Rich Fisher

General Manager & host of StudioTulsa

Rich Fisher passed through KWGS about thirty years ago, and just never left. Today, he is the general manager of Public Radio Tulsa, and the host of KWGS’s public affairs program, StudioTulsa, which celebrated its twentieth anniversary in August 2012 . As host of StudioTulsa, Rich has conducted roughly four thousand long-form interviews with local, national, and international figures in the arts, humanities, sciences, and government.  Very few interviews have gone smoothly. Despite this, he has been honored for his work by several organizations including the Governor's Arts Award for Media by the State Arts Council, a Harwelden Award from the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa, and was named one of the “99 Great Things About Oklahoma” in 2000 by Oklahoma Today magazine.  

In addition, Rich is an active musician. He’s currently the principal trombonist of the Signature Symphony at TCC, leads the Starlight Jazz Orchestra, and is a free-lance musician whose work ranges from the pit of touring Broadway musicals, to the salsa band, Grupo Salsabor.

Ways to Connect

(Note: This show originally aired back in April.) It's a straightforward fact, yet it's also frequently overlooked or dismissed: the great majority of premature deaths in this country can be prevented through changes in diet and lifestyle. Now comes a bestselling book that describes these changes while also explaining how such nutritional modifications can sometimes do more for us than prescription meds, other pharmaceuticals, and surgical procedures. Our guest is Dr. Michael Greger, author of "How Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease." As Dr.

(Note: This interview first aired back in July.) On this edition of ST, we speak by phone with Robert Penn, a British writer and journalist whose books include "It's All About the Bike," a bestselling memoir of craftsmanship. Penn joins us to speak out his new book, just out from W.W. Norton, which is called "The Man Who Made Things Out of Trees." As is noted of this book at the Norton website: "Out of all the trees in the world, the ash is most closely bound up with who we are: the tree we have made the greatest and most varied use of over the course of human history.

(Note: This interview first aired back in July.) On this edition of ST, we speak with Susan Senator, a writer, activist, and longtime advocate for people with autism.

On this edition of ST, we speak with the author Peter Cozzens, who has written several acclaimed books on the Civil War and the American West. He chats with us about his newest book, which is just out: "The Earth Is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West." Per Douglas Brinkley, writing for The New York Times Book Review, this book is "a detailed recounting of random carnage, bodies burned, treaties broken, and treachery let loose across the land.... Cozzens admirably succeeds in framing the Indian Wars with acute historical accuracy....

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, an interesting chat with Dr. James S. Gordon, a well-regarded expert on using mind-body medicine to heal depression, anxiety, and psychological trauma. Dr. Gordon is the Founder and Executive Director of The Center for Mind-Body Medicine; he's also a Clinical Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry and Family Medicine at Georgetown Medical School. He tells us about The Center for Mind-Body Medicine (or CMBM) on today's show.

On this edition of our program, we speak with Ian Scheffler, who has written for The New Yorker, The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, and The Los Angeles Review of Books. His first book, just out, is a nonfiction text called "Cracking the Cube: Going Slow to Go Fast and Other Unexpected Turns in the World of Competitive Rubik's Cube Solving." As one Erno Rubik -- the inventor of the famous cube -- has noted of this book: "Scheffler provides the first comprehensive book on the global phenomenon of speedcubing.

On this edition of ST, we speak with the noted historian and scholar Blanche Wiesen Cook. The third and final volume of her landmark biography of Eleanor Roosevelt has just been published. "Eleanor Roosevelt, Volume 3: The War Years and After, 1939-1962" covers the final decades of a woman who towers over the 20th century, taking us through World War II, FDR's death, the founding of the United Nations, and much more. It is, as Maureen Corrigan noted on NPR's Fresh Air, "a monumental biography [and] an exhilarating story, as well as an undeniably melancholy one.

The Supreme Court has by now affirmed, of course, that gay marriage is the law of the land, and LGBTQ lifestyles, television shows, cultures, and communities are becoming more and more present -- and thus more and more visible -- in American life. How is this sea-change affecting America's churches, especially here in the middle of the country? On this edition of ST, we speak with Rev. Cynthia Meyer, a United Methodist minister. Earlier this year, she came out -- while she was preaching a homily -- to her Edgerton, Kansas, congregation.

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we chat once again with Katie Plohocky, the founder and director of Tulsa's Healthy Community Store Initiative. This initiative is an umbrella for several programs that Plohocky runs, all of them focused on healthy eating, healthy living, and healthy communities -- these programs include R&G Grocers (Tulsa's mobile grocery store), Cooking for Health (a program that brings farm-fresh food and nutrition to at-risk populations), and a farm-to-table catering operation.

(Note: This program originally aired back in August.) On this edition of ST, we speak with the author and historian Nancy Isenberg, who is the T. Harry Williams Professor of American History at LSU, writes regularly for Salon.com, and was formerly on the History faculty here at The University of Tulsa.

On this installment of ST, an interesting chat with David Burkus, a widely respected expert on business and management practices who's also a bestselling author, an in-demand speaker, and an associate professor of management at Oral Roberts University. He joins us to discuss his new book, "Under New Management: How Leading Organizations Are Upending Business as Usual." As was noted of this work by Publishers Weekly: "In this thought-provoking business book, Burkus...asserts that many historical management practices are no longer relevant in today's workplace.

The "penny sales tax" for education didn't pass, but voters here in the Sooner State did back criminal justice reform; the "Right to Farm" State Question was rejected, yet Republicans won big all over Oklahoma on Election Day, as, indeed, they did nationwide. On this edition of StudioTulsa, we are joined by David Blatt of the OK Policy Institute, an non-partisan, non-profit think tank.

On this installment of ST, we learn about the Tulsa-based, volunteer-run, non-profit Horton Records, which began about five years ago, and which aims to -- as noted on its website -- "provide support and tools for band management, promotion, booking, merchandising, and distribution in order to help local and regional musicians fulfill their artistic goals and further promote local and regional music on a broader scale.

On this edition of StudioTulsa Medical Monday, we speak with Dr. Lisa Rosenbaum, who is a national correspondent for The New England Journal of Medicine. She joins us to talk about a three-part series of articles that she recently wrote for the Journal's Medicine & Society section; all three of these well-written, expertly researched pieces concern how we as a society -- and as medical professionals -- care for the mentally ill in the twenty-first century. The articles are entitled "Liberty vs.

When did names like Fat Tire and Sam Adams become as familiar -- in certain circles -- as the names Bud, Miller, and Coors? On this edition of StudioTulsa, we are discussing the craft beer movement (or should we say craze?) in America today -- how it began, why (and where) it has caught on, and how it relates to key concepts like race, ethnicity, class, and gender. Our guest is J. Nikol Beckham of Randolph College in Virginia, where she is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies specializing in such pop-culture fixtures as television, popular music, and food.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we speak with the author, scholar, and activist Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, who grew up in rural Oklahoma and is now based in San Francisco. She is the daughter of a tenant farmer and part-Indian mother, and she's been active in the international Indigenous People's Movement for more than four decades.

On this edition of ST, we speak with the well-regarded contemporary American painter and artist, Susanna Coffey, who is currently speaking/teaching at the University of Tulsa as a Ruth Mayo Memorial Distinguished Visiting Artist.

On this edition of our show, we offer a conversation with author Hisham Matar. His first novel, "In the Country of Men," was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize and the Guardian First Novel Prize, and his latest book, his third, is a memoir entitled "The Return." This work tells the story of his father's kidnapping by Muammar Qaddafi's government -- and of the fallout endured by Matar and his family over the ensuing decades.

On this edition of StudioTulsa Medical Monday, we speak with Bret Stetka, a health, science, and medical writer who works as an Editorial Director for Medscape by WebMD, and who is also a contributor to both Scientific American and Shots (the NPR Health blog). Stetka talks about how and why he decided, after completing his med-school training, to pursue medical journalism rather than, say, some sort of doctoring or medical research.

Is technology taking over and/or fundamentally changing and/or worsening our lives? It's a debatable question...or series of questions...but, for whatever it's worth, there do seem to be more and more books and novels and TV shows these days in which technological devices are taking over, fundamentally changing, or even, yes, worsening our lives as human beings.

On this edition of ST, we are discussing "Onegin," the universally acclaimed 20th-century ballet by the late choreographer John Cranko, with music by Tchaikovsky, which Tulsa Ballet will present this coming weekend (October 28th through the 30th) at the Tulsa PAC. This ballet -- based on the Alexander Pushkin verse-novel called "Eugene Onegin" -- offers the love story of Tatiana and Onegin. It's a rich and engaging tale of unrequited romance -- as full of complex drama as it is great dancing -- and you can learn more about this ballet here.

On this installment of ST, we speak with Blaise Misztal, the director of the National Security Program at the Bipartisan Policy Center, which is a Washington-based think tank aimed at developing principled, politically viable policy solutions. Over the years, Misztal has researched a variety national security issues, including U.S.-Turkey relations, Iran and its nuclear program, cybersecurity, stabilizing fragile states, and public diplomacy in the 21st century. He has published op-eds in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Weekly Standard, The New Republic, and elsewhere.

On this edition of ST, we speak by phone with Laleh Mehran, a Denver-based multi-disciplinary artist who moved to the United States from Iran when she was a child in the 1970s. Her art work explores cultures and locations, ideas and identities, patterns and shapes -- and it seems especially focused on issues of technology, geography, and media. Her striking pieces have been shown/installed over the years -- both individually and in group shows -- in Holland, Germany, Italy, Massachusetts, Oregon, Pittsburgh, and elsewhere.

Recently, Tulsa's St. John Health System and the Tulsa Cancer Institute joined forces to become the Oklahoma Cancer Specialists and Research Institute (or OCSRI). Our guest on StudioTulsa Medical Monday is Suanne Gersdorf, who became the chief executive officer of OCSRI about a year and a half ago.

On this installment of ST, we speak with Alex Prud'homme, who is Julia Child's great-nephew as well as the co-author of her autobiography, "My Life in France" (which was adapted into the hit movie, "Julie & Julia"). Prud'homme joins us to discuss his new book, "The French Chef in America: Julia Child's Second Act." In this work, per a critic for Booklist, "Prud'homme deftly chronicles the years after Julia Child left France and settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts....

"Into the Sun: A Novel"

Oct 24, 2016

Our guest on this edition of ST is Deni Ellis Béchard, whose previous books includethe novel "Vandal Love" and the memoir "Cures for Hunger." He joins us to discuss his new book, a novel called "Into the Sun." This book explores, as a critic for Kirkus Reviews noted, "how living in Afghanistan profoundly affected a group of friends.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we learn about "Native Fashion Now," a traveling exhibition on view at the Philbrook Museum here in Tulsa through January 8, 2017. Our guest is Christina Burke, the Curator of Native American and Non-Western Art at Philbrook, who tells us how this show thoroughly and engagingly blends cutting-edge/modern-day fashion with classic Native American iconography/imagery. And further, per the Philbrook website: "Visitors are invited to explore the rich and surprising realm of contemporary Native fashion.

On this installment of ST, we learn about an exciting new production of Bizet's "The Pearl Fishers," which Tulsa Opera will present at the Tulsa PAC on both Friday (the 21st) and Sunday (the 23rd). As noted of this production at the Tulsa Opera website: "Georges Bizet's sensual tale of forbidden love and the bonds of true friendship is musical ambrosia. Tuneful and exotic, 'The Pearl Fishers' centers on an unusual love triangle in which two men, Nadir and Zurga, compete for the same woman but are also loyal friends.

What, exactly, is a brain concussion? What causes one -- and what is happening to one's brain when a concussion occurs? Also, are concussions actually happening more often these days, or are medical and neurological professionals simply more sensitive to them -- or more aware of them? On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we speak with Dr. Eric Sherburn, who is on the faculty of the OU-TU School of Community Medicine, where he serves in the Department of Family Medicine and Sports Medicine.

Our guest on this edition of ST is Tony Moore, who was formerly the chief operating officer at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida, and now serves as the director of both A Gathering Place and Guthrie Green. The former is, of course, the George Kaiser Family Foundation's $350 million initiative -- now being built along Riverside Drive near 31st Street -- that will open late next year, and the latter is the popular public-park-and-open-stage space in downtown Tulsa, just across the street from the Woody Guthrie Center.

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