Leah Fleming

Morning Edition Host

Leah Fleming’s passion for local public radio journalism and exciting news partnerships is what brings her to Macon. She joined GPB in 2013 following six years at WLRN-Miami Herald News, in Miami, where she served as a reporter and All Things Considered anchor before being named deputy news director.

Prior to her time in South Florida, Leah worked as Morning Edition host/reporter at WABE Public Radio in Atlanta, Georgia. There she was acknowledged for her work including an award from the National Association of Black Journalists for her interview with professional boxer Laila Ali. Leah fell in love with the art of radio during a summer internship in college. Since then she has reported, produced and anchored news programs at several stations, including WAMC Northeast Public Radio in Albany, New York, and WJCT Public Broadcasting in Jacksonville, Florida. Leah has also worked at NPR in Washington as a producer and mentor with NPR’s Next Generation project. Raised in New York, Leah holds a Master of Science degree in communication arts.

Ways to Connect

AID Atlanta, the state’s largest HIV/AIDS service organization, has filed a lawsuit against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

 

The group claims the federal agency’s decision to defund it threatens the delivery of services to the communities most at risk of getting the deadly virus: young, black, gay and bisexual men.

We sit down with Nicole Roebuck, the executive director of AID Atlanta, to talk about the lawsuit, infection rates in Atlanta, and lingering stigmas associated with the virus.

VannDigital

 

Today’s Music Minute recognizes Atlanta singer turned reality star Kandi Burruss, who celebrates her 41st birthday today.

 

 

Burruss is featured on the hit show "Real Housewives of Atlanta." But before she was a reality star, Burruss grew up singing in church. She then became part of the singing group Xscape.

 

 

The group churned out six chart-topping hits, including this song, a cover version of "Who Can I Run To" in 1995.

NAAGA

The number of  African Americans who own guns is on the rise.

 

According to a 2014 Pew survey, 19 percent of African Americans said they owned a gun, up from 15 percent in 2013.

 

 

 

The National African American Gun Association is a nationwide group based in Atlanta made up of black gun supporters. The organization has seen membership climb to 20,000 members in just two years.

Wikipedia Commons

On this day in 1933, James Brown, who lived much of his life in Augusta, was born.

The funk legend recorded sixteen singles that topped the Billboard R&B Charts, including this song in 1966, “It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man's World.”

Brown’s signature voice and provocative dance moves inspired a generation of future artists. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.   

WIKIPEDIA

The NBA playoffs began this past weekend and it was a rough start for the Atlanta Hawks.

They lost on Sunday to the Washington Wizards, 114-107, in the first of a seven game series.

It's been an up and down season for Atlanta's basketball team. But will things change in time for the playoffs?

GEORGIAMUSIC.ORG

On this day in 1964, Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls was born in Decatur, Georgia.

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The Atlanta Dogwood Festival will feature a number of local talents. One of the musicians performing this weekend is Felicita.

She’s a vocalist, guitarist, and a student at Georgia State University. She’ll be performing at the International Stage throughout the weekend in Piedmont Park.

We chat with Felicita about her budding musical career. Then, we hear a live song recorded in the GPB Performance Studio. 

The Atlanta Dogwood Festival kicks off today. It will feature more than 50 performances over the next three days.

One of those performers is Antonio Rodriguez. He’s a musician and singer from Veracruz, Mexico. He’ll be performing each day at the International Stage in Piedmont Park.

 

 

Rodriguez traveled to our GPB Performance Studio this week to play us a song and tell us a little about his love for music.

 

PINTEREST

It started in 1936 as an event to put Atlanta on the map. Now it’s the oldest outdoor festival in Atlanta and a classic opening to spring. 

The Atlanta Dogwood Festival returns to the city for the 81st time this weekend. The three day event will include an extensive artist market, live music on two stages and food from a variety of vendors. 

The festivities kick off at noon on Friday at Piedmont Park and will run all the way until Sunday.

WORDPRESS

Hundreds of Jewish Community Centers, synagogues, and schools have reported threats and vandalism in recent months.

 

In Atlanta, the Marcus Jewish Community Center has been one of the institutions affected by this troubling trend.

TUMBLR

On this day in 1999, Joe Williams of Cordele, GA passed away at the age of 80. Williams was a mainstay of the jazz scene for decades.

 

He served as the frontman of the Count Basie Orchestra starting in 1954, where he performed songs this one: “Well, Alright, Okay, You Win.

From 1961 until his passing, Williams was a highly-regarded solo artist who played in venues across the country. In the 1980's, he also made occasional TV appearances on "The Cosby Show" as Grandpa Al.

 

artsbridgega.org

Today, the nominations will be revealed for the Georgia High School Musical Theatre Awards, also known as the Shuler Hensley Awards.

FLICKR

  The Nigerian novelist and feminist thinker Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is the focus of a roundtable discussion on feminism taking place in Atlanta tomorrow night. 

 

Adichie’s books on feminism have made her a powerful voice in the modern feminist movement.

 

 

Antres Finnie is the creator of the blog The Robot Rebel. She sits down with us to talk about organizing the event and how to look at the fight for women's rights in a new light.

 

 

Coretta Scott King was not just the wife of the late civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. She was also an accomplished activist in her own right.

 

She traveled the world and advocated for racial and social equality for people of all walks of life.

 

In 1968, the same year her husband was assassinated, Scott-King founded the King Center, which has served as a base of operations for modern day activism.

 

 

 

 

FLICKR

There were two big stories that made headlines involving sex trafficking in Georgia last week.  In Savannah, a man was convicted of 19 counts of child sex trafficking. 

In Sandy Springs, police broke up a human-trafficking operation inside a million dollar home. Eight women were rescued and one man was arrested in connection with the crime.

 

Atlanta has a reputation as one of the worst sex-trafficking hubs in the country. But how widespread is the problem?

: Taylor Gantt

The Harlem Globetrotters are one of the most storied basketball teams in history.

They have been combining athleticism, theater and comedy for over 90 years.

 

But they've also been responsible for promoting change in the sports world by way of their unique act on the basketball court.

We sit down with "Buckets Blakes" to talk about the legacy of the team and the changes they've experienced over the years.

The Globetrotters are headed to Atlanta this weekend for a pair of games on Saturday.

PBS

As college students make spring break plans, many are still buzzing about President Trump’s new executive order that moves the Initiative for Historically Black Colleges and Universities under the jurisdiction of the White House.

 

 

Trump says the move will help galvanize support for struggling HBCUs. But the details and benefits of the move are still yet to be seen.

 

 

FLICKR

On this day in 1977, country music star Jason Aldean was born in Macon.  

 

His hometown loves its native son and will show that love by renaming a downtown street “Jason Aldean Way.”  

Aldean’s career includes six platinum albums and 18  #1 singles, including his song, “A Little More Summertime.”

After his latest hit album, "They Don't Know," Aldean will be up for several big Academy of Country Music Awards, including Entertainer of the Year and Male Vocalist of the Year.

 

KICKSTARTER

On this day in 1971, Rozonda ‘Chilli’ Thomas was born in Atlanta. She would grow up to become one-third of the group TLC. The trio is famous for a number of memorable hits, including the song, "Creep," which won a Grammy in 1996.

 

 

Outside of her music career, Thomas has worked as an actor, a reality TV star, and a fitness guru. She also founded the organization Chilli’s Crew, a group that helps young girls deal with self-esteem issues.

PINTEREST

February is a time to celebrate influential figures in African-American history. And our guest today is certainly one of those trailblazing figures.

PINTEREST

Today’s music minute features a member of one of Georgia’s most popular bands. Coy Bowles of the Atlanta-based Zac Brown Band was born on this day in Thomaston in 1979.

MUSIX MATCH

We go to Lovejoy, Georgia today to celebrate the birthday of Kokomo Arnold, who was born on this date in 1901. Born James Arnold, Kokomo regarded his career as a recording artist secondary to his work as a bootlegger. 

 

As we celebrate the contributions of African Americans this month, we salute a Georgia native son on his birthday: Kokomo Arnold of Lovejoy.

 

 

FLICKR

One of the ways African-Americans have shared the pain and the pleasure of the black experience is through music.  

 

Black artists have been an essential part of almost every genre of music. And black songs are often catalysts for change and enhanced public awareness.

FLICKR

Computer Science students at Morehouse College are working on a project to help save young minority men from incarceration.

They have created a tool that uses visualization technology to help organizations analyze data from more than 200 youth facilities nationwide. The goal is to help these detention centers determine the most effective reform methods so resources can be allocated more efficiently.

 

BET

DeKalb County elections officials could decide today how old you have to be to run for office in the new city of Stonecrest.

Mary-Pat Hector is a 19-year-old Spelman College student who is running for a seat on the City Council. But one of her opponents in this crowded race filed a complaint last month with the DeKalb County elections board, citing Mary-Pat’s age as a disqualifying factor. 

 

We sit down with Mary-Pat Hector to discuss her current situation, why she wants to run for office, and her background as a young activist. 

   

FLICKR

Each week during Black History Month, we will bring you a discussion centered around African American issues. In this episode, we discuss the role of black women in society and the difficulty of being a double minority.

 

We sit down with Stephanie Sears of Clark Atlanta University. She is an adjunct professor of Africana Women’s Studies. We discuss some of the issues facing black women today, what steps can be taken to achieve greater equality, and the idea of the “Angry Black Woman.”

This week President Trump signed a “two-for-one” executive order that says for every new regulation that government agencies pass, two old ones must be eliminated. Trump says the action will help small and large businesses succeed. 

To learn more about regulations and the effect they may have in Georgia, we sit down with Antonio Saravia. He’s an assistant professor of economics and director of Mercer University’s BB&T Center for Undergraduate Research in Public Policy and Capitalism.

FLICKR

February is Black History Month here in the United States. Since 1976, every president has set aside the month to honor and remember African American history.

But is designating one month just for Black History appropriate? We tackle that question in the first part of our series about Black History Month.

 

We discuss this idea with Daniel Black. Black is an award-winning novelist and an African American Studies Professor at Clark Atlanta University. 

 

PIXBAY

The city of Stockbridge has voted to ban smoking inside vehicles when children are present in a 3-2 vote during Monday night’s council meeting.

The trend towards banning smoking in vehicles where children are passengers is growing.  According to the Public Health Law Center there are eight states plus Puerto Rico that have such bans.  Georgia is not one of them.

 

  • Christmas is only a few short days away.

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