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.

Plugging The Job Skills Gap

Jul 24, 2014
Public Domain

The recent findings that Oregon job openings are staying open for long periods because of under-qualified workers got the attention of political leaders. 

State Rep. Peter Buckley of Ashland and his Senate counterpart host a meeting this evening (July 24) to explore the factors in the "skills gap" and possible solutions. 

How To Stop Hating Yourself

Jul 24, 2014
Tarcher/Penguin

It's one thing to be hard on yourself, and take setbacks and criticism to heart. 

It's another thing entirely to actually hate yourself. 

Author Anneli Rufus is one of many people who struggled with low self-esteem all her life. 

And while she does NOT recommend going all the way to the other end of the spectrum, she does think it's high time to close what may be an epidemic of self-loathing. 

Public Domain

Thunderstorms moved through Southern Oregon and Northern California Tuesday night, with thousands of lightning strikes recorded on both sides of the state line.

The National Weather Service reports more than 1,200 downstrikes in Jackson County alone.

And so the Oregon Department of Forestry reports multiple fires caused by lightning, most of them less than two acres in size.

The Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest also reports more than a dozen new fires, also small.  Crews scattered in search of new smokes.

Expanding The Oregon Caves

Jul 23, 2014
National Park Service/Public Domain

It takes a very long time to make a cave. 

All that dripping and calcifying takes hundreds of thousands, even millions of years. 

But making the legal boundaries of the Oregon Caves bigger only takes an act of Congress. 

And Congress is on it; the Senate just passed the Oregon Caves Revitalization Act and sent it on to the house. 

VENTSday: Sick Leave + GMO Labeling

Jul 23, 2014
guernicamag.org

The Lane County Commissioners and Eugene City Council provide one topic for discussion this week: paid sick leave, who should provide it, and which level of government should regulate it.

And if that's not enough controversy, we'll also talk GMO food labeling on this week's edition of VENTSday.

We do not schedule guests for Wednesday at 8:30, because that's the time for VENTSday, your chance to vent (politely, please) on a pair of topics in the news. 

Building Good Will At Goodwill

Jul 23, 2014
Goodwill of S.O./Facebook

The inventory at Goodwill Industries of Southern Oregon will soon include a very large pair of shoes. 

Those currently belong to Gayle Byrne, soon to retire as the organization's president. 

During her 37-year tenure, Byrne more than tripled the number of stores and expanded the service area and number of people helped by Southern Oregon Goodwill. 

Suing To Help The Bull Trout

Jul 22, 2014
U.S. Fish & Wildlife/Public Domain

Environmental groups are keeping their own and government lawyers busy. 

Cascadia Wildlands and other groups recently announced an intention to sue the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management over the bull trout. 

The groups say the land agencies need a "timeout" to consider how projects on the lands they manage would affect the threatened trout. 

Where CFLs Go When They Die

Jul 22, 2014
Wikimedia

We can certainly save a bunch of energy and money using modern light bulbs. 

They are uniformly more efficient than the old incandescent bulbs. 

And--in theory, anyway--they last long enough to cover the addition upfront expense of buying them. 

But the compact fluorescent bulbs (CFL) contain some toxic substances that require more attention to disposal. 

A Mind For Numbers -- Yes, YOU

Jul 22, 2014
Tarcher/Penguin

Okay, non-math students, stop making those gagging sounds and listen up.  Your case is not hopeless. 

Barbara Oakley is now an engineering professor, but she's one of those people who flunked math in high school. 

Yet she turned things around as an adult, and points the way for other people to do the same. 

Medford Considers Dog (Owner) Sanctions

Jul 21, 2014
Wikimedia

Just because the Medford City Council backed down from a dog fight does not mean it's done with dog issues. 

The council chose not to enact a ban on certain aggressive dog breeds earlier this year, after hearing a fair amount of barking (sorry) from dog owners. 

But issues with dogs remain in town. 

Southern Oregon U's New President

Jul 21, 2014
Southern Oregon University

Roy Saigo stepped into the college president's office at a time of upheaval: both faculty and students were unhappy about many issues. 

And that was at his LAST job. 

Dr. Saigo inherits a similar situation as the interim president at Southern Oregon University, following program cuts and a faculty vote of no-confidence in the previous president. 

Saigo has work cut out for him in a time of change across the Oregon state university system. 

Public Affairs Books

In a world of finite resources and a (so far) continually expanding human population, something has to give. 

The case is often made that people will simply have to get by with less... fewer creature comforts, more bare-bones lifestyles. 

Robert Bryce is having none of it. 

Bryce points to many cases in which technology figured out solutions that did not involve deprivation. 

Max Walter

  

UPDATED | Saturday 9 am - As firefighters make significant progress on Shasta County’s  Bully Fire , Cal Fire officials report that a body has been discovered within the burn zone. 

Cheryl Buliavac, a spokesperson for Cal Fire’s Shasta Trinity Unit, says the body was found late Wednesday afternoon near a residence north of Platina Road. “It appears that the individual was trying to escape the approaching fire,” said Buliavac.

Tough Decisions At Start Of Library District

Jul 18, 2014
Oregon Historical County Records Guide

The property taxes assessed for library operations in Jackson County will be the maximum allowed, 60 cents per thousands dollars of assessed value. 

Jackson County voters approved the formation of a library district in the May election, and supporters rejoiced. 

Then they took a look at the task at hand, and it's a big one. 

The library district, through its board, formally got the responsibility of running the county libraries on July 1, just a month and a half after the election. 

Rewarding A Drive For Science

Jul 18, 2014
Youtube

Do you love science?  Or at least like it a lot? 

We keep working as a society to engender interest in the STEM fields--science, technology, engineering and math. 

And an Oregon student, Rachel Lertora from Astoria, is a finalist in a national science competition climaxing on 4-H National Youth Science Day. 

Your (Re)Defining Moments

Jul 18, 2014
Tarcher/Penguin

"I was born to do this!"  Have you ever said that? 

Maybe someone else in your life said it? 

We can argue with the concept of being destined for anything, but it is a concept Dennis Merritt Jones embraces. 

Southern Oregon University's new president pays a visit to the basement AND we get a lesson in recycling the little fluorescent light bulbs.

Plus, the bull trout gets ANOTHER lawsuit on its behalf and the Oregon Caves may get to expand. 

These are among the many highlights of The Exchange during the week of July 21st.

Minus the pictures and direct links, here's the list so far:

Bringing Broadband To The Rural Coast

Jul 17, 2014
Almonroth/Wikimedia Commons

Just because you live in a rural area doesn't mean you have to live with slow Internet service. 

Actually, in a lot of cases, it does. 

Not by design… it's just that providing broadband service in rural areas just doesn't add up financially for would-be providers. 

So it takes some goosing from public coffers to get broadband to remote areas. 

Thierry Geoffroy/Wikimedia

Not all the people who show up at the doctor's office or ER speak English. 

Oregon law recognizes this, and requires certified medical interpreters to be on hand when medical professionals treat non-English speaking patients. 

But that's easier said than done, with interpreters in short supply. 

Hard Times: Oregon's Disappearing Lake Abert

Jul 17, 2014
Ron Larson

We knew some bodies of water would get smaller in drought years. 

But one Oregon lake in particular is taking it hard: Lake Abert in Lake County. 

It is Oregon's only saltwater lake, and it is disappearing. 

The lake has lost 99% of its water from its full pool volume, and is now too salty to support what life did occupy it.  The causes are more complicated than just weather patterns. 

Pages