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If Fletcher Powell could be someone else, he’d be Errol Morris or Ira Glass. Except younger and better looking.
Since he can’t, he’ll be Fletcher Powell, KMUW producer and announcer. Fletcher came to KMUW in 2009 after five years of working in the stock market (don’t ask). He feels like this line of work fits him a little better than that one did.
Fletcher has a BA in Psychology from the University of Kansas and an MA in Communication from Wichita State University. He’s lived in Wichita most of his life, aside from some brief stops in Iowa and Ohio. He likes baseball, guinea pigs, and the Oxford comma.
Denise M. Irwin is an arts activist and loves the vibrant arts community in Wichita. She is currently a member of the Arts Council of Wichita, the Arts Forum, and the Ulrich Museum of Art Salon.
She joined KMUW in 2008 following a stint at Cowley County Community College in Arkansas City where she served as creative director and graphic design instructor. She worked at length with the Arkansas City community to revitalize its downtown through public art initiatives that included creation of four community murals.
A long-time listener and contributor to public radio, Denise believes in the value of public radio journalism and the diversity of funding that provides this editorial independence.
She is a graduate of Emporia State University (BS) and Wichita State University (MS). She is married to her best friend Rex. They have a daughter, Jaccie, who is a professor of rhetoric at California State University, Sacramento.
Chicago native Chris Heim began a lifelong love affair with radio after wandering into the campus station at the University of Chicago and being unexpectedly offered a music show after an opening developed. She got her first job in radio at one of the area’s last “free form” stations, worked at Chicago’s only progressive rock station and then joined the NPR affiliate, where she hosted jazz and world music shows (the latter being one of the longest running in public radio), served as music director and produced and anchored national broadcasts of the city’s jazz, blues and Latin music festivals.
Chris is also a freelance writer whose work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Utne, Global Rhythm, Dirty Linen and Option.
Here at KMUW, Chris produces and hosts Global Village, a nationally-distributed world music show; the nightly jazz show Night Train; Crossroads, KMUW’s twice-weekly blues and R&B show.
Carla Eckels has been an award-winning announcer/news producer for KMUW 89.1FM, Wichita Public Radio for 15 years. Carla also produces a R&B and gospel show Soulsations, Sunday nights at 6 on KMUW. She also hosts Joyful Sounds, a Sunday morning gospel radio show on the internet Grown Folk Jamz. Prior to KMUW, she was the local host for NPR’s Morning Edition at WYSO public radio in Yellow Springs, Ohio and co-hosted a nationally syndicated Gospel Countdown Radio show in Cincinnati.
Carla has reported on national news stories such as the BTK serial killer case, Roeder trial, Greensburg tornadoes and the 1958 Dockum Drug Store sit-in for NPR. The Dockum feature was the number one listened to story on KMUW’s website in 2007.
She’s the recipient of an Edward R. Murrow regional award for her reporting on Alzheimer’s. Carla has annually emceed the Wichita River Festival and Black Arts Festival gospel music segments. She was the emcee for the 2010, 2011 A Tribute to Trail Blazers Gala for the Kansas African American Museum and the 2011 NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet.
From 2004 to 2007, Carla hosted the number one gospel radio show on KSJM 107.9 JAMZ. She is the recipient of the Best Disc Jockey award voted on by subscribers of The Community Voice Newspaper.
Carla is a graduate of Wichita State University with a degree in communications. Her greatest joy is her family. She is married to Wichita and WSU Football Hall-of-Famer, Rev. Reuben Eckels and they are co-founders of New Day Christian Church. They have two children. Carla serves at New Day along side her husband, Reuben and co-pastor Rev., Dr. Cynthia Wolford.
Bill was born and raised in a sod hut on the Kansas plains.
And then he graduated with a degree in clarinet performance from Simpson College in Indianola. While in Iowa, Pearce worked at a commercial radio station playing pop-like music records and reading news.
After college, he returned to Wichita and began a career in photography. He worked for KWCH, at a commercial photo studio and later for Cessna. Pearce got back into radio when he found a job at the now-defunct Friends University station. He played classical music during the week and hosted his own jazz show on Saturdays.
For the past eight years, Pearce has read magazines like Sports Illustrated and Entertainment Weekly for the Wichita Radio Reading Service, which is in the same building as KMUW. That’s how General Manager Mark McCain found him. Straight No Chaser features mostly instrumental jazz, from early music to recent recordings. Also listen for the record labels, names of all the musicians involved, and when the recording was made.