Deborah Shaar

News Reporter

Reporter Deborah Shaar joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia, and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, area.

Deborah’s reporting has been featured on NPR newscasts and Morning Edition. She won a national Sigma Delta Chi award from Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) in 2017 for investigative reporting for her story “FAA Plan to Shift Weather Observations at Airport Raises Safety Concerns." She also won first-place in the Kansas Association of Broadcasters (KAB) 2017 contest for news feature with her story “Sedgwick County Takes Integrated Approach to Mental Health Crisis Intervention.

In 2016, she earned a regional RTDNA Edward R. Murrow award for investigative reporting (“Searching for Zebra Mussels in Wellington Lake"). The Kansas Association of Broadcasters recognized her reporting with two awards in 2016 (“Hesston: Sounds of Resilience” and FAA Airport Weather Observer series) and one award in 2015 (“Hesston’s Recovery 25 Years after an F-5 Tornado Hit").

She began her on-air career as a news reporter and anchor at several small market TV stations in southeast Ohio and West Virginia. She fine-tuned her writing and producing skills while working on a highly rated three-hour morning news show at the Fox TV affiliate in Detroit, Michigan. From there, she put her on-air, writing and producing skills to good use: training and developing broadcast news students at Ohio University. As managing editor of the WOUB radio and television newsroom, Deborah served in a crucial role as supervisor of the student-staffed nightly television newscast. Many of her student anchors, reporters and producers earned prestigious national, state and regional awards—and still work in the news business today. She continued her on-air work as a fill-in anchor for a statewide TV news network in Ohio.

Deborah earned Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in journalism from Ohio University. Her master’s thesis is a historical narrative about the transformation of journalism training at the University of Leipzig, Germany, as a result of Germany’s reunification.

Ways to Connect

neetalparekh / flickr Creative Commons

The employment forecast for the Wichita area shows little to no job growth in 2018.

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A Kansas security expert says being prepared and paying attention to your surroundings are the best ways to stay safe during an active shooter incident.

Security specialist Richard Lewallen is an anti-terrorism program manager with the Kansas National Guard in the Adjutant General’s Department. He spoke during a Kansas Division of Emergency Management event on social media Monday morning.

Lewallen says if you’re going to a large public gathering, be sure to look for ways to exit and for places to take cover.

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Sedgwick County Commissioners are re-evaluating the funding formula used for senior centers during the annual budget process.

Sedgwick County provides funding for 17 senior centers each year through the aging tax mill levy.

The centers offer a variety of services, educational opportunities and physical activities for people 55 years and older.

Division on Aging Director Annette Graham says the current funding formula has been in place since 2006.

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Butler Community College and Cowley College are working together to get more students trained to be fire responders.

The colleges signed an agreement that allows Cowley College students the ability to receive an associate degree in fire science from Butler after completing their basic certifications at Cowley.

Butler’s fire science program teaches a wide range of skills from fire suppression to emergency rescue to how to handle hazardous materials. Students operate the equipment, acquire basic EMT skills and study the chemistry involved in the way a fire behaves.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

Wichita State University has appointed a law enforcement veteran to serve as its interim police chief.

Robert Hinshaw will begin the job on Monday. His 33-year career in law enforcement includes four years as Sedgwick County Sheriff.

Hinshaw will lead the 47-person university police department during a search for a permanent chief.

The current police chief, Sara Morris, is retiring.

Hinshaw is an Administration of Justice graduate of Wichita State and holds a masters in Business Law from Friends University. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy.

Details about crime and traffic incidents in Sedgwick County are now available online or through a mobile phone app.

The Sedgwick County Sheriff’s office rolled out its new crime mapping tool, called “What’s Going On,” during a staff meeting on Tuesday.

The map is designed to let county residents know when and where crime is occurring.

Lt. Lin Dehning explained the map shows the rough location of crimes and traffic incidents, not the exact address.

"It’s designed basically to be in the middle of the street and 100 block rather on a specific house," he said.

A prescription drug monitoring program in Kansas will receive a federal grant worth more than $178,000 to help fight the opioid crisis.

The Kansas Board of Pharmacy oversees K-TRACS, a system for monitoring prescriptions for controlled substances.

Board Executive Secretary Alexandra Blasi says doctors, dentists and pharmacists who participate in the program report their prescription activity to the state to verify a patient’s history.

The list of Republican candidates running to become the next governor of Kansas continues to grow. Wichita businessman and former state Rep. Mark Hutton launched his campaign on Monday in Wichita.

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Disasters can happen at any time, so emergency responders say the best way to survive is to plan ahead.

The reminder comes as part of September’s National Preparedness Month.

For the past 16 years, emergency management officials have conducted a public campaign to get people ready to face a disaster.

They recommend placing non-perishable food, water and supplies into a container to be used when needed.

Cody Charvat with Sedgwick County Emergency Management says it’s important to plan for the possibility of losing electricity for up to 72 hours.

June Trieb

The Wichita Symphony Orchestra is seeking public input to help the organization plan for the future.

The Wichita Symphony launched an online survey to get feedback on things like the performance schedule and music style preferences.

Symphony CEO Don Reinhold says the community input will be used to help develop a new five-year strategic plan for the more than 70-year-old orchestra.