Kathleen Masterson

New England News Collaborative Reporter

Kathleen Masterson is VPR's New England News Collaborative reporter. She covers energy, environment, infrastructure and labor issues for VPR and the collaborative. Kathleen comes to Vermont having worked as a producer for NPR’s science desk and as a beat reporter covering agriculture and the environment.

Kathleen covered food production for Harvest Public Media while based at Iowa Public Radio in Ames, Iowa. She wrote stories ranging from the risks of antibiotic use in livestock feed to how hedge fund managers visit corn fields to bet on the commodities market to how the fracking boom has spurred sand mining in Iowa. As a digital producer for NPR for several years, Kathleen reported science and health stories and produced multimedia series for NPR.org. She covered topics that ranged from human evolution to swine flu to the Affordable Care Act to plastic chemicals BPA and phthalates.

Kathleen has contributed work to NPR, Marketplace, Grist, and NPR-affiliates including KQED and WGBH. She also worked as a digital producer for PBS NOVA, a science writer for University of California, San Francisco and the Morning Edition producer/reporter for VPR.

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Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Sen. Patrick Leahy has won an eighth term representing Vermont in Washington, D.C. The incumbent senator, who was widely expected to win, garnered more than 60 percent of the vote.

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

One of the largest remaining elm trees in New England has died. But the wood from the 109-foot-tall slippery elm tree is heading on to a new life — as custom furniture. And a percentage of the sales proceeds will support research to breed elms that are resistant to Dutch elm's disease. 

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

On its face, the purchase of Vermont-based Seventh Generation by the giant multinational Unilever seems like a straightforward a corporate buyout. But leadership and employees alike says it’s a chance for the company to expand its sustainable mission — and go global.

Photo illustration by Emily Alfin Johnson; Photo by Taylor Dobbs, Patti Daniels / VPR

About 60 percent of Vermonters polled say they'd vote for Democratic incumbent Sen. Patrick Leahy, who has held the office since 1975. His challenger, Republican Scott Milne, has held steady in recent months with about 22 percent of polled voters.

Courtesy The Nature Conservancy

Conservation biologists say that the good news for wildlife is there are still extensive tracts of forest habitat in the northeast. Yet as humans have built up roads and housing developments, crossing between key habitat areas — such as from the Adirondacks to the Green Mountains — can be a dangerous trip for a moose or a bear.   

Kathleen Masterson / VPR file

A Burlington-based company working on climate change solutions has won a federal grant to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from Vermont farms. 

Sarina Jepsen / Courtesy Xerces Society

Data from a University of Vermont researcher is helping the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service make the case that the rusty patched bumblebee should go on the national endangered species list.

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

The University of Vermont College of Medicine has announced that it’s receiving a $66 million gift, the largest ever made to a public university in New England.

A man was shot and killed Friday night in Winooski by a deputy with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department.

Courtesy

Once called the unofficial poet-laureate of the Northeast Kingdom, poet Leland Kinsey has died at the age of 66. 

Kathleen Masterson / VPR file

When you shop for cleaning supplies, brightly colored bottles advertise stain-removing powers or "whiter whites." But it’s hard to get clear information about what the chemical ingredients could do to your health or the environment. The Environmental Protection Agency is hoping to change that.

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

Even as wind and solar energy have grown to nearly 10 percent of New England's energy mix, they're still not a reliable power source. Wind and sunshine can't simply be turned on and off with a switch. A new software company is hoping to use a simple appliance in your basement — your water heater — to store that sporadic renewable energy and transform the way the electricity grid works. 

carlotoffolo / iStock

The city of Burlington is stopping its use of a pesticide that harms bees, even before the official rules are written that could ban its use on municipal lands.

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

Long before guns were invented, humans developed other approaches to hunt wild prey. The art of falconry is believed to have originated in China some 4,000 years ago. For our "Summer School" series, we took a trip to the Green Mountain Falconry School in Manchester to learn about this ancient art of hunting for game using a hawk.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

The Public Service Board held a much-anticipated hearing Thursday on a Vermont Gas Systems effort to build a pipeline through a wetland area in Geprags Park in Hinesburg.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR File

A U.S. District Court judge in Burlington has ordered the Vermont Public Service Board to allow the public to attend Thursday's hearing on the Vermont Gas pipeline project.

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

A Hinesburg citizens group opposing the Vermont Gas Systems pipeline filed a complaint Monday alleging that some town officials and company representatives violated Vermont's open meeting law. 

President Barack Obama signed the federal GMO labeling law on Friday. The national law mandates that food manufacturers label most foods with GMO ingredients. 

Angela Evancie / VPR

A new VPR poll finds that Secretary Hillary Clinton may have a tough time winning the last 30 percent of Sen. Bernie Sanders' supporters to her camp.

Kathleen Masterson / VPR

President Obama is expected to sign a federal GMO labeling bill into law soon. This would nullify Vermont's labeling law, as well as laws passed by Connecticut and Maine that have not been enacted yet — effective immediately.

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