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RCSD Supt. Barbara Deane-Williams to retire in January

The Rochester City School District will be looking for a new Superintendent of Schools. A statement was released late Thursday night by Barbara Deane-Williams saying that she intends to retire effective January 31, 2019. Deane-Williams did not go into specifics about why she is retiring. She will be holding a news conference late Friday afternoon. In her statement, Deane-Williams says it has been “a privilege to serve as Superintendent and work side-by-side with so many dedicated educators,...

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What do you want to ask the congressional candidates?

25th Congressional District candidates Joe Morelle and James Maxwell will have a debate on October 25 before the general election. What questions would you like them to answer?


The Rochester City School District will be looking for a new Superintendent of Schools.

A statement was released late Thursday night by Barbara Deane-Williams saying that she intends to retire effective January 31, 2019.

Deane-Williams did not go into specifics about why she is retiring. She will be holding a news conference late Friday afternoon.

The opioid crisis in Monroe County continues to take lives, break families, damage dreams, and devastate communities. There are now 122 reported opioid deaths in the county this year, as of October 2018. Are we seeing improvements with this epidemic or are things getting worse? The answer depends on who you ask and the statistics you read. On this edition of Need to Know we join public broadcasting stations throughout the state for a special report: New York’s Opioid Crisis.


Two longtime Rochester journalists were inducted into the New York State Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame on Thursday. 

Anchors and reporters Ginny Ryan and Doug Emblidge, both of 13-WHAM TV were inducted during a ceremony in New York City.

Ryan told us that the award is really about not just her accomplishments but a lot of people she’s worked with along the way.

Among the statewide races, the contest for state comptroller often gets little attention from voters. But there’s still lots of interest in the post itself — incumbent Tom DiNapoli faces three challengers.

DiNapoli has twice won election to the post, but he was first appointed to the position by the state Legislature in 2007, after the previous comptroller, Alan Hevesi, pleaded guilty to corruption charges.

Constellation Brands

Newlands, who was brought on board in 2015 as an executive vice president, indicates that the announcement this week that he will take over as CEO of Constellation Brands next March was all part of the succession plan.

Current CEO Rob Sands will then assume the role of executive chair.

Newlands says he’s known the Sands family and been familiar with the operation for more than 20 years, since he used to do consulting for them.

And while Newlands home is in the Chicago area, he is well acquainted with the Finger Lakes, having grown up near Corning.

“I know the upstate new York area pretty well because I spent my entire growing up days an hour-plus outside of Rochester, so I know the area pretty well as well, and we certainly expect, especially given the founding foundation right there literally on the lake, that Victor is going to continue to be the headquarters of the company.”

WXXI has produced a new documentary that unites master fabricator Jesse James with one of his heroes, the great metal sculptor Albert Paley. The two men collaborated on pieces of art, and the documentary, "Dialogue in Metal," unveils the results.

We talk to both James and Paley, and we discuss how this remarkable program came together with WXXI's own Todd McCammon and Tom Dooley.

The film debuts on WXXI-TV on November 5 at 9 p.m., and will be screened at The Little Theatre on October 26 at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Both James and Paley will participate in post-screening Q&As that evening. 

This hour, we hear from Jeremy Cooney. He’s a lawyer and he’s running for State Senate in the 56th District as a Democrat. We talk to Cooney about his platform, his priorities for the district, and more.

His opponent, Senator Joe Robach, did not respond to invitations to join this discussion.

This hour, we hear from Jen Lunsford. She's a lawyer and a mother, and she's running for State Senate in the 55th District as a Democrat. We talk to Lunsford about her platform, her priorities for the district, and more.

Her opponent, Senator Rich Funke, declined to come on the program before the election.

Beds are already full at the Open Door Mission

10 hours ago

The Open Door Mission is gearing up for what promises to be a very busy winter season.

That's the word from Executive Director Anna Valeria-Iseman, who says the shelter has been unexpectedly full this fall.

"Which is actually not consistent with years previous, so that's a little bit of an alarm to us that we're going to have a really, really busy winter.  So we are doing what we can, we're staffing up, we're making sure that we have enough people on during the day as well as overnight," she said.


Reporter Claudio Sanchez, who appears regularly on NPR programs like Morning Edition and All Things Considered, is taking part in the 150th anniversary kickoff at Wells College in Aurora, in Cayuga County on Thursday.

He’ll be part of a discussion on a wide range of topics, including the future of higher education in America.



News from NPR

A large group of mostly Honduran refugees, reportedly numbering into the thousands, has crossed into Guatemala in a caravan that is believed headed to the U.S. border.

Hundreds of migrants have arrived at the Guatemalan border town of Tecún Umán, along the southern border of Mexico, NPR's James Fredrick reports. Organizers of the caravan say they are waiting for thousands more to join them in the coming days, before attempting to cross the Mexican border.

Academy Award winner Kobe Bryant was dropped as a jury member from the Animation Is Film festival in Los Angeles this weekend after backlash stemming from past sexual assault allegations against him.

The former NBA-phenom won an Oscar earlier this year for his animated short-film Dear Basketball, but under pressure from a group calling itself Women and Allies, festival organizers announced on Wednesday that Bryant would no longer participate in the second annual event.

Come Halloween there's usually one question that's top of mind: Trick or treat? But each year the devoted researchers at Chapman University dig deeper than that when they set out to discover what really haunts people's night-scapes and what sorts of things make us afraid of what may be lurking in the closet, hiding under the bed, or breathing (heavily) at the other end of the ringing telephone line?

The Washington Post has published the last column Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi wrote before he disappeared on Oct. 2 after entering the Saudi Arabian Consulate in Istanbul.

"We held on to this column he filed the day before he entered the consulate in the hopes that we could edit it with him, as we normally did," Fred Hiatt, who runs the Post's Opinions section, told NPR.

More news from NPR

From the Inclusion Desk

Beth Adams/WXXI News

In celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, a local nonprofit is recognizing a long-time employee.

Young Kim is 37 years old. She's been working at Unistel Industries on Blossom Road in Rochester since 2002.

Unistel is a nonprofit that provides job training and placement for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Young and her colleagues work on assembly lines at the company, which is the country's number one supplier of spices for the U.S. military.

Veronica Volk / WXXI News

You may have seen pictures of two local men go viral: a barber giving a man a haircut on the sidewalk because the shop wasn’t accessible by wheelchair.

But since the story went national, it’s raised questions about how people with disabilities are covered in the media.

Devin Hamilton is 30 years old. He's an engineer working in Webster, and he has cerebral palsy. He says one day, he decided to get a haircut at Joe's Upscale Barbershop, a few blocks from where he works. But when he rode his wheelchair over there, he didn't see a ramp.

We're joined by former Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, who authored the Americans with Disabilities Act. 

Research shows that among similarly sized cities, Rochester is the single worst in the country when it comes to employment and poverty for people with disabilities. 

Harkin is the keynote speaker for the upcoming ROC EmployABILITY conference, which is focused on increasing employment opportunities and reducing poverty among people with disabilities. We preview that conference. In studio:


In Rochester, the graduation rate for students with disabilities is 22 percent* compared to 40 percent nationally.  The median individual earnings for those with disabilities is $14,450. This is $4,000 below the national median.  That means Rochester’s disabled community is the poorest in the nation when compared to the 75 largest metropolitan areas.

Despite the systemic challenges of educational segregation and stereotypes, adults with intellectual disabilities are challenging the perceptions of intelligence as they navigate high school, college, and the workforce.

More stories from the Inclusion Desk

A wide-reaching epidemic

WXXI, in partnership with public broadcasting stations across New York state, is airing special programming examining the opioid crisis.

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