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NCPR News Staff: Natasha Haverty

Reporter and Producer

Natasha Haverty has an English degree from Brown University and got her radio training at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Maine.

From Maine she went to work at The Moth, a nonprofit in New York City devoted to the art of live storytelling, where she was the coordinator of the community outreach program that teaches workshops to schools and community centers and brings storytellers to the Moth stage (and the radio). She also helped produce the first two seasons of Peabody Award-winning Moth Radio Hour (now playing on NPR stations across the country).

Tasha returned to her home state after receiving the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities’ “Liberty and Justice for All” grant to create an oral history of the Norfolk Prison Debating Society, which had an outstanding record against top college teams in the Forties and Fifties. She recently premiered her original 'improvised audio drama' The Yankee City Series at a live listening event at Harvard University. Tasha arrived in the North Country on April Fool's Day, 2012. E-mail

Stories filed by Natasha Haverty

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Nelson Mandela and Denis Goldberg. Photo courtesy of Denis Goldberg
Nelson Mandela and Denis Goldberg. Photo courtesy of Denis Goldberg

A belief in justice: Denis Goldberg, Mandela's trialmate

Today is the first day of Passover, a Jewish holiday celebrating liberation. One visitor to the north country this week has devoted his life to the struggle for freedom--Denis Goldberg.  Go to full article
Kodi Kadeem Beckles. This photo was used in the missing poster issued by lostnmissing.com
Kodi Kadeem Beckles. This photo was used in the missing poster issued by lostnmissing.com

Vigil held for Kodi Kadeem Beckles

A vigil was held last night in Plattsburgh for Kodi Kadeem Beckles, the SUNY Plattsburgh student found dead on Monday morning after a city-wide search.

Arlene Sabo, head of SUNY Plattsburgh's university police, spoke with WPTZ Channel 5 television.  Go to full article
"Lighthouse Rock Island" Rock Island Lighthouse, Thousand Islands, New York. Photo: Ted Van Pelt
"Lighthouse Rock Island" Rock Island Lighthouse, Thousand Islands, New York. Photo: Ted Van Pelt

Are the Thousand Islands scenic...enough?

The ice is out along much of the St. Lawrence River and the colors, sounds, and movement of Spring in the Thousand Islands region are on their way.

But here's a question: is the Thousand Islands--the fifty mile archipelago with its constellation of villages, castles, cottages, and parks--scenic enough? And what's more: is it significant? That's what around 60 people from the community gathered late last month to figure out.  Go to full article
Aaron Hinton, outside his building in Brownsville, Brooklyn. He calls the war on drugs "the war on the poor." Photo: Natasha Haverty
Aaron Hinton, outside his building in Brownsville, Brooklyn. He calls the war on drugs "the war on the poor." Photo: Natasha Haverty

What if 10 percent of your neighbors went to prison downstate?

The North Country has more than a dozen state and federal prisons, housing thousands of inmates. It turns out a lot of those inmates come from just a few neighborhoods, and those have been at the center of the 40-year drug war. Today, Brownsville, Brooklyn has one of the highest concentrations of incarcerated or formerly incarcerated people in the country.  Go to full article
Five Omar Mualimmak spent nearly five years in a solitary confinement cell. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/m_at/8566414982/">Matthew Thompson</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Five Omar Mualimmak spent nearly five years in a solitary confinement cell. Photo: Matthew Thompson, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Prison reform advocate will speak in Canton tonight

St. Lawrence University is hosting a series of events this month aimed at opening up a public conversation about the prison system.

Last night was the first: Five Omar Mualimmak spoke to a lecture hall full of students and community members, about his near five years in solitary confinement, on charges that were later overturned. He also talked about his work to reform the system, and the art he created in prison.  Go to full article
Glades Correctional Institution inmates reading in the prison library, Belle Glade, Florida, 1975. Photo: Tom McLendon.
Glades Correctional Institution inmates reading in the prison library, Belle Glade, Florida, 1975. Photo: Tom McLendon.

Prison college education is returning to New York

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has unveiled a new plan to bring college education back into New York prisons. Cuomo's new initiative will offer college level education at ten New York State prisons, one in each region of the state, though the prisons haven't yet been identified.  Go to full article
The village of Dannemora, NY and Clinton-Dannemora prison, one of the facilities that remains open here in the North Country. Photo: Natasha Haverty
The village of Dannemora, NY and Clinton-Dannemora prison, one of the facilities that remains open here in the North Country. Photo: Natasha Haverty

Cuomo cuts corrections budget, closes prisons

Cuomo still plans to close four prisons later this year, including two here in the North Country. In his speech yesterday the Governor also spoke about putting more resources into programs to help offenders return to society and stay in society.

This comes only a few weeks after Cuomo talked about rolling back the "madness" of mass incarceration in New York. The new budget reduces funding for the Department of Corrections by $8 million.  Go to full article
View from a subway platform in Bedford-Stuyvesant, one of the neighborhoods in New York city with the highest concentration of men and women admitted to prison. Photo: Natasha Haverty
View from a subway platform in Bedford-Stuyvesant, one of the neighborhoods in New York city with the highest concentration of men and women admitted to prison. Photo: Natasha Haverty

Cuomo: "reducing the madness of an incarceration society"

Cuomo also talked about the state of prisons in New York yesterday. And according to the Governor, there's good news, and there's bad news.  Go to full article
Nighttime in Algonquin Park. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/64894594@N08/7046599793">abuakel</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Nighttime in Algonquin Park. Photo: abuakel, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Listen: Wolf howl sound check

You just heard a public wolf howl at Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario. But that event can only take place if park naturalists actually hear wolves the night before, during what they call a "sound check."

So on the night before the "public howl", teams of naturalists spread through the park, scouting the area and keeping in touch by handheld radio. It was past ten in the evening. The August night was clear and still, and the sky dripped with meteors. That's today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article
Algonquin Park Wolves. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jdbsound/3968088234/">JDB Photos</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Algonquin Park Wolves. Photo: JDB Photos, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Howling for wolves

During the holidays we're listening back to some of our favorite stories from 2013. This morning we go back to late summer, and up to Algonquin Provincial Park, where for the past fifty years, people from all around the world have made the journey to hear wolves howl. The Eastern Timber Wolf lived across the eastern United States before humans virtually erased it from the landscape. But in some parts of Canada, the Eastern Wolf is alive and well. Reporter Natasha Haverty sent this postcard.

(Note: While August is the best time to hear wolves at the park, the rangers told us that now is the best time to see them, when the trees are bare and the contrast in the landscape is stronger.)  Go to full article

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