Public Commentary | WYPR

Public Commentary


Commentaries from community leaders around the Baltimore Metropolitan Region:

Marc Terrill – President, The Associated

Dr. Kimberly Moffitt – Chair, Language Literacy and Culture PhD Program (UMBC)

Al Hutchinson – CEO, Visit Baltimore

Dr. Francesca Gamber – Principal, Bard High School Early College Baltimore

Rev. David J. Ware – Rector, Church of the Redeemer


Archive prior to October 2013

Moffitt: Media Literacy And Protecting Your Mind

3 hours ago
Photo provided by Moffitt

Many of us are now confined to our homes possibly with children and a lot of time on our hands. While it creates an exciting time to generate new ideas, start existing home projects, or even read a few good books, it also lays ground for us to take in and be overexposed to all sorts of media. Specifically, we are facing a pandemic and an “infodemic”—an “overabundance” of information that makes it difficult for people to identify truthful and trustworthy sources from false or misleading ones.


Ware: Remembering The Waitress

Mar 10, 2020
Photo provided by Ware

The Waitress grew up in a postcard North Baltimore colonial, three kids and a dog, picture perfect, and lonely. She watched her parents pour their first drink before sundown every afternoon, her mother in pearls and a fresh dress, her dad exchanging his briefcase for “something cold” as he crossed the threshold. Even as a little girl she knew the names on the bottles, how the seasons affected what was served, how to pass the hors d'oeuvres, and when to swallow her feelings. There was something dark under the family’s brittle surface that trained her to smile no matter what, and she internalized that her experiences were less important than her parents’ tangle of anger and regret. 

Gamber: The Only Way Is Forward

Mar 3, 2020
Heart of the Schools / ATB Productions

Lunch is one of the best times of day at Bard High School Early College Baltimore. The entire schools eats on the same lunch shift. Teachers open up their rooms for History Movie Club, Anime Club, or just to chat with students. In the cafeteria, freshmen play video games with seniors, while members of the mock trial and debate teams plot their next moves.

Terrill: A Path To Leadership

Feb 26, 2020
- Provided by The Associated

A great deal of discussion and research has been devoted to the notion of leadership and the capacity of the individual as a force for positive change. Timeless questions like: Is leadership innate or can it be taught? Or, what should constitute the core competencies of a leader given our times? Or, even more granular, what matters most in effective leadership, cognitive or emotional intelligence? 

Moffitt: Black History Is Living

Feb 19, 2020
Photo provided by Moffitt

The 1619 Project. When They See Us. Who Killed Malcolm X? All are recent works in media that shed light on the sordid aspects of American history. While thought-provoking and at times disturbing, these media programs also reveal to us that history as a discipline and a lived experience should never be considered static. In fact, it’s living. 

Hutchinson: It’s Time To Come Together For Baltimore

Feb 11, 2020
Photo provided by Visit Baltimore

From Visit Baltimore’s research, we know 54% of visitors traveled to Greater Baltimore to visit friends and relatives. Unfortunately, what some of these visitors are hearing from their hosts is bad news about Baltimore City. After living in the city for three years, I understand just how divided our region is and has been for decades.

Ware: Remembering The Tavern Owner

Feb 4, 2020
Photo provided by Ware

The Tavern Owner grew up in north Baltimore, the second son of a family known for its swell house parties in the 19th century. In those days, guests would arrive by horse and carriage and stay for the weekend, to dance and eat shaved ice and escape the city’s heat. By the time he and his siblings came along, teenagers would pile into station wagons and drag the new road leading out to the reservoir. He went to Gilman and later boarding school, but his eyes were never really on the books or the corner office.

Terrill: The Associated At 100

Jan 28, 2020
- Provided by The Associated

The American experience is principally an immigrant story and the chapters of the Jewish community of Baltimore reflect the same.

Jewish people have lived in Baltimore for centuries, side by side with our neighbors, in building one of this nation's great cities.

Gamber: Education, Innovation, And Equity

Jan 14, 2020
Heart of the Schools / ATB Productions

On Friday, January 17, hundreds of eighth-graders in Baltimore will submit their high school choice applications. This one day will be the culmination of months of research, planning, and  soul-searching by students, families, guidance counselors, and others. 

Moffitt: The Importance Of The CROWN Act

Jan 8, 2020
Photo provided by Moffitt

Locs, braids, Afros, twists. Black hairstyles on black bodies have always been highly-policed in America. Black hair is revered for its uniqueness and creativity and simultaneously reviled for the perceived offense of having naturally curly or coiled hair that distinguishes it from other races.

In 2019 the CROWN Act, or Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair, was signed into law in California, banning race-based workplace discrimination based on one’s traditional and natural hairstyles. Similar legislation has now found its way to Maryland and Baltimore.

Jackie Copeland comments on the history of enslaved African Americans in Baltimore.  

Maryland Hospital Association

The summer of 2019 is flying by. As schoolkids across Maryland prepare to return to their classroom, the hospitals and health systems that serve your communities are helping to make sure your kids start the school year off right. They’re offering check-ups, vaccinations, routine care, sports physicals and more.

As devoted caregivers, it’s the privilege of our doctors and nurses to welcome children into the world and to continue to help them grow and to thrive. And, increasingly, we partner with the community and with local schools to make sure students are healthy – and ready to learn.

Bowen: The Three Rs of Education

Aug 13, 2019

What does thinking for yourself really mean? Jose Antonio Bowen, former president of Goucher College and self-regulated learner, tells us. 

Curley: Do The Right Thing

Aug 6, 2019
Noel St. John

Michael Curley, environmental lawyer and author, tells us how we can help save the Chesapeake Bay and reduce global warming. 

Copeland: Kwame Onwauchi's Rise

Jul 30, 2019

Jackie Copeland, executive director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum, tells us about Kwame Onwauchi's unique journey that led him to become a well-respected chef and author. 

Bob Atlas, president and CEO of the Maryland Hospital Association, explains how hospitals are using telehealth to care for communities. 

Bowen: How Learning Works

Jul 9, 2019
Rob Ferrell

Jose Antonio Bowen, former president of Goucher College, explains how the five most important things people can do to improve learning are S.W.E.E.T. 

Curley: The Chesapeake Bay Keepers Club

Jul 2, 2019
Noel St. John

Why don't we have Chesapeake Bay keepers? San Francisco has them, Narragansett has them...environmental lawyer and author Michael Curley explains how it could work, and why it's important. 

Copeland: The Six Triple Eight

Jun 18, 2019

In February 1945, the U.S. Army sent 855 black women from the Women’s Army Corps (WACs) to England and France to clear the backlog of mail in the European Theater of Operations. 

Jackie Copeland, executive director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture, tells us about a film that spotlights this effort. 


Bob Atlas, president and CEO of the Maryland Hospital Association, explains how Maryland's health care leaders and public officials are working to provide Marylanders with fresh, affordable food. 

Bowen: The Future of Work

Jun 4, 2019
Rob Ferrell

Goucher College President Jose Antonio Bowen comments on why the future of work is about being complimentary to technology, not dependent on it. 

Curley: Help Save the Bay!

May 28, 2019
Noel St. John

Michael Curley, environmental lawyer and author, tells us how the Chesapeake Bay Foundation educates, advocates, litigates and restores, all with the hope of saving the bay. 

Maryland Hospital Association

Bob Atlas, president and CEO of the Maryland Hospital Association comments on how hospitals are working to increase patient safety and expand access to care. 

Bowen: From Professor to Cognitive Coach

May 1, 2019

Jose Bowen, president of Goucher College, comments on why the role of the professor needs to be reimagined as a cognitive coach. 

Curley: How Salt Can Be "Bad News" for the Environment

Apr 24, 2019
Noel St. John

Environmental lawyer and author Michael Curley comments on how road salt can be "death to the environment" and provides information on its use in Maryland.   

Copeland: Celebrating the Work of Linda Day Clark

Apr 16, 2019

Jackie Copeland, the executive director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture, tells us about Baltimore photographer Linda Day Clark and her new exhibition at the Lewis Museum, The Gee's Bend Photographs


Bob Atlas, president and CEO of the Maryland Hospital Association, discusses a few of the major public health issues facing the state, and shares how Maryland hospitals are working to tackle these challenges.

How to Go to College

Mar 26, 2019
Rob Ferrell

As high school seniors enter the stressful college decision time, here is some advice. Relax.

Where you go to college matters a lot less than how you go to college. We have known this for years, but it is hard to accept. Surely being around future titans of industry at Harvard has some advantage. But much of that seems to be correlation not causal: people who exercise also tend to eat better.

Curley: Uncomplicating Climate Change

Mar 19, 2019
Noel St. John

Environmental lawyer and author Michael Curley tells us a true story that teaches the simple facts about climate change. 

Copeland: Honoring the Work of Victorine Quille Adams

Mar 12, 2019

Jacqueline Copeland, Executive Director of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture, comments on the achievements of Victorine Quille Adams who was, among many other things, the first African-American woman elected to the Baltimore City Council.