Samantha Wright

News Reporter/Show Producer

Samantha Wright is a news reporter and the host for Boise State Public Radio's new weekly podcast, "Legislative Breakdown".

Her spot reporting, special projects, and audio production have been featured on Voice of America, National Public Radio News, This American Life, National Native News, the Northwest Radio Network and on The New York Times website. Samantha earned a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Use of Sound for her feature “Co-op Cooks.”  She also earned a first place award for Use of Sound for her feature “Canning Makes a Comeback” from PRNDI - Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. Samantha was a co-producer of the Idaho StoryCorps Project. The project was recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists.

The Idaho Botanical Garden has just joined the “Let’s Move” initiative.  That’s First Lady Michelle Obama’s project to fight childhood obesity through exercise and better nutrition.  As Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports, the Garden gets kids “Moving” through a Botany Camp.

A miniature plane flew across the desert near Shoshone Thursday. The unmanned craft snapped pictures of sagebrush. Scientists hope to use this test flight to map pygmy rabbit habitat. Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports the goal is to help them survive.

Spud: Good Or Evil?

Jun 30, 2011


Idaho’s famous Spud is getting picked on. A Harvard study and the federal government have slammed the tater. The Governor and the Potato Commission came out this week in the spud’s defense. Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright asks a dietitian to weigh in.

University of Idaho President Duane Nellis says the lagging economy has hit his school hard. Budget cuts and tuition increases are challenging the Moscow institution. But Nellis says the economy will turn around, bringing new opportunities to Idaho. This week, he’s on a Statewide Leadership Tour, traveling, talking, and listening to what people have to say about the U of I. He stopped by Boise State Public Radio and told Samantha Wright the University has lost 20-million dollars in state funding in the past two years.

The Last Good War

Jun 23, 2011

He photographed over 400 World War II veterans. Then he took those photos, and the stories behind them, and put them into a book: “The Last Good War: the Faces and Voices of World War II.” Author and photographer Thomas Sanders will speak at the Idaho State Historical Museum Thursday night. He sat down to talk about his book, and the rather graphic image that started the project. A warning to our listeners, Sanders’ story begins with that strong image.

They decide who you get to vote for in the next general election the Commissioners who sit on the state’s Redistricting panel. They met for the first time Tuesday, in the basement of the Idaho Statehouse. As Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports, the commission begins its work an oath.


Idaho has had a cool, wet spring, while the desert southwest is dry and hot. Arizona’s seeing some of the largest wildfires in its history. That’s includes the Horseshoe 2 blaze in the southeast part of the state. Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports with so much of the state on fire, Arizona called for help, and firefighters from Idaho responded.

Over the next three months, Redistricting Commissioners will redraw the political boundaries. The goal is to make the districts as fair and even as possible. But inevitably, someone somewhere won’t like the final plan. And they’ll sue. Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports on why that is.

It's a case full of twists and turns, involving a public official and a lot of money. In 1996 Phil Hart stopped paying his income taxes. He claimed they were unconstitutional. Since then, Hart's been elected to the Idaho House of Representatives. He faced an ethics investigation from his legislative colleagues. Now he's appealing his state tax case to the Idaho Supreme Court.

Since last June, Spokesman Review Reporter Betsy Russell has followed his story. She told Boise State Public Radio's Samantha Wright how it all got started.

Here’s a question. Are you more likely to lose weight if you watch the TV show “Biggest Loser” and see contestants dropping pounds. An Idaho State Professor says maybe not. In fact, identifying with those contestants may make you LESS motivated to lose weight. Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright reports it all comes down to how your brain motivates you.

Idaho Statesman columnist Tim Woodward has written about everything from judging fruitcakes to haunted houses to personal stories about his family. And we’re not kidding when we say he’s written thousands of columns. Wednesday, after 40 years on the job, he retires. Woodward told Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright that his career, like many journalists, began with getting his journalism degree…

Meridian Levy Fails

May 23, 2011

A number of school districts around Idaho asked for more money for education in Tuesday's election. A few passed in places like Wilder, Parma, and Cassia County. Many did not, including the state's largest school district, Meridian. As Boise State Public Radio's Samantha Wright reports, voters said NO to a 37-million dollar supplemental levy.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death for Idahoans ages 15 to 34 and for boys age 10 to 14. And it’s a problem that few people feel comfortable talking about. But one woman is talking, telling her painful story in the hopes she can reach others, and prevent tragedies like hers from happening. In Part Two of our series “Suicide in Idaho: Small State Big Numbers,” Boise State Public Radio’s Samantha Wright has her story.