Robbie Harris

WVTF/RADIO IQ New River Valley Bureau Chief

Robbie Harris is based in Blacksburg,  covering the New River Valley and southwestern Virginia. 

The former news director of  WBEZ/ Chicago Public Radio and WHYY in Philadelphia, she led award-winning news teams and creative projects.  Early in her career, she was the Humanities Reporter at New Hampshire Public Radio, and also served as a tape editor on Fresh Air with Terry Gross.

Robbie worked at New Jersey Public Television and WCAU/CBS TV in Philadelphia while she pursued  her Master's Degree at the University of Pennsylvania.  During college, she was a Page at Saturday Night Live in New York and a reporter and program host for Cross Country Cable Television in Somerville, NJ.  Robbie also worked at the Rutgers College Radio Station, WRSU and was part of the team which founded "Knight Time Television" at the university.

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Catawba Sustainability Center
12:16 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

Resurrecting The American Chestnut Tree

American Chestnut trees used make up twenty-five percent of the Appalachian forest.  A blight, in the early 1900s changed that, and today they’re all but gone from the forests from Georgia to Maine. 

But the tree left us a way to resurrect it from the dead, and with it, a kind of message:  Only with the help of human beings will the towering Chestnuts return. 

"I was raised here in the valley and when I started hunting, about 1960 or so there were still these old gray giant trunks standing in the woods," says Carl Absher a semi-retired forester from the Catawba Valley.  

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Smart Phone App
4:00 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Blacksburg Transit: There's an App for That

Credit Blacksburg Transit

Blacksburg Transit is joining a handful of locales in Virginia that have an App for youR smart phone that let’s you plan your bus trip.  Officials say it will save money, energy, and riders’ patience. 

For mass transit riders, there’s nothing more frustrating than watching the bus pull away while you decide weather to break into a sprint to catch it. Tim Witten is the Intelligent Transportation Systems Manager for Blacksburg Transit.

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Perfect Pitch
2:52 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

The Family That Tunes Together

Credit Stock Photo

There was a time when a piano was the heart of many homes. In some it still is. But sales of acoustic pianos have been dropping steadily over the last 35 years.  And as more people move to digital instruments, the number of piano tuners is also shrinking.  Some worry it may become a lost art.

“When I was a kid they asked, ‘What’s your daddy do?  He goes ding ding ding," said David Allen.

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Health & Medicine
6:23 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Mastering Self-Grown, Self-Preserved Food

Increasing interest in locally grown food is spurring a revival of ancient methods of preserving that food.  With all the effort that goes into growing it, the next step is finding ways to store it for future consumption. 

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Virginia Tech Research
4:10 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Understanding the Rising Cost of Health Care

The cost of health care has been rising faster than other sectors for decades, to the point where today, one of every five dollars is spent there.  But exactly why that is, has not been well understood, until now.  

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