Joe Corcoran

Morning Edition host; Reporter/Producer

Joe Corcoran has been WKU Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” host and news anchor since 2003. Joe’s received numerous awards for his on-air work including the Associated Press’s “Best Radio News Anchor in Kentucky” twice. Several of his stories have aired on NPR’s “All Things Considered”.

A graduate of Syracuse University, Joe spent most of his career in television journalism both on-air and in management at stations in North Carolina, Iowa and Illinois.

In Bowling Green, Joe is active in his church as well as with the Bowling Green Area of Commerce. He is on the Board of Directors for the Kentucky Associated Press.

He and his wife Patricia are the proud parents of three children and the “extremely” proud grandparents of two granddaughters, Claire and Vivian.

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Champion Petfoods USA Inc. plans to open its first U. S. kitchen in Logan County, creating 147 new jobs and an $85 million investment. The company specializes in in "Biologically Appropriate" pet foods using fresh local ingredients. It's headquartered in Alberta, Canada.

Champion's ORIJEN and ACANA dog and cat food brands feature unique, fresh regional ingredients. They're sold in more than 70 countries. The company does not outsource food production and makes all of its products in its own kitchens. The $85 million investment will go toward building a kitchen in Auburn with construction set to begin this summer.

Company executives say Logan County's agricultural heritage and proximity to ranches and farms makes its location a good fit. In a release, Governor Beshear said, "not only will Champion Petfoods bring vital agricultural jobs to the region, but it will also create a new customer base for nearby farmers and ranchers."

The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority preliminarily approved the company for tax incentives of up to $8.7 million through the Kentucky Business Investment program. KEDFA also approved Champion for tax benefits of up to $1.3 million through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act.

The state will auction dozens of high quality collector's items left over from the a 2008 agriculture conference during Richie Farmer's tenure as Kentucky agriculture commissioner.

A news release from current agriculture commissioner James Comer says the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources will sell 13 Remington rifles and 16 Case knives in an auction May 5th at their Frankfort headquarters with the proceeds going to help fund an urban garden project.

Six universities in Kentucky may now begin growing legal hemp this year. Agriculture Commissioner James Comer told Kentucky Public Radio his office has received the go-ahead from the Attorney General's office to begin pilot projects with the plant.

Those projects were made possible by last year's state legislation providing a regulatory framework and a provision inserted in a recent federal farm bill. Comer says his office will begin immediately to finalize regulations concerning the growth and production of hemp.

The manufacturer of suspension systems and components for heavy-duty vehicles will create 75 jobs as a result of their $20 million investment. The company held a ceremonial groundbreaking for their plant Wednesday in Elizabethtown.

The site will manufacture products to supply the company's existing operations in nearby states at their new location in the T. J. Patterson Industrial Park. Construction of the 100,000 sq ft building is expected to be completed later this year. The company has two existing operations in Somerset and Lebanon employing 450 Kentuckians.

Ground was broken Wednesday for the Warren County-based Kentucky Transpark's fifth speculative building in the past seven years.

All four previous buildings have been sold to manufacturers after being on the market for less than a year. The first spec building was bought in 2007  by American Howa Kentucky before ground was broken.

Most recently, Austrian-based plastic packaging company Alpla, Inc. purchased the fourth Speculative Building , bringing $22.3 million in capital investment and 72 new full-time jobs to the region. The Transpark employs more than 1,100 total.

The Bowling Green Independent School District Monday night introduced new elements in their ongoing negotiations with the Warren County School District over the number of non-city residents who can attend city schools.

The school systems don't have an agreement about how many county-resident students the city will accept, and are trying to reach a contract under orders from Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday.

The Bowling Green Daily News reports the city's plan includes a reduction from 750 non-resident students to 650 over ten years. Non-resident students would be admitted on a first come, first served basis. Siblings of students would be admitted, 60% of the remaining spots would be filled by kindergarteners based on application date, and the final 40% on grades 1 - 12 based on date of application.

The non-resident agreement is key to a school district receiving Support Education Excellence in Kentucky (SEEK) funding for out-of-district students.

  Updated at 9:07 a.m.

National Corvette Museum officials have called a press conference for Thursday at 3:00 pm.  Executive Director Wendell Strode is expected to discuss plans moving forward such as removal of the cars inside the sinkhole and repairs to the Skydome.  WKU Public Radio will have someone there and will bring you the latest during All Things Considered.

Original post:

Bowling Green contractor Scott, Murphy and Daniel has been retained as the construction engineer by the National Corvette Museum to help recover and rebuild following the damage caused by Wednesday morning's sinkhole. Eight classic Corvettes fell into the 25 foot deep by 40 foot wide hole.

Museum Executive Director Wendell Strode said that firm will help devise a plan to recover the cars and save any if possible. And while safety is the top priority, Strode said they want to save the cars "as fast as we can." Strode told the Bowling Green Daily News that he was told by someone at the scene that the cars in the sinkhole had an estimated total value of $1 million.

Strode said he was confident the contracting firm could complete its work by the end of August, in time for the 20th anniversary celebration of the Museum and the projected opening of the NCM Motorsports Park.

Security footage from inside the SkyDome at the time of the sinkhole collapse shows the floor sagging suddenly, with pieces of the floor collapsing and a couple of the cars disappearing below ground.

Kentucky State Police have arrested a man they described as "extremely dangerous" after requesting the public's help in finding him. Thirty-three year old Thomas Upton of Glasgow was arrested Sunday night at 9:30 on Boatman Road in Barren County without incident.

He's being held at the Barren County Jail.

Upton is described as a suspect in as many as eight auto thefts around Barren, Hart, Larue and Warren Counties. State police put out a warning to the public not to leave their vehicles running while unattended. That included warming up the vehicle in driveways in the morning or while inside service stations. They were also warning not to leave keys in an unattended vehicle as that's how many of the car thefts Upton's charged with occurred.

A police investigation is still ongoing.

WKU Elizabethtown/Fort Know campus will open at 10:00 a.m. EST Thursday.

WKU's Glasgow campus will open at 11:00 a.m. CST.

Caution is urged while traveling around the area.

President Obama heads to a Nashville high school Thursday, two days after a student fatally shot a classmate in an apartment building. Grief counselors were at McGavock Comprehensive High School on Wednesday to help students cope with the shooting.

It happened within an hour of the President's State of the Union address Tuesday night, in which he renewed calls to curb gun violence.

Police said the shooting took place at an apartment when 17-year-old Kaemon Robinson was playing with a pistol. It discharged, striking 15-year-old Kevin Barbee in the face. An attorney for Robinson said the teen didn't know the gun was loaded.

It's unclear just how the President would address the shooting in his Thursday afternoon speech to the school.

Warren RECC says early morning weather related issues on a transmission line caused power outages Wednesday that affected about 5,800 Warren RECC members, mostly in Warren and Logan Counties, around 3:30 a.m. 

Power was restored around Auburn around 4:40 a.m. and in Warren County just before 6:00 a.m.

A report from the federal government shows some good news for Kentucky enterprise. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says the state led the country in new businesses created during the second quarter of of 2013, the most recent data available.

Governor Steve Beshear's office says almost 6,700 new businesses opened in Kentucky during that quarter, many of them so-called "micro-enterprises", or businesses with five or fewer employees. The number represents an increase of more than 6% from the same period a year earlier.

Kentucky ranked second nationally by percentage in new businesses opened during the first quarter of 2013, third during the last quarter of 2012 and fourth during the third quarter of 2012.

Joe Corcoran, WKU Public Radio

The attached audio file is WKYU's entry in the Best Spot News category in the 2014 Kentucky AP Broadcasters awards competition.

The Baker Arboretum is one of the showplaces of Bowling Green. It was willed to Western Kentucky University by the late artist Jerry Baker for use as a retreat and conference center, and it housed hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of Mr. Baker’s world-renowned art.

Early on the morning of June 27 it caught fire. As many as four different area fire departments responded to the call. While most of the building and art was saved, tens of thousands of dollars of paintings were lost.

Reporter Joe Corcoran was on the scene that morning talking to the arboretum’s estate manager and Western Kentucky University’s president about the tragedy of losing such irreplaceable artwork.

Thank you for considering this entry for the Best Spot News radio category.

This audio compilation is WKYU's entry in the category of Best Radio Anchor for the 2014 Kentucky AP Broadcasters awards competition.

Our morning anchor Joe Corcoran is submitting audio of a live newscast recorded on Sept. 30, 2013. It's followed by excerpts from two live interviews Joe conducted during the Morning Edition news magazine.

The first excerpt is with Bishop William Medley of the Archdiocese of Owensboro, Ky., that aired on Feb. 11, 2013.  Bishop Medley joined us to give some local reaction to the surprising announcement that Pope Benedict XVI was resigning from the papacy.

The second excerpt is with former NPR anchor and Kentucky native Bob Edwards, who was talking about his new book, A Voice in the Box: My Life in Radio. The interview aired on April 19, 2013.

Thank you for considering this entry in the Best Radio Anchor category.

Two Hodgenville city officials have pleaded not guilty to charges of theft and abusing public trust. The News-Enterprise reports Hodenville mayor Terry L. Cruse and city clerk Madonna Hornback entered the pleas Tuesday in Larue District Court.

An indictment issued last month by a grand jury accuses both of using a city-issued fuel credit card to make personal purchases and taking money from the city.

Cruse and Hornback have denied the charges.

Larue County prosecutor Terry Geoghegan said the indictment stems from a lengthy investigation spurred by "citizen complaints." Judge Charles Simms III set a trial date for June 9.

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