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The Kansas News Service

We’re the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of public media newsrooms delivering critical reporting of sound and substance. Our work is broadcast every day to virtually all of Kansas, and shared online and in newspapers in every corner of the state.

The Kansas News Service deploys journalists across the state to cover stories that truly matter in people’s lives. We work to make sense of the issues and events affecting the health and well-being of Kansans, their communities, and the state overall — with an emphasis on education, health and the gears of government.

The news service team is anchored in Topeka, but reporters also work from Wichita and Garden City. They travel wherever a story takes them.

The Kansas News Service gathers and produces stories in the same way, and to the same standards, as the biggest news organizations around. But as a nonprofit, we’re free from commercial pressures — demands for web clicks, for instance — that can pull other journalists away from important stories.

The Kansas News Service is directed by KCUR 89.3 in Kansas City, in partnership with KMUW in Wichita, Kansas Public Radio in Lawrence and High Plains Public Radio in Garden City. Other public and commercial stations carry our work. There’s virtually no spot in Kansas that can’t pull in a signal from a station with the rich content of the news service.

I write about how the world is transforming around us, from topsoil loss and invasive species to climate change. My goal is to explain why these stories matter to Kansas, and to report on the farmers, ranchers, scientists and other engaged people working to make Kansas more resilient. Email me at celia@kcur.org.
Suzanne Perez is a longtime journalist covering education across Kansas. She joined the Kansas News Service staff in 2021, after more than 30 years as a reporter, columnist and editor for The Wichita Eagle. Suzanne strives to tell stories about what’s happening in Kansas classrooms, and also how local or state policy decisions affect students, families and taxpayers. She grew up in North Carolina and has a degree in English from N.C. State University.
As a Kansas political reporter, I want to inform our audience about statewide government and elected officials so they can make educated decisions at the ballot box. Sometimes that means I follow developments in the Legislature and explain how lawmakers alter laws and services of the state government. Other times, it means questioning those lawmakers and candidates for office about those changes and what they plan for the future of the state. And most importantly, it includes making sure the voices of everyday Kansans are heard.
Jim McLean has covered Kansas politics and government for more than 40 years. He began his career at a radio station in his hometown of Parsons, Kansas, before moving to Topeka in 1982 to cover the Statehouse for Kansas Public Radio. In the 1990s, he led the government reporting team at the Topeka Capital-Journal. Later, as vice president for public affairs at the Kansas Health Institute, Jim started a news service that provided in-depth coverage of health policy issues. That operation moved to KCUR in 2017 where it became the Kansas News Service.
Blaise Mesa is based in Topeka, where he covers the Legislature and state government for the Kansas City Beacon. He previously covered social services and criminal justice for the Kansas News Service.
As the Kansas News Service managing editor, I help our statewide team of reporters find the important issues and breaking news that impact people statewide. We refine our daily stories to illustrate the issues and events that affect the health, well-being and economic stability of the people of Kansas. Email me at skoranda@kcur.org.
As the editor of a statewide news outlet, I aspire to work with our reporters to give Kansans a clear-eyed view of the place they call home. That means delivering hard-hitting stories that expose those things that keep Kansas from being the most vibrant, healthy place it can be. You can reach me at scott@kcur.org or 816-235-8023.
Grace Lotz is a digital producer for KCUR and the Kansas News Service. You can reach her at grace@kcur.org.