Carla Eckels

Assistant News Director, 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.


10:12 am
Wed October 15, 2014

Soulsations Sunday: New Music From Gospel Inspiration Mandisa

Sunday, October 19:

Hear new inspirational gospel music from Mandisa. The powerful singer and American Idol contestant won her first Grammy this year and also just won her first 2014 Dove Award for Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year. Mandisa is considered a voice of encouragement and truth to people facing life's challenges all around the world.

Web extra: Here is the video for Mandisa's hit song "Overcomer."

10:08 am
Wed October 1, 2014

Soulsations Sunday: New Gospel Album From R&B Legend Gladys Knight

Gladys Knight's new album Where My Heart Belongs
Credit Album Cover Art

Sunday, October 5:

R&B Legend Gladys Knight has just released a brand new gospel album full of inspirational songs that are dear to her heart. The seven time Grammy winner has earned #1 hits in Pop, R&B and Adult Contemporary music. Knight’s album Where My Heart Belongs showcases her faith, her heart, and her unmatched vocal ability.  The longtime Las Vegas resident is the first African-American performer to have her a venue named after her, the Gladys Knight Theater at the Tropicana Hotel.  

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5:00 am
Wed September 24, 2014

Spaght Elementary Embarks On Scholastic Literacy Effort

Prisca Barnes, CEO of Storytime Village, Inc., engages with students at the Read and Rise program kick-off at Spaght Multimedia Magnet Elementary School
Credit Carla Eckels

According to the National Kids Count Data Center, more than half of Kansas 4th graders in public schools scored below the proficient reading level. Literacy advocates in Wichita are hosting events to help improve children’s reading skills. KMUW’s Carla Eckels reports…

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9:04 am
Mon September 22, 2014

Legendary Gospel Trio The Rance Allen Group Debutes New Single

The latest single from the Rance Allen Group

Sunday, September 28:

Listen to Soulsations for fresh contemporary sounds from the Rance Allen Group.  The legendary gospel trio skillfully uses horns, rhythmic hand-clapping and a captivating message in their new single called “A Lil' Louder (Clap Your Hands).” The stellar award-winning group is one of the most successful in history.  The three brothers have been singing gospel music for more than 40 years.  The Rance Allen Group’s latest album is scheduled to be released this fall. 

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5:00 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Former Wichitan Finds Bipolar Disorder Life-Changing

Zachary McDermott in New York City
Credit Courtesy photo

Originally aired on 9-18-14

In October 2009, a successful lawyer and former Wichitan discovered he had bipolar disorder. But he won’t soon forget the vivid experience that changed his life.  

Zachary McDermott remembers feeling like he was on his own movie set on the streets of New York…

"The police found me and I’m standing on a subway platform some where in Brooklyn," says McDermott. "I don’t have any clothes on accept a pair of blue Adidas soccer shorts no shoes, no shirt, no underwear—it’s October in New York."

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4:09 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

New Single From Contemporary Gospel Legend Dorinda Clark-Cole

Sunday, September 21:

Grammy Award-winning contemporary gospel artist Dorinda Clark-Cole has a new single out titled “You Are.” Known as one of the legendary Clark sisters, Dorinda’s new album will be available in 2015. 

Web extra: Here's Dorinda performing her single "You Are."

5:00 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Searching For Jaquilla Scales In A New Age

A photo of Jaquilla Scales around the time she went missing (left) and an age progression photo (right) of what she might look like today.

Thirteen years ago, law enforcement, family, and hundreds of volunteers in Wichita conducted an extensive search for an African-American 4-year old by the name of Jaquilla Scales. The preschooler went missing from her home on September 5, 2001.

Jaquilla was last seen just after midnight, asleep with her great-grandmother and little brother at their residence on North Volutsia. Jaquilla’s mother, Eureka Scales, was at a friend’s house at the time of her daughter's disappearance. Eureka remembers rushing home and asking her grandmother what happened.

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11:19 am
Fri September 5, 2014

After Thirteen Years, The Search For Jaquilla Scales Continues

Thirteen years ago today, Jaquilla Scales, a 4-year-old African-American girl, vanished from her Wichita home. No new leads have surfaced, but Jaquilla’s mother still hopes her teenager will be found. KMUW’s Carla Eckels reports…

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