Gina Kaufmann | KCUR

Gina Kaufmann

Host, Central Standard

Gina’s background combines print and broadcast journalism, live event hosting and production, creative nonfiction writing and involvement in the arts. Early in her career, she followed a cultural beat for The Pitch, where she served as an editor and art writer in the early 2000s.

She also worked as a contributing editor of Heeb magazine out of New York, assisting with the Heeb Storytelling series and ultimately starting her own live storytelling event series in Kansas City. Gina got her public radio chops working first as an intern for KC Currents with Sylvia Maria Gross, then as a co-host of The Walt Bodine Show.

She earned her bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and her Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia.

Ways to Connect

Segment 1: If Kansas City wants to go green, we have to drive less. Can we do it?

Transportation is the biggest source of carbon dioxide emissions in the United States, with most of that coming from cars and trucks, but how realistic is it to expect people to break up with their cars in a city that was built for the automobile?

Segment 1: Why a group of Bolivians in Kansas City demonstrated in the streets.

In response to news that the president of Bolivia had stepped down, a group met outside Union Station in solidarity with friends and family involved in much riskier demonstrations back in Bolivia. Their message was not about one candidate versus another, but the democratic process itself.   

Segment 1: Families live in downtown Kansas City, but it wasn't necessarily built with them in mind.

The accepted wisdom in Kansas City has long been that families want houses in the suburbs and that the market for downtown is young professionals and empty nesters, but families have lived downtown for generations.

Segment 1: Missouri is home to choice wild edible fall mushrooms.

A hunt for wild mushrooms at Burr Oak Woods launches a conversation about foraging Missouri mushrooms. Then, a James Beard Award-winning chef offers mushroom-cooking expertise for the home cook.

Segment 1: Climate change affects people unequally. 

We talk about what this inequality looks like when it comes to housing, the needs of low-income residents, and more.

Segment 1: Kansas City voters revert Martin Luther King Boulevard back to its previous name, Paseo.

The morning after  Martin Luther King's name was voted off of a major boulevard, we analyze what the controversy and its outcome mean for Kansas City communities. Plus, how this all looks through a national lens.

Segment 1: A genealogist tells us how she finds the stories behind our ancestry. 

You might think researching your ancestry is just about building your family tree. Ahead of a presentation this Friday, a researcher for PBS' "Finding Your Roots" and NBC's "Who Do You Think You Are?" says you can find out a lot more if you keep digging.

Segment 1: The financial stress of college causes some students to struggle.

For college students who don't come from financial means, it can be difficult to survive on a college campus. We hear about how they try to stay afloat while also staying on top of classes.

Segment 1: New paintings by a Kansas City artist examine the 'brash volume' of public discourse.

Rodeo clowns, talkshow hosts, preachers. To Michael Schliefke, they're symbols for what public discourse has become. 

Segment 2: A Kansas-born author creates literary buzz with 'halal fiction.'

Halloween Special

Oct 31, 2019

Segment 1: Kansas City storytellers try to scare us.

Scary stories take many forms. We got some of the best storytellers in town to share their favorite haunting tales. 

  • Nathan Louis Jackson, playwright
  • Kaite Stover, librarian
  • Jose Faus, poet

Segment 2: Why are there so many ghost towns, and why are they so haunting?

Segment 1: What the latest StoryCorps project can teach us about talking politics.

It's become an accepted truth that Americans are deeply divided on the issues that matter to us most. Why is that, and can taking the time to listen make a difference? That's what One Small Step, a StoryCorps collaboration, tried to find out. The local facilitators of the program share their takeaways.

Segment 1: The woman who coined 'white fragility' unpacks the meaning of the term.

Robin DiAngelo first started noticing what she now calls 'white fragility' about twenty years ago, when she worked alongside people of color as a diversity trainer. The resulting research culminated in a book that's been a New York Times Bestseller for more than a year. It's also elicited death threats.

courtesy of Natasha Ria El-Scari

When it comes to talking about sex, the accepted wisdom is that parents and kids alike would just rather not. But Kansas City poet Natasha Ria El-Scari doesn't think that's healthy.

Neither does her college-age son, who says he's benefited from his mother's openness and candor in a way his peers are missing out on.

"You need to write a book and call it the 'Mama Sutra'," he once told her. "You can thank me later."

Natasha El-Scari is out with a new book, Mama Sutra: Love and Lovemaking Advice to My Son.  She wrote it for anyone who needs understanding going into intimate relationships that they did not receive, with a focus on respect for oneself and others. In this conversation, El-Scari shares the experiences with intellect, womanhood, motherhood and community that led her to this project, and others to come.

Segment 1: The host of The Splendid Table stops by on a Kansas City visit.

Francis Lam is the son of immigrants, the father of a toddler, and a rising star in the food world. Hear his take on how something as simple as food ties into complex, multi-layered personal stories, in his life and in our culture.

  • Francis Lam, host, The Splendid Table

Segment 2: Bob Dylan may not be forever young, but a lot of his fans are.

Segment 1: A Kansas City restaurant teams up with a New Orleans chef on a popup event.

Ryan Prewitt is a James Beard Award winning chef at Peche in New Orleans, known for its focus on sustainability in seafood. When he comes to Kansas City to collaborate with Jax Fish House and Oyster Bar, he'll be spreading a message of consuming ocean species responsibly. 

Segment 1: A famous crossword puzzle creator makes Kansas City his home.

David Steinberg has been making crossword puzzles since he was 12, and getting them published in the New York Times since he was 14. He's just moved to Kansas City. In this conversation, he talks about sleeping on Will Shortz's couch, and other career milestones.

The Jackson County Detention Center has been a contentious topic in city and county politics, with a lot of the public debate focused on questions of funding and space. But conditions for inmates, most of whom are awaiting trial, continue to be concerning for those who know the facility. This show originally aired in July, 2019. 

Segment 1: A Kansas City avocado toast tutorial.

Avocado toast is very popular. We get explanations, tips and recommendations from a local fan, who also happens to be a nutrition expert.

Segment 2: A search for great neighborhood coffee shops.

Segment 1: An artist makes us look more closely at the disposable still life piling up on the kitchen table.

When Yoonmi Nam looks at the takeout containers, junk mail and plastic bags that accumulate around her, she sees a still life. Translating these objects into ceramics and putting them on a pedestal, she gives weight and permanence to the things that briefly populate our lives before getting tossed aside.

Segment 1: How a fractured school system contributes to problems with transportation.

Kansas City, Missouri, public school kids travel to school on dated buses that crisscross the city inefficiently. That cuts into school budgets, as well as time spent in class and on extra-curriculars. Big thinkers are taking on the issue and envisioning new models for getting kids to and from school.

Segment 1: A mass shooting on Central Avenue leaves a community grief-stricken.

Our reporter describes the weekend's shocking news from Wyandotte County, and a community leader asks Kansas Citians to understand what happened as an isolated incident that struck a growing, hard-working, tight-knit neighborhood.

Segment 1: A Kansas City dance performance is a transatlantic collaboration.

Krystle Warren and Brad Cox have been musical collaborators for years, continuing to make music together across an ocean. As Warren prepares to head from Paris to Kansas City for an October performance, the two discuss their shared history and their craft.

Segment 1: New reseach on how climate change coverage varies from country to country.

A KU journalism professor is at the forefront of research into how climate change stories are framed by journalists based on where on the globe they are working. The greatest divide occurs along the lines of relative wealth and economic development.

 

Segment 1: How Ukranians view the whistleblower case

For many Americans, the whistleblower scandal surrounding President Trump is a matter of politics and presidency. For the other country involved, Ukraine, the perception of these events is part of a larger web of scandals.

  • Anna Yakutenko, Journalist for Kyiv Post

Segment 2: Hispanic Leadership Lowrider Bike Club

Seg. 1: Holocaust Survivor Photos | Seg. 2: Barnstorming Tour

Sep 30, 2019

Segment 1: Kansas City is part of a global mission to collect and exhibit Holocaust survivor portraits.

Luigi Toscano wants people to look in the eyes of Holocaust survivors. His large-format photographs displayed in cities worldwide have elicited strong responses, ranging from a reunion of two former schoolmates separated by war to violent attacks in Vienna, where entire communities showed up to repair and protect the art.

Country Music

Sep 27, 2019

Ken Burns' Country Music series inspires interviews with Kansas City musicians about what country music means to them.

Segment 1: Generational differences in responding to climate change are complex.

Last week's climate strikes in Kansas City were organized by a young Kansas Citian who left the film industry and moved halfway across the country to take on this fight. His story represents a differing sense of urgency around climate change, but more than that, too. 

Segment 1: A KU researcher's studies provide context for news from the Amazon.

As global leaders gather for a climate change summit, a KU researcher shares new satellite-based data on the impact of deforestation in the Amazon, with particular insights into where this year's fire (which is still raging) fits in, both environmentally and politically. 

Paul Andrews / paulandrewsphotography.com

On Friday, when Jerry Bausby got two life sentences for the sexual assault and murder of his 18-year-old daughter, it was the culmination of three years of work for Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker.

Daizsa Bausby was a star student at the now-closed Southwest High School. She was a rule-follower and a go-getter with big dreams. But just a couple of months before her graduation, her body was found in a Kansas City motel room, dressed as though by someone else, according to examiners, who also concluded that she'd been sodomized and suffocated.

Pages