Kevin Willis

News Director

Kevin is the News Director at WKU Public Radio.  He has been with the station since 1999, and was previously the Assistant News Director, and also served as local host of Morning Edition.  He is a broadcast journalism graduate of WKU, and has won numerous awards for his reporting and feature production.  Kevin grew up in Radcliff, Kentucky and currently lives in Glasgow.

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WKU

WKU is one step closer to offering a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.

The Council on Postsecondary Education has approved the school’s proposal, which would allow students to pursue degrees in four tracts: fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction, and script-writing for film.

WKU is hoping the film component is something that will help the school’s new program stand out.

“We’re an hour away from Nashville, which has a thriving film industry. We’re about five hours away from Atlanta, which has a thriving film industry. And we have many undergraduates already working in film in Nashville, Atlanta, New Orleans,” said Dr. David Bell, English Professor and Director of Creative Writing at WKU.

If WKU receives approval from The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, it will admit its first class of students seeking the MFA in creative writing this fall.

WKU Athletics

The WKU women’s basketball is heading into their postseason conference tournament with some major individual awards to go along with their number-one seeding.

Conference USA announced Monday that WKU senior Chastity Gooch was named Player of the Year, after averaging over 17 points and 7 rebounds a game.

Sophomore Kendall Noble was named conference Defensive Player of the Year after setting a WKU record for steals in a season.

Michelle Clark-Heard was named conference Coach of the Year for leading the Lady Hilltoppers to a 27-4 record.

The awards were voted on by the league’s head coaches, a media member representing each school, and each school’s sports information director.

WKU plays Thursday in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA tournament, against the winner of Wednesday’s game between Charlotte and Marshall.

The Kentucky Republican Party appears ready to change the way it nominates presidential candidates—something that would help Senator Rand Paul run for the White House and Senate in 2016.

The executive committee of the state party gave preliminary approval Saturday to Paul’s request to hold a presidential caucus next year, instead of a primary election.

A formal decision on the move will come in August.

State law prohibits a candidate from appearing for more than one office on the same ballot.

By going to a caucus system, Kentucky Republicans are making it possible for Paul to seek Senate re-election and the presidency at the same time.

A county GOP leader told WKU Public Radio that executive committee members were told not to speak to reporters about the decision.

But he confirmed the vote to move to a caucus next year was unanimous.

WKU PBS

U.S. Senator Rand Paul will be in Bowling Green this weekend, asking fellow Republicans to change the way they nominate presidential candidates.

The Republican Party of Kentucky’s executive committee is meeting Saturday afternoon in Warren County, and Paul is hoping they will endorse his plan to replace the state’s presidential primary with a caucus.

In a primary, the winner is determined by counting ballots. A caucus counts the number of supporters who appear at meetings across the state on a specified day.

Paul wants the state GOP to move to a caucus so that he could run for both President and another U.S. Senate term at the same time. Current Kentucky law prohibits a candidate from appearing on the same ballot for multiple offices.

The Associated Press reports Paul believes a caucus would also offer military personnel greater opportunities to participate.

Kentucky is home to two military bases and absentee voters have posed problems for other caucuses around the country. A spokesman for Paul noted a caucus gives organizers more options to accommodate military voters.

The National Weather Service is measuring Bowling Green's snow accumulation at 7.2 inches as of 10 am.

Here are some other totals from across our region, according to the NWS:

Leitchfield: 24 inches

Horse Branch: 22 inches

Central City: 21 inches

Elizabethtown: 21 inches

Hartford: 19.5 inches

Morgantown: 16 inches

Campbellsville: 8 inches

Franklin: 4.5 inches

Motorists in pockets along a 40-mile stretch of I-65 in Kentucky have been stranded in their vehicles since late Wednesday evening. Numerous accidents due to the winter weather caused traffic standstills, followed by heavy snowfall that blocked motorists from being able to move.

The Kentucky National Guard was mobilized Thursday morning in an effort to help dig those motorists out. Chris Jessie, with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet's Elizabethtown office, says several snow plows sent to assist motorists last night also got stuck.

The stranded motorists are sitting along parts of I-65 between mile markers 65-105.

Stranded motorists are being asked to call 270.765.5978 for assistance. Those who are rescued in the Hardin County region are being taken to the Pritchard Community Center.

The next President and CEO of the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce won’t have to go far to begin her new job.

The chamber announced Thursday that Candance Brake will lead the organization beginning March 16.

Brake was most recently Executive Director of the Green River Area Community Foundation in Owensboro, which shares a building with the Chamber of Commerce.  She served as an Owensboro City Commissioner from 2004 until 2010, and was previously an executive vice-president of the chamber.

Brake earned her bachelor’s degree from Brescia University in Owensboro, and has a Masters of Public Administration from WKU.

WKU Public Radio

Fee increases set to go into effect next month at Mammoth Cave National Park will be used to renovate the park’s hotel.

Superintendent Sarah Craighead  announced Thursday that the new fees will  begin March 14.

Most cave tours will increase by $1 or $2, with the Wild Cave tour increasing by $5. Camping fees will jump from $3 to $5, and the cost of reserving picnic shelters will increase $25.

Craighead predicts the fee hikes will bring the park an additional $350,000 this year.

Eighty-percent of the fees collected at Mammoth Cave are used to fund facilities and services at the park. The remaining fees support national parks that don’t charge entrance fees, such as the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace in Hodgenville.

Mammoth Cave accepted public comments about the proposed fee increases from Nov. 14-Dec. 5, 2014. The park says it received 17 comments—12 in favor of the fee hike, and five opposed.

Eater has this look at a number of wineries in the WKU Public Radio listening area, including some in Cumberland, Pulaski, and Wayne counties.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet issue the following traffic advisory impacting I-65 Northbound Wednesday afternoon:

Corrective work continues between Exits 58 and 65 (Northbound Rest Area to the Green River Bridge). Crews are milling and paving the inside and outside lanes along with the joint where the northbound rest area on ramp connects to the interstate.

One lane is open to traffic but with volume increasing into the afternoon, delays are now being reported upon approach to the work area.  Delays are also likely for those wishing to leave the rest area and merge onto Northbound I-65.

Work should be completed by the end of the day.

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