Abigail Beckman

Reporter

Abigail Beckman joined the KMUW team in April 2014. Born and raised in a small Colorado mountain town, she is still getting used to being a flatlander.

She graduated from Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., with degrees in journalism and Spanish in 2012. Immediately following, Abigail worked as the news editor of the Dodge City Daily Globe in Dodge City, Kan., where her primary focus was covering crime news. She graduated with a Master of Arts in communication from Wichita State University in the spring of 2015.

Her work has been featured on NPR’s "Only A Game” and “Weekend Edition Sunday.” She has recorded and produced stories for Harvest Public Media and various public radio stations across the state of Kansas. In 2015, she wrote and produced the radio documentary “The Pieces that Remain: Remembering the Wichita State University Plane Crash which won a 2016 Gracie Award from the Alliance for Women in Media, a 2016 regional Edward R. Murrow Award, a first place in the News Documentary category from Public Radio News Directors Incorporated (PRNDI) in 2016, was named Outstanding Graduate Professional Project by the Elliott School of Communication at Wichita State University for 2015, and took first place in the 2016 special program category from the Kansas Association of Broadcasters.

For another piece called Reaching Out: The Ongoing Relationship Between the WPD and the Homeless," Abigail earned a national Edward R. Murrow Award. The Kansas Association of Broadcasters (KAB) awarded Abigail second place in the 2016 spot news category for her story on budget cuts within Wichita Public Schools that nearly closed the city's adult learning centers. A group project looking into the tight-knit community of Hesston, Kansas following a mass shooting that Abigail completed with co-workers Carla Eckels, Deborah Shaar and Aileen LeBlanc was awarded first place from the KAB in 2016, as well.

The Kansas Association of Broadcasters (KAB) awarded Abigail second place in the spot news category and news feature categories in 2015 for two pieces — Taps: The Hardest 24 Notes and Reaching Out: The Ongoing Relationship Between the WPD and the Homeless."

Ways to Connect

alamosbasement, flickr Creative Commons

Derby Public Schools is holding two public forums on Wednesday night to gather the community's input on the district's next superintendent.

The Kansas Association of School Boards (KASB) is helping the Derby school district gather input from students, teachers, and other community members on what they want in a new leader.

Current Superintendent Craig Wilford is set to retire on June 30.

The forums are scheduled for 5:15 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday evening in Derby High School’s lecture hall.

Abigail Beckman

For the first time ever, Wichita Public Schools will have a female superintendent. 

Hugo Phan / KMUW

Former Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer is running for governor. He is the first Democrat to announce for the 2018 election.

Abigail Wilson

People in the community of Hesston will gather on Sunday for a memorial in remembrance of the victims of a mass shooting last year at Excel Industries.

Brad Wilson / flickr Creative Commons

Several schools districts across Kansas saw a big increase in the number of students absent Thursday.

Attendance at public schools in Wichita, Dodge City and Garden City dropped significantly as immigrants across the country took part in an initiative seeking to highlight their contributions to U.S. business, economy and culture. Officials from all three districts said the absences couldn't be linked explicitly to the planned "Day Without Immigrants," but the number of students not in class was definitely higher than usual.

Hartman for Governor Youtube

Wichita businessman Wink Hartman says he's running for governor next year as a conservative Republican.

Hartman announced Wednesday that he is starting a campaign for the Republican nomination in 2018. The governor's job will be open during the upcoming election, because Sam Brownback can't seek a third term. In a video announcing his campaign, Hartman says he is a businessman, not a politician.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

Since President Donald Trump took office, there has been a flurry of protests and rallies here in Wichita, spurred by grassroots activists. Dr. Gretchen Eick, professor emeritus at Friends University, is a local history expert when it comes to the modern civil rights movement. KMUW’s Abigail Beckman spoke to Eick about how the activities we’re seeing now parallel the past.

Courtesy Wichita Festivals

A new kind of party will be held in Wichita this summer: The first-ever Wichita Vortex Music Festival will take place Aug. 4-5. 


Wikipedia

The FBI is involved in a multi-year investigation in the Wichita area.

Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell confirmed the investigation has been going on for at least two years.

"It could be longer, but that's certainly a conservative time frame," Longwell said.

Longwell said he could not comment on how or when he found out about the investigation because it is ongoing.

The FBI would not confirm or deny the investigation, but spokeswoman Bridget Patton said that agents were in Wichita last week.

WPD Facebook

The Wichita Police Department is conducting an internal investigation that possibly involves misconduct by department members.

According to Police Chief Gordon Ramsay, the case is the result of a criminal investigation being conducted by another law enforcement agency.

"Two police officers have been placed on administrative review pending the outcome of the criminal and internal investigation," he said during a press briefing Tuesday.

Ramsay said he plans to be transparent and keep the media and community informed as the investigation progresses.

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