Rina Miller

Weekend Edition host

Rina Miller got her start in radio on accident when she was sent to WCAR in Detroit as a temp employee. Since then, she has gained many years of experience in print and broadcast journalism, including work as a producer and program host at Radio Netherlands and as a reporter for ABC Radio News in New York. She enjoys working in public radio because the listeners are "interested, involved, and informed."

Outside the studio, Rina enjoys watching movies from the 1930s and '40s and absolutely hates karaoke. She has a deep love for animals and urges people to spay or neuter their pets, adopt from shelters and rescues, and purchase only from reputable, responsible breeders.

Q&A

What three people, alive or dead, would you like to have lunch with? Why?
Dorothy Parker, because her one-liners were the best.
Kurt Vonnegut, because he was the first writer who made me laugh out loud.
Bella Abzug, because she put her courage where her mouth was.
And if there could be a No. 4? George Clooney. You know why.

How did you get involved in radio?
By accident. I was sent to WCAR in Detroit as a temp employee, and loved the environment.

What is your favorite way to spend your free time?
Watching 1930s and '40s movies, especially those with Joan Crawford, Bette Davis or Rita Hayworth.

What has been your most memorable experience as a reporter/host/etc.?
Covering the crash of a cargo jet into a high-rise apartment complex in Amsterdam in 1992. The story was more complex than the obvious; many victims were illegal immigrants whose families were reluctant to come forward because they feared deportation. There were many substories that arose from this tragedy.

What one song do you think best summarizes your taste in music?
Leonard Cohen's Famous Blue Raincoat, sung by Jennifer Warnes.

What is your favorite program on Michigan Radio? Why?
Fresh Air. Terry has an amazing range of guests, so the show's never predictable or stale.

What is one ability or talent you really wish you possessed?
To sing like Etta James.

What do you like best about working in public radio?
The listeners. They're interested, involved and informed.

Is there anyone in the broadcasting industry you find to be particularly admirable or inspiring? Who?
Jon Stewart. He's fearless without being cruel.

If you could interview any contemporary newsmaker, who would it be?
Vladimir Putin

Is there a T.V. show you never miss? If so, which one?
Mad Men

What would your perfect meal consist of?
An Indonesian rice table

What modern convenience would it be most difficult for you to live without?
The Internet

What are people usually very surprised to learn about you?
That I despise karaoke.

What else would you like people to know about you?
That I have a deep love for animals. I urge people to spay or neuter their pets, adopt from shelters and rescues, or purchase only from reputable, responsible breeders.

Pages

Law
12:21 pm
Sun November 3, 2013

Couch on the porch? Trash in the yard? Hold tenants responsible, lawmakers say

Credit Jusben / MorgueFile

Renters in Michigan might be held financially responsible if they they don't properly take care of their home under a bill being considered in Lansing. 

For example, if you put a couch on your porch and there's a law against that in your community, or you leave trash lying around  you should be fined, not your landlord. That's the gist of the bill that would put more legal responsibility on tenants.

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Politics & Government
8:55 am
Sat November 2, 2013

Lessenberry talks elections, Detroit bankruptcy trial and Isle Royale's 'wasteful spending'

Dave Linabury Flickr

Week in review interview for 11/2/13

This Week in Review Rina Miller and Jack Lessenberry discuss next week's elections, the Detroit bankruptcy eligibility trial and the accusation by a Senator from Oklahoma that Isle Royale is wasting money and is not worthy of preservation.

Health
5:45 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Respiratory therapists oppose deregulation of their occupation

Credit Photobucket

Nineteen occupations in Michigan may no longer be regulated under a recommendation from the state's Office of Regulatory Reinvention, which is part of the state's Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

In the health field, the occupations include respiratory therapists, dieticians and nutritionists, acupuncturists, ocularists (someone who makes and fits prosthetic eyes) and speech pathologists.

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Education
4:01 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Teen videos help teach social skills to kids with autism

Credit Photobucket

Researchers at Michigan State University say video-based teaching could help teens with autism learn social skills so they can live more independently.

Earlier studies have shown that many people with autism pay closer attention when they're getting information from innovative technology.

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Law
2:00 pm
Sun October 20, 2013

Proposed license plate scan regulations get thumbs-down from police

Credit sideshowmom / MorgueFile

More police agencies are using license plate readers while they're out on patrol, and that has some people worried about privacy.

The state House Criminal Justice Committee is discussing a bill that would limit the use of license plate readers  and require a purge of data after 48 hours.

The readers are usually mounted on patrol cars and automatically scan vehicle license plates. The scans are then cross-referenced for outstanding warrants or stolen vehicles, and in some cities, even unpaid parking tickets.

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Law
12:46 pm
Sat October 19, 2013

'Vulnerable roadway status' would up penalties for drivers who hit pedestrian or bicyclist

Credit michigan.gov/mdot

Michigan drivers who hit a pedestrian, bicyclist or person in a wheelchair could face years in prison -- even if the victim is not seriously injured.

According to a state police report,  178 pedestrians and bicyclists were killed in Michigan in 2012; almost 4,400 were hurt in traffic accidents.

State Rep. Ed McBroom, who represents three Upper Peninsula counties, says his proposal would expand the state's existing law to cover what's called "vulnerable roadway users."

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Politics & Government
9:00 am
Sat October 19, 2013

Lessenberry talks bills to penalize drug users, gay marriage and Bernard Kilpatrick

The state capitol
Lester Graham Michigan Radio

Week in Review interview for 10/19/13

In This Week in Review, Weekend Edition host Rina Miller and political analyst Jack Lessenberry discuss bills in Lansing to penalize poor people who use drugs, a delay in the decision over gay marriage, and the sentencing of Bernard Kilpatrick.

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Politics & Government
8:25 am
Sat October 12, 2013

A summary of the week's news with Jack Lessenberry

State lawmakers have passed bills allowing the city to keep taxing at certain rates. The legislation awaits Governor Snyder's approval.
Bob Jagendorf Flickr

This week in review, Rina Miller and Jack Lessenberry discuss Governor Snyder's testimony regarding the Detroit bankruptcy filing, the governor's NERD fund, and the sentencing of former Detroit mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick.

The interview can be heard below

Week in review interview for 10/12/13

Law
11:25 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Don't call us, we'll call you -- maybe

Credit mensatic / MorgueFile

Accident victims and their families would be shielded from opportunistic lawyers under a bill approved by the Michigan House Wednesday.

Representative Joe Graves says the law would require a 30-day waiting period before a victim could be solicited for services.

Graves  says informants who work at hospitals or ambulance companies sometimes tip off personal injury attorneys.

"You go direct to the person and try to get them to sign on the dotted line, before they're ready -- you pressure them -- this backs it off a little bit," Graves says.

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Law
3:44 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Juvenile criminal histories could be kept secret

Credit Xandert / MorgueFile

Juveniles who've been in trouble with the law may be able to keep that information secret under a bill passed by the Michigan Senate today.

The bill would prohibit public and media access to juvenile criminal records.

Lisa McGraw is a spokeswoman for the Michigan Press Association, which opposes the bill.

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Business
11:52 am
Wed October 9, 2013

And now something you really may not like

Credit dee37 / MorgueFile

Squirrels: They're cute, they're clever and they're diabolical.

Okay,  they're not evil, but they are responsible for about two-thirds of substation outages caused by animals.   When you consider more than a third of all substation outages are animal-related, squirrels are indeed on the most-unwanted list.

The substations are premium real estate for squirrels and raccoons, which are attracted to the warmth and vibration from electrical equipment.

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Politics & Government
8:30 am
Sat October 5, 2013

Talking about the shutdown and Michigan, the Detroit mayors race and Belle Isle

Lester Graham Michigan Radio

Week in review interview for 10/5/13

Each week, I review the news with political analyst Jack Lessenberry.

This week we discuss how the government shutdown will affect Michigan, new endorsements in the Detroit mayor's race, and the state agreement to fund Belle Isle.

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Law
2:29 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

A large coffee, a comfortable chair, and the 232-page Public Health Code overhaul

Credit mconnors / MorgueFile

What's 232 pages long and took more than two years to write? It's a proposal to overhaul Michigan's public health code.

Michigan's public health code regulates everything from medical facilities to disease control to taxes.  It was created in 1978 and hasn't changed much since.

State Sen. Jim Marleau, R-Lake Orion, says one proposal calls for a team approach to medicine in Michigan,  so MDs and osteopaths, physician assistants and nurses are all on the same patient care page.

Marleau says that's a big change.

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Law
8:31 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Bill would regulate commercial dog breeders

Credit derrhama / MorgueFile

A bill in the Michigan Senate would put tighter restrictions on large-scale dog breeders.

The legislation is aimed at preventing puppy mills in which breeders keep dogs in cages, producing litter after litter.

State Sen. Steven Bieda, D-Warren, says large-scale breeders aren't currently regulated by any state entity.

He says the bill would require the breeders to register with the Department of Agriculture.

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Law
3:20 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

But officer, I really do have my proof of insurance ... somewhere

Credit southernfried / MorgueFile

Even the most organized people sometimes slip up -- such as when you forget to put a copy of your  proof of insurance in your car.

If you get stopped in Michigan without that paperwork,  your license could be suspended, the plate could be canceled and you might have to pay a fine.

State Sen. Mike Green, R-Mayville, says we're in a new era. He says drivers should be able to show proof of insurance electronically on their smart phone or tablet.

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Law
2:58 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Bill would take the cash out of metal scrapping

Credit vicky53 / MorgueFile

State Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Detroit, says this may be the year that thieves who strip homes, businesses and public places of valuable metals hit roadblocks when they try to sell the materials.

Tlaib has been working for more than three years to enact tougher regulations  for scrap-metal dealers who buy copper wire, aluminum, and other metals. This year she's getting bipartisan support in her efforts.

"We're second in the nation in scrap metal theft," Tlaib says. "That's not a great place to be, especially when we all  have been impacted in some way by illegal scrapping."

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Health
2:53 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

All Michigan newborns to be screened for heart defects

Credit nasirkhan / MorgueFile

Beginning next April, all babies born in Michigan will be screened for Critical Congenital Heart Disease -- or CCHD.

The Michigan Department of Community Health says Michigan will join 31 other states that include pulse oximetry screening to their newborn screening tests.

The painless test measures the amount of oxygen in a newborn's blood.

MDCH spokeswoman Angela Minicuci says congenital heart disease is one of the most common birth defects and impacts about nine out of every 1,000 newborns.

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Week in Review
8:30 am
Sat September 28, 2013

Talking about Common Core, Detroit extra pension paychecks, adoption refusal bill

David Defoe flickr

Week in review interview

Each week, I review the news with political analyst Jack Lessenberry.

Today we discussed Common Core education standards, new details about some practices that led to Detroit's financial crisis, and legislation to refuse adoptions based on religious reasons.

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Health
2:40 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Study: Abuse often mars childhood of black gay men

Gay pride flag
user Tyrone Warner Flickr

A new study finds young, gay black men in Michigan are often victims of physical, social and emotional abuse.

The Michigan State University study finds that abuse started early for many of these young men. About 70 percent of 180 black gay or bisexual men reported they were assaulted when they were 12 or younger.

"There are high rates of these kinds of exposures to traumas, and it is associated with things like having a substance abuse problem, depression, things like that," says MSU Professor of Ecological Community Psychology Robin Lin Miller.

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Law
2:37 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Law would require new parents to learn about babies' sleep safety

Credit stuartjessop / morguefile

Michigan health officials want to do a better job of educating parents about the dangers of co-sleeping with their babies. 

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