Megan Mack

Connections Executive Producer

Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming. She joined the WXXI News team from WHEC-TV, where she produced newscasts and "The Olympic Zone," and from the University of Rochester, where she served as an assistant director of public relations. Her background extends to television sports and entertainment, and to communications and social media management for non-profits.

Megan earned her B.S. in Television-Radio-Film from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, and her B.A. in Italian Language, Literature, and Culture from the College of Arts and Sciences at Syracuse University. She is also a graduate of The Second City’s Conservatory program.

Ways to Connect

An upcoming education series is focusing on the injustice that is a cause and effect of climate change. “Climate of Change: 22 Days of Learning and Action for Intersectional Climate Justice in Rochester and Beyond” will address how environmental injustice harms the region.

This hour, we preview the series and discuss the broader issues of climate justice with our guests:

The superintendent of Brighton schools wrote an open letter, urging state leaders to greenlight the return of students to school five days a week. Kevin McGowan wrote that Governor Andrew Cuomo and state health leaders need to take action based on the new CDC guidance. McGowan wrote, "Your continued inaction smacks of detachment, complacency, or a lack of understanding regarding the impact of your failure to act. There does not seem to be any reason for your delay and in the absence of one, we are left to think that movement on this issue simply isn’t at all a priority for you. Children need to be in school five days per week."

McGowan joins us to discuss the impact of hybrid and remote learning on students, and his desire to see students back in classrooms full-time. Our guest:

  • Kevin McGowan, superintendent of Brighton Central School District

Megan Mack / WXXI

First hour: Brighton Central School District Superintendent Kevin McGowan on reopening schools five days a week

Second hour: Previewing the "Climate of Change" series

Imagine growing up thinking that you're an only child, only to discover that you have 30 siblings. That was the story for an entire family of brothers and sisters, four of whom went to high school together without knowing that they were related. They continue to discover new siblings, and they might never know how many there are. That's part of the reason they've moved into advocacy: they are the story of a donor-conceived family. Fourteen of the siblings were born in 1994 alone. But the law does not require that donor-conceived children ever receive information on their biological parents, their siblings, or the size and location of their families. This large and growing group hopes to change that.

We talk to multiple siblings, starting with the one member of the family who grew up in the Rochester area:

  • Lindsey Wrobel, one of 28 donor-conceived siblings in the same family

Is Rochester ready to finalize a plan for reparations? Mayor Lovely Warren said on Friday that she wants to see reparations for Black residents and residents of color who have long suffered from the multi-generational impact of redlining and economic dispossession. How would this work?

Last week, the RASE Commission released its own report and recommendations for action, but two members of the commission dissented, because they wanted to see a recommendation for reparations. We've invited them to join us, to explain how they think this could be done. We've also invited Rochester's two mayoral candidates to join us.

Confirmed guests:

  • Damond Wilson, RASE Commissioner and member of Spiritus Christi Prison Outreach
  • Danielle Ponder, RASE Commissioner and attorney
  • Malik Evans, candidate for Rochester Mayor

Note: Mayor Lovely Warren was unable to join the conversation.

First hour: Is Rochester ready to finalize a plan for reparations?

Second hour: The story of one donor-conceived family

When COVID-19 vaccines first became available, a local doctor noticed a gap in access when it came to people with disabilities. Dr. Tiffany Pulcino and her team work with people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities and complex medical conditions. They set up mobile vaccine clinics throughout Rochester for their patients. So far, they have helped more than 2,000 patients receive vaccines.

This hour, we discuss the challenges the pandemic has presented for people with disabilities – from access to health care and vaccines, issues related to isolation from support systems, and more. Our guests: 

  • Tiffany Pulcino, M.D., assistant professor of internal medicine and pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and medical director of the UR Medicine Complex Care Center 
  • Michelle Labossiere-Hall, associate vice president of customized support at Heritage Christian Services 
  • Stephanie Ramos, advocate and patient of Dr. Pulcino

This story is produced by WXXI's Inclusion Desk, focusing on disabilities and inclusion.

Monroe County's Director of Development and Planning says Governor Andrew Cuomo made her feel demeaned and uncomfortable when she worked in Albany. Ana Liss has joined the growing group of women who say that the governor was a routine harasser, and created a culture of abuse and fear. She joins us to discuss her experience, and how she hopes these stories will change what we expect and tolerate in leaders at all levels.

Our guests:


First hour: Monroe County official describes the culture of the Cuomo administration

Second hour: Discussing the challenges the pandemic has presented for people with disabilities

The Vatican recently released a statement – a "responsum," in official terms – regarding whether the Church could bless same sex unions. The responsum contained a single word: "Negative." There was an explanatory note attached that explained the Church "does not and can not bless sin." For Catholics who have hoped that Pope Francis was moving the Church in a more progressive direction, this was a difficult piece of news to take in. Is this the end of their dream of a Church that supports the LGBTQ community?

Our guests discuss it:

  • Stan "J.R." Zerkowski, director of the Diocese of Lexington LGBT Ministry, and executive director of Fortunate Families
  • Bryan Wilkinson, tech professional who considered pursuing the priesthood