Michael Edward Miller

Around & About Host/News Producer

A graduate of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Michael Edward Miller hosts Around and About.  His favorite radio programs and podcasts include This American Life, Radiolab and The Moth.  He and his wife Rachel are both Chattanooga natives. 

Ways to Connect

   As part of their South Bound Lectures series, the Southern Lit Alliance is bringing Adrian Matejka to Chattanooga on Wednesday, February 10th.  In this interview, Matejka talks about The Big Smoke, his Pulitzer-nominated (and National Book Award-nominated) collection of poetry about Jack Johnson, the first African-American world heavyweight boxing champion.

CIA

  So it turns out the U.S. embargo against Cuba isn't a total embargo.  American businesses are allowed to export food, and Tennessee is sending about 1.3 million dollars' worth of chicken leg quarters to the island.

Adelina Bryant joins us to explain why chicken legs from the Volunteer State are so popular in Cuba, and how the state's exports to grow by $100 million if the embargo were lifted.  Bryant is with Engage Cuba, a nonprofit advocacy group that supports doing away with the embargo.

  Jared Bigham joins us to talk about education and the future of Chattanooga.  He’s the coordinator for Chattanooga 2.0, an initiative that's exploring ways to build "the smartest community in the South," according to their Web site.

Alex Friedman is the president of Private Corrections Institute, Inc., which he describes as "a non-profit citizen watchdog organization that works to educate the public and policymakers about the significant downsides associated with the privatization of correctional services."  Recently, the Hamilton County Commission voted in favor of paying up to $460,000 for a study regarding potential privatization of future correctional facility operations in the county.

Meg Vogel/NPR

  Today, Bob Boilen is best known as the creator and co-host of the NPR podcast All Songs Considered, but he started his NPR career working with the news reporters and hosts—for 18 years, he directed the flagship show All Things Considered. 

In this interview, he tells us how the small music clips between news stories led to the creation of his music show.  We also talk about his voracious appetite for live music—in 2015, he saw 506 shows.  And we discuss NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert Contest, and he gives some tips for bands who are entering.

Kevin Livinggood

  Chattanooga City Councilman Moses Freeman is one of the people featured on the new M.L. King Mural, and in this interview, he remembers the rich history of the surrounding neighborhood.  He also talks about events coming up on January 18th.  The city is seeking volunteers to participate in service projects that day, and the mural will be officially dedicated.

WUTC

  Artist Meg Saligman is known for creating monumental works of public art, and her Chattanooga mural is her largest ever, at about 40,000 square feet.  It's so large that it wraps around the entire AT&T building.  The photos in this post show all four of the mural's sides.

It will be publicly unveiled on January 18th--Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  The dedication will happen at noon, and Saligman will give a presentation at 1 p.m.

  Last week, Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke asked staff at the city’s Youth and Family Development Centers to proactively address hazing and bullying.  Mayor Berke made this directive after an incident involving basketball players from Ooltewah High School.  The rest of Ooltewah’s basketball season has been canceled.  Some parents of team members say the incident was part of a pattern of bullying and harassment.

Three Ooltewah High School basketball players have been arrested and charged with aggravated assault and rape after allegedly attacking a 15-year-old teammate.  The student was hospitalized and needed surgery to repair his colon and bladder after being sodomized with a pool cue.  The Hamilton County District Attorney’s Office and the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office are investigating reports that the attack was part of an ongoing pattern of hazing and bullying perpetrated by upperclassmen on the basketball team.

Rod Francis, creator of the Grow Young Project, joins us for an extended conversation. The Grow Young Project is a "a free online resource for clear, unbiased fact, opinion and reviews of all things related to winding back the clock." Francis is also a mindfulness coach, and he tells us about connections between mindfulness and aging, among other topics.  

  Chattanooga native Janie Dempsey Watts joins us to discuss her new novel Return to Taylor’s Crossing, which explores the lingering effects of racism and violence during the Civil Rights era in North Georgia.  The novel was published in 2015.

  North Georgia author Tim Champlin joins us to discuss his new book The Wild West of Louis L'Amour: An Illustrated Companion to the Frontier Fiction of an American Icon.  The book describes the real places, people and history that inspired L'Amour, who was one of the most prolific, bestselling American authors of all time.

Dennis Haskins/Instagram

  Actor (and Chattanooga native) Dennis Haskins is so synonymous with Richard Belding, the Bayside High School principal he played on Saved By The Bell, that he uses @mrbelding as his Twitter handle.

However, in spite of his signature role as an educator, he never finished college.  In this story, he tells us why, at age 65, he finally returned to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga to finish his degree. 

Christian Koch, President & CEO, Volkswagen Chattanooga, discussed the 2016 Chattanooga-made Passat in a Facebook Q&A.

J.C. Smith, founder of local theater company Closed Door Entertainment, joins us to talk about the musical Children of Eden, which is their final 2015 production.

From their Web site:

Pages