Bob Leweke

News Director / Morning Edition Host

Bob Leweke is WMRA's News Director and Morning Edition host.

Before coming to public radio in 2003, Bob had worked for The Roanoke Times as a circulation manager and writer.  He later became a member of the communication faculty at Pikeville College in Kentucky, and at Bridgewater College in Virginia.  Bob holds degrees in communication and political science from Virginia Tech, and a doctorate in mass communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  In 2015 and 2016, the readers of the Daily News-Record voted him “Best Radio Personality.”

In his hours away from WMRA, Bob enjoys music, cycling, reading and movie-watching, and spending time with his family doing all of the above.  He also tries to keep the beat as the drummer for WMRA's house band, The Sustainers.  You can follow him on Twitter @WMRAnews.

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Marguerite Gallorini brings us a few voices from her tiny hometown of Saint-Loup, France, a microcosm of the global refugee crisis.... Jordy Yager brings us the sounds of sound-reporting, with sound artist-in-residence at Shenandoah National Park Dianne Ballon (it's kind of "meta," isn't it?).  Plus, this week's installments of The Spark and Our Island Universe!

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Emily Richardson-Lorente sits in a class at the Darden School of Business that instructors hope will push students out of their comfort zones, just like real life does.... WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz explores the future of greenways for walkers and cyclists in Harrisonburg.... and, Christopher also leads us through the recent active shooter drill with emergency personnel in Harrisonburg, paired with a report from 2015, as Andrew Jenner attends last year's Citizens Police Academy.... and we've got Our Island Universe, too!

On this week's Second Look, we go hunting for Pokemon in Harrisonburg with admitted non-gamer, WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz.... We'll also go deep underground into an old train tunnel under Afton Mountain, soon to be a new trail for cyclists and walkers, with Jordy Yager.... Marguerite Gallorini will have a review of the recent Chihamba arts and culture festival in Charlottesville.... and, Emily Richardson-Lorente has a preview of the giant mural near the UVa grounds that combines paint with the poetry of UVa's poet, Rita Dove, due to be finished this week.

On this week's Second Look, our special correspondent Kara Lofton has the sounds of some of the lesser-known bands that you may have missed at the Redwing Roots Music Festival.... We also tour two mostly-forgotten, historically black cemeteries in Lexington and Charlottesville with WMRA's Faith Pinho and Sefe Emokpae.... We survey the battlefields in Congress over the displaying of the Confederate battle flag, and in the courts over Gov. Terry McAuliffe's order restoring rights to felons.... and, we've got space for Our Island Universe, too!

On this week's Second Look, we hear from Jordy Yager about the young men and their mentors who make up the award-winning Central Virginia chapter of 100 Black Men of America.... Christopher Clymer Kurtz has a preview of Doah Fest, a musical festival near Luray.... the possible reform of laws that allow police to seize and keep property without a conviction.... some surprising federal data about the demographics of parts of Virginia including Lexington.... an interview with Meg Gruber, president of Virginia's Education Association.... and Our Island Universe, too!

2015 WMRA Award-Winners

Jul 2, 2016

On this week's special edition of Second Look, we celebrate the story-telling that won first place awards from the Virginia Association of Broadcasters for 2015:  Kara Lofton's story about the Charlottesville trauma workers who began the trend of taking a "pause" after the death of a patient (First Place, Outstanding Feature Reporting).... and Jordy Yager's series on Food Insecurity in Virginia (First Place, Outstanding News Series).  Congratulations to both!

On this week's Second Look, we revisit WMRA's Jessie Knadler's discovery that the sunscreen you've got in your beach bag may be helping to kill the world's coral reefs.... We also boat along part of the so-called "Looper" trail, on the Rappahannock.... Brit Moorer, in her last story for WMRA, takes a tour down the Rivanna.... We try to figure out what's taking Congress so long to pass Zika legislation.... And, a round-up of some Virginia news from the past week.

On this week's Second Look... With the exception of Christopher Clymer Kurtz's preview of the June 22-23 Wind Symposium at JMU, this week's show is a repeat of the June 12 show, which was pre-empted by NPR coverage of the mass shooting in Orlando.

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Jessie Knadler gets a hat trick, with three stories this week... on, first, the search for a new home for quirky Rockbridge attraction Foamhenge... second, the planting of "seeds of resistance" to the proposed Dominion pipeline... and third, a new state campaign that aims to wean kids off sugary drinks (soda pop!  energy drinks!) and onto healthy alternatives....

On this week's Second Look, Jordy Yager wraps up our exploration of mental health care in Virginia, with a look at the push for a new crisis stabilization unit in Staunton.... Sefe Emokpae and Faith Pinho explore two long-neglected cemeteries....

On this episode of Second Look.... May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so WMRA's Jordy Yager takes a look at the new mental health court dockets in our area, as well as the progress Virginia has made over the last few decades in identifying and treating mental illness....  In a report for Virginia Public Radio, Jessie Knadler reports on new guidelines to help ER staff deal with the growing problem of opiate addiction, and we’ll hear from some Virginia lawmakers who are pushing Congress to have a say in America’s involvement in the Middle East… and Our Island Universe, too!

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Jessie Knadler finds one general store in the tiny town of Middlebrook that is not only surviving, but thriving....  Christopher Clymer Kurtz dives into the government's new definition of "chronic homelessness," and how it's affecting clients and caregivers on the ground.... Brit Moorer takes us on a canoe tour of the Rivanna River in Charlottesville.... and Jordy Yager learns what one local NAACP leader is saying about race, protest and privilege.

On this week's Second Look, Bob Leweke talks with Brad Zinn, the News Leader reporter who led a six-month investigation into the scope of child sexual abuse in Virginia... Jessie Knadler explores what some local craft beer lovers are calling a "sellout": Anheuser-Busch InBev's acquisition of the Devil's Backbone brewery in Nelson County; and she also takes a look at a new approach to the feral cat problem in Rockbridge County.  Also, one VCU researcher is studying the remaining pockets of school segregation in the South.  And, we've got this week's Our Island Universe.

Children as Prey

May 9, 2016
Nashville designer Merry Eccles

The News Leader in Staunton spent six months investigating the scope of child sexual abuse in Virginia, for an in-depth report into the problem.  It's called Prey: Sexual Predators are Hunting Our Children.  Bob Leweke spoke with the lead reporter on the series, Brad Zinn.

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Sefe Emokpae has the details of this year's IMPACT Charlottesville meeting.... Brit Moorer brings us the scene and the sounds of the Music Resource Center musicians taking their music outside to drivers stuck in traffic, sessions that are appropriately called "Traffic Jams".... and Virginia Public Radio's Sandy Hausman takes a deep look at parole in Virginia, and how it might be reformed.

5/6 - 2:10pm Thursday Update: Virginia State Police have reported that the child was safely recovered this afternoon. 

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5/5 - Early Wednesday evening, State Police issued an AMBER ALERT for a missing Spotsylvania child.

On this episode of Second Look, WMRA's Jessie Knadler examines the effect of Virginia's topsy-turvy spring weather on local vineyards, and whether climate change might be a factor.... Jordy Yager has a follow-up to our Refugees in Virginia series, with a look at one Burmese family literally making a new home for themselves in Charlottesville, with some help from Habitat for Humanity....  plus Christopher Clymer Kurtz's report on why Saturday, April 23 is going to be mediation pioneer Larry Hoover’s Day in Harrisonburg.... We've also got the week's statewide news... and Our Island Universe!

On this episode of Second Look, WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz explores interfaith relationships, both at the level of church, mosque and synagogue, and within one interfaith family.... We look at Virginia's latest jobs numbers (they're good).... and we've also got the latest installments of The Spark and Our Island Universe.

On this edition of Second Look, WMRA's Emily Richardson-Lorente takes us on a comprehensive tour of Sweet Briar College one year after it almost closed.... WMRA's Dan Easley talks with JMU professor Paul Bogard about his latest efforts to raise awareness of the effects of light pollution.... and we have reports from Virginia Public Radio on a guest worker victory in a Charlottesville court, a Virginia Tech survey of health care attitudes, and the prospects for a raise in Virginia's minimum wage.  And, on Our Island Universe.... what's "eating" Pluto?

On this week's Second Look, WMRA's Jessie Knadler hears from Staunton residents who braved snow on the last day of winter to help create a sort of city scrapbook.... she also attended an anti-KKK rally in Lexington... and explained the science behind marijuana's medicinal "Entourage Effect."  We also have a look at the effort of some Charlottesville officials to remove the statue of Robert E. Lee from a city park, and we'll sift through the archives for Bob Leweke's interview with Paula Poundstone.

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