Bill Raack

News Director

Raack has been in radio for over 20 years. After graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Kansas in 1983, he worked at commercial radio stations in Kansas and then Illinois. He moved to public radio in 1990, joining the staff of WILL-AM/FM in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, as a host/reporter and then as news director in 1993. He returned to his hometown of St. Louis in 1995 as the local host of St. Louis Public Radio's Morning Edition program and also served as a reporter/producer until 1998, when he was named news director. Bill and his wife Kim are proud parents of two public-radio-listening children.

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STLPR People
9:28 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Morning Newscaster Julie Bierach Says Goodbye

Julie Bierach is leaving St. Louis Public Radio to pursue a degree in nursing.
Credit (Bill Raack)

We're sad to say goodbye today to our morning newscaster, Julie Bierach.

Julie has decided to pursue a degree in nursing after a career in journalism and public relations. She delivered her last newscasts for St. Louis Public Radio this morning.

Julie has been the morning news voice on STLPR since November, 2010. Prior to that, Julie served as the station's science/technology reporter from July, 2007 until September, 2008.

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GM Senate Hearing
9:26 am
Thu April 3, 2014

McCaskill Grills GM Head Over Safety Recalls

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) questions GM CEO Mary Barra during a subcommittee hearing Wednesday.
Credit (Sen. Claire McCaskill)

Members of a Senate panel Wednesday accused General Motors of trying to cover up problems with an ignition switch that is now tied to 13 deaths.

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Quinn Budget Address
3:34 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

Quinn Pushes To Extend Illinois Income Tax Increase

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn delivered his annual budget address to the legislature on Wednesday.
Credit UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Illinois residents would continue paying a 5-percent income tax rate under the much-anticipated budget proposal Gov. Pat Quinn presented Wednesday. 

Illinois' income tax rate is supposed to expire in January, midway through the fiscal year. But Quinn says that would cause "savage cuts" to schools and other critical state services. Instead, the governor wants to make the higher income tax rate permanent.

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Illinois State of the State Address
4:54 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Quinn Says Illinois Is 'Making A Comeback,' Republicans Say Not Fast Enough

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn delivered the annual State of the State speech at the state capitol in Springfield Wednesday.
Credit (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

A hike in the minimum wage, sending more children to preschool and more grants for low-income college students are all part of the agenda Governor Pat Quinn laid out Wednesday in his State of the State address.

Five years to the day after he first became governor, Pat Quinn tried to make the case that Illinois is "making a comeback." It's also the anniversary of when lawmakers removed his predecessor from office. Ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich is now serving a federal prison sentence for corruption.

Quinn says he's helped restore integrity to state government.

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Illinois' Amazon Tax
12:46 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Illinois Supreme Court Invalidates 'Amazon Tax'

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled Friday that the state's law charging taxes on some Internet sales.
(via Flickr/steakpinball)

The Illinois Supreme Court is invalidating a two-year-old Illinois law charging taxes on certain Internet sales.

The justices ruled 6-1 in an opinion released Friday to invalidate the so-called "Amazon tax." The ruling determined that the law violates a pre-emptive federal decree prohibiting "discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce."

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St. Louis Life
8:48 am
Fri October 4, 2013

St. Louis' Forest Park Named Among '10 Great Public Spaces' For 2013

The Grand Basin and Art Hill in Forest Park in St. Louis. The park is one of the areas to benefit from a federal grant for recreational trails.
(via Flickr/david_shane)

Forest Park in St. Louis has been designated one of the Ten Great Public Spaces for 2013 by a national non-for-profit educational group.

The American Planning Association announced the list Friday - the nine other places on it are:

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Government Shutdown
4:25 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Shutdown Doesn't Stop Missouri Veterans From Visiting WWII Memorial

National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Credit (Bernt Rostad)

On day two of the government shutdown, it continues to cause headaches, including for a group of Missouri and Kansas veterans that flew to Washington. 

The nonprofit Heartland Honor Flight organized the trip and the closed National World War II Memorial was the first stop Wednesday. The group was met by many Missouri and Kansas lawmakers, who helped them get inside the memorial where barriers had been set up. 

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Saint Louis University
2:13 pm
Fri August 16, 2013

SLU President Biondi To Step Down Sept. 1

Father Lawrence Biondi
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Last updated 3:50 p.m.

Saint Louis University's president Father Lawrence Biondi will be stepping down Sept. 1.

The fact that Biondi was to retire was announced in May, but the date Biondi would step down was not announced at that time.

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School Transfers
4:32 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

CSD Expects Student Placements To Be Completed Monday Night

Sherrie Wehner with Cooperating School Districts.
Chris McDaniel, St. Louis Public Radio.

The Cooperating School Districts of St. Louis (CSD) has placed 2,400 of the nearly 2,600 students who have applied to leave the unaccredited Normandy and Riverview Gardens School Districts.

All Normandy students who applied to go to Francis Howell were placed, and will receive transportation paid for by the unaccredited district.

But many Riverview Gardens students who applied to transfer to Kirkwood or Mehlville, the transportation options for that district, did not receive spots because the receiving districts ran out of room.

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Arch Redevelopment
3:17 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Arch Grounds Redevelopment Begins With Official Groundbreaking

Dignitaries break ground Aug. 2 on the ‘Park over the Highway’ project, the first component in the CityArchRiver 2015 plan to revamp the Arch grounds.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

National and state leaders broke ground Friday on the first phase of the CityArchRiver 2015 plan to revitalize the Gateway Arch grounds.

Two members of President Obama’s cabinet—Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx—were present at the ceremony. The first project is a park to be built over Interstate 70 to improve accessibility between downtown and the Arch grounds. Senator Claire McCaskill praised local officials for getting to this point.

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