Jenna Dooley

WNIJ All Things Considered Host

Jenna Dooley has spent her professional career in public radio. She is a graduate of Northern Illinois University and the Public Affairs Reporting Program at the University of Illinois - Springfield. She returned to Northern Public Radio in DeKalb after several years hosting Morning Edition at WUIS-FM in Springfield.  For 2012, she was named "Newsfinder of the Year" by the Illinois Associated Press. She is also recipient of the 2014 Donald R. Grubb NIU Journalism Alumni Award. She is not afraid to brag at parties that she has met Carl Kasell, Ira Glass, and Garrison Keillor (and has pictures to prove it!) She is the former Recording Secretary for the Illinois News Broadcasters Association.

Guy Stephens / WNIJ

Recovery efforts continue in Fairdale after last month's deadly tornado. Of the 66 homes destroyed, it's estimated more than 50 residents want to rebuild. The DeKalb County Community Foundation has a pass through fund called the DeKalb County Disaster Recovery Fund – to receive donations/contributions from donors to support the recovery efforts.

Jenna Dooley

There’s activity at a long-dormant prison in northwest Illinois. Residents in Thomson have lived more than a decade in limbo waiting for it to open. Now, it’s time.

Ready for Change

At a recent prayer service in Thomson, longtime resident Arlene Eslinger says she has a lot on her heart these days. She says residents are getting older. People want change, but Eslinger fears Thomson isn’t prepared for an influx of prison workers and their families.

Mike Phillips / IVCC

Megan Fitzgerald lives near the large-scale hog farm under construction near Wenona.

“I’m actually one of the closest residents to the Sandy Creek and this proposed hog facility, less than a mile away,” Fitzgerald said.

Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs marked 100-days in office with a report of accomplishments and challenges that face the office.

The analysis from Plante Moran identified questionable program expenses with the paid internship program, but noted the program has yet to be activated during the current administration.

Jenna Dooley

Glass, puzzle pieces, even a domino sit in piles on a farm on Irene Road in Kirkland, just outside of Fairdale.

Trucks loaded with broken bricks and concrete make trips along a normally busy road, but it’s their turf now going back and forth.

It’s the reality of one week after a storm.

Carissa Brendle’s father-in-law saw the twister coming, so he headed down to the basement of his newly built home and called his son who lived nearby.

Public Works Director T.J. Moore announced his resignation from the City of DeKalb. According to a news release, Moore has accepted a similar position for the Village of Hanover Park.

Moore spent four years in DeKalb as Public Works Director.

His last day with the City will be Wednesday.

The release says the City of DeKalb will begin recruitment for Moore’s position immediately.

NIU Center for Governmental Studies

The mining industry’s economic impact on LaSalle County is in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Jenna Dooley

In its first award announcement of 2015, the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission named 20 recipients of the Carnegie Medal.  The medal is given throughout the United States and Canada to those who risk their lives to an extraordinary degree while saving or attempting to save the lives of others.

In January 2014, then 20-year-old Michael D. Bates helped save his grandfather, then 78-year-old Roger Bates, from suffocating when he was trapped in a grain bin.


A recently released audit from the Illinois Office of the Auditor General found in a testing of travel expenditures, $31,945 of the $46,501 tested were reimbursements to an employee for travel between the employee’s home and the official headquarters listed on filed forms. The audit says "travel expenses between an employee’s official headquarters and home are not reimbursable."

As of last month, there were more than 19,000 video gaming terminals across Illinois. But it appears things are leveling off after three years of growth. Still, the machines are a major revenue generator for the state and local governments. In fact, the state’s share from video gaming recently passed $276 million.