Scott Finn

Executive Director and CEO

Scott Finn is executive director and CEO of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, an indispensable resource for education and community development for West Virginia and all of Appalachia.

He describes himself as a "recovering reporter," serving stints as news director at WUSF in Tampa, news director and reporter for West Virginia Public Broadcasting, and statehouse reporter for the Charleston Gazette.

As a journalist, Finn received several national awards, including the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting from the Education Writers of America, two awards from Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Gerald Loeb Award for excellence in business reporting, and the Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award for Excellence in Reporting on Drug and Alcohol Problems.

Finn served as a AmeriCorps-VISTA member in Big Ugly Creek, West Virginia (it's actually a small, beautiful place); founded and ran an AmeriCorps program called APPALREAD; and was a sixth grade social studies and English teacher.

He also was a really, really bad whitewater rafting guide.

Finn, his wife, Wendy, and children, Max and Iris, live in Charleston, West Virginia.

Pages

Politics
11:31 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Could Highway Funding Fight Halt W.Va. Road Construction?

Funding for a four-lane upgrade to W.Va. 10 and other routes is endangered by the political stalemate in Washington.
Credit Chapman Technical Group

How does the fight over highway funding in Washington affect people living in rural West Virginia?

The PBS NewsHour recently traveled to Logan County to show how the funding fight could bring construction on a four-lane upgrade of W.Va. 10 to a halt.

It's also become a political issue in the Third District Congressional Race, with Rep. Nick Rahall touting his seniority and ability to bring home highway funds, and challenger state Sen. Evan Jenkins vowing not to raise gas taxes to fund highways.

Read more
Storyteller Award
5:05 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

Battling Storms and Computer Glitches to Protect Your Paycheck

Kristi Crouch and Jane Smith go above and beyond to make sure everyone gets paid!

You may have heard about the state’s HUGE computer project, to change over to a new system called OASIS.

Well, this is the story about how that changeover almost prevented some of our employees from getting the right paycheck – and two of our employees who single-handedly prevented that from happening.

One employee even left the hospital where her grandchild was being born to fix the problem!

For these reasons, Jane Smith and Kristi Crouch are the winners of our Storyteller Award for the month of July.

Read more
Storyteller Award
4:54 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

The People Behind Mountain Stage - Vasilia Scouras and Jeff Shirley

Vasilia Scouras and Jeff Shirley are two of the people behind Mountain Stage
Credit Josh Saul

Mountain Stage is West Virginia's calling card to the world, and West Virginia Public Broadcasting's premier program. On show night, everyone sees Larry Groce, Adam Harris, Julie Adams, Bob Thompson and the other musicians on stage.

But behind the Stage is a small team of people who make sure the tickets get sold, the musicians make it there on time, and everyone gets paid. And two of them went WAY above and beyond in May and June to be our Storyteller Award winners: Vasilia Scouras and Jeff Shirley.

Read more
Power outage causes viewing/listening problems
10:03 am
Sat June 28, 2014

All Systems Go in Huntington & Charleston

2:56 p.m. -- We should be back to full service for WV PBS in Huntington and Charleston as well as WVWV radio in Huntington -- INCLUDING Suddenlink customers. The problem was related to the power issues yesterday that caused our system to re-boot improperly. We've manually set it and are running a backup generator as well. We will continue to monitor and make course corrections as needed. Thanks again for supporting West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

Read more
Storyteller Award
1:53 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

The Rock of Our Development Department

Peggy Dorsey

  In each of our lives, we have a rock, someone we can depend on when times get tough. You know what I’m talking about: the eye of the hurricane, the wind beneath my wings, that sort of person.

In our development department, that person is Peggy Dorsey, our individual giving manager. For her dedication, Peggy is the recipient of this month’s Storyteller Award.

We are preparing for Peggy’s retirement this fall and her importance in our development efforts cannot be overstated. She makes sure everything gets done right and on time – pledge drives, premiums, letters, database updates, responses to member questions. Simply put, she does an amazing amount of work.

Read more
Radio
1:49 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

Coming July 1 - Our Improved Weekend Radio Lineup

Bridget Lancaster of Charleston is co-host of America's Test Kitchen, coming to West Virginia Public Radio in July

Our listeners have spoken, and we're listening at West Virginia Public Radio!

Starting in July, we're making improvements to our weekend schedule, based on listener surveys, ratings and other feedback.

The New Schedule is Here!

We’ll still have your favorites, like Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me, Prairie Home Companion and Car Talk.

Read more
Imagining Our Future
1:54 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

Watch the "What's Next, West Virginia" Panel Discussion

From our tumblr page, WVNextin6

Watch former First Lady Gayle Manchin and others debate the future of West Virginia in this video. Other participants include Perry Bryant of West Virginians for Affordable Health Care and former state Sens. Lloyd Jackson, Brooks McCabe and Dan Foster.

Read more
News
10:05 am
Sun May 11, 2014

Mountain Stage Archive Project: Sharing 30 Years of Great Performances

Bill Lynch has a big story in the Charleston Gazette about the Mountain Stage Archive, and the fundraiser for it coming up on May 17.

Here's how he describes the archive in the article:

"Turn 'Mountain Stage' executive producer Adam Harris loose in the show’s archives and the 30-year-old turns into a total fan.

"He almost can’t stop pulling tape cases off the shelves or picking through boxes to look at things.

Read more
Storyteller Award
4:07 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

This Employee Never Asks Anything in Return

Mailroom Dave, this month's Storyteller Award winner.

The winner of this month’s Storyteller Award is usually one of the first employees to arrive at our Charleston facility, and often one of the last to leave. He’s dependable, friendly, and does his job with a positive and fun attitude. His name is David McClanahan.

Since there are two David McClanahan’s in Charleston (the other is our Director of Engineering), we call him “Mailroom Dave.”

Mailroom Dave makes sure the building is clean and well-maintained, but he does a lot more, too, as our receptionist Sharon Dunlap attests:

Read more
AP Awards
8:00 am
Sun April 6, 2014

West Virginia Public Broadcasting Named Top Radio News Operation in the Virginias

West Virginia Public Broadcasting won six top AP awards, including this one for best website.
Credit Jessica Lilly

West Virginia Public Broadcasting was named Outstanding Radio News Operation among metropolitan stations in Virginia and West Virginia at The Virginias AP Broadcast awards luncheon Saturday.

West Virginia Public Broadcasting also won top honors in six categories: best investigative reporting, best website, best radio news anchor, best spot news, best documentary, and outstanding effort by an individual reporter.

News Director Beth Vorhees was named best radio news anchor, and reporter Glynis Board received the outstanding reporter award.

Read more
Storyteller Award
10:36 am
Sat April 5, 2014

How Steven Grindstaff Made His Former Employer Cry

The idea of losing accountant Steven Grindstaff made his former employer cry...and for good reason!

You usually don't want to be the employee who makes your supervisor break down in tears.

But when Steven Grindstaff's old boss realized he would be losing his prize employee to West Virginia Public Broadcasting, that's exactly what happened.

Steven’s current boss is our CFO, Tammy Treadway. She describes what happened when she called his previous employer:

“As I expressed my interest in having Steven work for us, I thought, ‘Wow, this man seems really upset about losing him. He sounds like he is going to cry.’

Read more
Telling West Virginia's Story
3:12 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

From McDowell County to the U.S. Senate, Thanks to You

Sabrina Shrader was featured in a West Virginia Public Broadcasting story, which led her to testify for the U.S. Senate.

When you become a member of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, you hope your support makes a difference, that it has the power to change minds and even change lives.

And every once in a while, we hear a story that shows how we are having an impact. Today, that story belongs to Sabrina Shrader, who survived her abusive childhood to become an advocate for children living in poverty in West Virginia.

Read more
News
1:09 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

McDowell vs. Fairfax County: 350 Miles and a World Apart

Credit Courtesy of James Neal

We've reported a lot about declining life expectancy in some Appalachian counties, including the place with among the lowest life expectancies in America: McDowell County.

Now, the New York Times' Annie Lowrey has a powerful story comparing life expectancy in McDowell County to that of Fairfax County, Va. It's just 350 miles difference, but a world apart.

From The New York Times:

Income Gap, Meet the Longevity Gap

Read more
Storyteller Award
9:31 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Conquering The Snow, Telling Our Story

Larry Dowling conquers the snow on our roof in Morgantown
Credit Robin Mazza, West Virginia Public Broadcasting

It’s not always easy to tell West Virginia’s story. The weather can be harsh, and resources can be scarce.

So when an employee takes what could have been a miserable task and makes it fun...that’s deserving of special recognition. That’s why Larry Dowling is our Storyteller of the Month.

Dowling is a video director and producer in our Morgantown studios. Here’s how his fellow employee, Robin Mazza, explains what you’re seeing in this photo:

Read more
APTS Award
4:05 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Rockefeller Named Champion of Public Broadcasting by National Group

Credit State of West Virginia

A good friend of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, Sen. Jay Rockefeller, has just been honored by the organization that represents public television stations throughout America.

First as Governor and later as Senator, Rockefeller and his wife Sharon have played a crucial role in growing the statewide public television and radio network that is West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

Read more
After the Water Crisis
10:49 am
Sun February 23, 2014

What Does the World's Best Water Smell Like? (Hint: It's Not Black Licorice)

Judge Michael Cervin smelling the water at the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting competition
Credit bottledwaterweb.com

When I signed up to be a judge at the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting, I thought it would just be a bit of fun -- a relaxing weekend in an historic West Virginia mountain spa town.

Then came the water crisis: a massive spill of the coal-cleaning chemical MCHM into our water supply, and more than a week under a “do not use” order.

Read more
Storyteller Award
6:00 am
Sat February 8, 2014

Reporters Shine During Water Crisis

Ashton Marra
Credit Cecelia Mason

This month’s Storyteller Award goes to a team who’ve worked together so much their names have become joined together: Dave and Ashton.

Dave Mistich is our digital editor; Ashton Marra is our statehouse reporter. And with guidance from news director Beth Vorhees, and major assistance from reporters all over the state, they’ve led our comprehensive and in-depth coverage of the water crisis.

Beth says it best – I have her message here:

Read more
News
4:52 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

Video: Water Crisis Public Hearing from House of Delegates

Water distribution in Kanawha County

Watch the public forum the WV House of Delegates held Monday evening about the Elk River chemical spill.

Read more
Last Day Is Friday
3:44 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

VOTE: Which Two West Virginia Towns Should Get "Turned Around"?

Alderson, W.Va.
Credit New South Media

It’s been a rough month in West Virginia, with the water crisis and all the negative, stereotypical coverage of Appalachia around the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty.

Let’s take all our anger and frustration and turn it into something positive. Let’s “Turn This Town Around.”

Read more
Television Studio Upgrade
8:37 am
Thu January 30, 2014

West Virginia Public Broadcasting Awarded $750,000 Grant

Side shot of "vintage" camera in our Charleston studio.

West Virginia Public Broadcasting has been awarded a $750,000 competitive grant to replace all equipment in its main Charleston studio and record and transmit local programs in high definition.

This grant was very competitive -- we received about a quarter of all funding available this year! And it will transform what we can do from our Charleston studio in two ways:

1. We will finally be able to replace our failing, 25-year-old equipment.

It's so old, our engineers have to go to hobbyists on e-bay to find parts.

Read more

Pages