Heather Brandon

Digital Content Editor

Heather Brandon is digital content editor for WNPR. She previously worked as a producer for Where We Live, The Colin McEnroe Show, and news broadcasts. Heather lives in Hartford with her husband and three children. She has a master's degree in public policy from Trinity College, and a bachelor's degree in urban studies from Bryn Mawr College. 

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Fri January 23, 2015

The Young and Restless in Connecticut

Downtown Hartford on the Connecticut River.
Ricky Aponte Creative Commons

More young people are moving to the heart of cities, according to a report from think tank City Observatory. This includes cities that we usually think of as “economically troubled,” like Buffalo, Cleveland, and, yes, even Hartford. Some of these cities have been losing their overall population, but gaining in their numbers of college graduates in their 20s and 30s.

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Medical Decisions
7:30 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Cassandra C Could Leave Hospital While Waiting for Next Chemo Treatment

Cassandra C, 17, was ordered to continue her chemotherapy treatment despite her objections.
Jackie Fortin

Cassandra C, 17, is being forced by the state to undergo chemotherapy treatment for her Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Under a court order, DCF has had temporary custody of Cassandra since mid-December.

DCF now says it is exploring other options for her while she continues treatment. Cassandra's next chemotherapy treatment won't happen for several weeks, so she may be allowed to leave the hospital and live in a group home. While there, she would continue to receive other treatments DCF says she needs.

Cassandra's attorney, Joshua Michtom, said on WNPR's Where We Live that Cassandra is in her hospital room with someone at guard at all times. For her, he said, being anywhere other than her one room in the hospital would be preferable.

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Energy
2:45 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Regional Power Operator Provides Brief on State of Grid

ISO-New England's control room.
ISO-New England

New England's electricity grid operator said natural gas pipeline bottlenecks and retirement of aging power plants could put pressure on the price of energy.

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White House
10:31 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Obama Task Force on Policing Includes Yale Law Professor

Tracey Meares, a professor at Yale Law School.
Marquette University Law School

Yale Law School professor Tracey Meares is a member of President Obama's Task Force on 21st Century Policing, which meets for the first time publicly on Tuesday.

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Quakin'
1:14 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Five Small Earthquakes Recorded Within Five Hours in Connecticut

The U.S. Geological Survey's "Did you feel it?" map, showing the results of 263 responses from the region in 71 ZIP codes.
U.S. Geological Survey

Scientists on Monday recorded five small earthquakes within five hours in the same area of eastern Connecticut, including a 3.1-magnitude tremor felt more than 60 miles away in Massachusetts. 

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Springfield
12:06 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Springfield Looks to Balance Ethics and Casino Jobs

Springfield City Councilor Michael Fenton in City Hall. Fenton proposed an ethics ordinance that would limit public officials' ability to get jobs at a new MGM casino in the city.
Facebook

The Springfield, Massachusetts city council will discuss a proposal on Monday night that would restrict the city’s mayor or councilors from working for MGM for at least five years after leaving city employment. Non-elected officials considered “major policymakers” would face a two-year ban.

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Bond Commission
10:33 am
Mon January 12, 2015

State Bond Commission Approves Funding for Rail Stations

Ben Barnes.
Credit CT-N

Governor Dannel Malloy announced that $5.75 million was approved Monday by the state Bond Commission to improve railroad stations on the Hartford Line and the New Haven Line. 

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State Legislature
11:47 am
Sat January 10, 2015

Connecticut Black and Latino Caucus Names Leadership

Norwalk State Rep. Bruce Morris.
Connecticut House Democrats

Norwalk State Rep. Bruce Morris will be leading the General Assembly's Black and Latino Caucus in the new session. 

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Medical Decisions
2:51 pm
Thu January 8, 2015

Connecticut Supreme Court: Teen Can't Refuse Chemotherapy

Jackie Fortin, at center, is Cassandra C's mother, pictured with attorneys James Sexton, Mike Taylor and Cassandra's attorney, Joshua Michtom
Lucy Nalpathanchil WNPR

In a swift ruling on Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court decided that a teen recently diagnosed with cancer can't refuse life-saving chemotherapy.

According to the ruling, state officials are not violating the teen's rights by forcing her to undergo chemotherapy treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma. The teen, known as Cassandra C, will be free to make her own medical decisions when she turns 18 in September.

For the past month, Cassandra has been held at a local hospital, undergoing chemotherapy treatment against her wishes. Doctors said chemotherapy would give her an 85 percent chance of survival and without the treatment, she could die.

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Marketing Controversy
9:54 am
Thu January 8, 2015

Connecticut Brewery Seeks to End Uproar Over Gandhi-Bot

The Woodbridge-based New England Brewing Company's label for Gandhi-Bot.
New England Brewing Co. Facebook

A Connecticut brewery that drew condemnation in the U.S. and India for its beer that carries the name and likeness of Mohandas Gandhi said it's received threats and is seeking a way to end the uproar. 

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Marketing Energy
4:40 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Northeast Utilities Renames Itself Eversource Energy

The outgoing Northeast Utilities name and logo.
Credit Northeast Utilities

Northeast Utilities is adopting a new name as part of a rebranding effort. 

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General Assembly
4:05 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Gov. Malloy Takes the Oath of Office, and Other Inauguration Day Events

Gov. Malloy takes the oath of office on Wednesday.
Jessica Hill The Associated Press

Democrat Governor Dannel Malloy took the oath of office for a second term on Wednesday, which also marked the opening day of this year's General Assembly session. 

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Connecticut Legislature
1:52 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

State Sen. Andrew Maynard Receives Standing Ovation as Senate Opens

The Connecticut State Capitol.
David Wilson Creative Commons

Wednesday marked the opening day of the 2015 General Assembly session. The State Senate began its legislative session with State Sen. Andrew Maynard in attendance. 

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Music
7:42 am
Tue January 6, 2015

The Needle Drop's Anthony Fantano Recommends New Ear Candy

Anthony Fantano in a WNPR file photo.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Anthony Fantano, host of The Needle Drop, came by WNPR studios and shared a few of his latest favorite musical sounds.

Appearing on WNPR's Where We Live, Fantano told host John Dankosky that it's been the best musical year that he can remember.

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Year in Review
3:20 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

Ten Stories From WNPR Not to Miss in 2014

CintheaFox Creative Commons

We're nearing the end of another news-filled year. Take an entertaining and informative look back at 2014 as we benefit from the wisdom of the WNPR audience: below are ten most-viewed stories you shouldn't miss from our newsroom. 

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White House
2:10 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

President Obama Closes the Year With a Press Conference

President Barack Obama talks on the phone with Alan Gross, who was en route to the United States from Cuba, in the Oval Office on December 17.
Pete Souza White House

President Barack Obama claimed an array of successes in 2014, citing lower unemployment, a rising number of Americans covered by health insurance, and an historic diplomatic opening with Cuba. 

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Natural Gas
2:47 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

New York State to Ban Fracking Over Health Concerns

From left, Dr. Howard Zucker, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at an October meeting.
Kevin P. Coughlin Office of Governor Cuomo

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration announced on Wednesday that it will ban hydraulic fracturing in the state, following a long-awaited health impact study.

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State Parks
11:59 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Architect Seeks Ideas for Waterford's Seaside

Victor Solanoy Creative Commons

Around 100 people attended a meeting in Waterford on Monday night to discuss ideas for a proposed new state park. 

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Higher Education
10:48 am
Mon December 15, 2014

Quinnipiac's Irish Famine Museum to Launch Digital Database

"Burying the Child" by Lilian Lucy Davidson.
Ireland's Great Hunger Museum Quinnipiac University

Ireland's Great Hunger Museum at Quinnipiac University is launching a digital database with about 1,500 articles and illustrations related to Ireland and the Great Famine.

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Mayflower II
9:31 am
Sat December 13, 2014

Mayflower Replica Heads to Mystic Seaport for Restoration Work

The Mayflower II in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in a 2013 photo.
Robert Linsdell Creative Commons

The replica of the ship that brought the Pilgrims to America has set sail from Plymouth, Massachusetts, to another historic port in Connecticut where it will undergo a restoration. 

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National History
8:50 am
Sat December 13, 2014

Congress Approves Historic Coltsville Park in Hartford

Colt's Armory in Hartford around 1906.
Library of Congress

Connecticut officials are celebrating congressional approval of a new national park in Hartford centering on the historic Colt firearms factory building with the blue, onion-shape dome. 

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Live Music
1:40 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

The Meadows Brothers Perform at WNPR

Ian Meadows of The Meadows Brothers, who sings and plays guitar.
Chion Wolf WNPR

Connecticut-based music duo The Meadows Brothers recently visited WNPR's Where We Live to perform and record some live music. 

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Smoking Survey
1:37 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

E-Cigarettes Make Inroads With Children in Connecticut

Credit Sodanie Chea / Creative Commons

A study from Yale School of Medicine said a quarter of high school students in Connecticut have tried an electronic cigarette. 

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Still Revolutionary
8:21 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Key Issues Forum Focuses on Innovation

Dan Haar moderates the Key Issues Forum.
CPBN

The Hartford Courant presented a Key Issues Forum on Thursday morning in collaboration with the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network. 

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Local Music
2:22 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

The Soothing Sounds of Northampton's Winterpills

Winterpills members Philip Price and Flora Reed in WNPR's studios.
Heather Brandon WNPR

Colin McEnroe has been working for an age to get Winterpills to appear on his show. A new album was recently released by the band, Echolalia, allowing WNPR a perfect reason at last to bring in members Philip Price and Flora Reed.

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Lady Cora Jams
1:35 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

Downton's Elizabeth McGovern Plays Sadie at Hartford's Infinity Hall

Elizabeth McGovern fronts the band Sadie and the Hotheads.
Sky Arts sadieandthehotheads.com

Elizabeth McGovern doesn't want her role as Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham, to overshadow her identity as a musician. But she does admit it drives people to come see her band. Sadie and the Hotheads have just released a new album, Still Waiting. They'll be at Hartford's Infinity Hall on December 14.

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Trains
2:40 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Officials Highlight Regional Rail Line in Massachusetts and Connecticut

Downtown Springfield, Massachusetts.
Expos1225 Creative Commons

Massachusetts and Connecticut officials are riding the rails on Monday to highlight upgrades in the so-called "knowledge corridor" through southern New England. 

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Transportation
2:43 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Metro-North Says It Needs New Infrastructure to Meet Punctuality Goal

Metro-North Railroad workers repair a damaged section of track after a Bronx derailment in December 2013.
Patrick Cashin Metropolitan Transportation Authority

The president of Metro-North told Governor Dannel Malloy that the commuter rail line cannot reach its target of 95 percent on-time service, and that the best way to achieve the goal of punctuality is to continue to rebuild the rail system. 

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Public Health
1:06 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Connecticut Legislative Hearing Focuses on Ebola Response

State Rep. Susan Johnson, center, co-chairs the state legislature's Public Health Committee. Pictured is a discussion of hospitals and health care discussion last month.
Connecticut House Democrats

Connecticut lawmakers held a hearing on Monday to learn more about the state's protocols for handling any future Ebola cases. 

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Roadways
9:10 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Pilot Who Landed on Busway in West Hartford Details Scary Landing

A Cessna made an emergency landing on CTFastrak in West Hartford on Saturday.
Hartford Police Deputy Chief Brian J. Foley

A pilot of a single-engine plane made an emergency landing on the CTFastrak busway in West Hartford, Connecticut, over the weekend. 

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