Rachael McDonald

Morning Edition Host / Reporter

Rachael McDonald started her career at KLCC as a volunteer in the newsroom in 2000.  Rachael was hired by the Northwest News Network to establish their Richland bureau in 2004. She reported on the progress of cleanup at Hanford Nuclear Reservation, chemical weapons destruction at the Umatilla Chemical Depot, agriculture and wine. Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 to be the host of Morning Edition. She also reports on Lane County, forest issues and a variety of other local and regional stories. Rachael has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Oregon. Rachael has won numerous awards for her reporting including first place from PRNDI for her story "Garden Brings Community Together" and for her interview with Naseem Rhaka, author of "The Crying Tree".  Rachael enjoys reading, hiking, biking and cooking.

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Disasters & Accidents
12:40 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

DeFazio Pushes For Funding To Fight Wildfires

Credit http://defazio.house.gov/

U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio of Oregon plans to use a rare procedure to force a vote on a bill TO increase federal funding to fight wildfires. This as the U-S Forest Service is close to surpassing its firefighting budget for the year.

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Politics & Government
1:22 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Ethiopian Athletes Likely to Seek Asylum in U.S.

The four Ethiopian track and field athletes who were reported missing on Saturday, July 26, 2014 (from left to right): Amanuel Abebe Atibeha, 17, Dureti Edao, 18, Meaza Kebede, 18, Zeyituna Mohammed, 18. All four were located safe days after being reported missing.

Police reports show at least one of the four Ethiopian athletes who went missing after the World Junior Championships in Eugene last month planned to seek asylum. We checked in with an immigration lawyer to find out their chances of success.

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Wildfire
11:39 am
Mon August 18, 2014

NW Fire Season Seems To Be Calming Down

Credit Central Oregon Fire Info

Fire season is calming down in the Northwest. Officials have dropped their preparedness level to 4. The region was at level 5 for 31 days-- an all time record.

More than 8 thousand firefighters were battling 21 large fires in Oregon and Washington at the height of this fire season. Linda Hecker is with the Northwest Fire Coordination Center in Portland. She says things are calming down, which has allowed officials to reduce the region's preparedness level.

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Land Use
11:50 am
Thu August 14, 2014

Straub Family Opposes Springfield UGB Expansion

Signs opposing the City of Springfield's UGB expansion line Seavey Loop Road near Mt. Pisgah.
Credit Rachael McDonald

The City of Springfield's efforts to expand their Urban Growth Boundary to a rural area near Mount Pisgah have hit a snag. The largest landowners on Seavey Loop Road have changed their stance from neutral to opposed to the city's plans.

Bob Straub started acquiring land on Seavey Loop in the 1950s. The late Oregon governor's grandson manages the 56 acres with his sisters.

Straub: "My grandfather liked the idea of preserving the land for farming use. He always felt a close connection to the farming community."

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Oregon coast
1:02 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

Lincoln County Commissioners Oppose A National Marine Sanctuary Off Oregon's Coast

The waters off Cape Blanco were being considered as candidates for National Marine Sanctuary status.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

The Lincoln County Board of Commissioners voted Wednesday to oppose the designation of a National Marine Sanctuary in Oregon coastal waters.
 

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Small Business
7:28 am
Wed August 13, 2014

Popular Goat Dairy Turns To Crowd-funding

Shari Reyna with some of her goats in the barn.
Credit Rachael McDonald

A goat dairy near Dexter is suffering from its own success. What's been a labor of love for many years is becoming impossible to sustain without an infusion of cash. Ferns' Edge Dairy is turning to crowd-funding to stay alive.

Shari Reyna has been tending her Mt Zion Dairy Goat herd on this land southeast of Eugene since the 1970s. She and her partner Fred Warner own Ferns' Edge Dairy which produces popular chevre and other cheeses.

Reyna takes me on a tour of the dairy.

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Festival of Eugene
1:08 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Festival of Eugene May Seek New Location

Credit Festival of Eugene

The Festival of Eugene is on. But organizers say it may have to take place in a different venue. The original plan was to hold it near the 5th Street Market.

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Wildfire
12:41 pm
Mon August 11, 2014

Lightning Sparks About A Dozen Small Fires East of Eugene

A red flag warning is in effect for most of Oregon through Tuesday because of high temperatures and thunderstorms.
Credit Schin Haakenson / Inciweb

Monday night's lightning sparked several small forest fires east of Eugene. A red flag warning is in effect for most of Oregon through Tuesday with high temperatures and more thunderstorms expected.

Oregon Department of Forestry crews are battling a 20 acre blaze near Dexter. Officials say it isn't threatening any structures. ODF spokesman Nick Hennemann says crews are working to put the fire out as quickly as possible. It's unclear how many other small fires were sparked by lightning overnight.

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Disasters & Accidents
1:33 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

South Eugene Home Destroyed By Fire

A helicopter drops water on a house fire off Fox Hollow Road in South Eugene.
Credit Kyle Huges.

UPDATE: 5:15pm

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University of Oregon
1:31 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

Students React to UO President's Sudden Departure

UO President Michael Gottfredson announced his resignation Wednesday, effective immediately.
Credit University of Oregon

University of Oregon President Michael Gottfredson has resigned after two years on the job. Gottfredson announced his decision Wednesday in a campus-wide email. He took the helm in 2012 replacing an interim president who took over after Richard Lariviere  was fired by the State Board of Higher Education. KLCC's Rachael McDonald went on campus Thursday to find out what students think about Gottfredson's abrupt departure.

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