid expansion, immigration reform, race for U.S. Senate seat

cncphotos flickr

Week in Michigan politics interview for 6/12/2013

This week in Michigan politics, Jack Lessenberry and Kyle Norris discuss Medicaid expansion in Michigan, immigration reform and how it could affect struggling Michigan cities, and the race for Senator Carl Levin’s seat in the U.S. Senate.

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Politics & Government
2:48 pm
Sun May 5, 2013

Making antifreeze safer for children and animals

Animals and children are sometimes drawn to antifreeze's sweet smell and bright colors.
Credit Flickr user "Steve and Sara"

Antifreeze often looks like a sports-drink or Kool-Aid and it can have a sweet smell that attracts animals and kids. A bill in the Michigan legislature would require that a bittering agent be added to antifreeze so humans and animals don’t want to drink it.

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Arts & Culture
5:33 pm
Sun April 28, 2013

Shakespeare helps prisoners change

Frannie Shepherd-Bates (standing) directs actor Molly McMahon in a project outside of prison. Shepherd-Bates is executive artistic director of the Magenta Giraffe Theatre Company in Detroit.

Frannie Shepherd-Bates is a Shakespeare geek. She is also executive artistic director of the Magenta Giraffe Theatre Company in Detroit.

Twice a week, Shepherd-Bates drives from metro Detroit to the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility, which is about 10 miles south of Ann Arbor, to share her love of Shakespeare.

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Arts & Culture
2:10 pm
Sat April 6, 2013

Metal heads and academics unite

Credit bgsu.edu

This weekend an international heavy metal conference for academics and researchers is happening in Bowling Green, Ohio. It's called "The Heavy Metal & Popular Culture Conference," and organizers say it's the first of its kind in the U.S.

It will feature presentations by heavy metal scholars from around the world about race and gender in the genre, and about its growing popularity in places like Finland and Puerto Rico.

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Health
5:55 pm
Sun February 3, 2013

UM professor says “no shame” for children with disorder of sex development

Credit Flickr user Amy the Nurse

It’s not uncommon for newborn babies to have an unclear gender. About one in 300 infants have a disorder of sex development (or DSD). That means babies have atypical sex chromosomes, atypical gonads, or atypical genitals.

For some parents, the experience can be overwhelming and in the past, shame and secrecy have been associated with the disorder.

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Homelessness
3:48 pm
Sun January 27, 2013

Counting Michigan's homeless

Homeless people in more rural areas might live in tents, cars, or abandoned trailers. They can be hard to locate.
Credit Nicole Salow / Flickr

Michigan organizations that help homeless people are taking part in a “snap-shot” census. The federal government requires the overnight count every other year. It’s part of the Obama administration’s plan to eradicate homelessness by 2020.

The census must happen on a single night during the last ten days of January. The count includes people who are in shelters, transitional housing, and on the street.

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Investigative
5:01 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Stateside: Homeless shelters get a makeover

Enchanted Makeovers reinvision shelters' interiors

Kyle Norris takes a look at Enchanted Makeovers.

Imagine what you might know about physical space and tranquility if you lived in a drug house, an abandoned building, or jail.

That’s the experience for many of the women who stay at the Women and Family Treatment and Shelter at Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries. They often come from intense circumstances to the shelter, in order to make big changes in their lives.

The shelter is housed in a former convent. On the third floor everything reeks of fresh paint. A professional paint company has donated the paint and man power to paint the walls. The long hallway is now sky-blue and the twenty rooms where the women live now have fresh coats of cotton-candy pink and lemon-yellow paint.

Terry Grahl runs the non-profit Enchanted Makeovers and she’s making this large-scale renovation happen by coordinating a symphony of volunteers and businesses. She got a church in Taylor to making curtains for all the rooms. An artist from Georgia is coming in to paint murals on the walls and the shelter is also getting new ceiling fans and new floors.

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Investigative
4:22 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Stateside: At-risk, LGBTQ kids find safety through vogue dance

Dancers practicing their vogue moves at the Ruth Ellis Center.
Kyle Norris

Michigan Radio's Kyle Norris takes us to the Ruth Ellis Center, where LGBTQ children dance their "vogue" best.

Matthew Dawson is the kid wearing sunglasses inside, in the middle of the day. He’s in a room full of about twenty kids who flip, dip, and cat-walk in a dance style known as “vogue.” (For a quick reference, think Madonna’s “Vogue” video from 1990.)

He says this style of dancing is a powerful way for him to express himself. “One of the emotions I say I put into my vogue is anger. I feel like I put it into vogue so I won’t have to put it into other things that are not very constructive.”

Matthew Dawson says as an LGBTQ young person, if he danced like this in the outside world—or on the street—he would not be safe.  And these vogue dancers find safety in their dance community.

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Investigative
3:56 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Stateside: Med team brings "street medicine" to Detroit's homeless

Street Medicine is a mobile medical clinic that services Detroit
streetmedicine.org

Several Wayne State University students started Street Medicine Detroit in May.

They’d heard about a similar program in Pittsburg and they were inspired. They partnered with a Detroit non-profit called Neighborhood Service Organization and together they created a mobile medical clinic.

Philip Ramsey is a community outreach specialist with NSO. (Rumor has it that if you’re trying to locate a specific homeless person, and you give Ramsey the vaguest of details, he can go out and find that person who might be living in a tent next to highway.)

It’s Ramsey’s job to drive the med team around the streets and back-alleys of Detroit and to help them locate homeless people who are in need of medical services.

So once a week, the van rumbles down Michigan Avenue past prostitutes on the corners and a young man pushing a baby stroller.  Ramsey helps the team find people who are lying down on the ground or sitting on the curb. He says additional clues that someone may be homeless are people with dirty clothes and uncombed hair, or people who are openly drinking.

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Health
8:36 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Helping the homeless in Detroit

Sean Hunter flickr

Seeking Change interview for 12/17/12

Michigan Radio's Kyle Norris has been been spending a lot of time in Detroit lately to report on stories of people doing things to help the homeless in the city.

And this week Michigan Radio will be airing the first of her three part series on the homeless on Stateside.

Norris reported on a mobile medical clinic that works with the homeless, how a woman gives homeless shelters makeovers, and how homeless gay youth create their own families.

Norris talked about her experience reporting on these stories on Seeking Change. She says her stories are about people doing little things to make a difference for the homeless in Detroit.

Politics & Government
8:30 am
Wed November 21, 2012

The week in Michigan politics

cncphtos flickr

Interview

It's a busy news week in Michigan politics. This week Kyle Norris and Jack Lessenberry discuss various proposals and happenings in Lansing:

1. Michigan Supreme Court Justice Diane Hathaway faces allegations of fraud in a federal civil lawsuit. It accuses Hathaway and her husband of hiding assets to qualify for a short sale on a $1.5 million dollar home in Florida.

2. A proposed bill that would allow people to claim a 12-week-old fetus as a dependent for tax exceptions.

3. Another proposed bill would bring massive overhaul of Michigan's school funding system. Jack discusses some of the major changes.

Education
4:24 pm
Fri November 9, 2012

Homeless Awareness Week

Credit cdc.gov / cdc.gov

Homeless Awareness Week in Michigan is November 10-18. The idea is to highlight the causes of homelessness and the issues that homeless people face. There are events planned in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Port Huron, and other towns.

In Livingston County a group of people will live in their cars for 24 hours and eat only what they can buy with about $5 in food stamps, in order to raise awareness.

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Politics & Government
8:26 am
Wed October 31, 2012

The week in Michigan politics

Credit User: cncphotos / flickr

The week in Michigan politics interview

Every week Michigan Radio talks with political analyst Jack Lessenberry about what's been happening in Michigan politics.

This week Lessenberry and Kyle Norris talked about how Governor Rick Snyder is campaigning against all of the ballot proposals except for Proposal 1. Prop 1 involves emergency managers. And how Proposal 5, the proposal that deals with raising taxes, seems to be the most confusing and controversial proposal.

Norris and Lessenberry also discussed if Hurricane Sandy will influence Michigan voters, and how a recent Romney campaign ad claims the auto bailout resulted in GM using that money to hire more workers in China than in the U.S. Lessenberry says the ad isn't true.

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