Kerry Bringhurst

News Director | Host, Morning Edition

At 14-years-old, Kerry began working as a reporter for KVEL “The Hot One” in Vernal, Utah.  Her radio news interests led her to Logan where she became news director for KBLQ while attending Utah State University.  She graduated USU with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and spent the next few years working for Utah Public Radio.  Leaving UPR in 1993 she spent the next 14 years as the full time mother of four boys before returning in 2007.  Kerry and her husband Boyd reside in Nibley.

Ways To Connect

Reactions to the Supreme Court's decision regarding national health care reform vary. During UPR's Access Utah broadcast Thursday morning, guests were asked to give their reaction to the decision, less than an hour after the announcement, and by mid-day Utah's high-level politicians had released their statements.

It's already apparent that the recent and ongoing consuming wildfires in Utah will have an impact on the state's economy. Kerry Bringhurst spoke with Kyle Stevens, Deputy Commissioner for the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, about the impacts on the agricultural industry in Utah. Livestock producers in Sanpete County have reported the loss of lambs and ewes in wildfires. In other areas of the state, livestock has been evacuated. 

When temperatures soar like they have this week in Utah, working outdoors can be dangerous. A national campaign is underway to help prevent heat-related deaths and illness.

Twenty-three girls from Southern Utah's Hurricane High School cheer squad spend a lot of time outside in the heat. Shanna Baker is their assistant coach, responsible for making sure the girls stay hydrated and healthy.

"In fact our school is under construction, so we're outside full time right now on the football field."

The non-profit organization Families USA released a report this week that estimates 2 Utahns between the ages of 25 - 64 die every week because they did not have adequate health care.

The organization's Executive Director Ron Pollack says the Affordable Care Act offers access to coverage for families who struggle to get the health care they need.

To encourage self-sufficiency and sustainability the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is challenging Utahns to grow their own food with the 10,000 Garden Challenge.

The overgrowth of invasive weeds in Utah is in part to blame for out-of-control fires in the state according to Larry Lewis of the Utah Department of Agriculture. Lewis says the department is working with Utah State University Extension experts and local weed control experts to eradicate weeds and encourage the regrowth of native grasses.

According to Lewis, wildfires burning in rural communities where invasive weeds are found can force smoke to filter throughout the state, impacting air quality in all areas of the state.

The Tour of Utah cycle race -- "America's Toughest Stage Race" -- will take the state by storm August 7 - 12. UPR's Kerry Bringhurst spoke to Steve Miller, the Tour's president, to find out just how excited we should be about this event coming to Utah.

Six of the world's top 15 international cycling teams have committed to the race that will see some changes this year, says Miller.

http://www.roadrespect.utah.gov

On Monday Utah cyclists began riding from Beaver to St. George as part the Road Respect Tour that concludes in Logan on Saturday. Cycling with the group during the 518 mile tour is Evelyn Tuddenham with the Utah Department of Transportation. UPR's Kerry Bringhurst talked to Tuddenham at the start of her second-to-last day on the road.

Mackinzie Hamilton

Residents in the Northern Utah community of Providence, who were evacuated during a police stand-off Thursday have been allowed to return to their homes.

"[Police] responded, and when they responded to the residence they were notified by the neighbors that the neighbors had heard gunshots inside the residence."

Photo by Kent Miles from arts.utah.gov

What began as an interest in poetry in her accelerated English class at Logan High School has evolved for Markaye Hassan into a love not only for poetry, but for the poets themselves.

Her passion is evident when she talks about the process of falling in love with poetry during the course of her class: "We spent a lot of time annotating poems where we would go through and really notice how every single word is so important and all of the different ways you could really apply it to yourself. It is so deep. Every word is so important."

Utah's U.S. Senator Mike Lee held town meetings throughout Northern Utah this week. UPR's Kerry Bringhurst was at Wednesday night's meeting in Logan and spoke first hand with some of Lee's constituents, who are concerned about the growing federal deficit, federal control of public lands, and the future of Northern Utah's Hill Air Force Base.

Former Political Science professor at Utah State University and Nibley resident, James Waite remembers when the Richard Gebaur Military Base closed while he was living in Kansas City, Missouri:

Utah Senators Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee joined a minority of senators last week in voting against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act. The Alliance for a Better Utah believes that a vote against reauthorizing the Act represents a callous insult not just to the women of Utah but to the entire population of Utah and the United States.

Alliance for a Better Utah Executive Director, Maryann Martindale told UPR's Kerry Bringhurst that:

Organizations in Utah who serve residents receiving Medicaid and State Child Health Insurance are calling for Utah lawmakers to hold a special session to allocate money that would be used to help those whose personal information was stolen when a state computer system was hacked.

Judi Hilman is with the Utah Health Policy Project. She says the state is not doing enough to help the more than 800,000 victims:

They call him the renewable energy guru. Andy Swapp is the technology teacher at Milford High School. He was recently recognized for his dedication to renewable energy by Utah Senator Orrin Hatch with a congressional tribute. Senator Hatch closed the tribute with the words, "Mr. President, I was really impressed with what I experienced in meeting Andy. I wanted to highlight the important, innovative work of a successful educator engaged in leading our nation into the future."

In May the Extension program at Utah State University will hold a workshop to help assist owners and operators of family farms and ranches with transitioning their business to their successors. This is a unique opportunity for small agribusiness owners to visualize the future of the family farm with or without them.

It was the largest earthquake drill in state history and one that students and the staff at the Edith Bowen Laboratory School have been preparing for.

As 10:15 rolls around, Tyler Rasmussen of River Heights and his classmates at the Logan elementary school wait for the announcement from counselor Clint Farmer that the drill has begun. He and other students in Mrs. Moeller's class take cover as she tells them:

"The best things to hold onto are going to be the legs of the desks because that's the sturdiest part of your desk."

Kerry Bringhurst talks to the Standard-Examiner's Dave Greiling about this week's headlines.

More than 3,000 counties and the District of Columbia were evaluated by the University of Wisconsin's Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The county health rankings measure how healthy their residents are and how long they are expected to live.

In Utah, Cache County received the #2 ranking when it comes to health behavior, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment.

The overall theme for National Public Health Week this year is "A Healthier America Begins Today". It's a time when public health agencies from all across the United States come together... to encourage families, friends and neighbors to make small changes. Because when they make small changes in their lives, they protect their health and they prevent disease.

Jill Parker of the Bear River Health Department gives UPR listeners a run-down of the week's events in Northern Utah.

The concept behind an empty bowl event is not new. It began in South Carolina as a way to bring attention to the need to feed those less fortunate. Thursday, on the campus of Utah State University in Logan, area restaurants donated soup and bread while members of USU's ceramics guild threw 250 bowls. Visitors who purchased a bowl of soup got to take the bowl home and the money was donated to the Cache Community Food Pantry.

Lawyers for an environmental activist convicted of disrupting a federal oil-and-gas auction say the man has been put into isolation at a federal prison because of an unidentified congressman's complaint. The federal bureau of prisons refuses to confirm or deny that Tim DeChristopher is being punished.

Kerry Bringhurst talks to the Standard Examiner's editor Dave Greiling every Wednesday about the paper's headlines.

Weber High School Assistant Principal Fired
Jim Bell was terminated from Weber High School on March 21 and the school district also provided information about that termination to the North Ogden police department. The allegations or charges against Jim Bell have not been released.

A federal program to help rural residents construct their own homes is facing funding cuts. UPR's Kerry Bringhurst tells us administrators of the program in Cache and Box Elder Counties are worried cuts to the national program could harm future home owners.

Kim Datwyler is Executive Director of the Neighborhood Nonprofit Housing Corporation. She helps administer funds from the federal government for the program:

Kerry Bringhurst had the opportunity to have a conversation with the artist commissioned to construct and install a hanging sculpture in Utah State University's new Agricultural Research & Science Building, "kinetic sculptor" Tim Prentice from Connecticut.

The new building is recognized for its energy efficiency and everything about it reflects the theme of nature. Prentice's sculpture is inspired by grass.

Kerry talks to the Standard Examiner's editor Dave Greiling every Wednesday about the paper's headlines.

Weber State Tuition Hike
Weber State University asking its board of regents to increase tuition and fees. The Standard Examiner reports that an increase of 5% in tuition could go into effect for the summer session. Dave Greiling says the increase "For a full-time undergraduate that's a state resident...would be about $110 a semester."

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