Steve Kraske | KCUR

Steve Kraske

Host of Up to Date

Steve Kraske is an associate teaching professor of journalism at UMKC and has hosted "Up to Date" since 2002. He worked as political correspondent for The Kansas City Star from 1994-2013 covering national, state and local campaigns. He also has covered the statehouses in Topeka and Jefferson City. From 2013-2016, he was a part-time columnist for The Star; he now serves on the newspaper's editorial board.

Before arriving in Kansas City, he worked at daily newspapers in Iowa and Illinois and at United Press International in Madison, Wisconsin. Kraske is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he received a bachelor's degree in journalism. He was a 1992 John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University.

Kraske has won awards for both his print and radio work and has appeared on NPR, CNN and Fox. He's a big fan of "Prairie Home Companion" and Kansas City jazz. His father lives in Stillwater, Minn., not far from the St. Croix River.

Ways to Connect

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: The policies and techniques that are best at keeping drunk drivers off the road.

Last month, the Missouri House of Representatives voted for the second year in a row to cut the state funding for sobriety checkpoints to $1. The plan to catch drunk drivers and keep them off the street? Saturation patrols. Today, we talked about the effectiveness of these options. 

Paul Sableman / Flickr - CC

Segment 1: Schools in the Shawnee Mission district have been accused of stifling expression during student demonstration.

During last Friday's national school walkout, parents and students at several Shawnee Mission schools reported that administrators attempted to curate and censor student speech. These complaints have spurred an investigation by the American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas. Today, we asked what happened during the demonstrations, and how the school district is responding.

Susie Fagan / Heartland Health Monitor

Segment 1: Examination of the secrecy shrouding Kansas government ignites momentum for openness, but it's dwindling. 

Kansas is considered to be one of the "darkest" state governments in the nation. We asked why this problem persists and how lawmakers have responded to calls for more transparency in Topeka. 

Hey Paul Studios / Flickr - CC

Segment 1: As rates increase among children in Kansas City, lead poisoning remains a persistent concern.

It's been decades since companies stopped adding lead to things like paint or gasoline, but the dangers posed by lead poisoning are still affecting thousands of lives throughout the metro area. We learned why it's so hard to get rid of lead contamination in old homes and businesses, and what you can do to minimize your risk.

Carolina Hidalgo / File/St. Louis Public Radio

Segment 1: The processes threatening, and protecting, Missouri's governor.

Tensions are high in Jefferson City as lawmakers continue calls for Eric Greitens' resignation but, as the governor faces possibly career-ending felony charges, ensuring fairness is paramount. Today, a veteran journalist discusses the systems in place to guarantee justice for the governor, and for the state of Missouri.

Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Students in Kansas City and across the country stage a school walkout, 19 years after a mass shooting at Columbine High School.

Laura Ziegler / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: How Jackson County leaders are handling political and personal controversies, and rising crime rates.

Laura Ziegler / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Streetcar authority chief says, "we're trying everything we can" to fund a lengthening of streetcar corridor.

Sam Zeff / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: How Kansas City is protecting its digital data from hackers.

In light of recent cyberattacks in Atlanta and Baltimore, data security is becoming a larger focus of municipal governments across the country. Today, we looked at Kansas City's own data security, and some of the measures the city has taken to protect against ransomware and other harmful technologies.

Shane Adams / Flcikr - CC

Segment 1: Adidas and KU have been implicated in an FBI investigation of collegiate basketball.

Roadside Attractions

With such a variety of themes and characters on display this month at area cinemas, there's no telling what you might see. From talking dogs to road-tripping senior citizens, Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary Film Critics caught us up on what's showing now, including "Finding Your Feet," "Beirut," "1945," "The Leisure Seeker," "Isle of Dogs," and "Leaning Into the Wind."

Airman First Class Jovan Banks / U.S. Air Force

An explicit report was released yesterday by a Missouri House committee with testimony from the woman who was involved in an extramarital affair with Governor Eric Greitens. The report details alleged sexual abuse perpetrated by Greitens during their relationship. In its wake, more state lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are calling for his resignation.

Doby / NPR

After House Speaker Paul Ryan announced today that he will not seek re-election in the fall, many are wondering who will next fill the role. NPR's Mara Liasson suggests the move signals a lack of confidence among Republicans who hope to maintain control of the lower chamber of Congress. Today, the veteran national political correspondent provided context for Ryan's decision, and helped untangle other complicated stories developing in the White House and on Capitol Hill.

Kansas Judicial Branch

The Kansas Court of Appeals is sort of like the middle sibling of the justice system. They don't enjoy the same level of prestige as the state Supreme Court, and they're not as familiar to everyday folks as municipal or district courts. Today, we asked three appeals court judges about their place in Kansas' justice system, and discussed how single-issue advocacy groups and judicial selection rules affect public perception of this often overlooked court.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

On April 9, 1968, five days after the killing of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., civil unrest in response to long-standing racial tension broke out in Kansas City. But what really happened 50 years ago? Last week, KCUR hosted the panel "Reaction or Riot?: Understanding 1968 in Kansas City" for community members to share their own experiences and recollections. Today, we revisited that conversation about the ways our city has — and hasn't — changed in the last half century.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: How do university students ensure their priorities have a voice in state government?

Students in Kansas and Missouri have concerns that go beyond their next exams and life after graduation. They point to soaring tuition rates, concealed weapons on campus, sexual harassment and assault, and state support for higher education. To communicate their concerns, student lobbyists work the hallways in both state Capitols. Today, we met the students who do this important work.

Claire Verbeck / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Why global warming may be our military’s biggest threat.

While climate change may harm food production and lead to more intense wildfires, it also poses a hazard to our military. How can our armed forces respond? Today, we asked former Secretary of State Colin Powell's chief of staff, who was director of the Marine Corps War College, to shed light on how our nation's military leadership is changing its approach to environmental issues.

Social Good Week / Flickr - CC

Segment 1: How hyper-connectivity and technology have democratized power.

Our world has changed a lot in the 21st century. New technologies like Twitter and KickStarter have enabled worldwide social movements. But how does this new power work?  One activist described the ways public influence is shifting, and what it might mean for our future.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: New mayor and CEO of Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas, says he's tapped into family's "longstanding commitment to the community." 

Laura Spencer / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Criminal charges in Schlitterbahn death come amid push for tighter regulations on Kansas amusement parks.

Last week, three Schlitterbahn employees were indicted on criminal charges related to a boy's death in 2016 at the Kansas City, Kansas, water park. Today, we discussed the merits of cases, and found out how state law is evolving in response to the incident.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: With deadline looming, Kansas lawmakers struggle to find funding plan that satisfies the state's legislature and supreme court.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Despite some disappointing off-season roster changes and a freak knee injury for veteran catcher Salvador Perez, at least a few Kansas City Royals fans are excited for the 2018 season to get under way. In what has become a tradition, we spent opening day at Kauffman Stadium speaking with everyone from announcers and reporters to chefs and brewers to get a sense for what's new — on the field and off.

Alissa Eckert / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Segment 1:  Recent local cases of the highly-contagious virus have some parents on edge.

With at least eight recently-reported cases of measles in Johnson County, Kansas, many parents want to do everything they can to ensure their little ones aren't at risk. Today, we got advice for limiting a child's exposure to the virus, even if they're not yet old enough to be vaccinated against it.

Bryan Thompson / Harvest Public Media

Segment 1: With an understanding in place, city officials and airport developer work on next steps at KCI.

Last month Kansas City officials and the developer of the planned single-terminal setup, Edgemoor, put a memorandum of understanding in place, but negotiations and planning continue. Today, we got an update on the potential timeline and project costs.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Newly-appointed secretary of troubled Kansas child welfare agency on transparency, missing foster kids, and reports of cover-ups and gag orders.

Oscillioscope

With March coming to a close, Up To Date's Film Critics returned to get us caught up on the flicks showing around town. But first, we met the writer and director of "Into the Night: Portraits of Life and Death," which chronicles how nine individuals, including a Prairie Village surgeon, reconcile themselves with their own mortality.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: How has our relationship with social media has changed over time?

In light of a report that data was harvested from 50 million unknowing Facebook users, many are rethinking their relationships with social media. Today, we explored the changing public perception of online social networks.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: In the face of uncertainty, fear is not your friend.

The leader of the largest United Methodist congregation in the country says Americans live in fear. Fear of crime and terrorism. Fear of losing our jobs or having enough money to retire. Fear of missing out on all the fun stuff everybody else seems to be doing on Facebook. We spoke to the minister about when fear reaches unhealthy proportions, and what to do about it.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Segment 1: Non-profit connects underserved Kansas City neighborhoods to fresh produce.

Food deserts are a big problem for many communities in the metro, but the remedy isn't always to build big grocery stores. Today, we talked with the founder of Kanbe's Markets to learn about his unique approach to connecting communities with fresh, healthy food.

Center for Youth Wellness

Segment 1: How trauma and abuse in childhood can mean a lifetime of illness.

Dr. Nadine Burke Harris had already established herself as a provider of care to vulnerable children when she met a patient named Diego, but the boy changed her way of thinking about the effects of toxic stress. We spoke with the doctor about Diego's story, and about the connections between childhood trauma and lifelong illness.

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