Chris Lehman

Chris Lehman graduated from Temple University with a journalism degree in 1997. He landed his first job less than a month later, producing arts stories for Red River Public Radio in Shreveport, Louisiana. Three years later he headed north to DeKalb, Illinois, where he worked as a reporter and announcer for NPR–affiliate WNIJ–FM. In 2006 he headed west to become the Salem Correspondent for the Northwest News Network.

Chris is a native of rural Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He was born in the upstairs bedroom of his grandmother's house, and grew up in a 230 year old log cabin in the woods. Chris traces his interest in journalism to his childhood, when his parents threatened to take away his newspaper if he didn’t do his chores.

In addition to working full time in public radio for the past decade, Chris has also reported from overseas on a free–lance basis. He's filed stories from Iraq, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Uganda. He lives in Salem with his wife and child.

Read Chris's blog, "Capitol Currents: Dispatches From Salem."

Pages

NPR Story
6:47 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Kitzhaber Creates Commission To Study Capitol Statue Squabble

A statue of early pioneer missionary Jason Lee stands in the U.S. Capitol Building ... for now.

Each state is represented by two statues in the United States Capitol Building. Some Oregon lawmakers have tried repeatedly to replace one of their state's specimens.

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NPR Story
4:59 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Recall Effort In Southern Oregon City Falls Short

Breeze Botanicals owner Brie Malarkey stands in front of the medical marijuana dispensary at the heart of a recall election in Gold Hill, Oregon.

An attempt to remove most of the city council in the southern Oregon city of Gold Hill has fallen short.

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NPR Story
4:35 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Comic Book Aims To Boost Earthquake Preparedness

Dark Horse Comics produced a 12-page booklet to educate the public about earthquake preparedness.

Emergency managers in Oregon have a new tool to educate the public about earthquake preparedness. It's a comic book. And it's co-produced by one of the nation's top comic book publishers.

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NPR Story
8:41 am
Fri August 22, 2014

Marijuana Dispensary Leads To Small Town Political Showdown

Brie Malarkey owns Breeze Botanicals in Gold Hill, Oregon.

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 4:56 pm

The town of Gold Hill, Oregon is in turmoil. Two-thirds of its City Council is the subject of a recall election on Monday.

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NPR Story
9:29 am
Thu August 21, 2014

Major Parties Oppose Oregon's Top Two Primary Ballot Measure

The Citizens Initiative Review, a group of Oregon voters brought together to consider the pros and cons of a Top Two primary system, have issued their recommendation: They're against it.

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NPR Story
4:56 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Changes On The Way For 'No Fly List'

Changes are coming to the federal government's "No Fly List." But it's not clear yet what those changes will be.

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NPR Story
4:37 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

Oregon's Citizens' Initiative Review Could Expand To Other States

File photo

This week, a group of Oregonians will meet in Salem to figure out where they stand on an upcoming ballot measure. It's called the Citizens' Initiative Review and it's been a part of the Oregon election process since 2010.

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NPR Story
3:39 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Oregon Treasurer Can't Seek Re-election

Oregon Treasurer Ted Wheeler

Oregon's attorney general issued an opinion this week that says Democrat Ted Wheeler is not eligible to win election to a second four-year term.

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NPR Story
3:58 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Active Fire Seasons Puts A Strain On Northwest Fire Resources

ODF Klamath Unit personnel prepare to protect the area around the Parker Mountain RAWS station and lookout tower on August 2, 2014.

This summer's active wildfire season is stretching fire crews to the limit. This week, virtually every available wildland firefighter in the Northwest is on the scene of a blaze.

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NPR Story
1:49 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Democrat Challenging Walden On Health Care

Democrat Aelea Christofferson is challenging Republican Greg Walden for Oregon’s 2nd Congressional seat.

Aelea Christofferson, the Democrat taking on Greg Walden, Oregon's only Republican member of Congress, released an attack ad Friday blasting Walden's opposition to the Affordable Care Act.

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NPR Story
5:28 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

Oregon Court Backs Warrantless Rescue Of Sick Horse

This photo of 'Grace' was taken shortly after she was rescued.
Strawberry Mountain Mustangs

An Oregon police officer was justified in seizing someone's horse without getting a warrant first. The Oregon Supreme Court ruled Thursday that warrantless searches are allowed when the life of an animal is on the line.

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NPR Story
6:11 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Oregon Will Consider Washington's Top Two Primary System

Washington voters got another chance this week to take the state's relatively new Top Two primary system for a spin. This year Oregon voters will choose whether to shift to a similar method of choosing candidates.

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NPR Story
6:51 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

Oregon 'Driver Card' Campaign Kicks Off

Oregonians will vote this fall on whether its residents should be able to apply for driver’s licenses regardless of their immigration status. Supporters of the measure kicked off their campaign Monday.

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Agriculture
6:24 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Hot Weather A Mixed Blessing For Farmers

File photo of workers harvesting watermelons at Bellinger Farms in Hermiston, Oregon.

This summer's hot, dry weather has been a mixed blessing for Northwest farmers.

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NPR Story
6:34 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Estimates Differ On How Much Tax Revenue Oregon's Marijuana Initiative Would Raise

Oregon’s legalized marijuana campaign says pot would generate about $39 million in tax revenue in its first year. Legislative revenue experts disagree.

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NPR Story
4:09 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Wildfires Continue To Have Northwest Residents On Edge

An aerial view of the Chiwaukum Fire near Highway 2 northwest of Wenatchee, Washington.

People in many Northwest communities are on edge Tuesday. A series of wildfires that threatened urban areas in recent days is the culprit.

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Education
6:44 pm
Mon July 28, 2014

Northwest States Vary On 'No Child Left Behind' Waivers

Oregon is waiting to hear whether its application for a continued federal waiver from the No Child Left Behind law will be approved.

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Smoking Ban
6:51 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

Oregon Ponders Smoking Ban At All Beaches

Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach viewed from U.S. Highway 101.
Roy W. Lowe U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Oregon could become the first West Coast state to ban smoking on all of its beaches. The Oregon State Parks Department is seeking public input on the proposal.

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Wildfires
5:24 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Feds Offer Wildfire Assistance, But So Far No Payments To Homeowners

Firefighters cut a line in the trees in order to contain the Carlton Complex fire.
Inciweb/National Wildfire Coordinating Group

Originally published on Mon July 28, 2014 4:09 pm

Federal funds are being used to help fight the wildfires that have raged across the Northwest this summer. But so far, the Federal Emergency Management Agency isn't handing out money directly to owners of the nearly 200 homes lost in the blazes.

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NPR Story
6:34 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Oregon County Turns Public Health Function Over To State

Originally published on Fri July 25, 2014 1:11 pm

Counties across the Northwest that are heavily dependent on timber revenue from federal lands have been struggling to provide public health services.

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