Mark Brush | Michigan Radio
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Mark Brush

Digital Media Director

Mark is Michigan Radio's Digital Media Director. He works to develop and maintain the station's overall digital strategy. As a senior producer/reporter from 2010 to 2016 he helped move the station toward publishing more online-first stories.  

From 2006 to 2010, as the unit's co-manager and senior producer, Mark helped transition the station's regional environmental news unit into an award-winning national news service known as The Environment Report.

Mark is a graduate of the University of Michigan ('00 MS in Environmental Policy and Planning & '91 BA in Political Science) and has been a "public radio junkie" since 1992. Much of Mark's storytelling philosophy was influenced through his close work with veteran CBC "réalisateur" David Candow.

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The progression of a cleanup of a room of someone with hoarding disorder.
Hoarding Task Force of Washtenaw County

For a while, the show Hoarders was popular on cable.

A show about people who just can’t stop hoarding things in their homes. Bathrooms, kitchens, living rooms are piled high with paper, dishes, clothes, food. Doors can’t open. Sometimes there are too many animals in the house. People with hoarding disorder put themselves – and sometimes others – in danger.

The TV show resolves the issue with a lot of drama and tears, and the problem, at least what the viewer sees, is all taken care of in one or two episodes.

But life doesn’t work that way, and for a long time, there just wasn’t a lot of help available for people with hoarding disorder.

Rep. Joe Kennedy III, D-MA
Lorianne DiSabato / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Massachusetts Rep. Joe Kennedy III, seen as a rising political star with a famous last name, will deliver the Democratic response to President Trump's State of the Union. In announcing their decision, Democratic leaders in Congress called Kennedy a "relentless fighter for working Americans."

President Trump arrives to deliver his 2018 State of the Union Address.
screen grab / YouTube

President Trump is delivering his State of the Union address to Congress tonight, which will be followed by a response from the Democratic Party. Journalists across the NPR newsroom will be annotating the President's remarks, adding fact-checks and analysis in real time (see below).

You can watch the State of the Union address below:

And check out live fact checking and analysis of the speech below:

Larry Nassar in court in recent months with his attorneys, Shannon Smith and Matthew Newburg.
Kate Wells / Michigan Radio

UPDATE 12:30 p.m.:
In the NCAA's letter to MSU Athletic Director Mark Hollis, Executive Vice President of Regulatory Affairs and Strategic Partnerships Oliver Luck says, "Larry Nassar's heinous crimes of record against more than 150 victims raise serious concerns about institutional practices, student-athlete safety and the institution's actions to protect individuals from his behavior."

Nassar in court.
Kate Wells / Michigan Radio

Dr. Larry Nassar, a former athletic doctor at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison today.  He pled guilty to seven counts of sexual assault in Ingham County court last November.

Last summer Nassar also pled guilty to federal charges for possessing thousands of images of child pornography. More than 120 women and girls tell MSU police that Nassar sexually abused them under the guise of treatment.

Nassar was fired from MSU in September 2016. The university has hired attorneys to investigate who knew what about the allegations against Nassar.

MSU says it has no plans to release that internal review.

Meanwhile, lawsuits against Nassar and the university allege that MSU officials have been receiving reports of abuse since 1999.

Gov. Snyder delivers his 2017 State of the State address.
House TV

The 48th Governor of Michigan made his final State of the State address last night (7 p.m., January 24). You can watch his speech here or below:

MSU board announces its support of MSU president Lou Anna K. Simon.
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

The Michigan State University Board of Trustees held a closed door meeting Friday (Jan. 19). They looked at the school’s response to the Larry Nassar case.

Some Michigan lawmakers have been calling for the resignation of MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon. This was a developing story. We added updates as they came in.

Larry Nassar
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

The Michigan State University Board of Trustees and President Lou Anna Simon have asked Attorney General Bill Schuette to open an independent review of how MSU handled complaints against disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar.

YouTube

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King was shot and killed in Memphis in 1968. Violent riots followed in what surely must've felt like an unraveling of American society.

Like a lot of people, I only know about King through books, pictures, or perhaps a grainy video of the "I Have a Dream Speech."

Today, we can see and hear King in ways we couldn't before.

We can watch video of his interviews on Meet the Press:

What's left of the the Pontiac Silverdome just before Sunday's implosion attempt.
Tony Brown / Michigan Radio

If at first you don't succeed ... set another round of explosives.

The much-anticipated implosion of the Pontiac Silverdome landed with a thud yesterday morning as the run-down stadium refused to collapse after a series of explosions.

Today was a different story - WDIV has the video:

Tony Brown / Michigan Radio

The demolition of the stadium was supposed to begin early Sunday morning with a series of explosions designed to bring it down. Curious onlookers and the media gathered with their cameras at the ready. The demolition crew detonated their charges, but the stadium refused to come down.

Mayor Mike Duggan, and state Sen. Coleman Young II
courtesy of Bridge Magazine, and State Dems

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan debated his challenger for the upcoming November 7 general election, state Sen. Coleman Young II.

You can still get your Kid Rock for Senate merch (and, perhaps, pretend to be in on the joke.)
https://www.kidrockforsenate.com/

I mean, c'mon. You gotta make a buck somehow.

Kid Rock, whose real name is Robert James Ritchie, just did it by fooling some people into believing he was running for U.S. Senate.

On the Howard Stern show today, Ritchie was asked if he was really running for Senate.

More from the Detroit Free Press:

Map showing the land owned by the Huron Mountain Club as of 2006.
Kaye LaFond / Michigan Radio

Well... it's not an absolute "no."

It's more of a "probably not," given what we've learned about the Huron Mountain Club in reporting this story.

We'll get to the downright practical ways you might get into the club below. In the meantime, we'll just say it doesn't hurt your chances if you’re Channing Tatum, or related to Henry Ford (and even Ford had trouble getting in).

Drawing of the World Trade Center obtained from Yamasaki & Associates.
Archives of Michigan

Most of us remember where we were 16 years ago today when the twin towers came down in the 9-11 terrorist attacks. The buildings, once a towering representation of New York's financial district, became a massive pile of concrete and twisted metal in less than two hours.

The 15 people charged in the Flint water crisis so far.
Booking photos from the Michigan AGs office and others.

Taxpayers from the state of Michigan are funding both the defense and the prosecution in the Flint water crisis investigation.

The tab so far? $15.5 million.

SPLC's "Hate Map" shows 28 hate groups in Michigan.
SPLC / screen grab

The Southern Poverty Law Center lists 28 "hate groups" in Michigan for the year 2016.

The year before, the SPLC listed 19 in the state.

Hate groups peaked in Michigan in 2010 when the SPLC listed 35 in the state. That peak coincided with a national peak in hate group activity as well - the numbers then fell before rising again.

More from the SPLC:

Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Here are the election results from the races we are following. 

Velsicol Chemical on the banks of the Pine River in St. Louis, Michigan. The chemical plant closed in 1978. The plant was later buried on site -- buildings, contamination and all -- after an agreement with the EPA and the State of Michigan.
Pine River Superfund Citizen's Task Force

The town of St. Louis, Michigan got some good news from the Environmental Protection Agency this week. Agency officials announced at a meeting with concerned citizens that the Velsicol Chemical Superfund site will get $9.7 million to start a massive cleanup project this fall.

The small city in mid-Michigan has one of the most polluted pieces of land in the country. The Velsicol Chemical Company (known as Michigan Chemical up until 1976) produced all kinds of toxic chemicals at its factory right on the banks of the Pine River.

The suspect in the Bishop International Airport stabbing, Amor Ftouhi.
FBI

Update Thursday, June 22, 10:45 p.m.:

The head of Detroit’s FBI office says investigators have learned how and when Fthoui entered the U.S., but still can’t say why he ended up stabbing a security officer at Flint’s Bishop International Airport Wednesday.

The 15 people charged in the Flint water crisis so far.
Booking photos from the Michigan AGs office and others.

State Attorney General Bill Schuette's investigation into what went wrong during the Flint water crisis has been going on for two years. During that time, Schuette has held several press conferences announcing new charges against those involved.

To date, 15 current and former state and local officials have been charged with 51 criminal charges for their role that led to the crisis.

(Read more: Why didn't state officials heed the warning signs in Flint?)

Attorney General Bill Schuette
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The head of the Michigan health department is one of the five charged with involuntary manslaughter with regard to their involvement in the Flint water crisis.

Former FBI Director James Comey testifies in front of the Senate Intelligence Committe on June 8, 2017.
PBS Live Stream

Former FBI Director James Comey is testifying before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence this week, speaking publicly for the first time since he was fired by President Trump nearly a month ago.

Our online streaming player was recently updated. The update resulted in the "play" button disappearing from menu bar in Chrome browsers.

It often looks like this:

In Chrome, that play button is stored as a "cookie" in your browser history. You'll need to delete the old cookie in order to get the play button to reappear. 

Click here for instructions on how to delete cookies for Chrome.

(You can also try clearing your cache.)

Terry Kreeger / Wyoming Game and Fish Department/CWD Alliance

The state House has passed a bill that would increase penalties for bringing animal carcasses with chronic wasting disease into Michigan.

The crime would be a misdemeanor with fines from $500 to $2,000 and a possible 90-day jail sentence. It would be illegal to import infected deer, elk, moose, or other animals.

Chronic wasting disease is a neurological disorder that is fatal to animals. It is contagious among white-tailed deer, mule deer, moose, and elk. It has not been shown to be contagious to humans.

Area where the boil water advisory was in effect.
City of Detroit

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has lifted the boil water advisory covering parts of Detroit, Hamtramck and Highland Park.

More from a press release from the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department:

The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department received a statement released from GLWA today indicating that the most recent round of testing shows no bacterial contamination in Detroit’s water supply. Two rounds of multiple samples were tested by GLWA indicating the water meets the Safe Drinking Water Act. According to the statement:

U.S. Capitol.
user Ottojula / Wikimedia Commons

President Trump addressed a joint session of Congress tonight.

His address came a day after he gave an outline of his budget plan for Congress, which would increase defense spending and make cuts to domestic programs.

Yousef Ajin stands with his family. His wife and kids are U.S. citizens. He has been working toward citizenship, but now faces the possibility of being deported.
screen shot from Donal Harrison's Vimeo video.

Update Feb. 28, 4:21 p.m.:

Our reporter Sarah Cwiek attended Yousef Ajin's hearing today. 

Part of a map of the easternmost oil and natural gas liquid pipeline that shows areas of "coating delamination." The east line shows 11 such areas. The west line shows seven.
Enbridge document submitted to the EPA

An Enbridge work plan document shows areas where a protective coating around its twin oil pipelines running through Lake Michigan might be failing.

Enbridge posted the document on its website last fall. It shows 18 specific areas along the pipelines where there is “coating delamination.” The 64-year-old pipelines were installed with a coating around them to protect for corrosion.

Besty DeVos during her hearing.
SCREENSHOT / C-SPAN

The U.S. Senate is scheduled to vote on Betsy DeVos's nomination as U.S. Secretary of Education. Democrats have been trying to block her nomination. 

Two Republican Senators have indicated they will not support her nomination. That would result in a 50-50 tie in the Senate and Vice President Mike Pence could then cast the tie-breaking vote.

The vote is scheduled for noon.

Watch below:

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