Maria Altman


Maria is a reporter at St. Louis Public Radio, specializing in business and economic issues. Previously, she was a newscaster during All Things Considered and has been with the station since 2004. Maria's stories have been featured nationally on NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Weekend Edition, as well as on Marketplace.

Maria has won numerous awards, including from the Illinois Associated Press, the Missouri Broadcasters Association, the Missouri Bar Association, and the Missouri State Teachers Association.

She came to St. Louis from Dallas, where she worked at KERA. Maria has also worked at WUIS in Springfield, and WSIU in Carbondale, Ill. She received her M.A. in Public Affairs Reporting at the University of Illinois-Springfield and a B.A. in journalism from the University of Iowa.

In her spare time she serves as an adjunct journalism instructor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

Maria lives in St. Louis with her husband and two kids.

Ways to Connect

Washington University in St. Louis, named for the first American president, announced this President’s Day, the discovery of a tie to another president.

The university recently learned that its libraries have a collection of books originally owned by Thomas Jefferson.

The 28 titles, including 74 volumes, were donated to Washington University in 1880, with no mention of their provenance.

The Jefferson County Council is holding the first of three public hearings tonight on red light cameras.

Last fall Jefferson County's three member board of county executives signed a five-year deal with American Traffic Solutions for a handful of red light cameras.

It now appears those cameras will not go up.

A newly elected seven-member county council is beginning a process to repeal a law that allows traffic cameras.

The city of St. Louis today marked the halfway point in its ten-year effort to end chronic homelessness.

A five-year report released today shows a 20 percent drop in the city's chronically homeless since 2005.

Chronic homelessness is defined as those homeless for a year or more or four times over a three-year period.

The report also states that the overall homeless population also decreased, from about 1,500 in 2005 to about 1,300 last year.

The updated plans for the Gateway Arch were revealed at a public meeting last night as well as the possible cost of the project.

The preliminary figure is $578.5 million.

Walter Metcalfe, Jr., who has headed up the CityArchRiver foundation that sponsored the design competition, says completing a vision is worth the price:

The Missouri Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a lower court did not follow procedures when it allowed the adoption of a Guatemalan woman’s child four years ago.

Encarnacion Romero was arrested at a poultry processing plant in southwestern Missouri in 2007 under suspicion of illegal immigration. The next year her infant son was adopted by a Carthage couple while she was in prison.

Romero says she never agreed to the adoption.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.

And just in time comes historian Adam Arenson’s new book “The Great Heart of the Republic: St. Louis and the Cultural Civil War.”

While Arenson is a professor at the University of Texas El Paso, he spent a year in St. Louis doing research for his book.

The president and CEO of the St. Louis Regional Chamber & Growth Association will step down by the end of this year.

Dick Fleming made the announcement Thursday.

He will continue to lead the RCGA until the board chooses his successor.

Fleming says the St. Louis region works together much better than it did when he first joined the RCGA back in 1994.

Marion S. Trikosko / Wikimedia Commons

For some, Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Day will be a day of service rather than a day off.

More than 400 volunteers are expected to take part in projects organized by AmeriCorps St. Louis and the City of St. Louis.

Brittany Ledbetter with AmeriCorps says they're hoping to foster volunteerism that will help the community long-term.

The Better Business Bureau received more than 200 complaints nationwide about an auto warranty marketer based in suburban St. Louis.

Stop Repair Bills of St. Peters also is getting an "F" grade from the Better Business Bureau.

The company markets auto repair plans, but Bill Smith, a trade practice investigator with the BBB, says customers are missing the fine print.

(St. Louis Public Radio)

NorthSide developer Paul McKee, Jr. has released "An Open Letter to the People of St. Louis" regarding the progress, process and questions surrounding the Northside Regeneration Initiative.

This comes with the announcement that McKee has gotten an additional $8 million in state tax credits for the $8 billion, that's billion with a "B," Northside project.

The website "" mentioned 10 states that retirees should avoid based on fiscal health, taxation and climate.  Topping the list? Illinois. 

The Illinois EPA is helping the Metro East village of Washington Park clean up an illegal dumping site this week.

The area an estimated 100 tons of trash, and the clean-up is expected to take three to five days.

Senator Kit Bond is retiring after more than four decades in public office.

Missourians first elected the Republican in 1970 as state auditor. Two years later Bond became the state’s youngest governor at the age of 33.

He spent two terms in the governor’s mansion, then went on to four terms in the U.S. Senate.

Maria Altman takes a look back on Senator Kit Bond’s long public service career.

Bill Greenblatt / UPI

The U.S. Secretary of the Interior and the Transportation Secretary were in East St. Louis today to talk about improvements to the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, a.k.a. the grounds of the Gateway Arch.