Karen Kasler (Ohio Public Radio)

Karen Kasler is a lifelong Ohioan with a passion for broadcast reporting. She left her hometown of Lancaster for Otterbein College. As News Director at WCBE in Columbus in the 90s, she covered a variety of events, including the local impact of the Gulf War, the financial problems of the Columbus Public Schools and the trouble-ridden Ameriflora exhibition in 1992.

Karen was selected as a Fellow in the Kiplinger Master's Program for Mid-Career Journalists at The Ohio State University in 1994. After a brief stint at WBNS-TV in Columbus, she moved to Cleveland and became the afternoon drive anchor and assignment editor for WTAM-AM. Karen followed the demolition and rebuilding of Cleveland Browns Stadium, produced award-winning series on identity theft and the Y2K panic, covered the Republican National Convention in 2000 and the blackout of 2003, and reported annually from the Cleveland National Air Show each year, often going upside down in an aerobatic plane to do it. In 1999, she was a media witness to the execution of Wilford Berry, at the time the first man put to death since Ohio re-instated capital punishment. Karen frequently reported for ABC Radio News, and also co-produced an award-winning nationally-distributed documentary on the one-year anniversary of September 11, 2001, which featured her interview with Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge from the West Wing of the White House.

Since returning to Columbus, she's covered major elections and the controversies surrounding them, the "Coingate" scandal and the resignation of former Attorney General Marc Dann. She's also produced features on "green" business, STEM education, campaign ads, the elimination of the state's anti-smoking agency and a demolition derby involving farm equipment.

Each year she anchors the Bureau's live coverage of the governor's State of the State. She was a panelist for the gubernatorial and the US Senate debates in 2006 and the Attorney General's race in 2008, and has also been interviewed by NPR, by the BBC and by Brian Williams for NBC's "Nightly News".

Karen has been honored by the Association of Capitol Editors and Reporters, the Cleveland Press Club/Society of Professional Journalists, the Ohio Educational Telecommunications Commission, and holds a National Headliner Award. She's won several awards from the Ohio AP, and is a four-time winner of the AP's Best Broadcast Writing award. She was nominated for an Emmy in 2006 for hosting "The State of Ohio". She's currently the president-elect of the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters.

Karen joined the Bureau in March 2004. She’s reported for NPR, Marketplace and the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, and is a frequent guest on ONN’s “Capitol Square” , WVIZ’s “Ideas” and WOSU-TV’s “Columbus on the Record”.

Karen is also an adjunct professor at Capital University in Columbus. Karen, her husband and their son Jack live on Columbus' northeast side.

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Statewide News
6:04 am
Mon April 7, 2014

New Language For Same-Sex Marriage Amendment

The group that’s pushing a same-sex marriage amendment in Ohio says it’s retooling the language because of concerns about religious institutions.

Ian James of Freedom Ohio says language about recognition of same-sex marriages by religious institutions has been taken out, and that the group will start circulating the new petitions as soon as possible. But he says they still have the signatures they need to put the original issue on the ballot with a filing deadline of July 2.

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Politics
12:26 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Governor’s Budget Update Bill Includes Tax Cut, Cigarette And Driller Hike

The governor’s budget update bill includes another state income tax cut – paid for by increases in two existing taxes.

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Politics
7:35 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Libertarians Say They’ll Go To Federal Court To Get Back On Ballot

Secretary of State Jon Husted announced Friday that Libertarians Charlie Earl and Steven Linnabary won’t be on the May ballot in the races for governor and attorney general, respectively. The decision comes after hearings last week to protest the signatures that got them there. The ruling was a main topic of the Libertarians’ convention this weekend in Columbus, where Charlie Earl was one of the headline speakers.

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Politics
7:23 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Kasich Delivers Proposals During State Speech & A Big Surprise

Credit Office of Governor John Kasich

Gov. John Kasich gave his fourth State of the State speech last night in Medina, and as perhaps fitting for an election year, it was unlike any other he’s delivered.

It was his shortest State of the State speech to-date at just over an hour in length. But the most surprising part of the evening wasn’t political; it was Kasich’s presentation of the three Cleveland women who were held captive for over a decade by Ariel Castro. It was the first time the trio has been seen together publically since their escape.  Kasich honored them with the 2014 Ohio Courage Medals.

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Statewide News
7:57 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Ohio House Approves More Snow Days For Schools

Credit Flickr Creative Commons User ElDave

Many school districts will likely have to lengthen their calendars this year, but state lawmakers have voted to give them a bit of a break. The Ohio House voted on a bill Wednesday that allows four calamity days that don’t have to be made up, but teachers have a different deal.

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