Kevin Lavery

News Reporter and Host

Kevin Lavery is a general assignment news reporter and produces news features and interviews for Current State. He's also an alternate local host on NPR's "Morning Edition."

Prior to coming to WKAR in 2006, Lavery was a reporter at KWMU in St. Louis, Missouri, covering local politics, government, and biotechnology issues.

Lavery's journalism career began in the Navy. He studied journalism at Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indiana; worked as news director and television producer for American Forces Network-Japan; and served in Antarctica as radio program director at the McMurdo Station Research Facility on Ross Island.

Ways to Connect

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

About 207,000 Roman Catholics live in the 10 counties that make up the Diocese of Lansing.  It contains 84 parishes and 34 schools, and it provides charitable assistance to more than 125,000 people each year. 

Today, Bishop Earl Boyea will observe the 75th anniversary of the foundation of the diocese with a special Mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral in downtown Lansing. 

WKAR’s Kevin Lavery spoke with Bishop Boyea about the some of the difficulties the Catholic Church is facing in America today.  But first, he asked him what he felt was a significant achievement of the Lansing diocese.

WKAR File Photo

Federal officials are watching mid-Michigan’s efforts to revitalize its former General Motors assembly sites.   The Obama Administration is poised to offer its help.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Michigan voters go to the polls Tuesday to cast their votes in the state primary election. In Ingham County, the most divisive contest is the race between Mark Grebner and Pat Lindemann for the office of Drain Commissioner.

WKAR File Photo

The 68th state House district covers a large swath of the city of Lansing, plus parts of Ingham County and Lansing Township.  The current officeholder,  Democrat Joan Bauer, will vacate the seat this year.  Seven Democrats are vying for the nomination to represent this very diverse district.

City of Lansing

The city of Lansing and the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians are extending their self-imposed deadline for finalizing a land transfer in preparation for a new downtown casino. 

Project leaders had initially set an August 1 completion date to transfer ownership of the land adjacent to the Lansing Center from the city to the tribe.  Now, they’re pushing their deadline back 90 days to November 1.  Officials insist the Kewadin Lansing casino project is following what they call an “aggressive” timeline, but say they simply need more time to finalize some details. 

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

The Amtrak train station just off the Michigan State University campus in East Lansing is getting a major renovation.  The Capital Area Transportation Authority has received a $6.3 million federal grant to rebuild the station and add a separate bus terminal.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Regional transportation planners will use a federal grant to rebuild and enhance the Amtrak train station in East Lansing. 

The $6.3 million grant will help the Capital Area Transportation Authority expand the Amtrak station near Michigan State University.  CATA will create a 200-acre multi-modal facility, with a separate bus terminal, upgraded waiting platform and accommodations for taxis and bicycles. 

U.S.  Department of Transportation general counsel Robert Rivkin says the project is part of a $12 billion federal program to improve intercity rail service.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Training to respond to acts of violence is a basic function of emergency personnel across the country.  On Wednesday, dozens of first responders from the Lansing region gathered at Michigan State University to test their skills in a mass casualty drill. 

WKAR’s Kevin Lavery watched the drill unfold.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

In 2007, the city of Lansing closed the Red Cedar Golf Course near the Frandor shopping center for budgetary reasons.  Now, an economic development team is studying five proposals to revitalize a portion of the 61-acre tract.  Regardless of which plan is selected, the land will undergo a major engineering project to keep pollutants from storm water runoff from spilling into the Red Cedar River.   

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Three candidates are competing for the Republican nomination to represent Michigan’s 69th state House district.  Last night, the trio appeared on a local government access TV show to debate the issues.

The GOP candidates for the 69th House district are Frank Lambert, a General Motors employee and part-time paralegal, George Nastas the Third, a 35-year Meridian Township resident, and current township supervisor Susan McGillicuddy.  The district encompasses Meridian Township, East Lansing and much of Ingham County.

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

The two Democrats vying for Michigan’s 69th House district seat met last night in Meridian Township for a televised debate.  

Former East Lansing Mayor Sam Singh and career educator Susan Schmidt are running in the Democratic primary on August 7 for the right to represent the 69th House district, which encompasses East Lansing, Meridian Township and much of Ingham County. 

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Happy Independence Day!  As we celebrate our 236th birthday as a nation, you might not see as many fireworks light up the sky this evening.  The long stretch of hot, dry weather we’re experiencing is forcing many local authorities to postpone their fireworks displays.  For fireworks retailers, the season has been a good news, bad news story.  Some vendors are seeing the weather bite into their revenues, but they’re also reveling in a new state law that allows them to sell more pyrotechnics than ever before.

iPocrates / flickr

Last week’s historic Supreme Court decision upholding President Obama’s Affordable Care Act clears the way for some 32 million people to receive health insurance under Medicaid.  But many health experts fear there may not be enough doctors to serve everyone.  The nation is in the midst of a shortage of primary care physicians. 

In this week’s reWorking Michigan report, WKAR’s Kevin Lavery looks at how those who train tomorrow’s health care providers in mid-Michigan are getting ready for the influx of patients.


Many people in mid-Michigan are praising the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision upholding the Affordable Care Act.  But local health officials see a gap in the law that poses a particular challenge.

The cheering audience gathered at Union Missionary Baptist Church in Lansing typified the reaction of millions of Americas applauding the Supreme Court ruling. 

Kevin Lavery / WKAR

Ingham County’s new consolidated 911 dispatch center is set to open Wednesday.  Its start comes after a brief court-ordered delay at the request of the dispatchers.

Dispatchers had asked an Ingham County judge to block the county center’s opening because they felt their training had been inadequate.  The new center uses a telephone touch screen system that displays information about county emergency units and assets.  The dispatchers had been trained in Livingston County, and said that information did not give an accurate picture of their duties.