Tom Williams

Program Director | Access Utah Host

Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996.  He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.)  He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah” and “Opera Saturday.”  He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.

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At the height of the Korean War, President Harry S. Truman committed a gaffe that sent shock waves around the world. When asked by a reporter about the possible use of atomic weapons in response to China's entry into the war, Truman replied testily, "The military commander in the field will have charge of the use of the weapons, as he always has." This suggested that General Douglas MacArthur, the willful, fearless, and highly decorated commander of the American and U.N. forces, had his...

loc.gov

Folklorist Jens Lund recently gave the 2016 Fife Honor Lecture at USU, presented by the USU Folklore Program and USU Department of English. His lecture was titled “‘I Done What I Could’: Occupational Folk Poetry in the Pacific Northwest.” The Fife Honor Lecture is an honorary lecture given every year in honor of Austin and Alta Fife, folklorists, documentarians, and founders of the Fife Folklore archives. Lund says that the dangers and difficulties of certain occupations are sometimes...

We continue our occasional series, Our Favorite Books, with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s enduringly popular creation Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock Holmes is thriving on television and continues to occupy an important place in popular culture. The famous fictional detective even figures prominently in the debate over evolution vs. intelligent design. We’ll look at how the character has changed over the years (and how our response to him has changed) and we’ll ask what Sherlock Holmes means in our...

HarperCollins

The New York Times bestseller “Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis” is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm, but has, perhaps, never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional,...

Our guest for the hour today is Matthew Garrett, author of “Making Lamanites: Mormons, Native Americans, and the Indian Student Placement Program, 1947-2000” (University of Utah Press). From 1947 to 2000, some 50,000 Native American children left the reservations to live with Mormon foster families. While some dropped out of the Indian Student Placement Program (ISPP), for others the months spent living with LDS families often proved more penetrating than expected. The ISPP emerged in the mid...

George Hirthler’s new historical novel, “The Idealist,” is the inspiring and tragic story of Baron Pierre de Coubertin, the French visionary who founded the modern Olympic Games. When the novel opens in early 1937, Coubertin is 74, he's broke, his health is failing, and although he has created one of the most influential international movements of the 20th century, he is completely unknown outside a small circle of admirers, whose financial help he has repeatedly declined. His wife can hardly...

npr.org

This extraordinary campaign season got more so over the weekend. What is your reaction to Donald Trump’s comments from 2005? And Utah Republican’s and some national Republican’s repudiation of their presidential nominee? What did you think of the debate? What is on the top of your mind as you get ready to vote? Cache County Libertarian Party Chair, Jonathan Choate of SD7 Technologies in Logan joins us for the hour.

Former Utah State University football player Torrey Green is charged with four counts of rape. Videos of behind-closed-doors meetings of Mormon officials surface on the internet the last day of General Conference. Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott meets

Former Utah State University football player Torrey Green is charged with four counts of rape. Videos of behind-closed-doors meetings of Mormon officials surface on the internet the last day of General Conference. Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott meets with the County Council to address an audit of his office. And "Operation Diversion" continues to address the drug problem among Salt Lake's homeless population. On Friday at 9 a.m. , Salt Lake Tribune reporters Alex Stuckey, Matt Canham,...

eoionline.com

When San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the national anthem, he sparked a vigorous national conversation about Race, Police, Patriotism, Free Speech and other issues. We’re going to continue that conversation next time on Access Utah. We’ll be talking with Forrest Crawford, Professor of Teacher Education and former Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity at Weber State University; and Jason Gilmore, Assistant Professor of Global Communication at...

https://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deepwater_Horizon

On April 20, 2010, a blast aboard the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil platform killed 11 workers, critically injured others and caused a leak that spilled thousands of barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico for more than three months. The Deepwater Horizon, one of worst environmental disasters in history, is now the subject of a pulse-pounding new movie. Historian and archaeologist, USU Professor of Environment and Society, Joseph Tainter will watch the film with special interest. He is author...

Charles Bock's daughter was 5 months old when his wife was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. His wife died two and a half years later, just before their daughter's third birthday. Charles Bock has written a new novel that's based on that experience. It’s titled "Alice & Oliver." The award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Children has created an unflinching yet deeply humane portrait of a young family’s journey through a medical crisis, laying bare a couple’s...

Double Day Publisher

Mark Twain, the highest-paid writer in America in 1894, was also one of the nation’s worst investors. “There are two times in a man’s life when he should not speculate,” he wrote. “When he can’t afford it and when he can.” After losing hundreds of thousands of dollars back when a beer cost a nickel, he found himself neck-deep in debt. His heiress wife, Livy, took the setback hard. She wrote, “I cannot get away from the feeling that business failure means disgrace.” Twain vowed to Livy he...

usu.edu

American West historian, author, and teacher, Patty Limerick, says that contrary to the stereotype of the boring bureaucrat, the stories of the men and women who have worked for the agencies of the Department of the Interior carry intrinsic interest and give rise to thought-provoking insights into the American West: past and present. Enormously important in the shaping of the American West, federal employees have been unjustly and inaccurately classified as "boring." Formed just as the United...

anthropology.usu.edu

Access Utah we’re going to talk about I.Q. v. E.Q. USU professors Jacob Freeman and Jacopo Baggio, along with UT-San Antonio professor Thomas Coyle, are studying the dynamics of nerds and poets. They want to understand the best brew of nerdiness and sensitivity to create teams that get things done. How can people work better together and why do some groups work well under pressure and some groups don’t? Professors Freeman and Baggio will join us to discuss the differences between I.Q. and...

essentialsofbusiness.ufexec.ufl.edu

We ’re going to talk about I.Q. v. E.Q. USU professors Jacob Freeman and Jacopo Baggio, along with UT-San Antonio professor Thomas Coyle, are studying the dynamics of nerds and poets. They want to understand the best brew of nerdiness and sensitivity to create teams that get things done. How can people work better together and why do some groups work well under pressure and some groups don’t? Professors Freeman and Baggio will join us to discuss the differences between I.Q. and emotional and...

Nicholas Carr started his blog “Rough Type” in 2005, when MySpace was a fast-growing social networking site and Facebook was a Palo Alto startup. Now in his book “Utopia Is Creepy and Other Provocations,” he has collected the best of those posts and added influential essays such as “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” and “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Privacy,” which were published in such magazines and sites as The Atlantic, the Wall Street Journal, and Politico. Carr’s favorite targets are...

Philo T. Farnsworth (1906–1971) has been called the "forgotten father of television." He grew up in Utah and southern Idaho, and was described as a genius by those who knew and worked with him. With only a high school education, Farnsworth drew his first television schematic for his high school teacher in Rigby, Idaho. Subsequent claims and litigation notwithstanding, he was the first to transmit a television image. Farnsworth filed ten patents between 1927 and 1929 for camera tubes ...

Elizabeth Smart
Credit United Way of Cache Valley

The abduction of Elizabeth Smart was one of the most followed child abduction cases of our time. She endured a 9-month ordeal after being abducted from her home in the middle of the night in June, 2002, at age fourteen. She has become an advocate for change related to child abduction, recovery programs and national legislation and is founder of the Elizabeth Smart Foundation . She writes "too many families experience the nightmare of having a child go missing. I know what it is like to be...

http://upcolorado.com/university-press-of-colorado/item/2896-the-man-who-thought-he-owned-water

On Wednesday’s Access Utah our guest for the hour is Tershia d’Elgin, author of “The Man Who Thought He Owned Water: On the Brink with American Farms, Cities, and Food” (University Press of Colorado). When Tershia d’Elgin’s father bought his farm—Big Bend Station in Colorado—he also bought the ample water rights associated with the land and the South Platte River, confident that he had secured the necessary resources for a successful endeavor. Water immediately proved fickle, however, hard to...

“Women talk more than men. Text messaging makes you stupid. Chimpanzees have language, just like humans. These are some of the most popular ideas about language that many people think are true. Rumor also has it that men are more direct in their use of language than women; women speak more correctly than men; being bilingual makes you smarter; and the most beautiful language in the world is French. But a myth-busting new study of how language really works is set to blow the lid off...

New York, 1888. The miracle of electric light is in its infancy. Thomas Edison has won the race to the patent office and is suing his only remaining rival, George Westinghouse, for the unheard of sum of one billion dollars. To defend himself, Westinghouse makes a surprising choice in his attorney: He hires an untested twenty-six-year-old fresh out of Columbia Law School named Paul Cravath. The task facing Cravath is beyond daunting. Edison proves to be a formidable, wily, and dangerous...

alexhelp.org

West Jordan loses out to New Mexico on becoming the site of a new Facebook data center. Utah Reps. Rob Bishop and Jason Chaffetz present their Public Lands Initiative to a House Natural Resources subcommittee in the hopes of passing it before Congress adjourns. Utah officials might not make a state water management draft plan available to the public. And fewer Mormons in the U.S. identify as Republicans this election season.

REUTERS/Brian Snyder

On Thursday's Access Utah, we revisit portions of our favorite episodes on race issues in America. We feature a discussion with Nikole Hannah Jones, talking about her book "A Letter From Black America," a segment from our episode on Black Lives Matter, and a conversation with author Sherman Alexie. Utah State University professor Jason Gilmore joined us in studio for the conversations.

penguinrandomhouse.com

On Wednesday's Access Utah, we revisit portions of our favorite book and author episodes. We feature a discussion with Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, talking about her book "Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History"; a segment from our episode on with Scott Hammond discussing his book "Lessons of the Lost" and a conversation with listeners from an episode featuring Ron Chernow and his book "Hamilton," which inspired the musical "Hamilton."

On Monday's Access Utah, we revisit portions of our favorite "fun" episodes. We feature a discussion with USU Philosophy Professor Charlie Huenemann , talking about "the perfect language;" a segment from our episode on fandom and what fans own, and a conversation with award winning musician Rita Moreno.

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