WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Jonathan Wilson

Environment Reporter

Wilson spent five years working as a local television reporter at stations in Indiana and Arkansas. After growing tired of local TV news, he arrived in the WAMU Newsroom in 2008 as volunteer and quickly realized that working as a public radio reporter was his dream job. Luckily, the bosses at WAMU decided not to crush his dreams and gave him a chance. Now he won’t leave.

Wilson is a graduate of Middlebury College, and received his Masters’ from the Medill School of Journalism. He is a native of Arlington, Virginia, and lives there now with his wife and his daughter.


Articles Written by Jonathan Wilson

This has been the coldest week of the winter so far for D.C.-area residents, and not a bad time to think about how well your house holds in heat.On Thursday Dominion Power crews sealed up drafty windows and door frames in three townhomes occupied by families transitioning away from homelessness in Reston, Va.The changes will make for a warmer and cheaper winter, but desi...
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In Virginia, demand for a food pantry's services is still growing, but not quite as fast as it was this time last year.Arlington Food Assistance Center is still getting applications from 10 new families needing assistance each month.Executive director Charlie Meng says both financial and food donations are up. That's allowed AFAC to expand services in the community, incl...
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As temperatures continue to drop into the 20s, power companies are reminding D.C.-area residents of simple steps to stay warmer without spending extra on heating bills.A worker from Dominion Virginia Power was chipping away at the inside of a gutter on Thursday, outside the second story of a townhome in Reston. Chunks of an asphalt-like mixture fall to the ground beneath his la...
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Food pantries can be a barometer for how the economy is affecting the neediest families. People at the Arlington Food Assistance Center say demand for food is not letting up this holiday season, though there are some signs of change.Every weekday, from 10 a.m. to noon, hungry Arlington residents line up at the center for their share of free groceries. The past couple of years h...
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In Virginia, the Northern Virginia Tea Party is trying to maintain momentum after the 2010 election cycle. The group is hoping a high profile guest speaker at its second annual banquet may have helped things.Christine O'Donnell may have suffered a convincing defeat in her effort to win one of Delaware's Senate seats. But as the keynote speaker at Tuesday night's Northern Virgin...
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In Virginia, the plan to transform Tysons Corner is slowly moving forward. Monday night, some local residents got their first glimpse of what the transformation will look like.More than 100 residents made their way around the cafeteria at Marshall High School, where renderings of seven of the first projects proposed under the new Tysons Corner building guidelines were on displa...
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On Saturday some local photographers will be capturing the holdiay spirit by offering free portraits for low income families. It's the second annual international "Help Portrait Day."Sandra Merriman lives in Franconia. She's on a fixed income and says getting a professional photograph taken has always seemed like a luxury, until this year."I pushed it on my kids that eve...
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Saturday is the second annual "Help Portrait Day" -- a day where photographers take portraits of people and families who can't afford professional pictures for free.Sandra Merriman and her family will participate in the event. She lives with her son, daughter, and two grandchildren in the Franconia area. For the past two years she's has relied on the nonprofit emergency assista...
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In Virginia, a small business owner is taking Arlington county to federal court.She says the county is forcing her to cover or take down a mural on the wall of her store, and violating her free speech rights.Kim Houghton, the owner of Wag More Dogs Grooming, says she commissioned the 16-by-60-foot mural on the outside wall of her store simply because she thought dog owne...
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In Virginia, the owner of a small business in Shirlington has filed a federal free speech lawsuit against Arlington County. Kim Houghton filed the suit regarding a mural she commissioned on the outside wall of her dog-grooming business, Wag More Dogs.Wag More Dogs' back wall faces Shirlington's popular dog park, and Houghton had what she thought was a great idea: a giant mural ...
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In Virginia, after a court ruling that didn't go their way, residents in Clifton are deciding whether to regroup or accept the Fairfax County School Board's decision to close the town's elementary school.Fairfax Circuit Court Judge Dennis Smith ruled that Clifton residents were properly notified of the possibility of closure, and that the decision was not arbitrary and capricio...
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A judge in Fairfax, Va., has ruled that the county school board acted within its rights to close the elementary school in the town of Clifton. Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Dennis Smith ruled against the Clifton parents, who claimed the board's decision was "arbitrary and capricious."The judge said though there may have been substantial evidence supporting a decision to ke...
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This week the Senate is expected to again take up a bill known as the DREAM Act. The legislation would help the children of illegal immigrants remain in the country to get an education or serve in the military.Gaby Pacheco came to the U.S. illegally from Ecuador when she was seven years old.Now she's 24 and studying to earn her bachelor's degree in special education at a...
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The Federal Trade Commission is teaming with local governments to spread the word about the fastest-growing type of identity theft: medical ID theft.Vee Johnson, of the Fairfax County's Consumer Affairs Division, wants local residents, especially senior citizens, to guard their personal health information just as closely as they guard their money."Protect your Medicare c...
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Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone. Now online retailers, including many headquartered in Northern Virginia's Technology Corridor are counting the numbers. One fast-growing company in Chantilly, CedarPC, continues to see the benefit of its online retail presence.John Vuong is the CEO of CedarPC, a company that specializes in selling refurbished computers to consum...
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Today is one of the biggest online shopping days of the year, also known as Cyber Monday. Quite a few companies in Northern Virginia's Technology Corridor shifted into their highest gear in preparation, including the growing retailer CedarPC.CedarPC operates two old-fashioned retail stores in Virginia -- one in Vienna, and one in Chantilly. Today, the Chantilly store is quiet, ...
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Thousands of people are flying out of the D.C. region to visit family and friends for Thanksgiving -- right in the middle of a controversy brewing over new security screening procedures at airports.Carol Fullerton, like many other travelers catching flights out of Dulles International Airport today, came expecting the worst."I'm here four hours early -- in preparation. S...
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In Virginia, several federal lawmakers and Gov. Bob McDonnell say they left a discussion with Defense Secretary Robert Gates feeling a little bit better about the impact military spending cuts will have on Virginia's economy.It's not clear whether the discussion will change Gates' plans.A proposal to reduce spending on military contractors by 30 percent over the next thr...
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In Virginia today, at a long-sought meeting with Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Gov. Bob McDonnell and several other representatives of the commonwealth, expressed their opposition to the planned closure of Joint Forces Command in Hampton Roaand a proposed reduction to military contractors.The closed-door meeting in Arlington lasted a little more than an hour. Gov. McDonnell ...
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In Virginia's Fairfax County, a public school in the Hollin Hills community is pleading parents and local businesses for money to save unique school programs.Hollin Meadows fifth-grader Jonathan Guerra-Cardial says the coolest thing about the huge garden at his school is being able to eat what you grow, and then turn what's left over into fertilizer."Eat the apples, and ...