Ben Adducchio

Assistant News Director

Ben has worked for West Virginia Public Broadcasting since May 2009. He started out as a reporter/producer, then moved up to his current position two years later.

A Fairmont native, Ben enjoys reading, writing, hiking the beautiful West Virginia trails, and spending time with friends. He's also an actor in the Morgantown area, and in 2013, he was named one of the Morgantown's "30 Under 30" by Morgantown Magazine.

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World Affairs
10:41 am
Wed April 23, 2014

EU Ambassador to U.S. Visits Morgantown

Joao Vale De Almeida visited Morgantown on Tuesday.
Credit West Virginia University

A native of Portugal, Joao Vale De Almeida is a fan of soccer and port wines. He’s the European Union’s ambassador to the United States and this was his first trip to West Virginia.

De Almeida spoke to several hundred WVU students about the need for collaboration between America’s government and the European Union as the world’s economy continues to move forward following harsh fiscal times in the last several years. The Ukraine-Russian tension is something De Almeida is paying attention to. He says problems there have the ability to inflict problems on the world economy.

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Books
5:06 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

New Book Examines the Impact of 'Hippie Homesteaders'

Joe Chasnoff, 1975
Joe Chasnoff

They’re known as the hippie homesteaders. People who moved to West Virginia in the late 1960s and 1970s to live off of the land. Some considered themselves as hippies, but others just wanted to leave urban environments for rural America.

A new book by Carter Taylor Seaton, Hippie Homesteaders: Arts, Crafts, Music and Living on the Land in West Virginia, examines the impact these people had on West Virginia. 

 
 You can find out more about this book at this website.
 

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Aquatic Life
7:23 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

DNR Officials Continue to Study Fatal Fish Disease

Columnaris disease can be fatal for fish. West Virginia has had fish kills due to outbreaks of the disease.
Credit Wikipedia Image

Columnaris Disease. It’s an illness affecting aquatic life in West Virginia. While it can be fatal, Division of Natural Resources officials are trying to stop it from spreading to more waters in the state.

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Natural Gas Drilling
5:08 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

Energy Corporation of America Won't Pursue UIC Project In Preston Co.

Credit Energy Corporation of America

Energy Corporation of America says they won't be planning to put an underground injection well in Preston County, following months of investigation into the project by the company.

ECA was looking to turn an old natural gas well near Masontown into a Class II Underground Injection Well. That would have essentially taken water from hydraulic fracturing processes and injected it in the ground there.

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Performing Arts
10:44 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Fairmont State University Student Wins National Poetry Award

Ian Williams is a national award winning poet. He's from Fairmont and is about to graduate from Fairmont State University.
Credit Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

April is Celebrating Poetry Month across the nation. West Virginia’s had a great many poets find success, including Irene McKinney, Linda Goodman, and Tom Andrews. But there’s a young man from Fairmont who’s now also making a name for himself in the field of poetry.

Ian Williams is a 21 year old college student at Fairmont State University. He studies English Education and he dreams of becoming a college professor at some point during his life. But before that, he’s finding success as a poet. Williams recently won a national Poetry Award, in the National Federation of State Poetry Societies College/University Level Poetry Competition. Ian was one of two first place winners. He says he first got interested in poetry as a high school student in Fairmont.

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Performing Arts
11:04 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Celebrating Shakespeare, 450 Years After His Birth

WVU is performing "Henry IV" as part of its William Shakespeare celebration this month.
Credit West Virginia University

It was this month, 450 years ago, that the famous playwright William Shakespeare was born in Stratford Upon Avon.

"We have made Shakespeare our literature," said Pat Conner a retired English professor from West Virginia University. He’s studied Shakespeare and his texts, and says there are many reasons people still flock to Shakespeare’s words even nearly 400 years after completing  his last work. Conner says he made one such discovery when studying the play, “The Merchant of Venice.”

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Natural Gas Drilling
2:31 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

WV DEP Investigating Tank Rupture in Doddridge County

A tank ruptured at a gas drilling site last week in Doddridge County.
Credit wikimedia

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection is still investigating the cause of a tank rupture at a gas well site in Doddridge County last week.

A tank ruptured at an Antero Resources gas drilling site last Friday, causing a small blast. Although no injuries or fire were reported, investigators are trying to figure out what exactly happened. The tank was holding hydraulic fracturing flowback water, says DEP spokeswoman Kelley Gillenwater.

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Children
6:56 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

"My Bike" Program Comes to West Virginia

Isabella goes on the bike parade with Sen. Joe Manchin.
Credit Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

For young children with certain disabilities, it’s just about impossible to ride a conventional bicycle. So a children’s charity known as Variety, which began in Pittsburgh in 1928, along with several people who wanted to get involved, started a program called the “My Bike” program. It provides specialized bicycles, that are built to suit the special needs of the child.

Nearly 30 children received these specialized bikes at a recent ceremony in Morgantown with Variety.

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Home Repair
11:43 am
Fri April 4, 2014

They Are Trying To Change The World--One Basement System At A Time

Colin Reger (left) and Randy Shillingburg (right) examine the crawl space in a house.
Credit Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

It's dark. It's damp. It's your basement, or crawl space. And for some people in Clarksburg, it's a labor of love to go down there and find ways to improve energy efficiency.

Basement Systems of West Virginia does work to improve the energy efficiency of homes by encapsulating crawl spaces. That means they take materials, similar to pool liner, and other things to create what they call “clean spaces.”

It’s their hope to improve conditioning and energy efficiency in these dim, dark places.

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Wildlife
5:17 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

Morgantown Changing the Way Deer Are Discovered

Morgantown is trying something new, to figure out how many deer are in the city.
Credit Creative Commons Photo

West Virginia’s got a lot of deer within its borders, and they can be a burden. For instance, the state’s vehicle collision rate with deer is one of the highest in the nation, according to a study by State Farm Insurance. In Morgantown, new technology is being used to monitor these animals.

You see them while driving along the interstate. You’ll catch them in your residential neighborhoods, eating vegetables from your garden.

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Population Flow
4:39 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

WVU Study: W.Va. Will Lose Population Through 2030

Credit U.S. Census Bureau / wikimedia Commons

West Virginia University researchers predict the state's population will decline by 1 percent, or nearly 20,000 residents, through the year 2030 as deaths continue to outpace births.
 
The report released Monday by WVU's Bureau of Business and Economic Research says the state will begin a sustained population decline around 2016.
 

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Energy & Environment
4:05 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

Still No Decision on Possible UIC Well Near Decker's Creek

Credit Energy Corporation of America

Energy Corporation of America still hasn’t made a final decision on whether to turn a natural gas well near Decker’s Creek in northern West Virginia into an underground injection well.

ECA hasn’t completed all of its investigation, says ECA spokeswoman Jennifer Viewig. ECA has an old well in Preston County near the water body Decker’s Creek. It’s looking to turn that site into what would be a Class Two Underground Injection Well. That means it would accept brine water and fluids from natural gas drilling operations and inject it into the ground there.

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Turn this Town Around
10:28 pm
Tue March 25, 2014

Grafton Begins to 'Turn This Town Around'

Kent Spellman (center) talks during a recent meeting of Turn This Town Around in Grafton.
Credit Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Throughout the next year, West Virginia Public Radio will bring you stories about two communities in West Virginia. These are Matewan and Grafton. These towns were selected as part of a special “Turn This Town Around” project. Grafton is starting its journey.

Grafton is the county seat of Taylor County and it’s got a little more than 5,000 people living in it. It was selected as the winner of the West Virginia Focus Magazine’s Turn this Town Around project, along with Matewan in Mingo County.

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Journalism Panel
1:14 am
Tue March 25, 2014

WVU Panel Discusses New and Old Newsgathering Methods Used During Water Crisis

David Boucher (left) and April Kaull (right) discuss how social media changed the way journalists covered the water spill crisis.
Credit David Smith/WVU PI Reed School of Journalism / West Virginia University

Panelists discussing the media coverage of the recent Elk River water crisis say digital media platforms played an important role in how they covered the story. More than 300 people were in attendance Monday night at West Virginia University to hear insights panelists gleaned from reporting on the crisis.

Some of those insights:

Social media allowed the journalists to interact with their audiences in new ways;

Traditional methods of reporting (phone calls, knocking on doors, filing FOIA requests) were absolutely essential to get the job done;

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Elk River Spill
3:41 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

WVU Panel Looks Into Charleston Water Spill

The WVU School of Journalism is going to be hosting a panel discussion on the chemical spill into the Elk River.
Credit Downstream Strategies

Monday evening, a special panel will be discussing the recent water spill into the Elk River.

This panel will be made up of journalists who covered the event, which affected the water supply of about 300,000 state residents.

This panel at West Virginia University is designed to analyze local and national coverage of this event. It will also discuss how crisis news coverage has changed, in today’s digital news media environment.

Maryanne Reed is the dean of West Virginia University’s P.I. Reed School of Journalism.

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Story of the Jews
4:38 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Morgantown Lawyer's Faith Shapes His Crusade to Fight Oppression

Morgantown Lawyer Allan Karlin
Credit Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This article is part of a special series highlighting the Jewish experience in West Virginia. It's a companion to the television series The Story of the Jews, airing March 25 and April 1 at 8 pm on West Virginia PBS.

We continue our series on the Jewish community in West Virginia, with a story about a Morgantown lawyer whose Jewish faith has contributed to his life's passion.

Allan Karlin came to Morgantown in 1974, to work as a lawyer in rural communities. His mission was to fight oppression and represent those who were struggling in the face of it.

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WVU Sports
6:16 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

WVU Basketball Prepares For Postseason Play

WVU Head Coach Bob Huggins says he's hopeful the team can end the season on a positive note, to start momentum headed into next year.
Credit Creative Commons Photo

West Virginia University’s men’s and women’s basketball teams are getting ready for post-season play this week. The teams are performing better than they were a year ago.

WVU’s women’s team finished the season with a 29-4 record, the best they have done in four years. They will be playing in the NCAA tournament, for the fifth consecutive year.

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Science
10:41 am
Mon March 17, 2014

North Central W.Va. Students to Enter National Rocket Competition

Todd Ensign works with student Jack Thompson.
Ben Adducchio West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia’s got a rich history of young people involved in the science fields, many using rocket science to fulfill their dreams. A group of students from North Central West Virginia is hoping a rocket will also launch them to the very top.

There are five students in North Central West Virginia who are building a rocket to launch in the Team America Rocketry Challenge competition.

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Football
4:03 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

The Gridiron Is Coming to The Greenbrier

An NFL football team will spend some time training at the Greenbrier Resort.
Credit Bobak Ha'Eri / wikimedia Commons

The New Orleans Saints announced Thursday they will be using the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs for part of its 2014 training camp.

General Manager of the Saints Mickey Loomis says the team wants to take advantage of a more moderate climate and setting in West Virginia. It will still spend some time training in New Orleans.

The Saints won a Super Bowl a few years ago under head coach Sean Payton.

The locations, times and dates haven't yet been released of when the Saints will be in town.

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West Virginia Morning
11:17 am
Thu March 13, 2014

WVU Professor Talks Russia/Ukraine Conflict

Boris Barkanov, (right,) is a WVU political science professor who spent some time in the USSR.
Credit West Virginia University

Tensions are high as negotiations continue over whether Russian forces will leave Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula. One West Virginia University professor is hoping the conflict is able to come to an end.

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