Matt Trotter

Reporter

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN. 

He has a master's degree from Arizona State University, where he spent a semester on the first reporting staff of Cronkite News Service's Washington, D.C., bureau. As a grad student, he won awards for multimedia journalism and in-depth TV reporting.

Matt is from Southern California, so he's slowly following Route 66 across the United States. He would have made it Chicago by now, but he's not a fan of long drives.

Ways to Connect

A new partnership will bolster efforts to battle childhood cancer in Oklahoma.

The Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust is part of a $2.2 million upfront investment to support three new researchers, expanded clinical trials and a research fund for pediatric cancer at OU’s Stephenson Cancer Center.

OU Pediatric Oncology Chair Dr. William Meyer said TSET is also allocating up to $1 million a year from an existing grant to the hospital to increase treatment access for kids.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

Private school renovations — even multimillion dollar ones — don’t usually make news, but one in Owasso is.

Rejoice Schools' new campus includes storm shelters to accommodate almost 1,700 people. That's all 965 students in preschool through 12th grade, plus about 700 more people.The elementary and middle school gyms are built to withstand EF5 tornadoes.

Flaherty and Collins

If you think all downtown Tulsa is missing is a grocery store, well, the ball is rolling.

The Performing Arts Center Trust is considering a proposal by Indiana-based developer Flaherty and Collins to build a retail and residential project anchored by a 32,000 square foot Reasor's on the PAC-owned parking lot at Third Street and Cincinnati Avenue.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

The Margaritaville casino and restaurant are now open at River Spirit Casino Resort.

Muscogee (Creek) Nation Chief James Floyd said the tribe was given the land it stands upon in the 1830s because it was thought to be worthless for farming, ranching or building.

"However, decades of leadership have held this land as a great asset for our people," Floyd said. "We've nurtured it, and we've preserved it. Today, we're standing on what can only be described as 'upeckv,' which means a dream."

New ACT numbers show participation is up and scores are down on the college readiness test in Oklahoma.

The percentage of graduates meeting English, reading, math and science benchmarks fell from 22 to 21 percent, and the average composite score dropped from 20.7 to 20.4. Steffie Corcoran with the Oklahoma State Department of Education said that’s probably because participation increased by about 15,000 students.

Matt Trotter / KWGS

With less than two weeks until Labor Day, teams are putting the final touches on their vessels for Tulsa’s Great Raft Race — including several octogenarians.

Residents of Montereau Retirement Community will be on the water. Wellness Director Kristen Schooley is tasked with keeping residents active and engaged, and she likes to think outside the box.

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt says after review, a new law allows breweries to sell you beer to take home and to drink there.

ABLE Commission Director A. Keith Burt said while he knew Senate Bill 424 would allow breweries to sell six-packs and growlers, he wasn’t sure it allowed them to serve on site.

"Because it didn't say on-premise consumption," Burt said. "And so we're open to the attorney general's office giving us guidance on if that suffices to allow them to do that."

Lisha Newman / Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation

The Grand River Dam Authority says it’s high time to take a look at the Illinois River.

For the first time in about 20 years, a carrying capacity study will be done on the Illinois River. GRDA spokesman Justin Alberty said they’ve hired OSU to perform the study.

"They're the ones that we've used before on Grand Lake, so they certainly have the background, and they have the expertise to do this," Alberty said.

OSU's geography department will look at how many boaters the river can support, how many actually use the river and how that affects the area.

Jenks Public Schools

One Tulsa-area teacher is among more than 200 honored by President Obama.

Jenks West Intermediate fifth-grade math and language arts teacher Moriah Widener got a call Monday morning telling her to check her email. That’s how she learned she was one of 213 teachers nationwide honored with the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

American Humane

A recent investment by an Oklahoma foundation is helping animals displaced by devastating flooding in Louisiana.

The Kirkpatrick Foundation helped fund a 50-foot, 15-ton rescue truck for American Humane’s rescue team. Randall Collins with American Humane said they’re mainly working in Livingston Parish, where three in four homes have been destroyed.

"What we've been doing is search and rescue to find those animals, bring them back, get them veterinary care that they need and try to reunify them with their owners, their loved ones, their families," Collins said.

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