Deborah Wang | KUOW News and Information

Deborah Wang

Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 2005

Deborah Wang is a news and feature reporter for KUOW. She covers a range of subjects, but mostly focuses on politics and government. She is also host of IN Close on public television station KCTS9.

Deborah is an award–winning radio and television journalist whose career spans three decades. A long–time network foreign correspondent, Deborah has reported from more than two dozen countries, including China, Vietnam, Cambodia, India, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Rwanda, Kuwait, and Iraq.

Deborah's first reporting job was at public radio station WFCR in Amherst, Massachusetts. In 1990, she went to work for National Public Radio, and served as NPR's Asia correspondent, based in Hong Kong. During that time, she covered the the Persian Gulf War from coalition headquarters in Saudi Arabia, and then spent many months in Kuwait, Turkey and Northern Iraq filing stories on the war's aftermath. In 1993, she joined ABC News as a television correspondent in Beijing and Hong Kong, and covered, among other things, Hong Kong's handover from British to Chinese rule. In 1999, she set up the network's first news bureau in Seattle.

Deborah has also worked as an on–air anchor for CNN International, and for the nationally syndicated public radio show Here and Now.

Deborah has won numerous awards for her reporting, including the Alfred I. DuPont Silver Baton for coverage of the first Gulf War, and the Overseas Press Club's Lowell Thomas Award for best radio documentary on Cambodia.

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KUOW/Deborah Wang

Story last updated by Phyllis Fletcher on March 20, 2013 at 1:50 p.m.

Starbucks holds its annual shareholders’ meeting Wednesday in Seattle. On the agenda: a proposal from a group of investors that’s meant to limit the company’s involvement in elections.

Audio Pending...

A federal judge gave the green light yesterday to a wide-ranging reform plan for the Seattle Police Department. The plan is meant to address a 2011 finding by the US Justice Department that Seattle police had engaged in an unconstitutional pattern and practice of excessive use of force.

Two Seattle police unions have filed a lawsuit against a federal plan to reform the police department.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

    

Correction: audio for this story differs from its original broadcast, which incorrectly identified Nate McMillan as a member of the Sonics championship team from 1979. We have also clarified the story to indicate that the two conference trophies in MOHAI's warehouse are not the only two won by the Sonics.

When the owners of the Seattle Sonics moved the team to Oklahoma City in 2008, basketball fans in Seattle were crushed. But they got one consolation prize: The team’s owners agreed to leave behind the Sonics’ cache of memorabilia.

Seattle’s mayor is launching a new program aimed at improving instruction in the city’s preschools. Mayor Mike McGinn announced the initiative in his State of the City address Tuesday.

Microsoft TechNet blog

In the old days, when Microsoft Corp. unveiled new software you might have gone to the store, paid for it once, and brought it home in a box.

But with Microsoft’s new service unveiled Tuesday, Office 365, the box is gone. It’s been replaced by a digital subscription that allows you to get almost everything you need from the web. In a promotional video, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said the service offers a “complete office in the cloud,” which he touted as a major leap forward.

Courtesy Seattle Housing Authority

The Seattle Housing Authority is preparing to redevelop Yesler Terrace, a 30-acre site that houses 1,200 low-income residents near the city’s downtown. Vulcan Real Estate is one of two private companies competing to become the lead development partner. The Seattle Housing Authority Board is scheduled to choose the winning bidder today.

All Nippon Airways 787s
AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi

The Federal Aviation Administration is grounding all Boeing 787 Dreamliners in the US. That’s after a 787 in Japan was forced to make an emergency landing Wednesday because of a battery problem.

Japan Broadcasting Corporation

Major global news services are reporting that two Japanese airlines have grounded all of their Boeing 787 jets. All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines made the announcements following an emergency landing Wednesday morning in Japan.

Deborah Wang?KUOW

Correction: An earlier version of the story stated that buildings cannot be nominated for landmark status if they are too small. The story has been corrected to say that while small buildings can be nominated, they do not automatically trigger a landmark review.

South Lake Union in Seattle was once home to timber mills, commercial laundries, warehouses, even a factory making Ford Model Ts. It’s now being targeted for major new development, with the city’s mayor proposing raising building heights dramatically in the low-rise district. But historic preservationists say the plan does not adequately address the area's unique history and they worry it will result in the obliteration of many of the old buildings that provide the city’s connection with the past.  

Image Courtesy/Vulcan

The Seattle City Council is debating a plan that would transform a huge swath of the city’s center, and that for the first time would allow developers to build residential high rises just a block from Lake Union.

King County Sheriff John Urquhart
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

There’s a new sheriff in town, at least in King County: John Urquhart will officially take over as King County Sheriff today.

Urquhart was the long-time spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office, and he was well known for his colorful press releases, with titles like: “Two Men Arrested After Dragging Cow With Car.”

Hasby/flickr

Seattle City Light has an unexpected pot of money on its hands. The utility says it needs to give away $5 million before the end of the year.

The money is earmarked for businesses that want to become more energy-efficient. It will pay for up to 70 percent of the cost of new lighting, heating and cooling systems, or other energy-efficient equipment.

But even with the subsidy, businesses have been slow to sign on this year.

Woman with unbrella helps kids get on a bus
KUOW/Deborah Wang

Western Washington is bracing for more precipitation after record heavy rains snarled traffic and caused localized flooding on Monday.

According to the National Weather Service, 2.03 inches of rain fell at Sea-Tac Airport between midnight and 5:00 p.m. Monday. That breaks the previous record for the day of 1.23 inches set in 1962.

The National Weather Service says a second storm is expected to hit the region Tuesday, and an even stronger weather system will move in on Wednesday, bringing high winds to the coast.

Seattle rain
Instagram photo/ John Tseng

This story is developing and will be updated as details emerge.

National Weather Service is reporting a record-breaking 2.16 inches of rainfall in the last 24 hours, and has issued winter storm advisories and flood warnings for parts of the Puget Sound region. Heavy rains in the area are posing a number of potential hazards, from mudslides to highway closures.

Commuters are being urged to check their routes as rain continues to fall.  Sound Transit's northbound Sounder service from Seattle to Everett has been canceled for Monday evening. North Cascades Highway is temporarily closed due to heavy snow and avalanche danger.

Deborah Wang spoke Sarah Miller with Seattle Public Utilities on Monday afternoon about the emerging problem of standing drainage water.

"With 80,000 drains in the city of Seattle, we can't be everywhere. We do clean the drains regularly," Miller explained. "However, when the trees drop their leaves, that happens in a relatively compressed period of time. Much as we get out there to clean the drains throughout the year this problem is exacerbated because the leaves drop at the beginning of November and then plug those drainage outlets."

Miller has been urging Seattle residents to adopt their local drains, to clear them of leaves and debris.

UPDATE at 5:00 p.m. on November 19:

Amtrak's Cascades passenger train service between Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia, has been temporarily canceled. A 48-hour moratorium due to mudslide danger was issued Monday afternoon and may be lifted by Wednesday. Amtrak Cascades announces cancelations and disruptions through their Twitter feed.

3 striking union members outside Hostess plant
KUOW/Deborah Wang

Striking members of a bakers’ union are still picketing a plant in Seattle that makes Hostess Twinkies and Ho Hos. That’s despite the fact the plant is now closed for good.

1st District Republican candidate John Koster
Deborah Wang

The 1st District was supposed to be the Republican Party’s best chance of picking up a Congressional seat in the state this year. But after Democrats won the seat decisively, Republicans are pointing fingers over who is to blame.

1st District Republican candidate John Koster
Deborah Wang

The battle for Jay Inslee’s old seat in Congress now appears to be over.

Republican John Koster sent a letter to supporters Thursday night informing them that he plans to officially concede the race today.

Senator Maria Cantwell waving at a campaign rally.
KUOW/Deborah Wang

As the vote count continues, Washington Republicans are preparing for possible losses in several key state races.

Democratic attorney general hopeful Bob Ferguson leads Republican Reagan Dunn. The two are vying for the seat left open by Republican Rob McKenna, who stepped down to run for governor. McKenna has held the office since 2005.

KUOW/Deborah Wang

Democratic Party activists in the state of Washington were in high gear this weekend conducting a massive get-out-the-vote campaign. Hundreds of volunteers manned phone banks and fanned out across neighborhoods to encourage people who hadn’t voted to turn in their ballots.

Flickr/401 (K) 2012 (CC BY-NC-ND)

Businesses have poured millions of dollars into political contributions this election season. But you may be surprised to learn that in Democratic-leaning Washington, the state’s three largest employers tend to favor Republican candidates.

Suzan DelBene at a podium
KUOW/Deborah Wang

On the campaign trail, Suzan DelBene tells the story of how her family struggled when she was a kid. Her father was laid off from his job when she was nine, and the family moved all over the country as her parents looked for work. “They never got back to a situation where they were financially stable,” she explains.

She recounts that despite her family's financial difficulties, she was able to go to college on student loans. “I was in a position to take care of my family,” she says. “I’m not sure I could tell that story today.”

John Koster
(KUOW photo/Deborah Wang)

If Republican congressional candidate John Koster has a signature campaign issue, it’s the country’s ballooning national debt.

The website for his 1st Congressional District campaign features a national debt clock ticking away. The total now stands at more than $16 trillion.

“I think one of the greatest things that we could do for our constituents and our future generations is not hamstring them with huge debt and huge deficits that they will have to pay off,” he said.

In his two decades in politics, Koster has been a staunch advocate of limited government.

(Photo/City of Kent)

The Mayor of Kent, Washington is proposing another round of layoffs and new taxes to bridge a $2 million budget shortfall. Mayor Suzette Cooke presented her 2013-2014 budget to the City Council Tuesday. In her opening speech, Mayor Cooke called her budget “as ugly as the economic times we face.”

City of Tacoma website

Tacoma officials are proposing slashing 217 city jobs over the next two years in order to bridge a looming budget gap of $63 million.

The police and fire departments would both lose 27 officers and two support staff. Other layoffs would result from the restructuring of several city departments.

Flickr Photo/Pylon757

Negotiators for the Boeing Company and its engineering and technical union are back at the negotiating table today. That’s after union members soundly rejected the company’s latest contract offer.

More than 21,000 members of SPEEA, the Society For Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace, voted by mail on the company’s contract proposal. When the votes were counted last night, 96 percent of engineers and 97 percent of technical workers had voted ‘no.’

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