Chris Bolt

News Director

Maybe I was destined for a career in radio when I built my first stereo receiver from a Heathkit box…then later spent time running wires over beer-stained floors for local bands in Colorado bars.  I remember becoming enamored with Public Radio's story-telling style covering an exiled music group that had come to Syracuse from El Salvador.  The piece involved interviewing through an interpreter and mixing in the music with a strongly-political story of death squads.  Over the next 23 years I’ve enjoyed covering the issues, people, events, challenges and accomplishments of Central New York. 

I came to Syracuse to finish a Broadcast Journalism degree at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School.  I’ve worked at WAER since 1990 and truly enjoy our mission of educating and engaging the community, while training aspiring journalists and broadcasters.  I’m passionate about the area’s lifestyle and efforts to improve its vitality.   When not on a story, in a studio or editing and mentoring students, I can probably be found outside.  I love Central New York’s natural areas and waterways, as well as golfing and biking opportunities.  

Ways to Connect

  A lot of people here in Central New York have Black Friday marked on their calendars for holiday shopping.  But one local economist says despite all the flashy ads, those great deals you’re counting on are not the focus of most stores. 

Cutting short our thanksgiving or campaign out before dawn might not produce the windfall of savings most shoppers think.  Cornell Professor of Applied Economics David Just has looked into the behavior of both the buyers on Black Friday…and the retailers.  Shoppers can get in a frenzy that clouds good judgment.

WAER Sports

  Syracuse University's appeal of the sanctions placed on the basketball program by the NCAA has resulted in a reduction of the number of scholarships lost and a drop in the fine being charged the school.  The infractions committee ruled on SU's appeal by giving back one scholarship-per-year.  The original penalty included the loss of 3 scholarships in each of the next 4 years for a total of 12.  That has been changed to 2 awards per year for a total of 8.  

Chris Bolt/WAER News

  Businesses in the 21st Century have to be connected on the internet.  Some local business owners today learned better ways to get on line … and get their business noticed.

John Smith/WAER News

  The air quality is officially smoke free today inside Syracuse Housing Authority properties.  They’ve been preparing tenants for a year in advance and the new policy is gaining praise from local health officials.

  Congress member John Katko says, like people across the world, he was sad to hear about the attacks in Paris this weekend.  But unlike others, he was not shocked.

“An element of me said ‘this is exactly what we thought was going to happen’, based on the vulnerabilities we knew about Europe when we went over to visit them firsthand”

Chris Bolt/WAER News / Point of Contact

  One of Syracuse's more conceptual art galleries celebrates its 40th anniversary tonight.  Point of Contact is as much about the ideas as it is about the works of art and writing.

  Governor Cuomo announced he’s raising the minimum wage for state workers to $15 an hour.  

That did not stop advocates from protesting at the Dunkin Donuts at the state Capitol, saying the governor’s  recent phased in wage increase for fast food workers is too slow.

  A Central New York family can change a person’s life, especially teenagers in the adoption system.  National Adoption Month is focusing on youth between age 15 and 18 this year.


  Syracuse was named one of the top 10 best cities in the nation for veterans to come and earn their college degrees. Hiring Our Heroes conducted a survey of cities with good access to colleges with veterans programs, as well as graduation rates and job opportunities.  Syracuse placed 7th on the list.

  Concern turns to the future of the employees and the community now that Entergy has decided to shut down the Fitzpatrick Power Plant.  The workers found out Monday morning in a face-to-face meeting with President Bill Mohl.  Senior manager of Communications Jerry Nappi says nothing is immediate; the decision means the plant won’t re-fuel next year.  For now, Entergy will still be producing power and running the plant.