Deborah Shaar

Deborah joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014 as a news reporter. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita in 2013, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area.

She began her on-air career as a reporter and anchor at various small market stations in southeast Ohio and West Virginia. She fine-tuned her writing and producing skills while working on a highly rated three-hour morning news show at the Fox TV affiliate in Detroit, Michigan. From there, she put her on-air, writing and producing skills to good use: training and developing broadcast news students at Ohio University. As managing editor of the WOUB radio and television newsroom, Deborah served in a crucial role as supervisor of the student-staffed nightly television newscast. Many of her student anchors, reporters and producers earned prestigious national, state and regional awards—and still work in the news business today. She later went back on-air as a fill-in anchor for a statewide news network in Ohio.

Deborah earned Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in journalism from Ohio University. Her master’s thesis is a historical narrative about the transformation of journalism training at the University of Leipzig, Germany as a result of Germany’s reunificiation.

U.S. House and Senate lawmakers are still months away from passing a new Farm Bill. The legislation, which governs an array of federal agricultural and food programs, is set to expire in 2018.

Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas is the chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. That committee and the House Committee on Agriculture are currently working to rewrite the Farm bill.

Roberts says his goal is to get the bill passed in October, or at the very latest, early next year.

U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas says local governments should enact hate crime laws to give law enforcement more options when protests and demonstrations turn violent.

Kansas’ senior senator called the weekend violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, a “terrible tragedy.”

He said cities should enact ordinances on hate crimes so that law enforcement could step in ahead of violence, which he said was not done in Charlottesville.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is offering disaster assistance to dozens of counties in western Kansas which were affected by a late spring snowstorm.

The storm dumped heavy snow, and straight-line winds up to 60 miles per hour created drifts and knocked downed power lines and trees. The snowstorm affected 27 counties, mainly in western and northwestern Kansas, from April 28 to May 3.

FEMA will reimburse state and local governments, agencies and nonprofits for recovery projects.

Girl Scout troops in Kansas provided input on one of the new badges that scouts nationwide will be able to earn this year.

The national Girl Scout organization added 23 new badges focused on science, technology, engineering, math and the outdoors.

The effort takes a progressive approach to STEM and also encourages girls to become citizen scientists using the great outdoors as their laboratory.

Hugo Phan / KMUW

State Treasurer Ron Estes won the election to become the next Republican Congressman to represent the 4th District in Kansas. Estes defeated Democrat James Thompson by less than ten points. Libertarian Chris Rockhold was also on the ballot and drew two percent of the vote.

There's a small-scale charity movement starting to take hold in neighborhoods across the country. Think of those "little free library" boxes, but with a twist: These are small pantries stocked with free food and personal care items like toothbrushes and diapers for people in need.

They're found near churches, outside businesses and in front of homes. Maggie Ballard, who lives in Wichita, Kan., calls hers a "blessing box."