Scott Finn

Executive Director and CEO

Scott Finn is executive director and CEO of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, an indispensable resource for education, news, public safety and economic 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.

Ways To Connect

West Virginia State University (WVSU) and West Virginia Public Broadcasting (WVPB) announce the creation of a one-year, paid media fellowship program called the West Virginia Media Diversity Fellowship.

Ten years ago, Jennifer Hill was trying to figure out how she, her mother and brother could survive Hurricane Katrina.

The ABC and Fox affiliates in the Charleston-Huntington market are no longer available on Dish Network.

WCHS and WVAH are owned by Sinclair Broadcasting, which did not reach an agreement with the satellite provider Dish Network. The stations were no longer available on Dish as of late Tuesday evening.

153 Sinclair Broadcasting stations in 79 markets have been blacked out on Dish Network because they failed to reach a new, long-term deal on broadcast retransmission licensing.. 

Charleston Daily Mail

Can West Virginia comply with President Obama’s Clean Power Plan? And if so, at what cost?

Those are the questions Randy Huffman is trying to answer. Huffman is Secretary of the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.

Huffman came on “The Front Porch” podcast to talk about how his agency is dealing with Obama's plan to reduce greenhouse gases from power plants.

Here are 10 takeaways from our interview with Huffman that will (hopefully) help you understand the Clean Power Plan’s impact on West Virginia.

Bruce Gilden, Vice

"Two Days in Appalachia," the recent photo essay in Vice, has generated a social media firestorm for how it portrays folks in eastern Kentucky.

Did Vice send photographer Bruce Gilden to Appalachia to make us look like freaks? And how does this feed into existing stereotypes of people here?

Over the past century, Charleston’s two newspapers brought down corrupt politicians, exposed injustice, and served as West Virginia’s first draft of history.

And now, the Charleston Gazette and Charleston Daily Mail are joining into one newspaper. Why is this happening, and what does it mean for West Virginians?

West Virginia Public Broadcasting

People in Appalachia have one of the most unique dialects in America. On The Front Porch, native speaker Rick Wilson teaches us eight ways to speak Appalachian.

Steve Clancy / Flickr

Is Harvard University is keeping out qualified Asian-American applicants in the interest of racial diversity? That’s what is alleged in a lawsuit.

On The Front Porch, a Yalie, a Harvard man and our resident intellectual from Marshall debate whether colleges should use race during admissions.

Are Appalachian students are at a disadvantage or advantage when they apply to selective schools? Perhaps a little bit of both.

Craig Cunningham / Charleston Daily Mail

Should the government require wages over a certain level for taxpayer-funded construction projects?

In West Virginia, some Republicans want to repeal the prevailing wage law altogether - like Laurie Lin of our podcast, "The Front Porch"

On The Front Porch podcast, we discuss the shooting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C. with a special guest, WVU Vice President David Fryson.

Fryson is a pastor, a lawyer, and leads WVU’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

We discuss the debate over taking down the Confederate flag, and enduring symbols of the Confederacy in West Virginia. That includes General Stonewall Jackson, a West Virginia native who fought for the South.

The Front Porch Podcast
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Increasingly, working class men in Appalachia can't find work.

Central Appalachia has seen thousands of layoffs in the coal industry this decade. More and more, women are the main breadwinners.

Should we require drug tests for recipients of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program?

A bill proposed by the West Virginia Legislature would have done just that, as part of a pilot program. It failed to pass, but is sure to come up in next year's regular session.

John Hale / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The governing board of West Virginia Public Broadcasting has approved a policy to determine which candidates will be included in future debates.

The policy comes after the 2014 election season, when West Virginia Public Broadcasting co-sponsored a U.S. Senate debate that invited only the Democratic and Republican candidates. WVPB later sponsored a second debate that invited all five candidates on the ballot, but the leading candidate, Republican Shelley Moore Capito, did not attend.

CDC

A recent Gallup-Healthways survey ranked West Virginia as the second-most obese state in America (thank God for Mississippi!) One in three West Virginians is obese.

This week on The Front Porch, we debate what’s making Appalachia fat, and what can be done about it.

Rick Wilson of the American Friends Service Committee blames aggressive marketing of sugar, salt and fat by big corporations.

Roxy Todd / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia has the nation's worst rate of drug overdose deaths. It started with prescription painkillers, and now is increasingly fueled by heroin.

On this week's "The Front Porch," we debate what's causing the epidemic, and what might actually work in curbing it.

WNYC

As host and executive producer of the hit podcast "Death, Sex & Money" from WNYC, Anna Sale asks famous people and regular folks about the things we need to talk more about, but don't.

On this week's "The Front Porch," Sale talks about her complicated love of West Virginia, and the bittersweet experience of visiting home, once you know you're gone for good.

Chuck Roberts / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Did you miss the first episode of Antiques Roadshow's visit to Charleston, West Virginia?

Don't worry, you can watch it here: Catch all three episodes from Charleston on West Virginia public broadcasting at 8 p.m. Every Monday this May.

Tax Foundation

Reforming the tax system is a major priority for the new GOP leadership of the West Virginia Legislature. Senate President Bill Cole has even floated the idea of eliminating the state income tax.

Like the cicadas, the issue seems to come up every few years, sometimes leading to changes, and sometimes not.

This week, The Front Porch gang debates whether West Virginia needs to change its tax system, and if so, who should benefit.

http://photographyisnotacrime.com

Jesse and Marisha Camp were driving through McDowell County when they were confronted by angry residents who believed they were taking photos of their children.

Hard times have come yet again to the coalfields of West Virginia -- massive layoffs, big cuts in production. The coal severance tax is down by about half in many coal counties.

That's what we're talking about this week on “The Front Porch”, our podcast where we bring together people with diverse views and backgrounds to see where we can find common ground.

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