Jeff Cohen


Jeff Cohen is a proud New Orleans native who now calls New England home. Or at least his second home.

He started in newspapers in 2001 and joined WNPR in 2010, where he is a reporter and an occasional fill-in host for All Things Considered.

In addition to covering state and Hartford city politics, Jeff covered the December 2012 Newtown shootings and the stories that followed.  Much of that work was featured on NPR.  Also in 2012, Jeff was selected by NPR and Kaiser Health News for their joint Health Care In The States project. That work resulted in several national stories, including ones on the Affordable Care Act and medical education.

Jeff was also selected by the Tow Foundation and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice as a fellow in their 2012 juvenile justice reporting project.

Before working at WNPR, Jeff worked as the city reporter for The Hartford Courant.  While at the Courant, he won a National Headliner Award for a Northeast Magazine story about the ostracized widow of the state's first casualty in Iraq; wrote about his post-Katrina, flooded out home in New Orleans; and was part of a team of reporters that broke the stories of alleged corruption at Hartford City Hall that led to the arrest of former Mayor Eddie A. Perez. 

He also worked at the Meriden Record-Journal and as a freelancer for The New York Times.

Jeff lives in Middletown with his wife, cats, and two trouble-making kids. Thanks to the kids, he's now writing children's books. The first, Eva and Sadie and the Worst Haircut Ever!, came out in June 2014.  The second, Eva and Sadie and the Best Classroom Ever!, comes out in June 2015.  He likes to make bread and wine.


State Legislature
3:51 pm
Tue May 31, 2011

Legislature Passes Bill Allowing Prisoners to Earn Credit for Early Release

The state House of Representatives has approved a bill that would allow some prisoners to get out of jail early. The Senate passed a version of the bill last week. 

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Food Service
3:47 pm
Thu May 26, 2011

Hartford Proposes Grades For Restaurant Health Inspections

Last year, restaurants in New York City were required to post a letter grade that summarized their health inspection results.  Now, the City of Hartford may do the same thing. The new plan wouldn't change the restaurant inspection process or requirements.  It also wouldn't apply to food trucks, school lunchrooms, jails, soup kitchens or hospital cafeterias. 

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2:42 pm
Thu May 19, 2011

Unions For Prison Workers Take Aim At State


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School Lottery
2:06 pm
Tue May 3, 2011

Hartford Schools Ad Campaign Angers Sheff Plaintiffs

Last week, we reported that an advertising campaign by the Hartford Public Schools upset state education officials.  Now, as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, plaintiffs a landmark school desegregation case say the "Choose Hartford" ad strategy could land everybody back in court.

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Public Notice
4:22 pm
Thu April 28, 2011

Public Notices Bill Dies in Committee

Towns and cities spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to print public notices in area newspapers. This week, a bill aimed at scaling back that mandate died in the state legislature. Newspaper publishers are happy, and local government advocates aren't.

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Magnet Schools
4:13 pm
Wed April 27, 2011

City Schools Tell Parents Not To "Gamble" With State Wait List

Tomorrow is the deadline for students who want to accept a placement in one of the state's magnet or choice schools.  But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, a press release from the Hartford Public Schools has apparently rubbed the state the wrong way.

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2:26 pm
Tue April 26, 2011

Hartford Votes To Take Capitol West Building

Courtesy Kenneth Gosselin/The Hartford Courant

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4:58 pm
Mon April 25, 2011

Malloy: Would Work With Legislature If Cuts Are Necessary

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy said his administration is continuing its talks with state labor unions to fill a $2 billion hole in the proposed budget.  WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports.

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4:39 pm
Wed April 20, 2011

Was Perez Working While He Was On Trial?

Convicted former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez is seeking what could amount to tens of thousands of dollars in back vacation and sick time.  But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, there's a question as to whether Perez was at work or on vacation while he was on trial last year for corruption.

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3:12 pm
Mon April 18, 2011

Segarra Presents Budget

8:53 pm
Tue April 12, 2011

Roldan Campaign Hires Perez Confidants, Including Former Chief of Staff

CtHouseDems via Flickr Creative Commons

Over the weekend, questions were raised about Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra’s ethics disclosures to the city and whether or not he may be in violation of federal housing requirements.  Now, as WNPR’s Jeff Cohen reports, it appears the people behind those questions were paid consultants to Segarra’s political opponent and former advisors of convicted Mayor Eddie Perez.

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3:24 pm
Tue April 5, 2011

Nonprofits Take To The Capitol

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

Connecticut's nonprofit service providers are trying to figure out how to improve their working relationship with the state in order to save money and enhance services.  Advocates for the state's non-profits gathered today/yesterday at the state capitol to talk about a recently released report that looks to answer this question: "How can we as a government smooth the path so that the non-profits can actually provide the services without having to worry so much about the bureaucracy and the red tape." That's Deb Heinrich.

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Public Notice
3:20 pm
Thu March 31, 2011

State May Allow for Online Public Notices

GiantsFanatic Creative Commons

Connecticut towns and cities are mandated by law to publish public notices in local newspapers.  But that could soon change.

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5:13 pm
Wed March 30, 2011

State's Case For Perez's Pension Continues

In Hartford, a state court judge has allowed a civil case over whether former Mayor Eddie Perez can collect his city pension…to continue. Attorney General George Jepsen said he's pleased with the decision. He says a judge could eventually consider whether Perez is entitled to a portion of his pension. "At some point, if the issue goes to trial, the issue of how much of Mayor Perez's pension should be revoked will be something the judge will consider." Perez was found guilty last year on corruption charges.

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5:18 pm
Mon March 28, 2011

Colleagues Remember Abraham Giles; Dead At 84

Courtesy Rick Hartford/Hartford Courant

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5:15 pm
Mon March 28, 2011

Perez Gone From Hartford City Hall, But Not Gone From City Politics

Chion Wolf/WNPR

In Hartford, convicted former Mayor Eddie Perez is gone from city hall.  But he’s not gone from city politics.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, former Perez allies are questioning the judgment of current Mayor Pedro Segarra. Segarra says it’s kind of strange to be criticized by allies of the man who's going to prison. “To blame me for transactions that were done by the previous administration by members of the previous administration are a little bit incoherent.” Perez was found guilty of taking a bribe from a city contractor last year.

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