Kerry Klein

Reporter

Kerry Klein is a radio and print reporter who’s covered issues ranging from air and water quality to renewable energy and space exploration. After stints at KQED, the San Jose Mercury News, and NASA, she freelanced for outlets like The Atlantic, Science and Stanford Magazine. In 2015, she was awarded a grant from the Public Radio Exchange to report a national story on the health effects of noise pollution.

After growing up near Boston, Kerry graduated from McGill University with a B.S. in geology. When she began working as an exploration geologist and geothermal energy analyst, radio reporting was a distant and unlikely future. But she found meaning in media while hosting a talk show at a Montreal public radio station and later while producing a podcast for Science Magazine. She subsequently studied science journalism at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and is excited to be exploring community health and the rich diversity of the San Joaquin Valley here at KVPR.

When she’s not in front of a computer or microphone, Kerry can be found biking to the rock climbing gym, practicing her violin, or sewing a retro cocktail dress.

Ways to Connect

 

On this week’s Valley Edition: Why Fresno has become such a hot housing market, and how rising prices are deepening the affordable housing crisis.

Plus, the fight to keep small town newspapers in business.

And we conclude our series Escape From Mammoth Pool with a conversation about climate change, forest management, and the increasing human toll of an intensifying wildfire season. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

 

Kerry Klein / KVPR

The emergency rescues at Mammoth Pool Reservoir last September didn't happen in a vacuum. Wildfires in the West are getting bigger, faster, and more intense, and “megafires” like the Creek Fire, driven largely by climate change and a century of fire suppression, are putting people and infrastructure more at risk than ever. 

Jack Haskel

Last September, just days after the Mammoth Pool Reservoir rescues, thick orange smoke and falling ash from a different wildfire forced Jack Haskel to cut short a backpacking trip in Northern California. A few years before that, he had to evacuate a trail under similar circumstances in Oregon.

But not only is Jack a backpacker, he’s also a Trail Information Manager with the Pacific Crest Trail Association, and he is increasingly finding himself spending his summer days fielding phone calls from hikers and backpackers seeing smoke and wondering what to do.

 

On this week’s Valley Edition:  Rising temperatures have changed how wildfires behave - what that means for the future of the Sierra Nevada. 

Plus, living in poverty during the pandemic can be a job in itself. What it takes to keep up with government assistance programs just to survive. 

 And we continue with the wildfire smoke investigation from NPR’s California Newsroom. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 


 

Great news: our podcast has been featured on The California Report Magazine, a weekly radio show and podcast produced by our friends at KQED. Every week, they share creative, sound-rich stories that take listeners on “road trip for the ears and the imagination,” and today they’ve dedicated an entire episode to Escape From Mammoth Pool.

Joseph Rosamond

In an earlier episode of this podcast, Chief Warrant Officer Joseph Rosamond, a helicopter pilot with the California Army National Guard, went so far as to say that flying the rescue mission at Mammoth Pool Reservoir “was the most dangerous, most risky thing I've ever gotten myself into.” What you haven’t heard is just how harrowing those flights were—particularly the one in which Rosamond and his crew loaded in three times as many people as the helicopter is rated for.

 

 

On this week’s Valley Edition: The Youth Squad. A group of high school students who are working hard to get other teens vaccinated. 

Plus, why some West Fresno residents are concerned about preserving access to social services in their community.

And the effect of wildfire smoke on your health. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

Alex Tettamanti

A year after the Creek Fire ignited in the Sierra Nevada, Madera County is facing a lawsuit related to injuries sustained by campers who became trapped by the fire in the backcountry. The 11 plaintiffs on the lawsuit suffered burns and other injuries while camping near Mammoth Pool Reservoir when the intense, fast-moving fire began. 

Rolando Rosales

In the first three episodes of this series, we shared stories from the panicked evacuations and dramatic rescues of hundreds of people trapped at Mammoth Pool Reservoir in the Sierra Nevada. They’d fled there over Labor Day weekend 2020, as the Creek Fire consumed their campground and closed in on the lake. 

This week, we step back from that narrative with an epilogue. In a conversation with KVPR colleague Kathleen Schock, Kerry Klein checks in on these three families a year later: How have they recovered? How do they look back at the experience? And who is suing whom?

On this week’s Valley Edition: How COVID-19 outbreaks in rural schools affect the surrounding communities.

Plus, why dozens of Cal Fire firefighters have suffered from heat illness while training.

 

And the rich history of drag performance and LGBTQ activism in the Central Valley. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

 

Joseph Rosamond

There are many ways to be heroic. Some of them are death-defying—like rushing into a burning forest to save hundreds of strangers—but some aren’t, and even talking someone down from a panic attack, or offering a ride in the middle of a wildfire, can pay dividends in serendipitous, even life-saving ways.

                                                                                                                                         

On this week’s Valley Edition: We continue our podcast Escape From Mammoth Pool. This week: the heroes, big and small, who helped more than 200 campers survive being trapped by the Creek Fire.

 

Plus, the strain on local hospitals as they cope with the latest surge of COVID-19.   

And a never-before seen art exhibition is headed to the Bakersfield Museum of Art. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

Alex Tettamanti

In last week’s episode, campers were in the throes of panic and chaos as they prepared to evacuate their campground. This week, they navigate two miles down a narrow, winding dirt road, its perils made all the more dangerous by the oppressive smoke and encroaching flames from the Creek Fire.

Credits:

 

On this week’s  Valley Edition: We continue our series Escape From Mammoth Pool, about the dramatic rescues of hundreds of campers during the first days of the Creek Fire.

Plus, young filmmakers in Bakersfield document food insecurity in Kern County.   

And how you can attend this year’s Dark Sky festival from your own backyard. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

 

Alex Tettamanti

For 17 years, Karla Carcamo’s family had a Labor Day tradition: they gathered all their cousins, aunts and uncles, grandparents, family friends, and even family members of family friends, and spent the long weekend camping at Mammoth Pool Reservoir in the Sierra Foothills.

 

Alex Tettamanti and her husband Raul Reyes were regulars at Mammoth Pool, too – the off-roading club they belong to with Vicky Castro and her husband Rolando Rosales also visited the reservoir every Labor Day to play with their quads and jet-skis.

 

On this episode of Valley Edition:  One year after the Creek Fire broke out, we debut a new series all about last year’s dramatic rescue of hundreds of people from Mammoth Pool Reservoir.

Plus, civil rights legend Dolores Huerta shares her vision for an upcoming peace and justice center in Bakersfield named in her honor. 

 

And music educators tell us how they’re handling the pandemic. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

 

The true story of how 242 people—and 16 dogs—survived one of the fastest-moving, most intense wildfires in California history, as the Creek Fire closed in on their campground at Mammoth Pool Reservoir over Labor Day weekend 2020.

Check out the trailer for Escape From Mammoth Pool, a new limited-run podcast produced by Valley Public Radio for the one-year anniversary of the start of the Creek Fire.

  

Healthy Fresno County facebook page

Coronavirus infections are now spreading faster in the San Joaquin Valley than in any other region of the state. And as hospitals reach critical capacity, health officials are warning that patient care is at risk.

 

On the next Valley Edition: The latest in the effort to recall Gov. Gavin Newsom, and why Latino voters could play a deciding role in the election’s outcome.

Plus, we explore the return of live music to local venues and how those venues are dealing with the pandemic.

 And poetry written from inside California’s prisons. Listen to these stories and more in the podcast above. 

US Forest Service / Inciweb

Last year, the western states were hit with a double-whammy of natural disasters: Not just the COVID-19 pandemic, but also a historically long and intense wildfire season that blanketed the region with plume after plume of noxious smoke.

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