Emily Donahue

News Director, Executive Producer, Texas Standard

Emily Donahue founded KUT News in 2001 as the station’s first news director. She's currently developing and launching KUT's daily news program, "Texas Standard".  Under Donahue’s leadership, KUT has grown from a staff of four into a nationally recognized newsroom with a radio and multi-media internship program cited far and wide; and has won more than 100 local, national and international awards for reporting, including five National Edward R. Murrow awards, two National Headliner Awards and a Clarion. Prior to joining KUT, Donahue was with the Peabody award-winning “Marketplace” team as producer of the Marketplace Morning Report. Emily has worked as a journalist for close to three decades in operations large and small. She says of all the places she’s worked – including London, New York, Los Angeles, Boston, and even tiny Lexington, Virginia -- Austin is the best. In fact, it’s home. 

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Politics
8:42 am
Thu June 27, 2013

PolitiFact: 'Pants on Fire' for Texas Rep's Rape Kit Claim

A Texas lawmaker said the evidence-collection kits are like the medical procedure known as dilation and curettage.
Todd Wiseman, Texas Tribune

Do so-called rape kits in Texas include an internal surgical procedure similar to abortion? That’s what a Republican legislator recently  suggested in a House debate.

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Voting Rights Act
6:07 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Luci Baines Johnson on the Voting Rights Act & Her Father’s Legacy

President Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act in 1965. His daughter, Luci Baines Johnson, says today's decision "breaks my heart."
U.S. National Archives

As the United States begin to digest the implications of today’s Supreme Court ruling striking down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, the decision is resonating here in Austin – the home of Lyndon Baines Johnson, the president who fought for the Voting Rights Act.

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Arts and Culture
3:15 pm
Fri May 24, 2013

Interview: Leonard Maltin on Capra, Classic Films and Movies That Prove 'Life Can Be Beautiful'

Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

It’s Memorial Day weekend – the first big weekend of the summer season and plenty of movies are battling at the box office.

Burt alongside the latest “Star Trek” and “Hangover” sequels is another movie: The 1933 Frank Capra film “Lady for a Day.” Film Critic Leonard Maltin is in Austin for its showing tonight at the Paramount Theater, as part of its summer film series.

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Affordable Housing 101
5:17 pm
Tue May 21, 2013

Interactive Map: Average Price for Austin Homes

This interactive map was created using MLS data provided by the Austin Board of Realtors

Click on the dots to view the average sales price of Austin homes for each month from January 2008 to April 2013. 

Arts and Culture
1:49 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

'Octopus Alone:' Children's Book Says Alone Doesn't Mean Lonely

'Octopus Alone' is the second children's book from Austin illustrator Divya Srinivasan.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The children's book, Octopus Alone, by Austin writer/illustrator Divya Srinivasan is released today. It's already being called a remarkable story that teaches children that it's OK to be by yourself in a safe and quite place.

Octopus is shy. She lives on a reef where there’s always a lot going on. Sometimes it’s more than she can take. One day, she finds herself in a new place far from home, all alone.

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Arts and Culture
5:05 am
Thu May 16, 2013

Survival and Identity in 'The 5th Wave'

Rick Yancey's new young-adult novel combines science fiction and existential questions.
Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

Imagine: The world as you know it has ended. People are gone. Food is scarce. Vicious animal roam freely. You are alone, fighting an enemy so devious, so powerful, so undetectable, you question your own sanity. You are 16.

That is the premise of Rick Yancey’s new young-adult novel, The 5th Wave. KUT’s Emily Donahue spoke with Yancey about the existential questions the characters grapple with along the way.

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Austin
2:16 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Map Says Many Austinites Bike to Work, But Do They Feel Safe?

This City of Austin Map breaks down the percentage of Austinites commuting to work by area. Click the image for an enlarged view.
City of Austin

It’s no secret that Austin is a biking city. And while cities around the country are gearing up for National Bike to Work Day, riding to work is nothing new for Austinites: according to Census data, people here commute by bike four times more often than the national average. 

To prove it, the city released a map breaking down bike commuting by neighborhood. But while more people are pedaling to work, cyclists don't always feel safe on Austin roads.

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PolitiFact
6:30 am
Wed May 15, 2013

PolitiFact: How Many Times Did Greg Abbott Sue the Federal Government?

This week, KUT's Emily Donahue and PolitiFact's Gardner Selby discover just how many times Greg Abbott has sued the Obama administration
KUT News

The Attorney General of Texas recently said he’s sued the Obama administration 25 times.

KUT's Emily Donahue checks that statement with Gardner Selby of the Austin American-Statesman’s Politifact Texas project.

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PolitiFact
5:00 am
Wed May 1, 2013

PolitiFact: Most State Employees Still Waiting for Raise

A state employee group says the state hasn't raised wages in years.
KUT News

As the legislative session comes to a close, no one knows yet if the next state budget will include across-the-board pay raises, but a workers groups claims state workers haven't seen a raise in years.

The Texas State Employees Union said on their website that most state workers haven't seen an uptick in wages since 2009.

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PolitiFact
6:01 am
Wed April 24, 2013

PolitiFact: How Many Texas School Days Are Lost from Tests?

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst recently said Texas students miss 45 days in a given year from testing. How did this rate on the Truth-O-Meter?
KUT News

Some public school students are taking state mandated tests this week. Do Texas schools lose 45 days a year to that testing, as one politico claims?

KUT News' Emily Donahue discussed that question is the Austin American-Statesman’s political fact checker, Gardner Selby.

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PolitiFact
5:10 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

PolitiFact: Americans Support Background Checks for Gun Buyers

Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell recently claimed that the majority of Americans support universal background checks for gun purchases. Gardner Selby (l) tells us how that ranks on the Truth-O-Meter.
KUT News

While campaigning for background checks with gun purchases, Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell referenced polls showing public support for the policy.

Mayor Leffingwell joined a press conference supporting background checks in March – and said 90 percent of Americans and 74 percent of National Rifle Association members support universal background checks.

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PolitiFact
5:10 am
Wed April 10, 2013

PolitiFact: Carbon Monoxide Still Used in Animals Shelters

This week PolitiFact's Gardner Selby and KUT's Emily Donahue checked into a claim made by State Senator Kirk Watson about euthanasia in Texas animal shelters.
KUT News

A Travis County state lawmaker says dogs and cats are still being euthanized by carbon monoxide poisoning.

KUT’s Emily Donahue checked that claim with Gardner Selby of the Austin American-Statesman’s Politifact Texas reporting project.

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Texas
3:10 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Sebastian Junger Screens Film About Journalist's Death in Libya

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Sebastian Junger has written bestselling books including The Perfect Storm. His documentary, "Restrepo" was nominated for an Oscar.  But none of his works was as personally powerful as the film he’ll introduce tonight at the LBJ Library.  

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Austin
4:09 pm
Mon April 8, 2013

'Three Graves Full' is a Mystery Thriller That’s Full of Laughs

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Jamie Mason’s first novel is called Three Graves Full. It’s part mystery, part thriller and part slapstick comedy of errors. And Jamie Mason is getting rave reviews.

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Arts and Culture
5:31 pm
Wed April 3, 2013

Afghanistan Stories From the Walking Wounded

"Outside the Wire" collects the stories of soldiers in Afghanistan.
Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

It’s been more than 11 years since the United States' war in Afghanistan began.  Nearly 20,000 U.S. military men and women have come back injured from the war.

Every one of those injuries has a story behind it.  Some were collected by Christine Dumaine Leche, a creative writing teacher at Austin Community College. She left her home and family to work with soldiers in Afghanistan, helping them to write about their experiences in a long and historic war.

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PolitiFact
5:18 am
Wed March 27, 2013

PolitiFact: Low Voter Turnout Among Latinos in '08 Election

A political adviser from Battleground Texas said Latinos in the 2008 elections turned out in fewer number than Latinos who initially registered.
KUT News

On Comedy Central’s “Colbert Report,” a political adviser said improvements in voter registration and turnout could help Democrats win statewide in what has long been Republican-leaning Texas.

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PolitiFact
5:45 am
Wed March 20, 2013

PolitiFact: Texas Has Highest Percentage of Uninsured

PolitiFact found that Texas has the highest percentage of uninsured, but not the highest number
KUT News

Gov. Rick Perry is holding firm to his decision to rebuff any Medicaid expansion under the federal health care law. One lawmaker says expansion is necessary – because Texas has six million uninsured residents– and that makes the state No. 1 in the nation.

How true is that statement?

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Arts and Culture
1:03 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

'Drowning House' Plunges Readers Into A Dark, Victorian Galveston

Elizabeth Black's first novel "The Drowning House" explores Victorian Galveston.
Random House

Galveston Island is famous for many things: miles of beaches, its many festivals and Victorian architecture – and its sea wall – that was built after the hurricane of 1900. That was the deadliest hurricane in US history – and it rewrote the history of Galveston.

Texas author Elizabeth Black has set that famous hurricane at the center of a mystery in her first novel, “The Drowning House." Just as Galveston’s modern history is built on the foundation of the great hurricane, so is the narrative, set moodily in the city’s historic district. 

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Arts and Culture
6:17 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Folklore From All Over in New Cargill Novel

Austin is home to a lot of weird stuff: bat tributes, floating marching bands, Hippie Hollow. In his new book, Dreams and Shadows, Austin author C. Robert Cargill delves deep into the dark heart of the city’s inner weirdness, using a little myth and legend as punctuation for a truly unique story. He spoke with KUT’s Emily Donahue about his work and his inspiration.

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Austin
5:25 am
Wed February 27, 2013

PolitiFact: Austin Has Low Unemployment, High Poverty

Emily Donahue and Gardner Selby examine County Commissioner Sarah Eckhardt's claim that Austin has low unemployment and high poverty
KUT News

A Travis County Commissioner says local prosperity is shadowed by rising poverty. In this week’s PolitiFact check-in, KUT’s Emily Donahue spoke to Gardner Selby of the Austin American-Statesman’s PolitiFact Texas.

PolitiFact tackled a claim by Travis County commissioner Sarah Eckhardt who, in an email, said conditions are tough despite "present prosperity."

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