Guy Stephens

WNIJ Here and Now Host

Guy Stephens is the local host for NPR's Here and Now on WNIJ.  He also produces news stories for the station, and coordinates our online events calendar, PSAs and Arts Calendar announcements.  In each of these ways, Guy helps keep our listening community informed about what's going on, whether on a national or local level.  Guy's degrees are in music, and he spent a number of years as a classical host on WNIU.  In fact, after nearly 20 years with Northern Public Radio, the best description of his job may be "other duties as required."


The Illinois Department of Corrections says it increased the number of correctional officers by nearly 500 last year.  The agency says that’s helped drive down overtime costs. 

Department of Corrections spokeswoman Nicole Wilson says after accounting for attrition through resignation, retirements and dismissals, the agency has increased staffing in 2015 by a net 468 correctional officers.  Wilson says, through Nov. 30, the department had hired 1,114 new trainees. 

Guy Stephens / WNIJ

For the last several years, an arts group has decorated windows for various occasions in Sterling, Rock Falls and Dixon.  This holiday season, it was Dixon’s turn. 


The Community Foundation of Northern Illinois on Thursday announced matching endowments to Rockford University and Highland Community College.  The money will be used to create scholarship endowments totaling $5 million for students at the two schools. 

Highland Community College is receiving $1 million from the Foundation, toward a total scholarship endowment of $2 million.  Rockford University is receiving $1.5 million, toward a fund totaling $3 million.


The nation’s 13 busiest airports and air traffic centers, including those in Chicago, don’t have enough air traffic controllers. And many of the most experienced are ready to retire. That’s according to recent testimony before Congress by a government inspector. 











The federal government is giving Illinois housing agencies nearly $2.6 million to help low-income residents find employment and training.

Rochelle Township High School District 212

A Rochelle teacher has won a $100,000 grant in the Farmers Insurance Dream Big Challenge.  

NIU School of Theatre & Dance

The NIU School of Theatre & Dance presents a work that didn’t exist a few months ago.  And it doesn’t have an author in the traditional sense.   “Women In To the Light”* is what is called a ‘devised’ play. 

A “devised” theater piece is defined as one without an author, or script, as usually understood.  Instead, it is the result of a process of collaboration and improvisation by the performers.

Rockford Park District

MercyRockford Health System has obtained naming rights for the Rockford Park District’s tournament complexes in Rockford and Loves Park.  In return, MercyRockford will pay the district $2 million over 10 years.   The facility in Rockford will be renamed MercyRockford Sportscore 1 and the Loves Park facility MercyRockford Sportscore 2.   


A manufacturing industry association is moving its headquarters from Rockford to Elgin.

The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA) has had its headquarters in Rockford since its founding in 1970.  Ed Youdell is its President and CEO.   Youdell says the Association has been happy in its Rockford home.  But, he says, it was time to think about the next forty years, and that led to a very important question:

Guy Stephens / WNIJ

The opening of a hotel on Rock Falls’ riverfront is being pushed back to late spring. Sauk Valley Media reports that the city learned last week that the company building the hotel -- Fitchburg, Wisconsin-based Landgraf Construction -- is ceasing operations and will be unable to finish the Holiday Inn Express & Suites on East Second Street.

The developers, Rock Falls Hotel Group, said the announcement was unexpected, but hotel construction will proceed. Switching construction firms, however, means the opening won’t happen till May.