Now that the clean-up has begun and the damage is being assessed in communities stricken by this weekend’s tornadoes, we’ll talk this hour about what it’s like to rebuild.
Mary Sutherlin has spent the last few days working with her neighbors and her husband to clean up what’s left of her home. She says when the tornado struck her hometown of Gifford on Sunday, she and her husband and 11 year-old grandchild barely made it into the back room before the tornado blew away most of her neighborhood. For the first half of this hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Sutherlin about what’s next and how she’s handling rebuilding and clean-up. Champaign County Emergency Management Agency Spokesman Rick Atterberry also joins us.
Then, Jim Gilliland, former mayor of Ogden, Illinois joins us. He says when a tornado struck the town of around 700 people in late April of 1996, both the damage and the idea that he was a key decision maker was overwhelming. We’ll talk with him about how the community came together and started to pick up the pieces in the weeks and months following the storm.
University of Illinois Chancellor Phyllis Wise joins us this hour on Focus.
Chancellor Wise, who oversees the University of Illinois’ Urbana-Champaign campus, has been pushing for “future excellence” through her “Visioning Future Excellence” initiative. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Chancellor Wise about her goals for the university’s future.
We’ll also talk with Wise about the university’s growing presence in China, the growing reliance on private support, including philanthropy from individuals and foundations, like the University of Illinois Foundation, for funding, and about the increasing emphasis on diversity as a mission of the university.
“Four score and seven years ago our forefathers brought forth on this continent…”
150 years ago tomorrow, President Lincoln delivered one of the best known speeches in American history. Do you remember, without looking it up, when the battle happened that inspired the speech? Today on Focus, Jim Meadows talks with Bruce Levine about the significance of the Gettysburg address and the Battle of Gettysburg. Levine says that while the Battle of Gettysburg is one of the most important battles of the war, the Gettysburg Address is not the most important speech Lincoln gave during that time period. We’ll talk about why that speech became so famous and what that says about American history.
Today on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Kevin Waspi, a chartered financial analyst and Jake Kuebler, a certified financial planner with Bluestem Financial Advisors in Champaign. We welcome your calls and questions!
The stock market continues to set new record highs and this hour on Focus, we’ll talk with personal finance experts Kevin Waspi and Jake Kuebler about what that means for your investment portfolio. We’ll also talk about holiday spending during this hour on Focus. Economists predict spending will be down this season; we’ll talk about why and will find out how that could affect you.
As we’re quickly approaching end of year finance questions, host Jim Meadows also talks with Waspi and Kuebler about what you can be doing to get ready for tax season. And as always, we welcome your personal finance questions whether you’re planning for retirement, just starting out and looking at buying a home or trying to figure out how to manage your budget.
Read more to see this month's updated couch potato porfolio.
Abraham Zapruder caught one of the most infamous moments in American history on film and sold the footage to Life Magazine. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with the reporter who convinced him to give up the film.
When President John F. Kennedy was assassinated at Dealy Plaza in Dallas, Texas in 1963, Richard Stolley was Los Angeles bureau chief for Life Magazine. He got a call soon after the news of the assassination broke that someone named Zapruder had caught the whole thing on film.
Is telling a story or being accurate to history important in a children’s storybook? Today on Focus - balancing fact and fiction in literature for very young readers.
Janet Riehecky’s been fascinated by dinosaurs since she was a little girl; today, she writes books about them. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Riehecky about writing a children’s book that grounds itself in scientific fact. Riehecky is the author of several children's books, including the series "Killer Animals," which features a variety of creatures found in nature such as scorpions and cobras.
Then, Meadows talks with Urbana author Marianne Malone. Malone has been working on a series of books inspired by the Thorne Room art exhibit at the Art Institute of Chicago. Although the stories are fictional, she says the books pull from history and are meant to teach about the past. Malone has so far written three books in the series, the latest being The Pirate's Coin.
What were your favorite books when you were little? Did they teach you anything?
Wanjala, or the "hunger season" is the time of year between planting and harvest when food is scarce. This hour on Focus, we'll hear about how one farming community in Kenya’s struggle with hunger.
In farming communities in Kenya, there is a period of time every year called wanjala, when food is scarce and hunger is rampant. In his most recent book "The Last Hunger Season," Roger Thurow tells the story of four farmers in western Kenya, and their struggles with hunger and poverty, while they try out a program supplied by the NGO One Acre, that brings hope of eliminating the “Hunger Season” for good.
This hour on Focus, we’ll hear a documentary produced by University Laboratory High School and WILL, “From the Frontlines to the Home Front: Inside View of the Military 1940-2012.”
Culture within and surrounding the United States Military has changed dramatically over the course of the half a century. If you’ve never served in the armed forces, have you wondered what that change looks like from an insider’s perspective? This hour on Focus, we’ll hear from men and women who served in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq about their experiences.
“From the Frontlines to the Home Front: Inside Views of the Military 1940-2012” is part of an oral history project that students from University High School produce with WILL.
This hour on Focus, we’ll talk with horticulture expert Sandy Mason and Karen Geiser, a market gardener, about extending the growing season and eating fresh and local during the winter months. We welcome your calls and questions this hour on Focus!
Colder weather is upon us, but that doesn’t mean you can’t continue to grow vegetables. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with market gardener Karen Geiser, who owns Karen’s Garden Delights in Kidron Ohio, about cold hearty plants and vegetables. She says she cold frames, high tunnels and low tunnels to ensure she has fresh food from her garden all year round. And of course, University of Illinois Extension horticulture expert Sandy Mason also joins us. We welcome your gardening questions this hour on Focus!
What defines a super hero? This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Bill Rosemann, editor at Marvel comics and Mark Hughes, film critic for Forbes, about the rise of the super hero on and off the page.
We’ve long been fascinated by super heroes, but why? According to Bill Rosemann, an editor at Marvel comics, it’s because they are relatable. This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Rosemann about what makes a super hero super and why they’ve captivated us for decades. Rosemann also talks about Marvel’s newest character, Ms. Marvel, a Pakistani-American character from New Jersey who is muslim.
Then, in the second half of this hour on Focus, Meadows talks with Mark Hughes, a comic book aficionado and contributing writer for Forbes. We’ll talk with him about the rise of the super hero on screen and how companies like DC and Marvel have expanded their stories across the media landscape.
What do you think makes a super hero “super?” Post in the comments section below!
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