Geoffrey Riley

News Director | Jefferson Exchange Host

Geoffrey Riley began practicing journalism in the State of Jefferson nearly three decades ago, as a reporter and anchor for a Medford TV station. It was about the same time that he began listening to Jefferson Public Radio, and thought he might one day work there. He was right.

Geoff came to JPR as a backup host on The Jefferson Exchange in late 2000, and he assumed the full-time host job at the beginning of 2010. The two hours of the Exchange allow him to join our listeners in exploring issues both large and small, local and global. In addition to hosting The Exchange, Geoff oversees JPR’s news department as its News Director.

Geoff is a New York native, with stints in broadcast news in Missouri, Alabama, and Wisconsin before his arrival in Oregon. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

Project Smoke

Steven Raichlen spends so much time around barbecue grills and smokers, we're not sure how he finds time to write books. 

And host a TV show, "Project Smoke," on public TV. 

But he does both, with another book out and a second season of the show on the air. 

KLCC

Donnell Alexander only gets 90 minutes to speak at the Eugene Library Thursday Night (June 2). 

And that's a shame, because he has a lot to say about a lot of things.  Like what it's like to be an African-American in Portland, which he described as feeling like "a sitting black duck." 

Like his visit with the extremists who took over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in January, or his documentary on the only (known) major league pitcher to throw a no-hitter while tripping on LSD (Dock Ellis). 

Alexander is journalist, writer, film producer, radio producer... that's just the short list. 

Peltier Art Gallery Facebook page

Leonard Peltier went to prison 40 years ago, convicted in the shooting of two FBI agents on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

To this day, supporters say Peltier is being held as a political prisoner, punished for his role in the American Indian Movement. 

Now his son Chauncey, an Oregon resident, is ignoring his father's advice to avoid the legal morass surrounding Peltier senior.  Chauncey curates and sells the artwork his father creates in prison. 

Pablo Martinez Monsivais

It's entirely possible that this year will end without Garland Merrick heading for the Supreme Court, and without Bernie Sanders heading for the White House. 

Neither prospect excites Oregon U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley.  Merkley, in his second term, is one of many senators trying to push the Republican leadership to hold hearings and a vote on the Supreme Court vacancy. 

And he's the ONLY senator to publicly endorse Sanders' campaign for president. 

For this week's VENTSday, we invite you to either stand in line or defend your neighborhood.  Or both.

First, airport lines: how would you fix the TSA to keep people from missing flights in security lines?

And while we're on security, let's talk neighborhood watches and other citizens efforts: is law enforcement in short supply where you live, and how do you and your neighbors compensate?

Listeners take center stage on our weekly VENTSday segment, a chance to vent on a couple of topics in the news--by phone, by email, or through our online survey. We provide the topics, you provide the opinions. No expertise necessary; just opinions and the ability to express them in a radio-friendly way.

We post our weekly survey on one or both of the topics in advance.

Basic Books

Tired of the rhetoric in this year's political campaigns?  There's a lot more of it coming, and some of it might be uplifting. 

If you take that optimistic viewpoint, you'll likely have company in British writer and editor Sam Leith.  He views the high and low points of the history of persuasive speech in his book Words Like Loaded Pistols

From Cicero to Simpson (Homer), it's a rich history. 

Infrogmation of New Orleans/Wikimedia

Novels are still a rarity on The Exchange, but we could not turn down Ellen Urbani

Her latest work of fiction, Landfall, is based on events in the real world, including Hurricane Katrina. 

Urbani's work as a therapist adds a dimension of trauma and recovery to the work. 

Bruce Menge & team

From living being to spackle.  A crude description, perhaps, but it gives you an idea of the horrors of the wasting disease that afflicted sea stars in the Pacific a year ago.

Starfish that appeared otherwise healthy turned to mush over a matter of days.  But this year--so far--is very different, with scientists finding young sea stars to be unusually prolific.  A good sign, or too early to tell? 

Dr. Bruce Menge of Oregon State University is watching the sea star nurseries with great interest. 

Circles In The Sand

Several religious traditions use the labyrinth to focus the mind and represent the spiritual journey. 

Denny Dyke took the labyrinth a step further--and a step further toward the ocean--when he drew his first labyrinth on a beach.  That was several years ago, and he continues the practice to this day. 

This summer's labyrinth will be on the beach at Bandon, Oregon. 

Penguin Random House

Karen Greenberg's work is all about helping America and the world understand some of the legal issues connected to the country's efforts to curb or stop terrorism. 

Greenberg is the director of the Center on National Security at Fordham University, and a prolific author and editor. 

Her latest book is called Rogue Justice, an examination of the expansion of activities once thought illegal, across two presidential administrations. 

Air Force/Public Domain

The Exchange takes a longer-than-normal weekend, along with most of our listeners.

So the program for Memorial Day features a pair of notable interviews from the past. 

At 8: Alexandra Horowitz prompts us to pay attention, with her book about trying to see our surroundings with different eyes.  It's called On Looking

At 9: Ian Lopez took a term long in use and explored it further in his book Dog Whistle Politics.  He gives us a sense of what people REALLY mean when they use certain terms in campaigns and in Congress.

Wikimedia

Adults in today's world can take the blame for human-caused climate change, but it's the kids who will have to live with the changes. 

So it makes sense to encourage young people to learn about, talk about, and work on corrective action on climate change. 

That's the general idea behind the Next Generation Climate Justice Action Camp, this summer in Jackson County. 

Penguin Books

When psychologist Dacher Keltner first began studying power, he thought he'd focus on politics, battlefields, and Wall Street.  But he quickly discovered that people use power in many situations, even with loved ones. 

He also found that taking care of OTHER people's needs can enhance power, quite the opposite of what many people might think.  The wielding of power through compassion is one of the themes of Keltner's book The Power Paradox. 

NIH/Public Domain

The Affordable Care Act--"Obamacare"--got health insurance for millions more people, but it is far from perfect. 

And that opinion is common even outside the Republicans in Congress who keep voting to kill the program. 

Richard Master got tired of constantly paying higher health insurance premiums for employees of the company he runs, so he went to look for an answer.  What he found ended up a documentary film called "Fix It: Healthcare At The Tipping Point."  Its essence: single-payer health insurance is the way ahead, "Medicare for all." 

Talent Joins List Of "Maker Cities"

May 25, 2016
Rico Shen/Wikimedia

Chicago.  Vancouver.  Memphis.  Talent.  How did one of the Rogue Valley's smaller cities end up on that list?  Because of the enthusiasm of city leaders for fostering entrepreneurship and small manufacturing. 

Talent's maker city effort just sent representatives to an upcoming summit of Etsy Maker Cities in Brooklyn. 

Brammo via Instagram

The company with the quiet motorcycles is going big time. 

Brammo, now based in Talent, gained fame as a maker of electric motorcycles. 

That part of the business has since been sold to Polaris, but Brammo kept working on battery and other power modules, and just landed $58 Million in contracts, with a big increase in staff coming. 

Smithsonian Books

Easy come, easy go.  The United States worked hard to put people in the moon in the 1960s.  Then, after achieving the goal with more landings over three years, we left in 1972 and have not been back since. 

Dr. Paul Spudis, a geologist and lunar scientist, thinks it's time we returned.  In The Value of the Moon, he makes the case for using the moon, both for its location outside of near-Earth orbit, and for its resources. 

Georgios Giannopoulos/Wikimedia

Accepting refugees from war-torn countries has already been an issue in this election year, and probably will be again. 

That does not deter the efforts of people who think the United States is a good place--if not the best place--to take people who can no longer live in their home countries. 

Catholic Community Services of Lane County and the Refugee Resettlement Program are working to bring in two families of refugees from Syria. 

Deviant Art/Wikimedia

The income concerns of people from the middle class on down provide the two topics for this week's VENTSday segment. 

We want to gather your thoughts on the new federal rule on who gets overtime pay, and while you're at it, tell us about tipping--when you do it, and who should get tips. 

Listeners take center stage on our weekly VENTSday segment, a chance to vent on a couple of topics in the news--by phone, by email, or through our online survey. We provide the topics, you provide the opinions. 

No expertise necessary; just opinions and the ability to express them in a radio-friendly way. We post our weekly survey on one or both of the topics in advance. 

Crown Business Books

Phew, good thing the Great Recession is over.  We sure learned a lot of lessons from the financial collapse of 2008.  Didn't we? 

Time magazine Assistant Managing Editor Rana Foroohar says no; not only did major figures go unpunished, but the banking system was not reformed significantly enough to avoid a repeat. 

In her book Makers and Takers, Foroohar points out that much of American business has now embraced the approach that the financial system rode to near-ruin. 

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