Kathy Lohr

Whether covering the manhunt and eventual capture of Eric Robert Rudolph in the mountains of North Carolina, the remnants of the Oklahoma City federal building with its twisted metal frame and shattered glass, flood-ravaged Midwestern communities, or the terrorist bombings across the country, including the blast that exploded in Centennial Olympic Park in downtown Atlanta, correspondent Kathy Lohr has been at the heart of stories all across the nation.

Lohr was NPR's first reporter based in the Midwest. She opened NPR's St. Louis office in 1990 and the Atlanta bureau in 1996. Lohr covers the abortion issue on an ongoing basis for NPR, including political and legal aspects. She has often been sent into disasters as they are happening, to provide listeners with the intimate details about how these incidents affect people and their lives.

Lohr filed her first report for NPR while working for member station KCUR in Kansas City, Missouri. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and began her journalism career in commercial television and radio as a reporter/anchor. Lohr also became involved in video production for national corporations and taught courses in television reporting and radio production at universities in Kansas and Missouri. She has filed reports for the NPR documentary program Horizons, the BBC, the CBC, Marketplace, and she was published in the Saturday Evening Post.

Lohr won the prestigious Missouri Medal of Honor for Excellence in Journalism in 2002. She received a fellowship from Vanderbilt University for work on the issue of domestic violence. Lohr has filed reports from 27 states and the District of Columbia. She has received other national awards for her coverage of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games, the Oklahoma City bombing, the Midwestern floods of 1993, and for her reporting on ice storms in the Mississippi Delta. She has also received numerous awards for radio pieces on the local level prior to joining NPR's national team. Lohr was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska. She now lives in her adopted hometown of Atlanta, covering stories across the southeastern part of the country.

Pages

Politics
10:03 am
Sun December 29, 2013

Abortion Rights Groups Say It's Time To Stop Playing Defense

Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis filibustered for 11 hours against sweeping restrictions on abortion back in June, becoming a hero for abortion rights activists.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Sun December 29, 2013 11:08 am

Abortion rights activists are working on a counterattack to the 200 bills that have passed in states across the U.S. since 2010.

In the past three years, Republican-led legislatures have backed bills to regulate abortions and the doctors and clinics that perform them.

Bills to ban abortions at 20 weeks are among the laws that cropped up three years ago and have now passed in about a dozen states. This year, North Dakota pushed to end abortions at around six weeks of pregnancy.

Read more
Business
3:05 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Even If FCC Relaxes Rules, Delta Won't Allow In-Flight Calls

Originally published on Thu December 19, 2013 10:08 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

If you ever fly, you've heard it countless times: You cannot use your cellphone while en route to your destination. Federal rules will not allow it. That could change now, as the FCC considers relaxing those rules. But in advance of that decision yesterday, Delta Airlines said it plans to remain committed to high altitude quiet time.

Here's NPR's Kathy Lohr.

Read more
Law
3:35 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Family Of Ga. Teen Found Dead In A Gym Mat Pushes For Answers

Demonstrators attend a rally on Wednesday in Atlanta for Kendrick Johnson, the Georgia teenager found dead inside a rolled-up wrestling mat in his school.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 5:16 pm

Activists from across the country are asking Georgia's governor to support an investigation into the death of Kendrick Johnson, a 17-year-old discovered dead in a high school gymnasium almost a year ago. His body was found in a rolled-up gym mat.

State investigators ruled out foul play, but Johnson's parents don't believe it.

Read more
Sports
3:11 am
Wed November 13, 2013

After Decades, Braves To Move To Suburban Atlanta

Originally published on Wed November 13, 2013 4:57 am

The Atlanta Braves will abandon downtown for a new stadium in suburban Cobb County. The Braves have played in the city for almost 50 years, and the news came as a big shock to residents.

U.S. Commutes: The Way We Get To Work
12:55 am
Thu November 7, 2013

To Get Around Town, Some Cities Take A Step Back In Time

Construction of the Atlanta streetcar line has hurt many businesses along the route, but there is hope that economic gains will increase once the line opens next spring.
Kathy Lohr NPR

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 10:17 am

This story is part of a project on commuting in America.

Cities across the country are investing in old-fashioned streetcars to solve what's known as the "last mile" problem. The hope is that trolleys will make it easier for people to get to their final destination.

Atlanta is one of the latest, laying steel rails for a 2.6 mile line. The tracks will run downtown from Peachtree Street to the Martin Luther King Jr. historic district on the east side of the city. Some see this as a big step forward.

Read more
Health
1:27 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Clinics Close As Texas Abortion Fight Continues

In July, abortion rights advocates marched in Austin, Texas, to protest legislation that could shut down all but five abortion clinics and restrict abortion rights throughout the state.
Tamir Kalifa AP

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 8:52 am

The fight over abortion in Texas is being played out in federal court, where abortion rights activists are challenging a new state law.

The measure bans abortions at 20 weeks, adds building requirements for clinics and places more rules on doctors who perform abortions. Some clinics have shut down, saying they can't comply with the law set to go into effect Oct. 29.

Read more
Politics
6:03 am
Sat October 5, 2013

Glitches Slow Health Exchange Sign-ups

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 9:11 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Officials are asking for patience from the public in the opening week of state health care exchanges. People across the country were supposed to get the chance to begin signing up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act known as Obamacare. But the online system has been overloaded since October 1st when the exchanges opened.

Even at the end of the week, NPR's Kathy Lohr reports that health care assistance in Georgia was still stymied.

Read more
Around the Nation
4:03 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Univ. Of Alabama Sororities Accept A Few Students Of Color

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

A bit of history has been made at the University of Alabama. Four black women and two other minority students have been accepted into all-white sororities. The sororities sent invitations to the women following allegations of discrimination in the recruiting process.

NPR's Kathy Lohr reports the university calls it a first step toward integration. Others say it's too soon to tell.

Read more
Race
2:27 am
Wed September 18, 2013

University Of Alabama Moves To Integrate Greek System

Judy Bonner, the University of Alabama's new president, when the school's championship football team visited the White House on April 19, 2012.
Mike Theiler UPI /Landov

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 6:48 pm

Students at the University of Alabama and community leaders are reacting to allegations that white sororities denied access to black women because of their race.

The student newspaper in Tuscaloosa, the Crimson White, ran a story that quotes sorority members who say they wanted to recruit at least two black candidates but the students' names were removed before members could vote on them.

Read more
Around the Nation
1:31 am
Mon September 9, 2013

Trail Life USA, The 'Other' Boy Scouts Of America

Originally published on Mon September 9, 2013 10:49 am

Read more
Business
2:23 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

New Carpet Factories Help Cushion Blows From Recession Losses

Fibers are rolled into spools at the Engineered Floors carpet plant in Dalton, Ga.
Kathy Lohr NPR

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 3:22 pm

Known as the "Carpet Capital of the World," Dalton, Ga., has struggled and lost 17,000 manufacturing jobs over the past decade.

But now, Engineered Floors is investing $450 million in two new manufacturing facilities and a distribution center in the area. The Dalton expansion is part of a resurgence in manufacturing in Georgia and it reflects an optimistic outlook for manufacturing across the Southeast.

Something Different, Something New

Read more
Business
2:49 am
Thu August 22, 2013

Bank Of America To Close Some Drive-Up Tellers

Bank of America won't say exactly how many drive-through lanes are closing. A spokeswoman did say the decision is not a cost-cutting move but a response to the way people are banking. At branches where drive-through lanes are closing, the bank says ATMs will be available.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 22, 2013 10:43 am

Some Bank of America branches with drive-through tellers from Georgia to Texas have already closed the lanes, according to spokeswoman Tara Burke.

She wouldn't divulge exactly how many are closing. She did say the decision is not a cost-cutting move but a response to the way people are banking.

About 13 million customers bank by mobile phone and 29 million participate in online services. Among them is 19-year-old Brittney Sprague who says, "Not too many folks will really miss the drive-through teller because everybody uses apps. It's all about the new technology."

Read more
Race
4:41 am
Sun August 18, 2013

Atlanta Celebrates King's Dream

Originally published on Sun August 18, 2013 2:07 pm

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This weekend, the city of Atlanta kicked off its own celebration to mark the anniversary. People gathered at the Martin Luther King National Historic Site and at the Center for Nonviolence. This is the beginning of more than a week of national events to commemorate King's "I Have a Dream," speech.

As NPR's Kathy Lohr reports, the festivities started in the city where King was born.

Read more
Around the Nation
3:13 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Civil Rights Leaders Call For States To Expand Voting Rights

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 3:24 am

Civil rights leaders meeting in Atlanta say states, including Texas and North Carolina, are deliberately trying to make it more difficult for voters. They're calling for a national campaign to strengthen voting rights, increase voter participation and eliminate long lines at the polls.

U.S.
2:26 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Where Do Drugs For Lethal Injections Come From? Few Know

A new law in Georgia makes information about where the state got its supply of lethal injection drugs a secret.
Ric Feld AP

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 4:45 pm

Several states are dealing with a shortage of lethal injection drugs and have had problems getting enough to carry out executions. In Georgia, lawmakers passed a measure that makes information about where the state got its supply a secret.

The Lethal Injection Secrecy Act says that the identity of people or companies that manufacture, supply or prescribe drugs used in executions is a state secret. But attorneys for death row inmate Warren Lee Hill are challenging the state over whether that law is constitutional.

Cruel And Unusual Punishment?

Read more
U.S.
3:50 pm
Tue July 23, 2013

Laws Tightening Abortion Rules Gain Traction In States

Dr. Howard Novick says new abortion restrictions in Texas could force him to close the Houston clinic he opened in 1980. He says he doesn't have the more than $1 million required to convert his office into a surgical center with wide corridors and sophisticated airflow systems.
Pat Sullivan AP

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 4:31 pm

A judge has temporarily blocked a North Dakota law that would have banned abortions beginning around six weeks, when a fetal heartbeat is detectable. It's one of several state laws passed this year intended to limit abortion.

Those backing the new rules say they will make abortions safer. But abortion-rights advocates say the laws are about politics, not safety.

Read more
Crime In The City
1:00 am
Mon July 15, 2013

G-Man Fights Crime, And A Medical Disorder, In Kansas City

Author Joel Goldman has found there's plenty of true crime to write about in the Kansas City metro area.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Mon July 15, 2013 3:10 am

Split by the Missouri-Kansas state line, the Kansas City metro area has been home to political bosses, jazz clubs, barbecue joints and tough characters, all of which find their way into author Joel Goldman crime thrillers.

Nine years ago, when Goldman was working as an attorney, he was diagnosed with a movement disorder that makes him shake and stutter at times. So he quit his practice and eventually gave his medical condition to one of his main characters, Kansas City FBI agent Jack Davis.

'Brought To His Knees' In A Hardscrabble Neighborhood

Read more
Race
3:30 am
Wed June 19, 2013

Survey: African Americans Fearful Of U.S. Economy

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 7:40 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Read more
Religion
3:23 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Churches Reconsider Sponsoring Boy Scout Troops

Some churches have said they will end their affiliation with the Boy Scouts after its decision to allow openly gay members to join. Others, including Southern Baptists, are considering their next move. Another group plans to hold a meeting in Louisville later this month with parents who say they want a more Christian organization for their children.

Around the Nation
3:34 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Boy Scouts 'Moving Forward,' Vote To Allow Gay Members

Originally published on Fri May 24, 2013 6:01 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Read more
Around the Nation
6:23 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Boy Scouts Vote To Allow Gay Members, But Not Leaders

Originally published on Fri May 24, 2013 4:01 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

The Boy Scouts ban on openly gay scouts is coming to an end. That's the result of a vote held today by the leadership of the Boys Scouts of America.

WAYNE PERRY: Our vision is to serve every kid. We want every kid to have a place where they belong, to learn and grow and feel protected.

Read more
Around the Nation
4:32 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Boy Scouts To Decide Whether To Admit Gay Youth

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 7:29 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

This week, Boy Scouts of America officials will meet in Texas to consider changing the group's longstanding ban on gay members. The first round of voting starts tomorrow. A new membership policy would allow gay youth, but continue to ban adult leaders who are gay.

NPR's Kathy Lohr reports.

Read more
Around the Nation
4:08 am
Wed May 8, 2013

S.C. Voters Confer Comeback Title To Mark Sanford

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 9:43 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Many a politician suffers a setback and recovers. Rarely does a politician endure a scandal and nationwide mockery on the scale of Mark Sanford and still recover.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Sanford did. South Carolina's former governor defeated Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in a special election for Congress.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

REPRESENTATIVE-ELECT MARK SANFORD: Some guy came up to me the other day. He said: You look a lot like Lazarus.

Read more
NPR Story
8:56 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Mark Sanford Wins House Race

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

In South Carolina tonight, a political comeback. Republican Mark Sanford, who was once mired in scandal as the state's governor, has won a congressional seat in a special election. He has defeated Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in a race that attracted national attention. Sanford just delivered his victory speech.

MARK SANFORD: I have a question for you all. How many of you want to change Washington, D.C.?

(APPLAUSE)

SANFORD: I had a suspicion that that may be the case and...

Read more
It's All Politics
12:37 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

Democrats Have High Hopes Of Defeating Sanford In S.C.

Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch looks over at former Republican Gov. Mark Sanford during a debate Monday in Charleston, S.C., in the 1st Congressional District race.
Randall Hill Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri May 3, 2013 6:28 pm

Read more
Around the Nation
3:46 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

50 Years Later, King's Birmingham 'Letter' Still Resonates

Martin Luther King Jr., with the Rev. Ralph Abernathy (center) and the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, defied an injunction against protesting on Good Friday in 1963. They were arrested and held in solitary confinement in the Birmingham jail where King wrote his famous "Letter From Birmingham Jail."
Courtesy of Birmingham Public Library Archives

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 11:12 pm

It's been five decades since Martin Luther King Jr., began writing his famous "Letter From Birmingham Jail," a response to eight white Alabama clergymen who criticized King and worried the civil rights campaign would cause violence. They called King an "extremist" and told blacks they should be patient.

But the time for waiting was over. Birmingham was the perfect place to take a stand.

Read more
Law
2:56 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

North Dakota Passes Nation's Toughest Abortion Laws

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 3:58 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

North Dakota now has the toughest abortion laws in the nation. That's after the state's governor, Jack Dalrymple, signed three bills into law today. One makes it a crime to perform abortions if a fetal heartbeat is detected.

As NPR's Kathy Lohr reports, that would effectively ban nearly all abortions in the state and sets up a likely court challenge.

Read more
Law
3:39 am
Tue March 26, 2013

Abortion Opponents Gear Up For More Battles

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 7:57 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Now to a debate over abortion that has escalated after some recent moves by states. The North Dakota legislature just passed a series of bills, including the strictest abortion ban in the country. And lawmakers there voted to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot next year which would end abortion entirely. Earlier this month, Arkansas passed a 12-week ban. NPR's Kathy Lohr reports that more states are debating stricter laws with hopes of getting one of them before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Read more
It's All Politics
6:27 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Sanford's House Bid A Test Of S.C. Voters' Will To Forgive

Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford chats with a diner at a restaurant in Charleston, S.C. Sanford is one of 16 Republicans in Tuesday's GOP primary for the special election to fill the vacant 1st Congressional District seat.
Bruce Smith AP

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 10:38 am

Two Democrats and 16 Republicans are running for South Carolina's 1st Congressional District seat in a special election Tuesday. The seat is open because former Rep. Tim Scott was tapped to replace Sen. Jim DeMint, who retired midterm.

The biggest name in the race is former Gov. Mark Sanford, whose infamous affair led to his political downfall. Sanford is trying to stage the political comeback of a lifetime.

And he's doing it one diner at a time — greeting customers over eggs and grits at Page's Okra Grill, just outside Charleston in Mount Pleasant.

Read more
Law
2:30 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

Arkansas House Overrides Governor's Veto Of Strict Abortion Bill

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 9:49 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. Today in Arkansas, the country's most restricted ban on abortion survived a veto challenge. The Arkansas House voted to override the Governor's veto. The new law bans most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy. NPR's Kathy Lohr has this story.

Read more

Pages