Adam Cotterell

News Reporter

Adam Cotterell returned to his home town of Boise, Idaho in 2007 after three years teaching university English in China. His plan was to teach high school drama and history, but in a move that almost makes him believe in destiny he took a part time job in Boise State Public Radio’s newsroom. He became a full time general assignments reporter in 2010. Adam's main focus is on covering education, but also enjoys doing all types of stories; from interviewing unique people to reporting on Boise's theatre scene.

Adam lives in Boise with his wife, daughter, and dog. He is also considered a pioneer in the art form abstract expressionist origami.

Pages

Theater
10:57 am
Fri September 19, 2014

How Growing Up In Idaho Has Shaped 'Genius' Playwright's Work

Hunter was born and raised in Moscow, Idaho. He now lives in New York.
Credit Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

The Idaho playwright who was awarded a MacArthur 'genius' grant this week has traveled far from his hometown of Moscow, but continues to revisit the state in much of his work.

Samuel Hunter now lives in New York, and has a play opening this weekend in Chicago.

Read more
Arts + Culture
11:58 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Idaho Playwright Wins $625,000 MacArthur 'Genius' Grant

Samuel D. Hunter
Credit Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Idaho native Samuel Hunter is one of 21 recipients of this year’s MacArthur Fellowship, commonly known as genius grants. Just in his early 30s, the Moscow native has already made a mark on the nation’s theater scene. He’s won numerous awards for his work including the prestigious Obie Award in 2011 for his play “A Bright New Boise.”

Read more
Health Insurance
4:16 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Census Report: High Number Of Idahoans Are Uninsured

Credit census.gov

The percentage of Idahoans with no health insurance was unchanged between 2012 and 2013. A new report from the U.S. Census Bureau says 16.2 percent of the state’s residents lacked health coverage in 2013. That’s about 257,000 people.

The nation as a whole saw a slight decline in the uninsured in that time, from 14.8 percent in 2012 to 14.5 percent in 2013.

Read more
Arts + Culture
1:41 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Boise State Scientist Using High Tech Tools To Solve An Ancient Mystery

Mummy portrait of a bearded man. A.D. 170-180. From the collection of the Walters Museum.
Credit art.thewalters.org

A Boise State University professor is trying to solve a historical mystery.

Darryl Butt is trying to figure out who was buried in an Egyptian sarcophagus.  Butt, however, is not an archeologist or historian. He’s a materials scientist and associate director of Idaho’s Center for Advanced Energy Studies. He mostly works with nuclear fuels. Butt says his involvement started with a chance meeting with someone from the Walters Museum in Maryland.

Read more
Water
12:16 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Report: Ground Water Levels Have Dropped In Southern Wood River Valley

Stream near Sun Valley
Credit rickotto62 / Flickr Creative Commons

A new report from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) finds that ground water levels have dropped in parts of the Wood River Valley.

USGS hydrologist Jim Bartolino’s team looked at changes in ground water and surface water between 2006 and 2012.

Bartolino says there are two distinct parts to the aquifer under the valley.

Read more
Agriculture
12:23 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Why Boise Owns A 7 Square-Mile Farm (Hint: It's For Your Poop)

Ben Nydegger on one of five biosolids "bunkers" at Boise's 20 Miles South Farm.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Do you ever wonder where your poop goes when you flush the toilet? If you live in Boise, it ends up somewhere a little out of the ordinary. It goes to a place called 20 Mile South Farm, so named because it's 20 miles south of Boise.

“Everybody who flushes the toilet contributes to this fertilizer right here,” Says Ben Nydegger, Boise's biosolids program manager.

Biosolids is the industry term for the stuff he’s standing next to. It’s a dark-brown pile about three-feet-tall and roughly twice the area of an Olympic swimming pool.

Read more
Policy
6:09 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

During Arguments In Idaho Case, Appeals Judge Predicts Gay Marriage Headed For Supreme Court

Screengrab of Boise Lawyer Deborah Ferguson arguing before the 9th Circuit.
Credit ca9.uscourts.gov

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments Monday afternoon in California on Idaho’s gay marriage lawsuit. A  lower federal court ruled in May that Idaho’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional

Read more
Gay Marriage
1:47 pm
Sat September 6, 2014

Federal Appeals Court Hears Idaho's Same-Sex Marriage Case

Lawyer Deborah Ferguson represents the four couples suing to overturn Idaho's gay marriage ban.
Credit Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

A three judge panel in San Francisco Monday will hear arguments for and against Idaho’s ban on same-sex marriage. A lower federal court has already ruled the law unconstitutional, but Idaho is challenging that decision and now the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will weigh in.

Read more
Law
3:13 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Judge Denies Idaho's Request To Toss 'Ag-Gag' Lawsuit

A federal judge in Idaho Thursday refused to toss out a challenge to the state's “ag-gag” law that was passed by Idaho legislators earlier this year at the urging of the state’s $2.5 billion dairy industry. The law spells out stiff punishments for people who secretly tape agricultural operations.

Read more
Education
1:12 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Rural Idaho Community Divided Over Failed School Levy

A school event in Lapwai
Credit facebook.com/pages/Lapwai-School-District

A school superintendent in northern Idaho says the reason his district hasn't had music classes in more than a year, and will soon switch to virtual gym classes, is as much about the difficulty of attracting and retaining qualified teachers in rural areas as it is about funding.

The story of Lapwai School District's  funding problems has been picked up by just about every news outlet in the state.

Read more
Science
10:18 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Notice More Flies? Why September Is Fly Season In Idaho

Credit roger wilkins / Flickr Creative Commons

If you’ve noticed an increase in the number of flies buzzing around you’re not imagining things. In fact, you could call this time of year “fly season” in southern Idaho.

Part of the reason you're noticing more flies is because there simply are more of them says Ian Robertson, a biology professor and insect ecologist at Boise State University.

Read more
Economy
4:07 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Share Of Idahoans Receiving Welfare Declines, Rate Still Higher Than Most

Screengrab from Census report.
Credit census.gov

Idaho is one of only six states that saw a decrease in the number of people on public assistance, or welfare, in 2012, according to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Read more
Health
11:37 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Boise State Researcher Finds Most Kids Like Healthier School Lunches

Under the new guidelines, students must be offered fruits and vegetables every day.
Credit Lance Cheung / USDA | Flickr Creative Commons

Most Idaho kids went back to school this week, meaning for many, a return to school lunches. Food in public schools has changed significantly since new federal nutrition guidelines were passed in 2010.

Read more
Higher Education
5:03 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

Concordia Law Dean Confident Boise's School Will Get Accreditation

Before becoming dean of Boise's Concordia School of Law, Cathy Silak worked for a large Boise law firm, served on the Idaho Court of Appeals and was a justice of the Idaho Supreme Court.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

It has been a tense few weeks at Boise's Concordia School of Law. Faculty and students had hoped to hear earlier this month if the American Bar Association (ABA) would grant it provisional accreditation. Instead, the ABA decided it needed more time to consider and would send someone to Boise for a closer look at Concordia.

But the ABA didn’t tell school administrators why it wanted closer scrutiny or give a timeline for when things might move forward. But now Concordia dean Cathy Silak says the ABA told her Tuesday it will send a fact-finder in September. 

Read more
Environment
4:19 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Winter Or Wildfires? See When Treasure Valley Air Is Most Polluted

See the interactive chart below.

The Treasure Valley has seen a handful of wildfire-induced hazy days this summer, but it's been nothing like 2012 or 2013 when big wildfires around the region brought smoke into Boise and surrounding communities, settling in the valleys and making it hard to breathe.

Read more
Higher Education
6:16 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Why Half Of Concordia Law School’s 3rd Year Students Will Take Fall Semester Off

Concordia's Boise law school is downtown.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Fifty new first year students will start classes next week at Boise’s Concordia Law School. That’s the largest incoming class since the school opened in the fall of 2012. Concordia’s third year class is almost as large but many of them won’t be taking classes this fall.

Read more
Higher Education
1:28 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

5 Big Changes Coming To Boise State University

Credit Scott Graf / Boise State Public Radio

Boise State University researcher Julia Oxford has won a $10 million grant to create a Center for Biomedical Research, making it the largest grant in the university’s history. Boise State President Bob Kustra made the announcement in his annual state of the university speech Wednesday.

Read more
Higher Education
10:55 am
Thu August 14, 2014

Idaho Universities Recommend Cutting Several Degree Programs

The University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho.
Credit Idaho Department of Commerce

Idaho’s public universities Wednesday told the State Board of Education what programs and degrees they’re ready to cut, which could lead to job layoffs. All four of Idaho’s four-year universities reported on a yearlong evaluation known as program prioritization. This was a requirement from the state board aimed at cost cutting.

Read more
Health
11:39 am
Wed August 13, 2014

Blaine County Reports Idaho's First Human Case Of West Nile Virus This Year

Captured mosquitoes to be tested for West Nile
Credit bannokcountymosquito.com

Idaho’s Department of Health and Welfare has confirmed the state’s first human case of West Nile virus of 2014. A Blaine County woman in her 20s is recovering from a virus-induced fever. Eight other Idaho counties have found West Nile in mosquitoes this summer, but the Blaine County case is the first confirmed human infection.

Last year, 40 known people in Idaho contracted West Nile and two died. A 2006 outbreak saw nearly 1,000 cases and 23 deaths in Idaho.

Read more
Education
9:00 am
Tue August 12, 2014

Boise Law School Students In Limbo As Concordia Accreditation Is Considered

Boise’s Concordia Law School will have to wait longer to find out if its first graduating class will be able to practice law in Idaho. The more than 40 students in Concordia’s class of 2015 expected to find out Monday if they’d be able to take the bar exam when they graduate. Instead, the American Bar Association (ABA) told them they’d have to keep waiting.

Read more

Pages