Sara Lerner

Reporter

In her role as reporter and afternoon news anchor, Sara responds to events as they unfold: from an approaching tsunami to unbearable gridlock during the Alaskan Way viaduct closure. Sara's reporting has covered a range of subjects including the Dalai Lama's Seattle visit, local controversies about racy coffee shops, and the ups and downs of real estate in the Puget Sound region.

In 2009, Sara was awarded a KUOW Program Venture Fund grant which supported her four–part documentary on human trafficking in Washington state. In 2008, her piece, "No More Lemon Bars For Voters," brought Sara a national award from Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. Sara continues to produce stories for NPR and radio shows like Studio 360 and Voice Of America. She joined the station in 2005.

Prior to her radio career, Sara researched cacao in the Costa Rican rainforest, worked for a Palestinian/Israeli co–existence group in Tel Aviv and visited nearly every country in Latin America. Her interest in travel stems from the same place as her passion for reporting: an intense curiosity about the world around us and the people who inhabit it. She says her motivation as a journalist is to continue asking questions and telling stories, truthfully.

Ways To Connect

"Natalie" sits in the kitchen of her parents house. She was 16 when she ran away from home and fell in love with a guy who turned out to be a pimp.
Courtesy Tim Matsui/ Alexia Foundation

The Long Night,” a documentary about child sex trafficking in the Seattle area, is being released online Monday. Sara Lerner speaks with filmmaker Tim Matsui, who says he believes exploiting minors in this way is a symptom of underlying causes.

21 Things RadioActive Learned At Third Coast

Nov 20, 2014
KUOW Photo

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media recently spent three days in Chicago with 550 of the world's most talented  radio makers at the 2014 Third Coast International Audio Festival.

“I washed my hands next to [NPR health reporter] Alix Speigel,” said youth producer Madeline Ewbank. "Once [former Planet Money reporter] Alex Blumberg passed so close to me that I could've tripped him. Not gonna lie, I seriously considered it.”

Sara Lerner interviews Cooper Broggel, 16, who realized a classmate at The Center School had a Molotov cocktail, an incendiary device, at the school Monday. He describes the situation.

Courtesy of the group Move the Hut

Last week a superior court judge ruled that a so-called “view-killing” cabin in the Methow Valley must go.  UW Law Professor Robert Anderson says this is an unusual case for property law in Washington state and it affects all of us.

Photo Credit ICE

On Monday, Sung Hoon Ha, 30, was deported to South Korea after living in the U.S. for eight years. He had been caught operating a human smuggling ring in Washington state.

Rod Hatfield

Did you know there are bees at Sea-Tac Airport? Twenty beehives are already in place in green space around the airport. And tonight, a two-day hackathon gets going that’s centered around the idea of bees and flight. It’s connected to a new art installment that’s going in at Sea-Tac: “Flight Path.”

Prosecutors have dropped four of nine charges against a Seattle attorney accused of raping five women in Asian massage parlors.

Flickr Photo/Snohomish County (CC-BY-NC-ND)

This morning, Snohomish County Sheriff Ty Trenary announced the end of active search operations at the site of the March 22 mudslide near Oso, Wash.

Trenary said it was a difficult decision to make and relied on “a little bit of soul searching and a lot of information from the scene.”

KUOW Photo/Sara Lerner

A month after the devastating mudslide near Oso, Wash., a mile of state Route 530 still sits under landslide debris.

As the people from this tiny community and the neighboring towns try to move on, they’re battling a major transportation issue with their daily commute to work.  Many of them are adding hours to their drive time to go around the mudslide.

AP Photo/The Herald, Dan Bates, Pool

Oso landslide survivor Amanda Skorjanc spoke from her hospital bed at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle on Wednesday. She and her 5-month-old baby Duke Suddarth are among the few who survived the landslide.

As Skorjanc’s partner Ty Suddarth sits next to her, she describes that moment when the landslide hit.

It carried her and her son 600 feet from where their home once stood.

Transcript: Amanda Skorjanc Recalls March 22 Oso Mudslide 

Ty had just given us a big family hug and he was going into Darrington to the hardware store.

KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

As of Wednesday morning, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s office has confirmed that 29 people have died in the Oso landslide. Hopes of finding survivors are dwindling.

That’s taking a toll on the families and the search crews, some who have been out there since the very beginning, doing intense physical and emotional work. Rescue operations managers are very conscious about giving those crews a break, letting them rotate in and out so they can rest and recharge.

KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

As the local community held Sunday church services a week after the devastating Oso mudslide, searchers continued their work in the sodden destruction zone.

The Snohomish County Medical Examiner confirmed on Sunday evening that 21 people have died in the mudslide. Of these, only 15 have been officially identified.

Flickr Photo/Snohomish County

The death toll has risen to 18 following the devastating landslide near Oso, Washington. One bright spot: The number of people missing has fallen dramatically. It's now down to 30. 

Flickr Photo/Michael Scheltgen (CC-BY-NC-ND)

A new study finds spending on the underground sex trade in Seattle has gone way up. Of the cities studied, Seattle is one of only two where spending increased, and it’s not pennies: $50 million in 2003 to $112 million in 2007.

Flickr Photo/publik16 (CC-BY-NC-ND)

A new human trafficking bill passed the state Legislature Monday that will allow victims who were forced into prostitution to clear their records of prostitution charges.

Removing one conviction has already been the law for a couple years. But now, a victim is able to get more than one charge vacated.

Pages