Susan Sharon

Deputy News Director

Susan is the deputy news director who handles assignments and planning by the news staff. She’s also a general assignment reporter who began her career at Maine Public Radio working at the State House in 1992, and still loves the work, which takes her to the Maine State Prison for a story on solitary confinement one day and to the foothills of western Maine to look for wood thrush the next.

Susan is a graduate of the University of Montana, where she got her first job in public radio news while still a student. She has also worked at television stations in Montana and Maine. You can occasionally hear her stories on NPR.

Ways to Connect

Jack Kennealy / Maine Land Trust Network

Governor LePage used a portion of his 90-minute State of the State address Tuesday to attack one of his favorite targets: land trusts.

Maine.gov


Washington County residents and former employees at the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) in Machiasport say the early morning closure of the minimum-security prison is a betrayal by the governor that they can't accept.

Steve Mistler / Maine Public

This week, Maine Democrats and Republicans are unveiling two separate but similar bills to address the universally condemned cultural practice of female genital mutilation.

The Democrats’ bill is backed by several district attorneys and members of the Somali and Sudanese communities. In contrast, the Republicans’ bill has been linked to what the Southern Poverty Law Center describes as the “largest anti-Muslim hate group in the United States,” with a chapter here in Maine.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

Dozens of people came together Saturday in support of a Haitian man from Waterville who was picked up by Immigration and Customs Enforcement last month. Simultaneously, the supporters got out their phones and left messages for members of Maine's congressional delegation, asking for their help.

Caitlin Troutman / Maine Public

Nine days after Jackman selectmen unanimously fired the town manager for his white separatist, anti-immigrant views, Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins of Maine showed up to offer her support.

Mindy Saint Martin

An attorney for a Haitian man picked up by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Waterville earlier this month said that he is encouraged by a federal judge's ruling in Manhattan this week. U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest said it was "unconstitutional and cruel" for authorities to detain Ravi Ragbir "without a moment's notice." Forrest then ordered Ragbir’s immediate release.

Mindy Saint Martin

A Waterville family is asking Gov. Paul LePage and members of Maine's congressional delegation to intervene on behalf of a Haitian man who was picked up by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) earlier this month for reasons that are not clear. The man, Lexius Saint Martin, is now being held at a New Hampshire jail awaiting deportation.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

Embattled Jackman Town Manager Tom Kawczynski, whose white separatist and anti-Islam views first came to light last week, has been fired. After meeting behind closed doors Tuesday morning, Jackman selectmen reached an agreement to part ways with Kawczynski, who said his "fight" has just begun.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

The town manager of Jackman is expected to learn his fate at an emergency selectmen's meeting Tuesday following revelations that he's a white separatist who's promoting the creation of a "white homeland" on social media.

via Facebook

Jackman selectmen have scheduled a  Tuesday morning meeting with town manager Tom Kawcynski, following revelations last week that Kawcynski is promoting and recruiting members for a white separatist organization and community. 

 

Kawcynski says his beliefs, which he does not consider racist, do not interfere with his job.  He's held the post for the past seven months and serves at the pleasure of the board of selectmen. 

 

via Facebook

The Jackman town manager is facing a backlash on social media and questions from the town's selectmen for what some characterize as his "white supremacist" views. Tom Kawczynski says those views are personal, separate from his job, and do not reflect anything other than "white pride."  

Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland
BA Bartlett / panoramio.com

Echoing the findings shared at a juvenile justice summit in Maine last Fall, the Muskie School of Public Service and the University of Maine School of Law are calling for a shift away from youth prisons like Long Creek in South Portland to non-residential community-based programs and services. And they’ve produced a report that suggests the transition will save money and produce better outcomes for kids.

Maine Department of Corrections

The Maine Department of Corrections is reporting the escape of a prisoner who left his home confinement without permission around 1 p.m. Tuesday.

Robert John Berry, 46, was serving a 16-month sentence for theft that began in May of last year.

Berry was assigned to the Mountain View Correctional Facility in Charleston and could have been up for release as early as April.

The department did not release additional information.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

It’s been a rough start to the new year for thousands of customers who rely on home heating fuel and for the companies that provide it.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press File

Twenty years ago this month, much of the state was coping with an icy disaster: downed power lines, toppled trees, impassable roads, frozen pipes and darkness for nights on end.

Schools turned into shelters, power crews worked feverishly around the clock and Mainers pulled together, offering hot showers and cups of coffee and swapping stories about surviving the Ice Storm of ‘98.

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