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 19 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. 

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

Carla Eckels / KMUW

Hundreds are expected to leave their cars and trucks at home today and cycle in to work as part of Bike to Work Day. It’s just one of the activities planned throughout May to promote riding bicycles, and new bike paths have been developed across Wichita to help with the effort.

KMUW’s Carla Eckels brings us this sound portrait of a ribbon-cutting ceremony along the Redbud Trail. The pause point near Wichita State University showcases images of local trailblazers and mosaic tiles capturing the city's stories.


Courtesy Eric Hammond

The last day of classes at Wichita’s Southeast High School is tomorrow, and there’s nostalgia in the air as teachers pack up and prepare to move from the current school at Edgemoor & Lincoln to their new building in east Wichita.

History and government teacher Eric Hammond says Southeast is a busy place.

"There's boxes galore," he says. "Boxes everywhere."

He, along with other staff and students, are moving. Hammond has been teaching at Southeast High School for six years.

Storem, flickr Creative Commons

No federal charges will be filed against a gun owner whose weapon discharged at a graduation ceremony Sunday in Augusta.

The gun owner wounded himself and a bystander when the gun he had stuffed into his sock accidentally discharged.

Augusta Police Chief Tyler Brewer says that the federal law prohibits carrying a gun into a safe school zone, but he says the law does not apply when the gun owner has a state concealed carry permit. Brewer says they will still pursue other possible charges.

Courtesy Workforce Alliance

The Workforce Alliance in Wichita is offering workshops and job fairs for youth, and also doing internship placement with various employers.

The Youth Employment Project is an opportunity for young adults to find work, especially through the summer. Angie Duntz, communications manager for Workforce Alliance, says the workshops offer basic information on essential skills and how to keep a job.

Neo Soul/New Single

May 13, 2016

Sunday, May 15

Sunday on Soulsations we'll hear new music from contemporary R&B artist Maxwell including "Lake by the Ocean". The new single from one of the pioneers of the "neo soul" movement is featured in the second installment of his musical trilogy. The first album in the trilogy, BLACKsummers'night, was released in 2009. 

Hugo Phan / KMUW

The Lord's Diner is gearing up to feed more people this summer. Last year, the food kitchen saw a dramatic increase in need, and it expects this summer to be the same.

The Lord’s Diner provides more than 2,000 free meals per day. Last summer, that number increased to 3,000.

There are sites downtown and in the Plainview neighborhood, but it's the food trucks that see the most traffic. On Wednesday, 970 meals were served from the truck at the Hilltop Community Center, and 540 meals from the truck near Evergreen Recreation Center.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

Sliding down poles to fight fires may eventually become a thing of the past, including here in Wichita. But there’s one place where the steel poles remain: at the two-story fire station downtown. Wichita Fire Chief Ron Blackwell talks with KMUW’s Carla Eckels about using the fire poles, even as a rookie.

Carla Eckels

A dedication of Wichita's Redbud Trail will take place Saturday. Bicyclists, walkers and joggers will celebrate the completion of the walk and bike trail, which connects Hydraulic & I-135 to 17th & Oliver Streets in Wichita.

The trail is not just a trail--there are history lessons along the way and three art plazas depicting the history of several of Wichita's pioneers. The trail also depicts several significant events, including the Dockum Drug Store sit-in.

Laura Chimera / flickr Creative Commons

Wichita Fire Department officials say careless cigarette smoking is one of the major causes of fires in the city--and some of the fires have been deadly.

Fire Chief Ron Blackwell says the Wichita Fire Department always emphasizes the importance of smoke alarms and early detection of smoke to help people successfully escape a house fire. He says careless cigarette smoking continues to be a part of Wichita’s residential fire problem.

Sunday, May 8

It’s the birthday month of Stevie Wonder.  The musical genius will be 66 years-old on May 13th. We’ll celebrate with his signature tunes all month long. Also hear music from vocalist-pianist Frank McComb. His tenor voice can sound eerily like Stevie Wonder.  

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