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

The statistics regarding the poverty rate in Syracuse are staggering. But what is poverty? And what can be done about it? WAER's Chris Bolt talks with some of those living in poverty, to tackle these questions.

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Chris Bolt / WAER News

Four Syracuse-area churches are joining together to open their doors to undocumented immigrants and refugees who fear federal immigration actions.  Father Fred Daley of All Saints Roman Catholic Church says policy changes have not been made to help immigrants, regardless of their status.  He also blames Washington with spreading false fears and stereotypes.

Organizations in Syracuse have joined forces in an international effort to bring awareness to gender-based violence.  The 16-day effort by the Near East Foundation and its partners, Planned Parenthood, Vera House and New Feminists for Justice, led from International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (Nov.

Scott Willis/WAER News

Central New Yorkers marked World AIDS day today by remembering those who died of the disease, but also celebrating progress of AIDS prevention in New York State.  ACR Health Executive Director Wil Murtaugh says the state’s increase in the supplement of Pre-exposure Pills, or PrEP, is helping stop the disease before it can be contracted.

WAER launches City Limits: A Poverty Project, a year-long initiative to examine the gripping, pervasive poverty problem facing Syracuse.  Over the course of the next year, WAER staff will tell stories about some of the impacts of poverty, how the city finds itself as the 13th most impoverished city in the nation and the myriad issues involved in trying to reduce the number of people in poverty.

Songwriter and musician Jimmy Webb had a decades-long friendship and musical partnership with Glen Campbell.  The Campbell hits Wichita Lineman, By the Time I get to Phoenix, and Galveston all came from Webb. 

(Jimmy Webb, Kim Campbell & Ashley Campbell spoke with Live Space's Entertainment's Tom Honan and WAER's Chris Bolt: Listen below to full interview and music.)

Chris Bolt/WAER News

Mayor Stephanie Miner reflected on some of the city’s most intractable problems she’s had to confront in her almost 8 years as mayor.  Issues such as violence, struggling schools, and poverty were among her largest challenges.  Her farewell address covered how such problems were faced and critical obstacles that remain.

Chris Bolt/WAER News

An investment of $315 million dollars in Downtown Syracuse construction projects, the addition of 440 new hotel rooms within three years and a thriving arts, entertainment and sports scene are all positive signs of Downtown’s resurgence.

This year’s Syracuse International Film Festival is chock full of thematic, independent work, from short films to local and international ones that aren’t typically seen at local cinemas.

Now in its 14th season, the film festival is a viewer’s ticket to a plethora of ideas, locations and perspectives.

This Saturday, the Palace Theater in Eastwood hosts a film festival for horror movie fans. 

Freddy Fest is an all-day tribute to Freddy Krueger … and will feature the screening of all seven of the “Nightmare on Elm Street” films in their original 35 mm format.   Director Jack Sholder, who crafted Nightmare on Elm Street Two, will be there for a Q-and-A session, along with actors and vendors .