Debra Bolton

Silver Rails co-host

Volunteer Debra Bolton first began working with High Plains Public Radio in September of 1980 as an operations assistant preparing program logs.  Later, she announced station identifications before becoming a host of the original Silver Rails on Saturday mornings.  After Debra became program director in 1990, she was the permanent host of Sinfonia and occasionally hosted High Plains Morning and Jazz Time.  Debra’s love for the traditions of music about people (folk) from around the world is what brought her back to High Plains Public Radio and to Silver Rails.

After Debra’s paid career in public radio, she entered the world of education.  She worked in Head Start, taught English, writing, and poetry at Dodge City and Garden City community colleges, and headed a family resource center for Garden City Community College.  For the past seven years Debra has been a faculty member of Kansas State University.  Her role as an Extension Specialist is one of training and advising county extension agents in 26 counties of Southwest Kansas.  She engages in social research at the community level and works to bridge KSU Cooperative Extension’s university-based research with community application.  Debra's website is

Debra’s early education was in English with an emphasis in British literature and balladry studies.  She holds a Ph.D. in Human Ecology with an emphasis in studying minority populations in rural communities.

Community: Garden City, KS

Phone: (800) 678-7444 (Garden City studios)

Cantigas de Santa Maria

Explore a glimpse of this vast (420 compositions) repertoire of poetry, songs, stories, and recitations about the “Blessed Virgin Mary” in this holiday special. The immense collection of Mariology came from the Court of King Alfonso X (1252-1284) of Castile (now Spain). You will hear the songs and stories as interpreted by historians, musicologist and musicians, playing on period and modern instruments. Listen for the complex themes and musical surprises of the Cantigas de Santa Maria. Hosted by Debra Bolton.

Silver Rails

Step aboard the Saturday afternoon train to music of the world in the folk tradition.  Live from HPPR’s studios, Debra Bolton and Lynn Boitano bring you Americana, world, bluegrass, acoustic blues, traditional and contemporary music performed in the folk tradition. You’ll hear songs and tunes from your own back yard and the distant reaches of the world.