Carla Eckels

Assistant News Director, Music Host

Carla Eckels is Assistant News Director at KMUW.  She's been an award-winning announcer/news producer for KMUW 89.1FM, Wichita Public Radio for 20 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 Q92FM.  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. 

In April 2016, Wichita State University presented Carla with the exclusive honor of the Wayne Carlisle Distinguished Service Award, The Carlisle Award is presented to an unclassified professional who models the standard of extraordinary service exhibited by the late Wayne Carlisle.

Carla has reported on national news stories such as the Hesston Shootings, 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 two Edward R. Murrow regional awards for her reporting including a 2015 award for her story on Shockers Men's Basketball: A Candid Look. Carla also won a 1st place Kansas Association of Broadcasting award in 2015  for her story on Bipolar Disorder and 2nd place for DJ Personality Aircheck for Soulsations.  Carla has annually emceed the Wichita River Festival and Black Arts Festival gospel music segments.

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, Reuben Eckels and they have two children.

Ways to Connect

Next week, drivers traveling east on Kellogg in Wichita will need to find another way to turn off the highway instead of the West street exit ramp.

Kansas Department of Transportation’s Tom Hein says the ramp will be closed early Monday, at 7 a.m.

“Our contractors will close the eastbound US 54 exit ramp to West Street in order to rebuild that ramp and it will stay closed for six months," Hein says.

Hein says the closed West Street entrance ramp to eastbound US 54 is currently under construction and is expected to open the week of May 15.

Sunday, May 7

Sunday on Soulsations hear the soulful sounds of Stevie Wonder. The musical genius turns 66 years old on May 13th. Last month Wonder received the inaugural ASCAP "Key of Life" Award named after his 1976 classic album. 

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Several federal grants intended to assist survivors of domestic and sexual violence are set to be released in the coming months. Groups across Kansas met at the statehouse in Topeka on Thursday to discuss a new strategic plan for the grant process.

The governor’s office annually awards funding provided by the Violence Against Women Act grants program. The money is directed toward organizations that specifically combat sexual violence, domestic violence and stalking.

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Across the country, youth employment is declining due to technology and to more adults looking for work. The Wichita Workforce Center is offering workshops to help teens find summer jobs.

Angie Duntz, communications director for Workforce Alliance, says the center will present three different workshops in one day. Young people who attend the free workshops will learn about what it takes to obtain a summer job.

neetalparekh / flickr Creative Commons

A report out of Creighton University reveals that the Kansas economy is showing growth, but lagging behind in a nine-state region.

The forecasting group’s overall index ranges between 0 and 100. An index greater than 50 means an expanding economy. Kansas received a 56 index for April, an increase from 52 in March. Four states received a 61 index, with South Dakota receiving the region's high of 69.

Creighton University economics professor Ernie Goss, who oversees the report, says Kansas is growing, but at a slower rate than the rest of the region.

The South Central Kansas Legislative Delegation will hold their last public forum in Wichita before the wrap-up session in Topeka next week.

Residents will have an opportunity to voice concerns and request action from elected officials. About 25 Republican and Democratic state lawmakers are expected to be part of the panel. Kansas Sen. Oletha Faust-Goudeau says she’s been hearing from several constituents.

Sunday, April 30

Sunday on Soulsations: he’s been dubbed the “Evolution of Hip Hop.” Hear inspiring music from Grammy-winning hip-hop Christian artist LeCrae.  The sought after rapper is on a nationwide tour for his Anomaly album.  LeCrae will be in concert at the Wichita State University Hughes Metroplex at 8 p.m. on May 5th. Special guests include Cash Holistah, Dre B and Lyrical Miracle.


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On Saturday, Kansans can learn more about managing money at a Financial Freedom Expo in Wichita. Pastor, author and former Secretary of State for New Jersey DeForest Soaries will share his expertise on finances.

Dr. Soaries is the senior pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in Somerset, New Jersey. He is the author of “dfree: Breaking Free from Financial Slavery" and “Say Yes to No Debt.” The books are based on Dr. Soaries’ "dfree" strategy on how to be debt free.

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According to a report, the number of suicides in Sedgwick County is declining. A walk to bring attention to suicide prevention will take place Saturday on the Wichita State University campus.

There were 68 suicide deaths in Sedgwick County in 2015, that’s a decrease from 82 deaths the year before.

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The 63rd annual Arbor Day Celebration, promoting the value of trees to residents, will take place Friday at OJ Watson Park in south Wichita.

City Arborist Gary Farris says trees are a great way to promote air quality and help the environment. According to Farris, tree planting by the city varies each year depending on funding.

“We've planted as few as a couple of hundred, and we’ve planted this year, just over 1700,” he says.

Farris says the City of Wichita lost thousands of trees in the droughts of 2011, 2012 and 2013.