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Steve Carmody

Mid Michigan Reporter/Producer

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting. During his two and a half decades in broadcasting, Steve has won numerous awards, including accolades from the Associated Press and Radio and Television News Directors Association. Away from the broadcast booth, Steve is an avid reader and movie fanatic.

Q&A

What person, alive or dead, would you like to have lunch with? Why?
My wife. She’s the best company I’ve ever had, or expect to, over lunch.
 
How did you get involved in radio?
I started listening to all news radio when I was about 8 years old. In my teens, when other kids were listening to rock stations, I was flipping between KYW and WCAU in Philadelphia. I was fascinated listening to the news developing and changing through the day. When the time came to decide on what I wanted to study at college, I was drawn to broadcasting and journalism. I spent most of my four years in college at the campus radio station, including two years as news director.  
 
What is your favorite way to spend your free time?
I read (usually two books at a time, one book at work, another at home) and I go to see a lot of movies (about 50 or more a year)
 
What has been your most memorable experience as a reporter/host/etc.?
Covering the federal building bombing in Oklahoma City in 1995 was a remarkable experience. It was going to be a quiet day newswise. Not much happening. I was at the state capitol to cover a rally. The earth shattering explosion changed that. I spent the next ten hours wandering around downtown, filing reports to my home station and NPR. For the next six weeks, it was literally the only story my station covered.
 
What one song do you think best summarizes your taste in music?
Zilch. I don’t listen to music.
 
What is your favorite program on Michigan Radio? Why?
This American Life. It’s the best story telling on radio.
 
What's a hidden talent you have that most people don’t know about?
I have no talent. Anyone who knows me well would agree.
 
What is one ability or talent you really wish you possessed?
The ability to cook.
 
What do you like best about working in public radio?
I like having the time to tell a story. I’ve grown tired over time working in commercial radio of trying to tell a complex story in 25 seconds or less. You can tell some stories in less than 25 seconds. But often, a truly interesting story needs a minute, 3 minutes or more to explain.
 
If you could interview any contemporary newsmaker, who would it be?
No one really.
 
Is there a T.V. show you never miss? If so, which one?
The Amazing Race. As a fan and a former contestant, I just enjoy the thrill of seeing different parts of the world.
 
What would your perfect meal consist of?
A light appetizer. A good fish course. A well done steak. A pleasant dessert. A fine 20 year tawny port.
 
What modern convenience would it be most difficult for you to live without?
The computer. It has changed my personal and professional life.
 
What are people usually very surprised to learn about you?
That I not only watch Reality TV, but that I’ve been a Reality TV star (retired).
 
What else would you like people to know about you?
I enjoy living in Jackson, MI. So many Michigan cities and towns are struggling these days. Jackson’s no different. But, the people there are forging ahead. Jackson is also committed to being a community. 

Ways to Connect

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Vice President Mike Pence will be in Michigan Friday. 

He’s helping to raise money for one of the Republicans running for governor.

Pence is the key note speaker at a noon hour fundraiser for Attorney General Bill Schuette’s gubernatorial campaign at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Two academics who’ve played key roles in the Flint water crisis are now facing off in a lawsuit.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The city of Flint is close to getting back a major water customer it lost during the city’s water crisis.

General Motors took its Flint engine plant off city water in the fall of 2014, after determining the water was corroding engine parts.  It was an early sign of problems with Flint’s drinking water.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

There’s an escalating dispute between Flint and state officials over issues with the city’s water system.

The dispute dates back to August 2017, when the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality informed the city of more than a dozen problems with Flint’s water system.

A Jackson city official is resigning from his post, three weeks after being charged with beating his girlfriend.

Andrew Frounfelker has spent more than a dozen years on the Jackson city council.

But in his resignation letter, Frounfelker says “recent publicity” had become a distraction.

That “recent publicity” is related to his arrest on a felonious assault charge.

Sault Ste Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians

Lansing’s mayor does not expect long-stalled plans for a casino in downtown Lansing are going to become a reality.

The Sault Ste Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians announced plans in 2012 to build a quarter billion dollar casino next to Lansing’s convention center.   But opposition from other tribes and state officials led the federal government to reject the tribe’s application to take land next to the Lansing Center into trust. 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A group suing the University of Michigan in a free speech case is now getting support from the Trump administration.

The U.S. Justice Department filed a brief in support of the plaintiffs in Speech First, Inc., v. Schlissel Monday.

At issue is U of M’s disciplinary codes that prohibit “harassment” and “bullying.” The suit claims the policy is “vague,” limiting students' freedom of speech on campus.

A university spokesman says the lawsuit is painting a “false portrait of speech” on campus by “seriously” misstating university policy.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s largest teachers’ union is asking state lawmakers to prevent a change in the way teachers are rated on job-performance

Starting in the fall, a greater percentage of an educator’s evaluation will rely on how well students perform on standardized tests.  The percentage will rise from 25% to 40%.  

David Crim is with the Michigan Education Association. He says standardized test scores are not a reliable way to judge teachers.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

65 years ago today, Michigan was struck one of the deadliest tornado’s in U.S. history.

The powerful F5 tornado touched down north of Flint just after 8:30 on the night of June 8th , 1953.

The twister’s 27-mile path of destruction tore through the small community of Beecher, home to 113 of the 116 people who died. The oldest victim was 80 years old.  The youngest was only 5 months.

Nearly a thousand people were injured.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A new report finds Michigan’s suicide rate increased by a third over the last 20 years.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports between 1999 and 2016 Michigan’s suicide rate increased by 33 percent. That’s slightly higher than the 30 percent rate of increase nationally. 

The increase was even higher in more than 20 other states. North Dakota posted a nearly 60 percent increase in suicides during the past two decades. Only Nevada saw its suicide rate decline since 1999.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan school officials would be required to report “credible” threats to law enforcement under a proposed state law.

The state Senate Judiciary Committee approved Senate Bill 1032 this morning.

The bill would require school officials to report “credible” threats immediately to police. The threats could be verbal, non-verbal, or electronic.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Whether Michigan should legalize marijuana for recreational use will be decided by the voters. The state Legislature let today’s deadline for the to act on the initiative lapse. It would legalize marijuana and regulate it like alcohol.

The state House and Senate would both have had to pass the initiative. The leader of the Senate Republicans said its chamber had enough votes to pass the measure. But the House was not on board.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan lawmakers are expected to vote this week on a proposal to repeal the state’s prevailing wage law.

A 1965 law requires union-scale wages and benefits on state-funded projects. But last week, a state board certified a ballot petition to repeal the law. The question would appear on the November ballot, unless state lawmakers approve it first.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

 

Once again, the city of Flint is being put on notice by the state about problems with its water system. 

Last year, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality listed more than dozen things the city needed to do to address problems with the water system and personnel.

Apparently some of those issues remain. 

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Marijuana advocates say they are watching “very closely” as a deadline looms for Michigan’s legislature to decide whether to act or not on a petition to legalize recreational pot.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A criminal court hearing for a former Flint emergency manager is scheduled for September.

At least for now.

Darnell Earley was originally indicted back in December 2016 on various charges related to the Flint water crisis. But his day in court has been delayed as prosecutors have spent time painstakingly outlining cases against other defendants.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A new report shows Michigan colleges and universities are graduating a greater percentage of their students.

The state’s Center for Educational Performance and Information has been tracking student “success” rates since 2009. 

The data show there has been incrementally improved graduation rates at Michigan’s community colleges and universities.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A former Flint emergency manager is scheduled to appear in a courtroom Friday.

Darnell Earley oversaw Flint city hall during the city’s disastrous drinking water switch to the Flint River in April 2014. 

He’s among 15 current and former government officials criminally charged in connection with the Flint water crisis.

Darnell Earley has been waiting for his preliminary hearing to begin for more than a year. Earley and former Flint public works director Howard Croft face a variety of charges, including involuntary manslaughter.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The state health department is out with a new report on the deadly Legionnaires' disease outbreak in Genesee County.

The Michigan Department Health and Human Services makes an old claim linking most of the legionella cases to Flint’s McLaren hospital.

University of Virginia

Michigan State University is hiring a university official with unique experience to advise on the search of MSU’s new university president.  

The MSU Board of Trustees is hiring University of Virginia President Teresa Sullivan to serve as an adviser to the presidential search.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s senior U.S. senator wants the Trump administration to provide more information to Congress about what’s on the table in talks with North Korea.

The on-again/off-again summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un appears to be back on-again.

Trump withdrew from a planned June 12 Singapore summit with Kim last Thursday, then quickly announced that the meeting could get back on track..

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Across Michigan and the United States, people are taking a moment to remember America’s military dead.

In Washington, President Donald Trump is marking his second Memorial Day as Commander in Chief with a planned visit to Arlington National Cemetery and a salute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

Before the late-morning activities at Arlington, Trump said in a tweet that "those who died for our great country would be very happy and proud at how well our country is doing today."

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A new survey shows most Michigan high school students are not aware of a potential option after graduation.

A Michigan Talent Investment Agency survey found only 13% of high school students consider apprenticeships a good postsecondary career option.  

Roger Curtis is the director of Talent and Economic Development for the state of Michigan. He says, even among students who were aware of apprenticeship programs, most only associated them with construction jobs.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

In the next month, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to overturn a ruling in a precedent-setting Michigan case.

In 1977’s Abood versus Detroit Board of Education decision, the Supreme Court ruled that public-sector workers could be compelled to "support legitimate, non-ideological, union activities germane to collective-bargaining representation."

The ruling allowed government employee unions to require fees from workers, whether they want to pay fees to the union or not.   

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Democrats are hoping for a “Blue Wave” in state legislative races in November. 

But Republicans are seeing a “green wave” of campaign donations.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Demolition crews have nearly completed tearing down Flint’s Hamilton Dam.

The crumbling 95-year-old landmark became a backdrop for many national television stories about Flint’s water crisis during the past few years.

However, the dam will soon be no more.

Crews have been demolishing the dam for the past few months. They expect to finish next month.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

New research from Michigan State University finds children develop language and literacy skills at a young age, in part due to their ability to “self-regulate.”

Self-regulation refers to a child’s ability to pay attention to tasks. 

Lori Skibbe is an associate professor in MSU’s Human Development and Family Studies department. She led a study of language and literacy skills among more than 300 children.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

AAA predicts more than a million Michiganders will be on the roads this holiday weekend, and paying a lot more at the pump.

Gasbuddy.com pegs the statewide average price for a gallon of gasoline at about $3.15.  That’s more than a half dollar more than last Memorial Day weekend.

Don Holecek is a professor emeritus at Michigan State University.  He’s studied tourism trends for four decades.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

There’s a new tool that Michigan cities can use to better understand their health care needs.

The NYU School of Medicine has developed what they call the City Health Dashboard, which looks at 36 key measures and drivers of health.   

Marc Gourevitch is the Dashboard’s principal architect. He says health problems like opioid abuse and obesity are tracked on the dashboard.

“Not only looking at health itself,” says Gourevitch, “but some of the things that cause health, like housing and transportation and air quality. So we try to bring all that together.”

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