Chris Lehman

Salem Correspondent

Chris Lehman covers the Oregon state capitol for JPR as part of the Northwest News Network, a group of 12 Northwest public radio organizations which collaborate on regional news coverage.  Chris graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He began his career producing arts features for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana and has been a reporter/announcer for NPR station WNIJ in DeKalb, Illinois. Chris has also reported from overseas, filing stories from Iraq, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Uganda.

Chris is a native of rural Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He was born in the upstairs bedroom of his grandmother's house, and grew up in a 230-year-old log cabin in the woods. Chris traces his interest in journalism to his childhood, when his parents threatened to take away his newspaper if he didn’t do his chores.

Oregon launched its medical marijuana dispensary program Monday. Nearly 300 dispensary owners signed up at this first opportunity for a state license.

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber says he's brokered a deal that will avoid a potentially divisive battle at the ballot box this fall.

Nike chairman Phil Knight is offering a prominent Oregon medical school $500 million for cancer research. However, it comes with a huge string attached.

Amidst the debate over the now-vetoed Arizona bill that would have protected businesses that refuse to serve gays and others for religious reasons, gay rights groups in the Northwest say similar legislation could surface here.

Checkout clerks in Oregon who accidentally sell alcohol to minors could have fewer repercussions to fear.

Hard alcohol is much more convenient to buy in Washington these days.

Oregon will not defend itself in a pair of federal lawsuits challenging the state's prohibition of same-sex marriages.

Oregon farmers are hoping the state Legislature makes it worth their while to donate crops that would otherwise go to waste.

Oregonians could one day be able to cast their votes through the Internet.

Officials at Oregon's largest medical center want state lawmakers to help fund a massive expansion of their cancer research facility.

Oregon lawmakers will return to the capitol Friday with a better sense of what they'll be voting on over the next three weeks.

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber has ordered the state's Department of Environmental Quality to toughen standards for car and truck fuels.

Oregon’s latest revenue forecast means lawmakers won’t need to make major budget adjustments this month.

No one likes to wait in line. But sometimes, you don't have a choice -- like maybe when you want a driver’s license.

Oregon lawmakers are considering two very different approaches to regulating marijuana this month.

This week, Oregon may join Washington in backing away from a proposal to protect bees by restricting certain pesticides.

Oregon lawmakers get back to work Monday after a snow day Friday threw a wrench in the schedule. The short week turned up the pressure on an already brief session.

Former astronaut Mark Kelly was among those speaking out in favor of a measure requiring criminal background checks for most private gun sales in Oregon.

An Oregon lawmaker wants the state to improve customer service at the DMV -- in part by offering longer hours with shorter wait times.

Oregon lawmakers are considering what some may call an audacious plan: free community college for all of its state’s high school graduates.

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