The Campbell Conversations

6:30 AM Saturdays & 6:00 PM Sundays | Local stations FM 89.9 & FM 90.3

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The Campbell Conversations is an interview-based public affairs radio program, created, hosted, and produced by Grant Reeher, Director of the Campbell Public Affairs Institute at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. The show airs on WRVO Public Media Saturdays at 6:30 AM and again on Sundays at 6:00 PM, and is also available as a downloadable podcast. WRVO Public Media is the largest regional NPR-affiliate in Central New York, with a listening area spanning 22 counties and southern Ontario.

The half-hour program features extended, in-depth interviews in which Reeher goes beyond and behind the current news cycle to explore important questions concerning public affairs. Guests include notable people from Central New York — writers, politicians, activists, public officials, and business professionals — whose work affects the public life of the community, as well as nationally-prominent figures visiting the region to talk about their work. It is also a recognized go-to place for candidate debates during election cycles.  The program enjoys a regular audience among political, non-profit, educational, and other policy-related social networks.

Among the program’s recognition's and awards are a “Best Special Program” award from the Syracuse Press Club, and a “Best Interview” award from the New York State Associated Press. 

“In the Campbell Conversations, we try to provide the extra space for the depth I am always hungering for as a listener,” said Reeher. “I hope listeners will find the guests’ commentary as interesting as I do when I have the privilege of talking with them.”  The Campbell Conversations are conversations in the public interest.

**Disclaimer:  Any reference in this website to any person, or organization, or activities, products, or services related to such person or organization, or any linkages from this web site to the web site of another party, do not constitute or imply the endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the Campbell Public Affairs Institute or Syracuse University.

Link to WRVO for all interviews

Campbell Conversations

Sean O'Keefe on the Campbell Conversations
Sean O'Keefe is a professor at Syracuse University and the Howard and Lousie Phanstiel Chair in Strategic Management and Leadership at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. He's also held a number of positions in previous Republican administrations. This week, O'Keefe joins Grant Reeher for a discussion on the Trump Administration, impeachment, the situation with Iran, and more.  (Sat, 18 Jan 2020 10:57:00 +0000)

Rep. John Katko on the Campbell Conversations
This week, the House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald Trump. The vote was mostly along partly lines. Central New York Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) voted against the articles of impeachement. While the House was debating the articles Wednesday, Katko sat down for this week's edition of the Campbell Conversations. Katko explains why he voted against impeachment, and other issues.  (Fri, 20 Dec 2019 21:14:00 +0000)

Author Alexander Watson on the Campbell Conversations
If you're looking to give or receive a good read this holiday season, consider " River Queens ," a quirky, compelling story that offers a decidedly different take on the classic river travel narrative. This week, Grant Reeher talks with Alexander Watson , the book's author.  (Sat, 14 Dec 2019 11:19:01 +0000)

The Campbell Conversations presents a panel discussion on impeachment
This week, the Campbell Conversations presents a panel discussion on presidential impeachment among four faculty members at Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship. The discussion took place November 15 in front of a live audience and was moderated by Campbell Conversations host Grant Reeher.  (Sat, 07 Dec 2019 10:05:00 +0000)

Hein Goemans on the Campbell Conversations
Why are citizens willing to fight, and die, in some wars but not others? What are the implications of that for political leadership and for war, more generally. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with University of Rochester professor Hein Goemans who has been studying these questions, and shares what he's learned.  (Sat, 23 Nov 2019 10:59:02 +0000)

Matt Bennett on the Campbell Conversations
In a Democratic presidential primary race, more progressive and left-oriented ideas seem to be supplying most of the energy, and the candidates seem keen to court it. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with Matt Bennett from the Washington D.C. based think tank Third Way, wo thinks that moderates hold the keys to defeating President Trump, both in the primary and in the general election.  (Sat, 09 Nov 2019 10:25:46 +0000)

Ezra Levin on the Campbell Conversations
Following President Trump's election, a progressive grassroots organization formed to resist his presidency. Calling itself Indivisible, it became a force, having tangible impacts on the 2018 midterm elections. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with Ezra Levin, a co-founder of Indivisible. The discuss the organization's future, and a new book that Levin has co-written, called "We Are Indivisible: A Blueprint for Democracy After Trump."  (Sat, 02 Nov 2019 09:00:00 +0000)

Ron Feldman on the Campbell Conversations
A host of regulations and protections were instituted in the wake of the financial crisis of 2007 and 2008. Have they now been dialed back too far? With other contributing national and global factors, are we at risk of another crisis? This week, Grant Reeher talks with Ron Feldman, First Vice President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, who thinks the answer may be yes.  (Sat, 26 Oct 2019 09:34:50 +0000)

A discussion on the Adirondacks on the Campbell Conversations
What are the current challenges facing the Adirondack Park, a sparsely populated, but heavily visited area? What are the biggest environmental, cultural and economic issues, and what have been some recent successes? This week Grant Reeher talks with Brian Mann, Adirondack Bureau Chief for North Country Public Radio.  (Sat, 19 Oct 2019 09:36:00 +0000)

Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick on the Campbell Conversations
Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick is seeking an eighth term in November. This year, he has two challengers, Democrat Charles Keller and Conservative candidate Gary Lavine. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with Fitzpatrick about some of the criticisms leveled against him, and what Fitzpatrick would do in an eighth term.  (Sat, 12 Oct 2019 08:54:00 +0000)

Candidates for Onondaga County Executive debate on the Campbell Conversations
Ryan McMahon was appointed Onondaga County Executive in November 2018 following the resignation of Joanie Mahoney. At the time, McMahon was serving as chairman of the Onondaga County Legislature. McMahon is running for county executive for the first time next month. His opponent is Democrat Tony Malavenda, a longtime business owner running for political office for the first time since the early 1980s. McMahon and Malavenda sit down for their first broadcast debate with Grant Reeher, and discuss many issues, including campaign spending, poverty and more.  (Fri, 04 Oct 2019 14:32:00 +0000)

Utica College professor Luke Perry on the Campbell Conversations
Congressional races in central New York are often considered bellwethers for the nation. In 2018, some central New York Democrats successfully challenged Republican incumbents, while others came up short. Why? Was is because of Donald Trump? This week, Grant Reeher explores the reasons behind this with Luke Perry, a professor of political science at Utica College, and author of the book "Donald Trump and the 2018 Midterm Battle for Central New York."  (Sat, 28 Sep 2019 09:00:00 +0000)

NPR's Rachel Martin on the Campbell Conversations
In an era of diminished public confidence in the media, what steps has NPR taken to strengthen connections and trust among its listeners? How does radio compare with other news mediums in communicating essential information? This week, Grant Reeher is joined by Rachel Martin, co-host of NPR's "Morning Edition." They discuss these issues, as well as some of Rachel's more memorable stories and interviews, and who her favorite NPR voice is.  (Fri, 20 Sep 2019 10:30:00 +0000)

Chol Majok on the Campbell Conversations
The city of Syracuse has been a recent magnet for refugees. More than 10,000 have settles there in the last 12 years. But this year, at least one refugee will be the first in Syracuse to win public office. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with Chol Majok, the Democratic nominee for Syracuse 3rd District Common Council seat.  (Sat, 14 Sep 2019 09:30:00 +0000)

Dr. Keith Humphreys on the Campbell Conversations
New York came up just short of legalizing recreational marijuana this year, and many political observers regard full legalization as just a matter of time. What are the important questions facing policymakers as they prepare for the inevitable? What can legalization in other states teach us? This week, Grant Reeher talks with Stanford University professor Keith Humphreys, an expert on marijuana policy and legalization.  (Sun, 08 Sep 2019 11:26:11 +0000)

Onondaga County District Attorney candidate Charles Keller on the Campbell Conversations
For 28 years, Bill Fitzpatrick has been Onondaga County's District Attorney, facing relatively little challenge in his last seven elections. Hoping to change that this November is Charles Keller, a Democrat and Syracuse-based defense attorney. This week, Keller speaks with Grant Reeher on why he's running against Fitzpatrick, and to describe the changes he'd make in the criminal justice system if elected.  (Sat, 24 Aug 2019 09:28:00 +0000)

Tony Malavenda on the Campbell Conversations
In recent decades, Republicans have dominated elected offices in Onondaga County. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with one Democrat who hopes to change that. Tony Malavenda is challenging incumbent Ryan McMahon in this year's race for Onondaga County Executive. They discuss the rationale behind his campaign, economic development, I-81, housing, poverty and more.  (Sat, 17 Aug 2019 08:59:00 +0000)

Onondaga County DA Bill Fitzpatrick on the Campbell Conversations
Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick is finishing up his 7th four-year term in office, and is seeking an 8th this November. Given his past elections, he might seem unbeatable, but this year he has two challengers. This week, Grant Reeher talks with Fitzpatrick about recent initiatives in his office, controversial cases, policing, opioids, and more.  (Sat, 03 Aug 2019 11:16:25 +0000)

Oswego Mayor Billy Barlow on the Campbell Conversations
Oswego Mayor Billy Barlow is no stranger to politics. At 23, he was elected to the Oswego Common Council. In 2015, at 25, he was elected mayor, the youngest in New York. He's running for reelection this year, and he's currently unopposed. This week, Grant Reeher talks with Barlow about some of the initiatives he has taken in his first term, how the city is coping with record high water levels on Lake Ontario, and some of the things he didn't expect when he first took office.  (Sat, 27 Jul 2019 00:00:00 +0000)

NYS Sens. Bob Antonacci and Rachel May on the Campbell Conversations
The two new state Senators from the Syracuse area, Rachel May (D-Syracuse) and Bob Antonacci (R-Syracuse) both ran for the Senate by running against Albany. Now they've finished their first legislative session. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with May and Antonacci about their experiences, what improvements or outcomes they saw, and what they see on the political horizon.  (Sat, 13 Jul 2019 09:19:00 +0000)