Scott Willis

Host, Reporter, Producer

I’ve always been enamored with the intimacy of radio.  It’s so personal.  It forces you to listen…and listen only.  No visual distractions.  I grew up listening to mostly top 40 radio in Detroit, with no shortage of entertaining DJ’s.  As a teenager, I discovered the area’s all news station.  I loved knowing what was going on, and the intensity with which they told stories.  I often wondered what it would be like to be the first to know what was happening, and then tell others.  Maybe that’s why I pursued a career in news. 

I would go on to serve as an intern at that all-news station, and it was amazing and maybe a little overwhelming to see what it took to put out a constant stream of news.  But something was missing.  It wasn’t until after I graduated from college that I actually discovered Detroit’s public radio station at my alma mater.  What a difference!  You had time to write and tell engaging, meaningful stories, to be creative, all without the pressure to constantly crank out the news.  Quality over quantity.  That’s when I knew public radio was for me.  I was hooked.

I would hone my skills on and off for almost three years at WDET as an intern under the tutelage of a patient Assistant News Director. I produced daily stories for newscasts, but also was given the privilege of producing long-form features on topics that interested me, and that people knew very little about.  Now THAT was cool.  Right up my alley.  What budding reporter could ask for more?

I landed here in Syracuse in June 2001.  Today, I’ve come full circle, and now teach the craft to more than a dozen student reporters per week.  We work hard to choose informative stories, find the most engaging sound, and edit copy for clarity and accuracy. 

Outside of work, I spend time with my wife and little boy.  We like to take walks, travel, and read.  When I can, I’ll hop on my bike for a quick ride.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the honor and privilege of bringing WAER’s dedicated and generous listeners the news of the day during All Things Considered.  Thanks for listening.

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VETERANS DAY 2013
6:40 pm
Mon November 11, 2013

Central New York Remembers and Honors its Veterans

Carol Anne Wood recites one of her granddaughter’s favorite poems.
Credit WAER News

Veterans and their families gathered at the War Memorial Tuesday for a celebration and honoring of their service. Carol Anne Wood is the grandmother of a woman currently serving in the U-S Army.  She would write poems for her granddaughter and the platoon, and quickly became known as the platoon grandmother.

Unfortunately not all service members are able to return to their families and communities. A special table was set up to honor those Missing in Action or who are Prisoners of War.      

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SYRACUSE BUSINESSES
4:39 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

What's The Best Way to Grow Your Business? Maybe it's Exporting

The global view from CNYIBA's website shows how people can use their services to export their products overseas.
Credit Courtesy CNYIBA.net

Business leaders say the key to growth for many small to medium Central New York companies might be selling their products overseas. 

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Upstate Neuroscience Research Building
11:31 am
Tue October 22, 2013

New Upstate Medical Building Hopes to Unlock Keys to Brain Injuries and Disease

Upstate Neuroscience Research Center opens, built onto East side of Institute for Human Performance
Credit Chris Bolt/WAER News

Researchers at SUNY Upstate and from other neighboring institutions now have a common space to study brain function and find ways to treat, and maybe cure, disease. 

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Outcome May Open Recreation Space
6:39 am
Fri October 11, 2013

November Ballot Propositions Could Settle Adirondack Land Disputes

NYCO wants to expand its mining site into the wilderness at Jay Mountain.
Credit Nancie Battaglia / adirondackexplorer.org

Access to land in the Adirondacks can pit private interests against the public, but a proposition on the November election ballots seeks to help ease tense situations near Raquette Lake.

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I-81
4:14 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Next Four Neighborhood Meetings on I-81 Viaduct Scheduled

I-81 viaduct at Adams St.

The State Department of Transportation has released the schedule of the next four neighborhoods meetings about the future of I-81 through Syracuse.  About 100 people turned out for the first one held two weeks ago in Toomey Abbott Towers, a stone’s throw from the highway. 

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