Steve Mencher

News Director

707-584-2012

Creator and lead producer of the CPB/AIR Localore: Finding America project at KCPT in Kansas City.  The “Beyond Belief” multimedia effort led with digital and broadcast video about faith communities coming together despite differences, while examining issues of community and equity. Radio producer at NPR, the University of Pennsylvania and the Library of Congress. Created arts education website ArtsZone for OVATION TV, and worked at Carnegie Hall and the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Interim Sonoma County Sheriff Rob Giordano promised a statement in the coming days that will outline the department's new policies. He promised 'less cooperation' with ICE.
Sonoma County Sheriff's Office

Sonoma County Interim Sheriff Rob Giordano released a statement August 10 promising "less cooperation" with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), responding to concerns in the community that go back to the policies of his predecessor, Sheriff Steve Freitas, who resigned for health reasons effective August 1.

Roseland Community Library
Sonoma County Library

Yesterday on the North Bay Report, we listened in on last week’s meeting of Sonoma LAFCO (Local Agency Formation Commission), the agency helping to make Santa Rosa’s annexation of Roseland a reality. There’s hope that this unincorporated part of town can grow and prosper under Santa Rosa’s governance, with improved education, health and economic outcomes for its residents. But not everyone in the area favors annexation, as Steve Mencher reports.

Map of Roseland Annexation
City of Santa Rosa

If you live in Santa Rosa, you probably know that chunks of land there–dominated by the 620 acres of the Roseland neighborhood–are not, in fact, part of the city; they are islands.

These unincorporated areas are served by a patchwork of agencies providing municipal services. As Steve Mencher reports, that problem may soon be solved if Roseland and four other nearby islands come under the city’s wing through annexation.

The City of Santa Rosa's Frequently Asked Questions about Roseland Annexation.

NASA visual aid on solar eclipse
NASA

Laura Sparks, an astronomy instructor at Santa Rosa Junior College, and chair of the Earth and Space Sciences Department, visited us for a chat about the August 21 eclipse. We'll have that story soon on the North Bay Report.

While she was here, she warned listeners about counterfeit eclipse glasses. Since it's crucial that you protect your eyes while looking at the eclipse, using these non-approved glasses could result in injury, so we are posting this information immediately.

Calves on dairy farm
KRCB/Steve mencher

Earlier this week we visited the orchards of Torrey and Lucy Olson on a Climate Smart Agriculture tour, to learn about soil management techniques and the challenges of farming as the climate warms. Today we visit a local dairy farm with an eye to learning about manure and water, and how effective management can benefit both farmers and the environment. Our visit was organized by the California Climate and Agriculture Network.

Gabriel Farm, Sebastopol
KRCB/Steve Mencher

It doesn’t take a huge farm to make a big difference for the climate. Reporter Steve Mencher visited an orchard in Sebastopol recently on a tour organized by the California Climate and Agriculture Network -  CalCAN. The idea was to witness how initiatives developed in Sacramento are affecting practices on the ground in Sonoma County.

President Donald J. Trump
Gage Skidmore

With President Trump’s tweets withdrawing the welcome mat from transgender service members, and the Justice Department’s friend of the court brief seeking to remove some employment protections from the LGBTQ community, local activists are wondering what their role should be going forward. Steve Mencher talks with Santa Rosa lawyer and rights advocate Naomi Metz.

Find out more about grants to local LGBTQ organizations from the LGBTQI Giving Circle.

An American Badger mom and two of her young.
Paula Lane Action Network

July 29 at the Laguna Environmental Center in Santa Rosa, naturalist Susan Kirks will give a presentation entitled "The Awesome American Badger." Reporter Steve Mencher met her recently in an open field, where she’d been called to investigate possible badger activity.

Al Gore in San Francisco July 24, 2017
KRCB/Steve Mencher

Ten years ago, Al Gore’s climate change slide show morphed into an award-winning documentary about the climate crisis. He’s back with a sequel, which suggests that things are both better and worse, as Steve Mencher reports.

Watch the trailer for the new film "An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power" opening at select theaters July 28 and everywhere August 4.

Greater Farallones Sanctuary Map
National Ocean Service | NOAA | Department of Commerce

When the Cordell Bank and Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuaries were expanded in 2015, advocates happily described them as "permanently" protected. That protection is now threatened by an April 28 presidential executive order which seeks to review the expansion, as Steve Mencher reports in the second part of a two-part story.

NOAA/Google Earth

Time is growing short to make your voice heard on the president's Executive Order to review and possibly shrink the National Marine Sanctuaries off the coast of Northern California, and elsewhere around the state and nation. The sanctuaries were expanded by President Obama in 2015 after extensive public input and hearings. In the first of two stories, Steve Mencher describes what the protections mean and what's at stake now.

Map of National Marine Sanctuaries off North Bay coast.
NOAA

(Editor's Note: The comment period for public input on these National Marine Sanctuaries has been extended to August 14.)

Poster with cast of Angels in America, National Theatre
National Theatre

Tony Kushner's play "Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes" is a huge hit in London this summer. There are no more tickets available to see Andrew Garfield and Nathan Lane in this powerhouse production at the National Theatre. But you can see the show in Sebastopol starting July 20 at the Rialto Cinemas. It's part of a series of events "captured live" and streamed to movie theaters, as Steve Mencher reports.

Baby tree planted in Tahoe National Forest
Trees for a Change

You're invited to a birthday party July 14 -- and the site is perfect: Armstrong Woods. The celebration recognizes a decade of work by a Santa Rosa-based company that honors and memorializes friends and loved ones with a unique and sustainable gift. Steve Mencher talked with Kim Isley, "treehugger in chief," about her brainchild.

Find out how you can give the gift of a tree at the Trees for a Change website.

Information about trash and recycling at recent meeting
Steve Mencher

It's easy to forget about trash. We bring it to the curb once a week, or send it down a chute, and it disappears. But trash is becoming an increasingly important subject in our region, as we try to figure out how we can avoid creating ever-higher mountains of garbage near our towns and cities. Steve Mencher reports on a recent gathering where trash and jobs were the central focus.

Learn more about "Don't Waste LA," an inspirational model for dealing with the stuff we generally throw away.

Battle for the Net Tweet
ACLU

July 12th is being promoted across the Internet as a “Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality.” The forces on the other side of this issue proclaim their allegiance to what they call an “Open Internet.” But as Steve Mencher reports, these two things are not the same.

Find more on Net Neutrality from the Electronic Frontier Foundation. And visit Battle for the Net.com to find out what you can do about keeping Net Neutrality.

Sheriff Steve Freitas
Sonoma County

Sonoma County Sheriff Steve Freitas announced today that he will be leaving office August 1. A recall effort had sought to end the sheriff's term early, but it has been withdrawn due to the new circumstances. Steve Mencher has an "exit interview" with the sheriff.

Listen to Bruce Robinson's story about the recall effort.

Advance Health Directive Image
My Care, My Plan: Speak Up Sonoma County

My Care, My Plan, Speak Up Sonoma County is a local initiative promoting the idea of advance health care planning. Reporter Steve Mencher talked with two of the volunteers driving this effort, and learned why everyone over 18 should update their plan regularly to fit changing circumstances. 

Find out what to include in an advance health care directive in this KRCB video.

Cannabis growing in field
Pavel Ševela / Wikimedia Commons

For wine consumers, appellations provide useful information about conditions where the grapes in a given bottle  were grown.  In Mendocino County  and elsewhere, cannabis growers  are now getting ready to apply the same philosophy to their products, as reporter Steve Mencher explains. 

Find out more about the Mendocino Appellations Project at their Facebook page. 

David Keaton

  The town of Sonoma will welcome the largest exhibition of public art in its history this summer. Metal sculptor Albert Paley will be represented by nine monumental yet fanciful artworks, installed in locations near the center of town. The exhibition is organized by the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art. Steve Mencher reports.

 

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