Lewis Wallace

Managing Editor and Reporter

Lewis Wallace comes to WYSO from the Pritzker Journalism Fellowship at WBEZ in Chicago, where he reported on the environment, technology, science and economics. Prior to going down the public radio rabbit hole, he was a community organizer and producer for a multimedia project about youth and policing in Chicago. Originally from Ann Arbor, Mich., Lewis spent many years as a freelance writer, anti-oppression trainer, barista and sex educator in Chicago and in Oakland. He holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from Northwestern University, and he has expanded his journalism training through the 2013 Metcalf Fellowship for Environmental Journalism and the Institutes for Journalism and Natural Resources.

Lewis contributes regularly to NPR and Marketplace, and also loves working with WYSO's growing team of community producers. His reporting on the rollout of the federal Affordable Care Act for WYSO won two 2013 national Public Radio News Directors Incorporated (PRNDI) awards in the small station category for continuing coverage (first place) and best news feature (second place). His features produced for the series WYSO Curious won 2014 PRNDI awards for use of sound (first place) and broadcast writing (second place). He won several 2014 Ohio AP Awards, including best reporter in the Radio II category.

Lewis is transgender and goes by the pronouns "he" and "him."

Ways to Connect

Satellite view of toxic algal bloom on Lake Erie
NASA Earth Observatory

 A wide-ranging Great Lakes cleanup program appears to have survived budget talks in Congress. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative would get $300 million next year under a massive spending bill expected to go to a vote this week.

The initiative created by President Barack Obama works on pollution, invasive species and algae bloom issues in the lakes.

But Obama’s budget request this year was less than the amount that usually goes to the project—lawmakers from Great Lakes states pushed for full funding.

Dayton Mall
Edoderoo / Flickr Creative Commons

Two local organizations have filed a lawsuit in federal court saying the Dayton Mall’s bus stop discriminates against people with disabilities.

Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, or ABLE, joined with Disability Rights Ohio in a suit filed Tuesday. They say the public RTA bus stop at the mall is unreasonably far from the mall’s main entrance, creating barriers for people with disabilities who work or shop at the mall.

Jason Boylan is an attorney for Disability Rights Ohio. He says the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was intended to prevent situations like this.

Norm and Betty Jo Anderson have lived in Piketon since the mid-1950s, when Norm, aka "Hard Head," started working at the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant.
Lewis Wallace / WYSO

UPDATE: As of Thursday, Dec. 17, it appears likely that Congress will fully fund the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant cleanup for FY2016. A spokesperson for the main contractor at the plant says it's too soon to be sure, but layoffs appear unlikely.

Norm and Betty Jo Anderson have lived in Piketon, Ohio, a tiny town in the Appalachian foothills, since the 1950s.

Former President Bill Clinton. He helped broker the peace agreement in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1995.
David/dbking / Flickr/Creative Commons

Former President Bill Clinton was in Dayton Thursday for a speech on the 20th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Accords, the agreement that ended a bloody war in what is now Bosnia-Herzegovina. Setting up the successful negotiation was one of Clinton’s accomplishments early in his presidency, though even he acknowledged what came out of those 21 days in Dayton is not perfect.


This week Dayton will recognize the 20th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Accords, which ended the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1995. Events in the area will include a visit by former President Bill Clinton on Thursday.

"Patches" is one of the C-123 cargo planes used to spray Agent Orange. It's now on display at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
Lewis Wallace / WYSO

When Stephen Ratcliffe went to Vietnam, he says he knew what he signed up for, but he didn’t know anything about Agent Orange.

“I remember seeing the spray planes flying over,” Ratcliffe says. “But they told me it was mosquito repellent, but you never know.”

In Wolf Creek and Dayton View, hundreds of homes still stand empty. west dayton abandoned house tour
Juliet Fromholt / WYSO

Since the housing market collapse in the late 2000s, Dayton and Montgomery County have been demolishing hundreds of abandoned houses per year.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Richard Ross with Gov. John Kasich at a Cleveland charter school earlier this year.
Mark Urycki / State Impact Ohio

The Ohio school superintendent has announced he will retire at the end of the year. In a release, Richard Ross says he came out of retirement four years ago to help Ohio schools, first as an advisor to John Kasich and then as superintendent since 2013—now he’s ready to go back. Ross has been criticized recently because of a scandal over Ohio charter schools.

Former Ohio Governor Bob Taft says he disagrees with his cousins on marijuana. But the disagreement is quite civil.
Lewis Wallace / WYSO

The marijuana initiative on Tuesday’s ballot in Ohio went down in flames, with 65 percent voting “no” on legalizing recreational and medical marijuana.

While early unofficial results last night showed the Greene County Parks levy trailing, the latest count shows the levy for additional operating expenses has passed with almost 51 percent in favor. Renewal levies across the county passed overwhelmingly, although new levies for additional operating expenses in Spring Valley Township and Silvercreek Township were both voted down.