Karen Kasler

Bureau Chief

Credit Kristen Kasler Peters

Contact Karen at 614/578-6375 or at kkasler@statehousenews.org.

Karen Kasler is a lifelong Ohioan. She grew up in Lancaster, attended Otterbein College in Westerville, and found her first professional break at WCBE-FM, Columbus. Karen was selected as a Fellow in the Kiplinger Program for Mid-Career Journalists at The Ohio State University in 1994. After earning her Master's Degree in that program, she worked at WBNS-TV in Columbus and then moved north to become the afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor for WTAM-AM, Cleveland. 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. Each year she anchors the Bureau's live coverage of the governor's State of the State. She was a moderator for US Senate debates in 2012 and 2010, participated in several debates in 2010, and has led debates over statewide issues. She's produced features for NPR and "Marketplace", and has been interviewed by NPR, the BBC, NBC and several local and regional stations around the country. She's a regular panelist on WCPN/ideastream's "The Sound of Ideas", a frequent guest on WOSU-TV’s “Columbus on the Record” and has appeared on WBNS-TV's "Face the State".

She's 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's a three-time Emmy nominee for "The State of Ohio". She's a past president of the Ohio Associated Press, and currently on the Board of Directors for the Central Ohio Society of Professional Journalists. Karen is also a former adjunct professor at Capital University in Columbus.

Karen, her husband and their son Jack live on Columbus' northeast side.

"The State of Ohio", Ohio Public TV/OGT

It hasn’t even been a month since the 2016 vote, but the speculation has been going for months on who will be running in 2018 for the top five statewide offices, which will all be open. But one Democrat says he’s making the moves to run for governor.

Statehouse News Bureau

Among the things lawmakers are dealing with in this lame duck session is whether the Senate will confirm a Democratic lawyer from Columbus to the commission that hears utility rate cases.

ODOT

Route 33 could become a technology superhighway, if a project launched by the state goes as planned.

Karen Kasler

More than two hundred singers – nearly all of them amateurs – will crowd the stage at the historic Ohio Theatre in downtown Columbus tonight, for a sold out performance that they’ll do only once. But there’s more to this group than just the music.

Statehouse News Bureau

It turns out Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton may have won one more county in Ohio than originally reported.

OGT/Ohio Channel

Now that the election is over, lawmakers will be coming back to work at the Statehouse for the lame duck session. But the presidential race is likely to come up in what they discuss.

Twitter/Hamilton County Court of Appeals

All the statewide races on this month’s ballot were decided by fairly big margins, except one. But the contest between Ohio Supreme Court justice between Republican appeals court judge Pat Fischer of Cincinnati and Democratic Cuyahoga County Common pleas judge John O’Donnell is now over.

Karen Kasler

A documentary filmmaker opened a pop-up chicken restaurant in Columbus this weekend that claims to feature “fast food with integrity”. It’ll be open for two more days, to get customer feedback. But it’s unclear whether it is what it seems.

OGT/Ohio Channel

This election has emboldened supporters of Donald Trump, and left Hillary Clinton’s backers devastated. But it’s also brought up big questions for those who align themselves with the major political parties. Two former party chairs took time recently to talk about what the results of this election mean for the future.

Karen Kasler

Mayors from Ohio’s 30 largest cities have formed a coalition to discuss state policy and lobby lawmakers about the issues their communities are facing.

Karen Kasler

Youngstown-area Rep. Tim Ryan says he’ll challenge Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for the job of leading Democrats in Congress. And the idea is going over well with one Democratic leader.

Statehouse News Bureau file photo

The state takes in $1.7 billion from out of state online retailers paying the commercial activity tax, or CAT. Now the state’s highest court says internet retailers which have no offices or employees in Ohio but sell products to Ohio residents still have to pay the CAT, which nearly all Ohio businesses pay.

Karen Kasler

Donald Trump’s campaign had targeted northeast Ohio in trying to build a win in this key swing state. Though Hillary Clinton won about 15,000 more votes, Trump won 17 of the 20 counties in the region. And he won big in an area Democrats usually dominate – the Mahoning Valley.

Karen Kasler

It was a bad night for some Democrats in Statehouse races.

Karen Kasler

Nearly 1.8 million Ohioans have already voted, and more than 11,000 people voted early this year than did in before Election Day in 2012.

Katherine Welles/Shutterstock.com

The US Supreme Court has declined to get involved in a case involving planned activities by the Trump campaign at polling places in Ohio tomorrow.

Karen Kasler

Thousands of people stood in huge lines at boards of elections offices in the state’s biggest counties. At the Franklin County Board of Elections, the line on Saturday was an eighth of a mile long.

Orhan Cam/shutterstock.com

Democrats say they’ll appeal a decision announced yesterday in a case involving activities planned near polling places on Tuesday by Donald Trump’s campaign.

Statehouse News Bureau

Gun regulation is an issue has been a challenging one for both major party candidates in the US Senate race between incumbent Republican Sen. Rob Portman and Democratic former Gov. Ted Strickland. In the last installment of a three part series breaking down the race issue-by-issue, here's how the candidates stand on guns and regulations.

Karen Kasler

Ohio’s US Senate race has five candidates on the ballot – the two big names are incumbent Republican Rob Portman and Democratic former Gov. Ted Strickland. But there are three other candidates - nonparty candidates Tom Connors and Scott Rupert, who has run before, and the Green Party candidate, Joe DeMare of Bowling Green.

Karen Kasler

While Democrats have been pushing their voters to cast early ballots, the Republican nominee for president has been on the campaign trail urging people to consider changing their early votes.

Statehouse News Bureau

The final Quinnipiac polls are out, and they show some changes for the races at the top of the ticket in Ohio – most notably, between Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Karen Kasler

Early voting numbers are coming in from the last few weeks, and from the first weekend of early in person voting. And the numbers could prove to be problematic for Democrats, who found success with early voting in the last presidential election.

Karen Kasler

The US Supreme Court has rejected an appeal from advocates for the homeless and the Ohio Democratic Party to ensure that more absentee and provisional ballots are counted. That settles the final lawsuit of the 2016 election over Ohio’s election laws – for now.

Karen Kasler

With just days to go before the election, hundreds of absentee ballots are having to be re-issued in northwest Ohio.

Karen Kasler

Polls show the presidential race is close in Ohio – a key swing state that voted for President Obama in the last two elections. This weekend was the first of two weekend of early in person voting, and it had both major political parties working to turn out their voters.

Karen Kasler

Ohio’s largest industry is agriculture, with one in seven Ohioans connected to that industry. In the second installment in the Statehouse News Bureau’s series featuring voices of voters, people in the state’s farm community talk about what they’re thinking about when they decide which presidential candidate to choose.

electthebeard.com

Voters who are dissatisfied with the major party nominees for president have other choices on the Ohio ballot. There are a few third party candidates, as well as a list of 18 candidates who have been certified as write-ins. And eight are from Ohio.

OGT/Ohio Channel

State agencies are already looking past this election and months ahead – to the upcoming budget process.

Statehouse News Bureau file photo

The chairs of Ohio’s two major political parties are carefully watching the numbers of people turning out to vote early in person and returning absentee ballots.

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