Jeff Williams

Associate Director for Radio

Jeff Williams is the Associate Director for Radio and Station Manager for WSIU Radio.  Jeff is a native of southern Illinois and has been in broadcasting for nearly 30 years.    After graduating with a degree in Radio-Television from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, he worked in radio and television news in Illinois, Indiana, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. before returning to WSIU Radio in 1997, as Morning Edition anchor/reporter.  Jeff became News Director in 2001 and assumed Station Manager duties in 2004.   WSIU is operated by Southern Illinois University Carbondale.  It  signed on the air in September 1958.  

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Pearl Franz / WSIU

From 1960 until 1985 Rich Herrin and the Benton Rangers forged high school basketball history with more than 500 wins, four undefeated seasons and 21 regional tournament titles.  Coach Herrin and four of his former players - Rich Yunkus, Terry Thomas, Hugh Frailey, and Bill Smith - sat down recently to reminisce for this week's edition of WSIU's Listening Project.

Their conversation was recorded as part of the 100th Anniversary of the Benton Public Library.

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On getting his players scholarships and jobs...

WSIU's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news and weather for Thursday, August 4, 2016

Pearl Franz / WSIU

Today we turn our attention to sports for this week's installment of  WSIU's Listening Project.  For years the name Bob Blondi has been synonymous with high school and college sports in southern Illinois and throughout the Midwest.  The Illinois Sports Hall of Fame referee presided over games for 50-years. 

Recently his son Bobby Blondi and grandson Rob Blondi shared some of their memories of the man who was the son of Italian immigrants and left an indelible mark on Benton High School and southern Illinois sports.

WSIU's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news and weather for Wednesday, August 3, 2016

WSIU's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news and weather for Tuesday, August 2, 2016.

Pearl Franz / WSIU

This week's installment of the Listening Project features long-time southern Illinois coal miner Jack McReynolds.  The West Frankfort native recalls his first days on the job back in 1960 at the Orient #5 Mine in Franklin County.  Jack's story was recorded as part of the 100th Anniversary of the Benton Public Library.

WSIU's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news and weather for Wednesday, July 27, 2016.

WSIU's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news and weather for Tuesday morning July 26, 2016

book cover for The Jaguar Man
Central Recovery Press

The Jaguar Man is the latest from  Author and documentary playwright Lara Naughton.  It's a memoir that chronicles a harrowing event that took place in her life while on vacation in Belize.  WSIU's Jeff Williams talked with Naughton about the book, the experience, and her journey of healing in this edition of In The Author's Voice.

Pearl Franz / WSIU

This week WSIU's Listening Project features a history lesson with Bob Rea, President of the Franklin County Historic Preservation Society.   Bob talks about how coal became king in Franklin county and also describe some little know history that dates back more than 300 years.

Salem Fire Department

As of Thursday morning more than 27,000 Ameren Illinois customers remained without power following a series of strong storms on Wednesday.

Ameren reports storm related outages in Perry, Randolph, St. Clair, Washington, Marion, Fayette and Richland counties.  Ameren says St. Clair County was the hardest hit with more than 23,000 customers without power.  Many of the outages are related to downed trees that knocked out power lines.

Today we continue with the Listening Project, a special series that chronicles the history of our region by connecting people with place through oral history.  Debbie Clark of Benton talks about moving to southern Illinois as a child when her father relocated their family from West Virginia.    Her story was recorded as part of the 100th Anniversary of the Benton Public Library.

Stay tuned for more stories from our Listening Project visit to Benton.

WSIU Radio's Jeff Williams reports the latest local and state news headlines plus a look at the region's weather for this Tuesday, July 12th.

Pearl Franz/WSIU

On Saturday, May 21st 2016 WSIU's Listening Project recorded oral histories from Benton residents at the 100th Anniversary Celebration  at the Benton Public Library.  In this episode we hear the story of German-born Margot McAfoos who moved to Benton from Germany in 1948 to marry her soon-to-be-husband John.

A new survey conducted by the United Way of Illinois shows the state's ongoing budget impasse is having a dramatic impact on social service agencies and their ability to provide those services.

book cover for Blood Flag
Harper Collins

New York Times bestselling author Steve Martini is out with his latest legal thriller.  It’s called Blood Flag and is rooted in the history of Nazi Germany.  WSIU Radio's Jeff Williams recently talked with Martini about his latest installment in the Paul Madriani series for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

People
Monica Tichenor / WSIU Public Broadcasting

 Illinois Lawmakers wraps up its regular weekly TV coverage of the spring legislative session on Friday.  Host Jak Tichenor talks about the program with WSIU's Jeff Williams.  

Illinois Lawmakers airs at 7:30pm on Friday, June 3 on WSIU TV.

Illinois State Capitol
Illinois Public Radio

With an  end of session deadline looming, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has floated his own budget plan to help bridge the ongoing impasse.  The plan was leaked to members of the media late Monday in the form of a memo from the Governor's Budget Director, Tim Nuding.

WSIU

Memorial Day officially kicks off the summer vacation season.  The U.S. Travel Association says Americans will take nearly 1.7-billion leisure trips this year.  Some of those trips could be as close as a local state park or as far away as a cross country excursion.  A free travel planning website, Gogobot, can help you decide where to go and what to do while you're on vacation.  WSIU's Jeff Williams recently talked with travel expert Krista Canfield about the website and this year's trending vacation destinations.

photo of fire at Royal Fiberglass Pools  in Dix, IL
Salem Emergency Management

Multiple southern Illinois fire departments helped fight a fire at Royal Fiberglass Pools in Dix Monday.  Salem Emergency Management officials say they provided mutual aid along with other fire crews including Jefferson County, Mt. Vernon, Centralia, and Kell. The Fire was reported around 9:30 Monday morning.  

book cover for Lady Lucy's Quest
Shires Press

A new children’s book, Lady Lucy’s Quest,  tells the story of a feisty young heroine who believes in the power of the possible. 

It’s written by Karen Gross who is a former college president and former senior policy advisory at the US Department of Education. 

WSIU Radio's Jeff Williams recently talked with Gross about the book and what inspired her to write a story for children.

In The Author's Voice is a web-based series of WSIU Radio.

FBI

A manhunt in southern Illinois has led the U.S. Forest Service to close part of the Shawnee National Forest.

Illinois State Police say the forest's Lusk Creek Wilderness area is closed until further notice as federal, state and local authorities search for 34-year-old Dracy "Clint" Pendleton. They say anyone entering another part of the forest should be on high alert.

book cover Past and Present
Seal Press

A new “how to” book suggests creative ways that we can remember loved ones who will never be forgotten.  It's a guide to how we can move beyond grief to celebrating the joy and affection of loved one's memories.    Loss survivor, author and journalist Allison Gilbert’s new book is Passed and Present: Keeping Memories of Loved Ones Alive.   WSIU's Jeff Williams recently talked with Gilbert about the book for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

book cover for Alibaba
Harper Collins

Alibaba is one of the world's largest online shopping malls.  A new book, Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built chronicles the humble origins of its founder and the company that is now a $200-billion industry.  WSIU's Jeff Williams recently talked with the book's author Duncan Clark for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

Author Kate DiCamillo is out with her latest novel.   The two-time Newberry Medalist ‘s latest  book for young readers is Raymie Nightingale.  WSIU's Jeff Williams recently talked with DiCamillo about the book for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

Raymie Nightingale is available from Candlewick Press.    In The Author’s Voice is an online feature of WSIU Public Radio.

book cover of Pirate Hunters
Random House

Imagine scouring the globe for the remains of one of the rarest of artifacts - a 17th Century pirate ship known as the Golden Fleece.   Writer Robert Kurson chronicles the journey of two treasure hunters in search of respected British sea Captain turned pirate Joseph Bannister's infamous ship.   WSIU's Jeff Williams talks with Kurson about his book Pirate Hunters for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

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