Catherine Wheeler

Phone: 307-222-4208
Email: cwheel11@uwyo.edu

Catherine Wheeler comes to Wyoming from Kansas City, Missouri. She has worked at public media stations in Missouri and on the Vox podcast "Today, Explained." Catherine graduated from Fort Lewis College with a BA in English. She recently received her master in journalism from the University of Missouri. Catherine enjoys cooking, looming, reading and the outdoors.

Ways to Connect

University of Wyoming

Due to Wyoming's economic downturn, Gov. Mark Gordon asked state agencies and departments to make 10 percent budget cuts.

WYDOT

The Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) is looking at new options to generate revenue as the department faces a $135 million revenue shortfall.

The department is mainly funded by federal dollars and a fuel tax, but WYDOT Director Luke Reiner said the tax has its limitations.

Cherish Thomson

A new health clinic for veterans in Casper has room to serve more veterans after moving to a new location. The community-based outpatient clinic is a part of the Sheridan VA Health Care System.

Catherine Wheeler

The Wyoming Community College Commission (WCCC) held two public hearings on the potential separation of a district.

The Campbell County Board of Commissioners applied to create a new community college district. The proposed district would be centered around Gillette College, which currently belongs to the Northern Wyoming Community College District. Because the district is based in Sheridan where the mills are levied, Sheridan County makes up the representation on the district's Board of Trustees.

Impact 307

Five finalists have been announced in the Sheridan Start-Up Challenge.

It's the fourth year of the entrepreneurial competition with the goal of helping new businesses grow. The event is put on by Impact 307, a business incubator in Sheridan, which is part of the University of Wyoming.

Wyoming State Bar

As Wyoming residents prepare to vote in November's general election, there will be 28 judges across the state up for "retention." It's up to voters to decide if these judges get to keep their jobs. But how do you sort out who these people are? Wyoming Public Radio's Catherine Wheeler spoke with Executive Director of the Wyoming State Bar Sharon Wilkinson about how this process works.

Wyoming Secretary of State's Office

Along with voting for president, U.S. Senate and House Representatives, as well as state and local officials, this November's ballot will also ask Wyoming voters to consider an amendment to the state's constitution.

Wyoming PBS

Gov. Mark Gordon said the number of new COVID-19 cases and related hospitalizations in the state is very concerning. He addressed the rising metrics during a press conference on Monday.

Alexis Barney/Natrona County School District

Alexis Barney teaches fourth and fifth grade at Evansville Elementary School in Casper. And this year, the Wyoming Department of Education has announced Barney is the state's 2021 teacher of the year. Barney said she's humbled to receive the award and views it as a privilege to represent the state's teachers. Wyoming Public Radio's Catherine Wheeler spoke with Barney about how she has been focusing on her students' mental health, especially since the pandemic.

Antelope Butte Mountain Recreation Area

Starting this December, Antelope Butte Mountain Recreation Area will be hosting AmeriCorps members who will work on broadening access to outdoor activities and recreation for kids in Sheridan and Big Horn counties.

The mountain, located near Shell, reopened two years ago.

U.S Forest Service

As the Mullen Fire continues to burn throughout southern Wyoming, the rest of the state is still in the midst of fire season.

"We've had an incredibly active fire season," Wyoming State Forester Bill Crapser said.

WYO Film Festival

As statewide public health orders aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus are being lifted over time, more public events are resuming. Many film festivals around the world have had to cancel or change their formats to limit risks. But for the WYO Film Festival in Sheridan, the shows will go on in-person, with some modifications. Wyoming Public Radio's Catherine Wheeler spoke with the festival's director Justin Stroup.

Wyoming Department of Education

The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) has announced it will be receiving a federal grant to improve literacy across the state.

The Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy grant from the U.S. Department of Education will provide $8.6 million in the first year. And if the state remains eligible, it could provide more than $43.5 million in funding over the next five years.

Catherine Wheeler

High school wrestling and basketball have gotten approval to start on time this year.

The Wyoming Department of Health has approved plans for athletes to start practice November 23.

The Wyoming High School Activities Association (WHSAA) says it will be using similar precautions used during fall sports, like keeping players in pods during practices and health screenings.

Sheridan Community Land Trust

The Sheridan Community Land Trust has received two grants that will go towards building more trails and parking areas in the Bighorn National Forest.

The two grants from the U.S. Forest Service and the Wyoming Business Council total nearly $600,000. The funds will go to building 15 miles of trail and three parking areas in the existing Red Grade trail system.

Catherine Wheeler

In Cody, Park County School District Number 6 Superintendent Peggy Monteith said with all the uncertainty going on in the world, she was just happy to see kids climb onto a school bus on the first day of school?

"I stopped behind the bus with their red lights on and watched these little, little guys get on the bus with their masks. And I was an emotional mess by the time I got to the school because I was so happy to see them back on buses, but also so sad that they had to get on buses in masks," Monteith said. "What a world! It's turned upside down."

Brinton Museum

The Brinton Museum sits on the historic Circle A Ranch at the base of the Bighorn Mountains. Named after the ranch owner, Bradford Brinton, the museum prides itself on an extensive collection of Western and American Indian art. Recently, the magazine True West announced it as the top western art museum of 2020. Ken Schuster, the Brinton's director and chief curator, spoke with Catherine Wheeler about what the honor means for the museum. 

Bureau of Land Management

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated a backlog in the meat processing industry. So Gov. Mark Gordon is directing $10 million in federal CARES Act funding to help Wyoming processors expand their operations.

The Meat Processing Expansion grant program hopes to address supply chain issues many producers and processors are facing.

Catherine Wheeler

The Wyoming Community College Commission (WCCC) officially received a completed application to start a new community college district in Campbell County. That receipt kicks off a 90-day timeline in which the commission must review the application and approve or deny it.

Wyoming's primary election results have been certified by the state's canvassing board.

The August 18 election brought in the highest primary turnout ever for a presidential election year in Wyoming, at around 61 percent of registered voters participating. Of that, 62 percent chose to vote in-person on election day or in-person absentee ahead of time. Leaving 53,601 absentee votes sent through the mail.

Stuart and Jen Robertson via Flickr Creative Commons

Carbon County has seen a spike in confirmed cases of COVID-19. The county had 83 cases on Friday, and had 154 total cases by Wednesday, August 19.

Local officials said the majority of those cases are from the Wyoming State Penitentiary in Rawlins. According to the Wyoming Department of Corrections (WDOC), there are 67 active cases among inmates and seven in staff. As of August 13, there are 573 inmates at the Rawlins facility.

Brocken Inaglory / (CC BY-SA 3.0)

As August comes to an end, conditions are ripe for potential fires.

Many counties and federal agencies have issued fire restrictions throughout the state due to the prime fire conditions: hot, dry and windy.

Catherine Wheeler

On a bright and warm morning, Campbell County High School's football players are slowly shuffling out of the locker room and out to the practice field. The players have already had a conditioning workout earlier and a coaches' talk. Now they are waiting for the second practice to start.

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