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Coming up on Connections: Tuesday, June 29

First hour: An update on the state of vaccinations in New York State

Second hour: Discussing climate action in Monroe CountyRecently, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the FDA, said parts of the U.S. could experience "very dense outbreaks" of COVID-19 due to the Delta variant. He said those outbreaks would be hyper-regionalized, affecting areas with low vaccination rates. Rural communities in parts of New York have low vaccination rates, compared to neighboring counties. In Allegany County, for instance, just 35 percent of the population is fully vaccinated. This hour, we're joined by the co-leaders of the Finger Lakes Vaccine Task Force to discuss vaccination rates in the region, and we hear from Dr. AnnMarie Zimmermann, medical director of Universal Primary Care in the Southern Tier. Our guests: 

  • Nancy Bennett, M.D., co-leader of the Finger Lakes Vaccine Task Force, professor of medicine and public health sciences at the University of Rochester Medical Center, founder and director of the Center for Community Health & Prevention, and co-director of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute  
  • Wade Norwood, co-leader of the Finger Lakes Vaccine Task Force, and CEO of Common Ground Health  
  • AnnMarie Zimmermann, M.D., medical director of Universal Primary Care, a Federally Qualified Health Center in the Southern Tier 

Then in our second hour, local climate activist Sue Hughes-Smith handily won the Democratic primary for County Legislature in the 14th District. She has been working in climate change activism and education for years, and if she wins the general election in November, she'll move into a new role where she'll have a hand in creating climate legislation. This hour, we discuss the state of the climate crisis on global, national, and local levels, and what Hughes-Smith and other activists would like to see in terms of climate action. Our guests: 

  • Sue Hughes-Smith, winner of the Democratic primary in County Legislative District 14, vice chair of Monroe County's Climate Action Plan Advisory Committee, and member of Roctricity 
  • Clement Chung, deputy director of Monroe County's Department of Environmental Services 
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.