Michelle Owens

Manager of Marketing and Communications

Michelle manages VPR's strategic and day-to-day marketing and communications. A graduate of Boston University's College of Communications, Michelle moved to Vermont on a whim and joined VPR in 2002. Prior to that, she was a reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Michelle is a founding member of the Green Mountain Derby Dames, Vermont's first roller derby league, and competed for six seasons under the public radio-esque pseudonym Susan Slamberg.  She loves anything to do with the outdoors, traveling, and cooking. She lives in Burlington with her husband and dog.

Ways to Connect

VPR and Vermont PBS are teaming up to air four live debates in October. The debates will include candidates for lieutenant governor, U.S. House, governor and U.S. Senate.
Kyle Blair / Vermont PBS

Vermont Public Radio and Vermont PBS have announced the VPR – Vermont PBS Debates, a new collaboration to broadcast four live candidate debates leading up to the General Election on November 6. The debates will be moderated by Bob Kinzel, Peter Hirschfeld and Jane Lindholm during VPR’s program Vermont Edition and broadcast by Vermont PBS.

Your participation is critical to producing this essential public service. In short, you are VPR — and your support is at the heart of everything we do.
Illustration by Anna Ste. Marie / VPR

VPR’s membership drive is scheduled for September 10-21, but you’ll only hear program interruptions on about half of those days! Help VPR meet its goal with more programming and less fundraising.

'JOLTED' is VPR's five-part podcast about a school shooting that didn't happen, and the surprising things that did.
Aaron Shrewsbury For VPR

Vermont Public Radio has launched JOLTED, a five-part podcast about a school shooting that didn’t happen, the line between thought and crime, and a Republican governor in a rural state who changed his mind about gun laws.

An updated Morning Edition clock will eliminate one newscast each hour, making room for a wider variety of in-depth news segments.
Daria Bishop / For VPR

Beginning Monday, August 13, you will notice some changes during Morning Edition as NPR implements changes to its program clock.

Henry Epp filming the VPR News Minute with Vermont PBS on June 15.
Brian Stevenson / Vermont PBS

Vermont Public Radio and Vermont PBS have announced a new partnership bringing the TV station’s viewers a 60-second roundup of VPR’s top stories every week.

VPR won two national Edward R. Murrow Awards for its news coverage in 2017.
VPR

Vermont Public Radio has won national Edward R. Murrow Awards for a Brave Little State podcast exploring the history of Vermont’s whiteness and a VPR News story about immigrants seeking asylum in Canada.

On Sept. 13, VPR’s Tell Me More Tour visited Orange County, hosting a public event at the Chandler Center For The Arts in Randolph.
Illustration by Lara Dickson / Deep Dish Creative

VPR is hitting the road to visit all 14 Vermont counties during our Tell Me More Tour through October 2018.

Musician, composer and educator Ray Vega is the new host of Friday Night Jazz on VPR.
Seth Cashman

Trumpeter, percussionist, composer, arranger and educator Ray Vega will join Vermont Public Radio this month as the new host of Friday Night Jazz.

VPR won four Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for its news coverage in 2017.
VPR

Vermont Public Radio stories about immigrants seeking asylum in Canada and the increase in millennial farmers in Vermont, a podcast about the history of Vermont’s whiteness and VPR’s digital news content have won four 2018 Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards.

Morning Edition Host Mitch Wertlieb will be away from the mic for several weeks this spring.
Daria Bishop

Morning Edition Host Mitch Wertlieb will be off the air for several weeks this spring as he recovers from hip replacement surgery.

"I'm going fully bionic!" Mitch says. He had his other hip replaced several years ago.

We’ll all miss Mitch’s in-depth interviews, quick wit and exceptional music beds. Some of us will miss his enthusiasm for the Red Sox. While he’s away, Jake Rusnock and Henry Epp will be waking up early to bring you the news.

Please feel free to leave your well wishes for Mitch in the comments!

Scott Finn will join VPR as president & CEO on May 7, 2018.
WVPB

The Vermont Public Radio Board of Directors has appointed Scott Finn as its new President and CEO.

VPR will continue to carry On Point, which will continue to be produced by guest hosts including Jane Clayson, Tom Gjelten and Ray Suarez.
On Point Radio

Tom Ashbrook, host of On Point, has been dismissed from WBUR, Boston University announced Wednesday.

Ashbrook was placed on leave in December 2017 after 11 current and former station employees filed complaints of sexual misconduct and bullying. Boston University launched two independent investigations, which found that Ashbrook's conduct "created an abusive work environment" but determined it "was not sexual in nature."

Award-winning public radio journalist Sarah Ashworth will return to Vermont Public Radio in March as director of news.
Chris Saunders / NHPR

Award-winning  public radio journalist Sarah Ashworth will return to Vermont Public Radio in March as director of news. She will lead the station’s 15-person news team.

Ashworth brings a variety of experiences to VPR, which has  significantly increased its public service journalism over the last 17 years as a result of audience demand.  She will lead VPR’s initiatives in broadcast and digital news gathering as the organization develops new ways to provide news, enterprise and investigative reporting while engaging the community in the process.

Update 1/4/18: Randy Brock has resigned from the VPR Board of Directors audit committee following his appointment to the Vermont Senate in December.

Original post: Vermont Public Radio has elected two new members to its Board of Directors to serve three-year terms:

John Dillon will become VPR's senior reporter for the New England News Collaborative in January 2018.
Vermont Public Radio

News Director and longtime VPR News reporter John Dillon will take on a new role as Senior Reporter for the New England News Collaborative beginning in January, VPR announced today. 

For every Giving Tuesday contribution to VPR, two generous individuals in Burlington and Shelburne will donate 15 meals to the Vermont Foodbank.
Vermont Foodbank

Update: What an incredible day! On Giving Tuesday 2017 we heard from 1,829 listeners who supported VPR and collectively sent 27,435 meals to Vermonters in need via the Vermont Foodbank. From everyone at VPR, thank you for your generous support. We are so honored to be part of this community.

Friday Night Jazz Host Reuben Jackson will leave VPR in April 2018.
VPR

Reuben Jackson, host of Friday Night Jazz, has announced that he will leave VPR next April. His final VPR broadcast will be Friday, April 27.

“Needless to say, the opportunity to share music I truly love with an audience of devoted listeners for five years has been - and will continue to be for awhile longer - an immense joy,” Reuben wrote in an email to staff. “I want to thank VPR for the unexpected opportunity and for the chance to return the world of radio.”

Use the voice memo app on your smartphone to record a message about why you're a VPR Sustainer.
Emily Alfin-Johnson / VPR

Sustainers: we want to hear from YOU! Why do you sustain VPR? What does being a Sustainer mean to you? Record and share your sustainer love and you might hear yourself during our December membership drive.

VPR is giving away an iPad Pro during the September membership drive.
Small Dog Electronics

Thank you! More than 4,300 VPR supporters came together to raise more than $400,000 for VPR in under six days of on-air fundraising - several days shorter than most pledge drives! We met the goal just before 9 a.m. on Wednesday, September 20. Thank you so much to everyone who made it possible and to those who support VPR. 

Peter Fox Smith has shared his love and knowledge of opera with VPR audiences since the station first went on the air in 1977.
Jordan Silverman

A Passion For Opera, which airs on VPR Classical Saturdays at noon, will end production next month. The last program will broadcast on Saturday, September 9.

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