Carla Eckels

Reporter, Music Host

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.

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Community
6:06 am
Thu February 14, 2013

Lecture Covers The History Of Black Newspapers In Kansas

Historian Aleen Ratzlaff holds up The Community Voice while speaking at the Wichita Public Library.
Credit Carla Eckels

Dozens took part in a lecture Wednesday on African-American newspapers and communities in Kansas at the Wichita Public Library downtown.

Historian Aleen Ratzlaff, professor of communications at Tabor College in Hillsboro, says Kansas has a rich history of newspapers that were owned and published by African-Americans and targeted to black readers.

"The emphasis has been on mainstream newspapers, but there were vital publications that were part of the African-American community as well as other ethic communities," he says.

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Wichita City Council
6:09 am
Wed February 13, 2013

Loss Of Federal Funds Will Reduce Programs For Wichitans

After a lengthy discussion Tuesday, the Wichita City council decided which programs would be funded by a federal block grant.

The Community Services Block Grant is expected to be cut in half, providing about $532,000 to support various service programs in Wichita. That means some programs that were previously funded will get less - or none.

Mary Kay Vaughn, Director of Housing and Community Services, told the council that the review committee had to prioritize what programs would get funded.

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Government
4:30 pm
Tue February 12, 2013

City Council Approves Landfill Contract, Increasing Capacity

The Wichita City Council approved a new contract Tuesday with Greengroup to operate a construction and demolition landfill in northwest Wichita.

Greengroup, formerly Herzog Environmental, has operated the landfill since 2001. The landfill will continue with current staff.

Don Henry, assistant director of Public Works and Utilities, told the council the contract includes ongoing operations of the landfill and provides for the opening of a new construction and demolition cell.

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Health
6:34 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Feeling Dizzy? What You Need To Know About Vertigo

Dr. Robert Jensen demonstrates infrared goggles used to diagnose vertigo on Angelica Garcia.
Credit Carla Eckels

A growing number of patients suffer from vertigo, an unsettling sense of one's environment spinning or moving.

Carol Taylor, 68, recalls the first time she had vertigo after a shopping excursion.

She had spent an entire Saturday shopping with friends, doing what they call "shop 'til you drop."

Which, she says, is exactly what she did when she got home.

"I found out later it was a vertigo attack," she says. "I went from an upright position to laying flat on the floor."

She was also sick to her stomach and extremely disoriented.

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Wichita City Council
6:05 am
Wed February 6, 2013

City Council Approves 10-Year, $12.5M Bike Plan

An illustration of one bike-friendly design option for Wichita streets.
Credit City of Wichita - Bicycle Master Plan

The Wichita City Council Tuesday approved the Bicycle Master Plan. It recommends ways to make bicycling easier, safer and more convenient in Wichita.

A 19-member steering committee worked on the plan for two years. More than 4,000 people participated in the planning process at various meetings and events.

At the council meeting, Scott Wadle of the city's planning department outlined some of the recommendations:

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Community
4:46 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

What Did $100M Do For Downtown Wichita?

View of downtown Wichita from the top of the Old Town Square parking garage.
Credit chris.locke / flickr

Nearly $100 million was invested in downtown projects last year including the Ambassador Hotel, St. Mary's Cathedral and the YMCA.

This figure comes from the 2012 Project Downtown annual report that was presented to the Wichita City Council Tuesday by Jeff Fluhr, president of the Wichita Downtown Development Corp., and Scott Knebel from the city.

David Dixon, principle for planning and urban design at Goody Clancy out of Boston, was also part of the presentation because he helped craft the master plan.

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Community
4:22 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

After 5 Years And $17M, St. Mary's Cathedral Reopens In Downtown Wichita

St. Mary's Cathedral will reopen to the public Saturday after a renovation that took five years to plan and complete.
Credit St. Mary's Cathedral

St. Mary's Cathedral will reopen after the dedication of the altar Saturday in downtown Wichita.

Father John Sherlock says after $17 million dollars and five years of planning, the sanctuary has been totally renovated, including a new baptismal, 7-ft bronze statues, extension of the choir loft and the return of the tabernacle to the front of the church.

He says there is also a significant space inside the top of the dome.

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Arts
6:03 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Gospel Music Executive To Start Network In Wichita

Gospel music executive, Carla Williams.
Credit Michael Gomez

For more than two decades, Carla Williams has worked as a gospel music executive. She’s helped manage the careers of platinum and Grammy award-winning gospel artists.

A couple of years ago, she started her own company, CW Creative, and recently returned home to Wichita to start a new initiative to help area artists.

KMUW’s Carla Eckels talked with Williams about her expertise in the industry and launching The Gathering Network.

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Business
6:14 am
Thu January 31, 2013

Chamber Survey Suggests Strong Support For Tax Cuts

Results from the 10th annual Kansas Chamber CEO Poll were released Wednesday. The Chamber uses the results to assist in developing its agenda.

Project Director Pat McFerron says the survey showed strong support for continued state tax reform.

"Twenty-nine percent of Kansas business owners say that taxes are their top concern," says McFerron.

"It's the same percentage that we had last year and again, for 10 years it's been a top concern and this is asked at the start of the survey without us mentioning anything else."

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Community
6:13 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Community Members To Hold Vigil In Support Of Immigrant Rights

Students and support organizations in Wichita will lead a prayer vigil at Newman University Friday in support of immigration legislation that creates paths to citizenship.

The Newman University Hispanic American Leadership Opportunity group (H.A.L.O.), student organizations, Sunflower Action, the Wichita Casa De La Semilla, and other organizations are partnering to host the prayer vigil called Respect Human Dignity - Keep Families Together.

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