Margaret Wolf Freivogel


Margaret Wolf Freivogel is the editor of St. Louis Public Radio. She was the founding editor of the St. Louis Beacon, a nonprofit news organization, from 2008 to 2013. A St. Louis native, Margie previously worked for 34 years at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch as a reporter, Washington correspondent and assistant managing editor. She has received numerous awards for reporting as well as a lifetime achievement award from the St. Louis Press Club and the Missouri Medal of Honor from the University of Missouri School of Journalism. She is a past board member of the Investigative News Network and a past president of Journalism and Women Symposium. Margie graduated from Kirkwood High School and Stanford University. She is married to William H. Freivogel. They have four grown children and seven grandchildren. Margie enjoys rowing and is a fan of chamber music.

Ways to Connect

Members of the Republican caucus converge in the House Lounge after Diehl announced his resignation.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

As reality shows go, the Missouri General Assembly’s last week is generally worth watching. This week, the legislature outdid itself. Typically, the session closes with a flurry of surprise votes. This year, the surprise was that nothing — nothing — happened on the floor for days as both chambers imploded.

Church members pick up debris. 81914
Nancy Fowler | St. Louis Public Radio

Many St. Louisans followed the news closely this week as unrest, issues and inevitable comparisons to Ferguson streamed from Baltimore. For a moment, it looked as though the country might stop treating Ferguson as a pariah and focus more on the nation's widespread systemic problems related to race.

But so far, it’s not turning out to be that moment.

Members of the Board of Aldermen look on as Tuesday's meeting rolls on.
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

Bad news hit St. Louisans this week like a hailstorm. But beyond that blast of mayhem, St. Louis Public Radio reported on some glimmers of progress in the efforts to address the region’s longstanding issues.

A woman casts her vote on election day in Ferguson on April 7, 2015.
Bill Greenblatt I UPI

St. Louis area voters sent contradictory messages Tuesday. And that’s a message in itself.

In Ferguson, three new city council members were elected, changing the face of municipal government and raising the number of African-American members to three of seven (counting the mayor). But, as Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies reported, that doesn’t necessarily mean that voters were inspired by the protest movement to clean house.

Ferguson protest 3/12/2015
Lawrence Bryant | St. Louis American

Watching yet another panel discuss press coverage of Ferguson this week, I couldn’t help but squirm. We journalists hold others accountable for their shortcomings. But in the months since Michael Brown was shot, we’ve had trouble owning up to our own.

Kenneth Wheat, a longtime Ferguson resident, said he supports "the good officers" and he wants to see more African Americans express how they really feel publicly.
Stephanie Lecci | St. Louis Public Radio

A New York Times editorial from last week, "The Problem Is Bigger Than Ferguson," still bothers me.

Since August, the flaws of Ferguson — and the St. Louis region — have been in the national spotlight. At last, the headline seemed to recognize that our home is not the only one plagued by racial issues. That would have been a welcome message coming from the nation’s newspaper of record, writing from the city where Eric Garner’s death raised many of the same questions that Michael Brown’s death did here.

knowles at presser announcing jackson's resignation
Wiley Price | St. Louis American

A lot that hasn’t been happening since August happened in Ferguson this week – first three concrete steps toward change, then one step toward the abyss.

The rubble of a burned down business on West Florissant Avenue in Ferguson.
File photo by Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio | File photo

Facts matter. Two Justice Department reports about Ferguson brought that home this week.

Traci Blackmon

Like flares on a highway, some of the headlines that flashed by in recent days signal danger.

First came good news from Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon. St. Louis labor unions have agreed to work 24-hours a day with no overtime to quickly build a football stadium. That's proof that St. Louisans can rise to the occasion – in this case, the perceived crisis of losing an NFL team – when we see that the region’s reputation and future are at stake.

St. Louis Public Radio switched to a new website design this week, and the reaction was generally positive. The most common complaint was confusion about how to listen to radio streams through the website, and we're working to make that clearer.

St. Louis Public Radio's website transitioned on Wednesday to a new design that is intended to make our content easy to access no matter what size screen you're using.

This responsive design displays content in ways that are appropriate for each device. On a laptop, for example, you'll see several stories at once on the homepage, as in the previous design. On a phone, you'll be able to scroll through the same content in a format that's easier to read on a small screen. In all versions, the goal is to provide news that matters through a clean, useful design.

at the post office s. grand 11.26
Rebecca Smith | St. Louis Public Radio

News organizations should focus outward on what’s happening in our communities and how we can serve them better. But our ability to focus outward is affected by many internal factors. Two developments this week, will in different ways, shape how St. Louis Public Radio serves you.

Police and protesters scuffle after police union business manager Jeff Roorda allegedly grabbed a protester at a January 28 meeting oh the public safety committee.
Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio

The subpoena served on St. Louis Public Radio Thursday is both baffling and disturbing.

Rotary Club of Overland mug
Margaret Wolf Freivogel

It was still dark when the Rotary Club of Overland gathered Wednesday morning at Russo’s restaurant on Page. At a time when north St. Louis County is in the international spotlight for what’s wrong, the meeting cast a sliver of light on what’s right.

In the months since Michael Brown’s death at the hands of then-Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, North County has been at the center of a debate of cosmic proportions. It concerns long-simmering, wide-ranging issues of race, fairness and opportunity.

(St. Louis Public Radio file photo)

Think what you will of the proposal to spend at least $860 million on a new football stadium, the announcement last week revealed a few telling things about St. Louis:

Rams media

Discussion of Ferguson-related issues continued to simmer this week. Meanwhile, questions about the Rams’ future boiled into prominence.

Oddly, the two conversations are happening mostly in isolation from each other, even though both revolve around the same fundamental concern: How to create a future for our region that will make St. Louisans want to stay and newcomers want to come?

Demonstrators calling for justice for Eric Garner and Michael Brown held a moment of silence outside the Fox Theatre on Sunday, December 7, 2014.
Camille Phillips/St. Louis Public Radio

The grand jury has made its decision. Thanksgiving is over. Christmas is approaching. And still, Ferguson-related protests continue.

This week, they materialized outside “Annie” at the Fox, in Jennings and in several other cities. Many St. Louisans are wondering when the unrest will end.

You can’t answer that question without asking others. What do protesters want? Who speaks for them? Who holds the power to solve the problems they raise? None of these perfectly logical questions has an easy answer.

News producer and weekend newscaster Camille Phillips, health reporter Durrie Bouscaren, race and culture reporting fellow Emanuele Berry, and arts and culture reporter Willis Arnold.
Photos provided by the journalists

Next week marks the one-year anniversary of a big change at St. Louis Public Radio. It transformed our work, but you may not know how.

So let’s celebrate the merger of St. Louis Public Radio and the St. Louis Beacon by considering why it matters. It’s simple. At a time when news media are undergoing historic upheaval and when news coverage of St. Louis has never mattered more, the merger has enabled us to serve you better.

Shells of used cars are all that remain after they were destroyed by fire during a night of turmoil in Ferguson Nov. 25.
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

The bleak reality of St. Louis this Thanksgiving casts the holiday in shadows deeper than any I can recall – save one other year.

Those shadows harbor our region’s flaws – recent and longstanding, absurd and epic, unwitting and unforgivable. Since Aug. 9, these shortcomings have been on display in stark silhouette against the unrelenting spotlight of international media attention.

Ferguson public safety press conference, 11-11-14. Belmar, Dotson, Ron Johnson, Isom, Bret Johnson, Replogle
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

St. Louisans may disagree on many things related to Michael Brown’s death, but we’ve been united in anxiety during the long wait for a St. Louis County grand jury’s decision on whether to charge Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.

When? What then? How will that affect each of us immediately and all of us long term? These questions have been hanging over everyone — from those directly involved in the protest or law enforcement to those who live far from Ferguson and see no direct connection to the issues raised there.