Rebecca Blatt | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Rebecca Blatt

Former Senior News Editor

Blatt served as WAMU’s senior news editor for special projects until March 2014. In that role, her work focused on in-depth reporting, political coverage and community engagement. Blatt coordinated coverage of special events such as elections, and she edited and produced news features and series. She also oversaw WAMU’s Public Insight Network, an online community of people interested in sharing experiences and perspectives for public radio news and programming.

Blatt got her start in radio at North Carolina Public Radio, where she produced interviews for The Story. She earned a master’s degree in journalism at UNC Chapel Hill before coming to WAMU as a morning producer in 2008. Her work has been recognized by the Education Writers Association, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, the Journalism Center on Children and Families, the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association and the New York Festivals radio programming awards. She is currently a student in the Professional MBA program at American University’s Kogod School of Business.


Articles Written by Rebecca Blatt

WAMU 88.5
Kin Yiu Cheung was driving a Sky Express bus from Charlotte bound for New York on May 31, when he reportedly fell asleep at the wheel. The bus flipped just north of Richmond, killing four people and injuring dozens more.Now Cheung's wife tells the Richmond Times Dispatch that he told his employer he was tired and didn't want to make the trip. She says he got behind the...
WAMU 88.5
General manger Mike Rizzo said Riggleman quit after the team denied his request for a new contract. Rizzo says Riggleman quit after he requested the team pick up the option on his contract for 2012 and the club declined.Rizzo made the announcement Thursday afternoon following the Nat's victory. The Nats have won 11 of the last 12 games.The team is expected to name an int...
WAMU 88.5
Crews now expect service to be restored by this evening, according to Kurt Kocher, a spokesman for Baltimore's Department of Public Works. Meanwhile they are bringing bottled drinking water to residents in the area.Kocher says this is an example of the city's aging infrastructure."It's something that really over generations was out of sight and out of mind and now it's e...
WAMU 88.5
Yonathan Melaku, 22, of Alexandria made an initial court appearance today on two grand larceny charges for a previous case. He appeared via a video hookup from the Loudoun County jail.There was no mention of his detention last week after U.S. Park Police found him in Arlington National Cemetery after dark. Officials investigated the contents of his backpack for what they initia...
WAMU 88.5
In the resolution, the mayors say $126 billion is being spent each year on the wars. And they argue that money should be spent at home instead. They call for funding to create jobs, rebuild infrastructure, develop sustainable energy and provide for other needs.This afternoon a bipartisan group of mayors heads to Washington to meet with the President. They are expected to share ...
WAMU 88.5
Baltimore has approximately 300,000 ash trees, close to 10 percent of the Baltimore's tree canopy. And replacing them is expensive, costing between $1,000 and $2,000 a piece, so the arrival of the emerald ash borer in Howard County is not welcome news.The pest is commonly spread when firewood is moved, so state agriculture officials are expanding a quarantine zone and banning m...
WAMU 88.5
Police say they were notified on Monday that an employee at Poolesville High School found graffiti on the outside school walls, windows and basketball court. Some had been spray-painted and included references to the KKK, a swastika, and ethnic slurs.In addition, a utility vehicle had been taken from a locked storage building on school grounds, police say. They say they believe...
WAMU 88.5
The laws approach school safety from several different angles. A few have to do with school buses. For instance, one stiffens the penalty for drivers who pass stopped buses. Another prohibits sex offenders from boarding school buses.Two others have to do with substance abuse. The first designates bath salts as controlled substances. Another requires Virginia's Department of Hea...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia State police say James Hawkins of Clinton, Md., has been charged with reckless driving. His truck overturned as he exited the ramp from the southbound Capital Beltway to westbound I-66. Police say speed was a factor in the crash. It closed westbound I-66 for three hours Tuesday.Hawkins was not injured in the crash, and no other vehicles were involved....
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Webb was joined by colleagues from North Carolina, West Virginia and New Mexico in an appeal to the Senate Appropriations Committee and an Appropriations subcommittee on the interior and environment.They are seeking $10 million for the Civil War Battlefield Preservation Program, which provides matching grants to preserve what Webb calls "hallowed grounds."Battleground pr...
WAMU 88.5
The new system classifies juvenile offenders based on the crimes they've committed, rather than their behavior since they've been incarcerated.Advocates and parents told the Board of Juvenile Justice Wednesday that it's not fair to those who have excelled and earned more privileges. They also say it could disrupt services provided to offenders while they're incarcerated....
WAMU 88.5
Ted Loza -- the former chief of staff to Council member Jim Graham -- has admitted to accepting improper payments in exchange for pushing legislation to benefit some in the taxicab industry.Now, prosecutors and defense lawyers are arguing over the sentence he should receive.During the first day of testimony Tuesday, prosecutors played video recordings showing Loza accept...
WAMU 88.5
Police spokesman Captain Paul Starks says investigators have not established a motive or identified any suspects in the killing of Jessica Nguyen. She was a sixth-grader at Gaithersburg Middle School, and her body was found inside a townhouse she shared with family members.Starks says police are not releasing any details about the stabbing.He says investigators have inte...
WAMU 88.5
Police say 21-year-old Bruce Yansen was one of three people swimming in the reservoir Friday evening when the ground dropped out from under him and the water was suddenly much deeper.Yansen reportedly panicked and went under the water. Another swimmer tried to save him but was unsuccessful. His body was recovered Tuesday morning.Swimming is prohibited in the reservoir. Y...
WAMU 88.5
The senators sent the request to Biden in a letter obtained by the Associated Press. Sens. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Jon Tester of Montana, Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Bill Nelson of Florida signed it along with Cardin.They note Biden has made progress in negotiations on spending and deficit reduction and say that as talks move forward the vice president must insist that sign...
WAMU 88.5
The rocket is scheduled to launch between 7 and 10 a.m. Thursday from the Wallops Island Flight Facility.The rocket will be carrying several new technologies to test. One is called an electrohydrodynamic-based thermal control unit. This technology is intended to be a more efficient way to remove heat from small spaces -- critical for space instruments and processors that could ...
WAMU 88.5
The new charges were filed after Kin Yiu Cheung appeared in the Caroline County Courthouse on a reckless driving count stemming from Tuesday's crash that killed four women and injured dozens of other passengers.Cheung had been out on bond, but was arrested today after the new charges were filed.Police say he was fatigued when the Sky Express bus swerved off Interstate 95...
WAMU 88.5
Under his direction in 1989, Virginia became the first state to have a lab capable of performing DNA fingerprinting, just months after the FBI first began using that technology as a crime-fighting too.lThe same year, Virginia also became the first to create a DNA database of convicted sex offenders.Associates say Ferrara died Monday at his home in Chesterfield County. He...
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Police say Trooper First Class Shaft S. Hunter may have been pursuing a speeding motorcycle when his vehicle hit a tractor-trailer early Saturday.A witness reported being passed by a speeding motorcycle and then a state police cruiser, which then hit the tractor-trailer. Police say Hunter was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash.State officials say the flag will be ...
WAMU 88.5
Maryland Transportation Secretary Beverley Swaim-Staley says toll increases are unavoidable because of the need to pay bondholders and the growing maintenance demands of aging infrastructure.The tolls would affect the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, the Baltimore Harbor crossings, the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway and some other toll facilities.They would take effect on Oct. 1...