Reinvention Stories

WYSO's Juliet Fromholt interview Jason Shelton in Trotwood
WYSO's Juliet Fromholt interview Jason Shelton in Trotwood
Credit Shawndra Jones

Have you ever had to reinvent yourself, because of the big changes in our local economy or in your personal life? Did you lose a job, go back to school, do things you never thought you’d be doing? What is that like?

In season two of ReInvention Stories, we meet residents of Old North Dayton, Trotwood and Five Oaks; men and women, new immigrants and life-long residents, all of them transforming themselves and their communities.

Every story you hear on the radio has a short film here on the website. Scroll down to see and hear them.

An interactive map of Dayton, full of photos, patents, city events, history, is online at reinventionstoreis.org. Check it out. Find stories from your neighborhood, or add your own story!

The ReInvention Stories team in season two is: filmmakers Julia Reichert, Steve Bognar, Shawndra Jones, Eric Risher and Basim Blunt plus WYSO producers Jerry Kenney, Juliet Fromholt, Sarah Buckingham and Neenah Ellis.

A big thanks to the funders of season two – see them listed below - and a shout out to the original granting organizations. ReInvention Stories was part of Localore, a nation-wide initiative to encourage public radio stations to work with independent media producers of all stripes. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting and AIR, the Association of Independents in Radio were the major funders. We’re proud to say we were an original Localore station!

Valerie and DeMarcus Calhoun moved to Dayton from Montgomery, Alabama in August of 2011 and rented a home in South Park. Valerie is a civilian working for the Air Force at Wright Patterson.   She went to Troy University in Montgomery, Alabama - and while studying there, she joined a student fellowship program - working and training at the local air force base. After graduation, the Air Force offered her a job. She could move to Boston, or to Dayton. All she had to do was convince her husband, Demarcus.


General Motors started manufacturing trucks in Dayton in 1951. Fifty-seven years later, GM closed its Moraine Assembly plant and over two thousand people lost their jobs - including Debbie Bradley of Fairborn. After 13 years at GM, Bradley started hearing rumors. GM was struggling. The plant might close. Bradley wanted to have a Plan B. So she took a placement test at Sinclair Community College. 

This week on ReInvention Stories we meet Shane Anderson, owner of Ghostlight Coffee on Wayne Avenue in Dayton's South Park neighborhood.

In high school, Anderson dreamed of becoming a band director, which, he did. Anderson was a band director and music teacher for fourteen years. Most of that time was spent at Miami East High School and Vandalia-Butler High School. But he had another dream, of one day running a coffee shop. And he wanted to quit teaching before getting too burnt out.   

In the final installment of WYSO’s ReInvention Stories, we meet Francisco and Maribel Arias Hernandez. The couple came to the United States from Mexico in 1989.  They planned to earn money and go back but they ended up starting a family in Chicago, and they lived there for 15 years. Francisco and Maribel came to Dayton with their two sons to start a construction business - during a time when authorities were cracking down on undocumented workers, and immigrants in Southwest Ohio were living in fear.

This week on ReInvention Stories we meet Jeremy Pennucci, owner of the Hazy Shade Disc Golf shop in Belmont. 

Pennucci grew up in Riverside. He always wanted to get into construction, and worked in that field for eight years. Pennucci found it less satisfying than he expected, and realized the toll it would take on his body. He was looking for something new when he was introduced to a sport called disc golf.

This week on Reinvention Stories we meet Merphie Frazier, president of the anti-violence group Street Souljaz.

Frazier went to the University of Dayton on a football scholarship.  He suffered injures, but he was still able to play - and he was being recruited by the NFL. Frazier wanted to play for the Steelers - until he saw a presentation at a training camp…

This ReInvention Story was produced by Steve Bognar, Basim Blunt, Wayne Baker, Neenah Ellis and Sarah Buckingham.

This week on Reinvention Stories we meet Kelly Dailey, owner of Funk Lab Dance Studio and Creative Arts Center in Kettering. Dailey grew up in Bellbrook and studied nursing at Wright State University. She worked as a psychiatric nurse for seven years at Good Samaritan Hospital and Kettering Medical Center. Now she runs the Funk Lab Dance Studio full time.

This ReInvention Story was produced by Megan Hague and Sarah Buckingham.

Daniel Kinney works third shift at UTC Aerospace Systems, a company that makes wheels and breaks for airplanes. He’s been an electrician for over twenty-five years. He and his wife Keshia own and operate Caribbacanas, a Caribbean food truck. They are part of a group of people reinventing dining. Kinney saw that the food truck movement has potential, and recognized the instability in manufacturing - so he decided to make the leap.

Caribbacanas is now a member of the newly formed Miami Valley Mobile Food Association. The truck will be hitting the streets again this summer.

Barbara Caveda’s mother was ill and couldn’t work while she was growing up on Staten Island, New York. At age twelve, Caveda left school to go to work and take care of her mom. She says the only thing that made her mother happy was baked goods – cakes, pastries, and especially chocolates.

Today, Caveda is pursuing that passion with a small home business called Barbara’s Chocolates, which she runs out of her own kitchen.

She chose Dayton at random, by pointing her finger on a map. And came here looking for a fresh start.

This week on ReInvention Stories, Briana Ballard, a Dayton native who’s been interested in religion and different forms spirituality from a young age.  Ballard owns Anything Under the Moon One Stop Pagan Co-Op in the Belmont business district. She took over the business in March of 2012.

This ReInvention Story was produced by Liz Cambron, Julia Reichert and Sarah Buckingham.

Pages