Emily Corwin

Seacoast Reporter

Emily Corwin is NHPR's Seacoast reporter, doing general assignment reporting across the region. She also does beat reporting on the state's justice system. Emily reports regularly on New Hampshire’s prison system, higher education, and regional politics. Previously, Emily worked on NPR's StateImpact project covering business & economy in New Hampshire. Emily received the 2013 Gracie Award for “Best Hard News Feature,” for her reporting on New Hampshire’s state prison for women.

Before coming to NHPR, Emily was the associate programmer for Public Radio Remix, with Roman Mars (of 99% Invisible). She hosted and produced Youthcast, a podcast from the Public Radio Exchange; and worked on other freelance projects in Boston. Emily studied cello performance and music composition at the California Institute of the Arts. She fell in love with public radio while schlepping between gigs on Los Angeles freeways.


Ways To Connect

Defence Images on Flickr

  A computer virus called Cryptowall crippled the Durham Police Department’s computer system Friday morning.  The virus was a kind of ransomware, which encrypts files, then tries to convince users to pay to decrypt them. Durham Town Manager Todd Selig says a Durham police officer opened what appeared to be a legitimate file attachment to an email on Thursday evening.

While you’re binging on new episodes of Orange is The New Black this week, here in New Hampshire, architects are working with the Department of Corrections to design a real $38 million state prison for women. 

And unlike most women’s prisons around the country, this 224-bed prison is being designed for the particular needs of women inmates.  To find out more about what New Hampshire's new prison may be like, NHPR visited a women's prison designed by the same architect, and with the same principles -- in Windham, Maine. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Smuttynose Brewing Company's new brewery opens Saturday in Hampton, NH.  Below is an audio postcard in which Smuttynose's "Master of Propoganda," JT Thompson, gives a tour of the $24 million energy efficient brewery, which produces 65,000 barrels of beer each day.

Ian Sane / flickr, creative commons

  There were more questions than answers Wednesday night at a public information meeting at the Pease Tradeport. There, Officials from the Department of Environmental Services, the City of Portsmouth, and the U.S. Air Force tried to address concerns about a contaminant identified in drinking water on Pease. 

SalFalko, Mentus Media / Flickr Creative Commons

The trial begins Tuesday for Seth Mazzaglia, the 31 year old man prosecutors say raped and killed 19 year old UNH student, Lizzi Marriott in October of 2012. 

A jury of 16 will be sworn in at noon.  They're then expected to visit sites in Dover and Portsmouth. There, jurors will likely view the Sawyer Mill Apartment where Marriott's death allegedly took place; dumpsters where evidence was found, and the location on Pierce Island where Mazzaglia told investigators he left the body.

The New Hampshire Bureau of Securities Regulation is taking action against a Jaffrey couple it says has committed securities fraud through a jointly-owned company, Howard Interests. 

Charles Howard III is no stranger to securities regulators.  In 1993, he was sentenced to prison for bank fraud, and conspiracy to commit insider trading and bank bribery. NH Securities Deputy Director, Jeff Spill says the Bureau believes Mr. Howard and his wife, Carolyn began engaging in unlicensed investment advising in 2002, about five years after Mr. Howard was released from jail.

Emily Corwin

  After six months of deliberation, the Newington planning board has approved a controversial proposal to bring up to 12 railcars of propane through the Seacoast each night. 

The company, called SEA-3, wants to transport domestic propane from oil wells in Pennsylvania and elsewhere to the Seacoast, for export by ship.

But neighborhood groups in Portsmouth, Stratham and Greenland have opposed the rail expansion, voicing concerns about moving explosive materials over aging railroad tracks.

Emily Corwin

  The Pease Development Authority voted unanimously Thursday night not to renew a contract with the scrap metal recycling company Grimmel Industries at the Port of New Hampshire in Portsmouth.

Residents, environmental watchdogs, and Portsmouth city officials have long complained that Grimmel’s scrap piles contaminate both the air and water.

Nevertheless, the Pease Development Authority signed a five year contract with Grimmel in 2009, citing an absence of alternative revenue sources.

Emily Corwin

  Geno Marconi, the Port Director at the Port of New Hampshire, watches a giant electromagnet lifting a tangle of scrap metal into the out of a delivery truck and onto a scrap pile. “It’s like a giant ballet,” he says, pointing to the cargo ships, tugboats and delivery trucks.

The Pease Development Authority – which manages the port – leases waterfront property to the scrap company, Grimmel Industries. Grimmel’s lease ends in December, and residents along the waterfront are demanding Pease find another tenant.

Emily Corwin

  By the mid-April at Keene State College, 13 students remained in professor Kristen Porter-Utley’s freshman biology lecture. Two had dropped out.  Keene State's Dean of Sciences and Social Sciences, Gordon Leversee,  says this is not unusual in science classes around the country.  Here, science students are 2 to 3 times more likely to get a D, an F, to withdraw, or receive an incomplete than students in other classes. 

Sara Plourde / NHPR

If it seems like, these days, everyone is talking about STEM - that now common acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math programs - it's because they are.

In this animated two-way, we take a look at what the push for STEM means for the state - from our public university system, to the State House, and through the business community - and for students.


  The Wire, a free arts and culture paper that served the Seacoast for 10 years, has shut its doors.

According to an announcement published on The Wire’s homepage on Tuesday, the paper delivered 4 million editions of their weekly paper before closing down this week.

The paper’s owners attribute their decision to “a mix of reasons both personal and professional.”   


  Construction will begin soon on a new $2 million athletic facility on the second floor of UNH’s Field House.  The Student-Athlete Center for Excellence is slated to open late next fall.

Mike Murphy, with the Athletic Department, says the new space should help the school attract athletes to campus.   

So it’s going to be both areas where students can have breakout rooms where they can work in tandem, but they also will have rooms where they can have advisors, tutors, and career assistance.

Rockingham County Attorney's office


Suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams will return to office on Wednesday, but his authority to make personnel decision will be limited.

Lawyers for Attorney General Joe Foster and Attorney Reams together crafted the agreement that allows the Reams to return to work. 

Foster suspended Reams from his elected post in November and opened an investigation. In March, the investigation concluded with allegations of sexual harassment, gender discrimination and misuse of public money. No criminal charges were made.

www.rocka.net / Rockingham County Attorney's Office

  Suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams is one step closer to getting his job back.  On Thursday, the Supreme Court decided for now, it will not hear the state’s appeal in a lawsuit seeking to return him to office.

Reams and his attorney will likely return to court next week to argue that the Supreme Court’s decision lifts a previous lower-court order continuing his suspension.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The New Hampshire Supreme Court ruled Thursday that suspended Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams can return to office while the Attorney General appeals a lower court's finding that the suspension was unlawful. 

The Supreme Court denied the AG's request for a stay that would have kept Reams out of office until the appeal is argued.


  The University System of New Hampshire voted Friday to put $54 million toward building renovations and acquisitions at UNH’s Durham Campus. 

$37 million will be spent renovating Hamilton Smith Hall, which houses UNH’s English Department, ESOL, Journalism and writing programs. The building has not been renovated in more than 30 years, and does not meet all disability and safety standards. 

Emily Corwin

  Conflict between commercial growth and historic preservation is a constant in Portsmouth, where city meetings over building heights often run late into the night. Now, city leaders hope a new 3-D model of downtown Portsmouth will bring context to the conversation.

Portsmouth is paying the Kittery archetectural rendering firm Tangram 3DS $50,000 to create this interactive map, which Portsmouth principal planner Nick Cracknell says will be used by land use and zoning boards.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

  Kentucky Senator Rand Paul rallied Republicans last night in Dover. The event kicked off what will be a busy weekend of politicking by high-profile members of the GOP.

In addition to  Rand Paul,  TX Senator Ted Cruz, and Utah Senator Mike Lee will take the stage at the Freedom Summit, an event organized by conservative groups Americans for Prosperity Foundation  and Citizens United.

Last night in Dover,  Rand Paul stressed the need for Republicans to broaden their appeal if they want to win in 2016. Paul says that means courting young people and minority voters.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

A New Hampshire judge has ruled that the continued suspension of Rockingham County attorney Jim Reams is illegal, and ordered his reinstatement.

Attorney General Joseph Foster suspended Reams’ power to prosecute in November, as the AG investigated allegations of sexual harassment and financial mismanagement.

Don McCullough

  Sea level rise was the topic of discussion at the Coastal New Hampshire Climate Summit on Thursday.  There, scientists and city planners came together to take small steps toward solving big problems.

Dave Burdick researches Salt Marshes at UNH, where he’s a professor of Marine Wetland Ecology.   He says his recent measurements show the water level of salt marshes in Portsmouth rising at 4.3 millimeters per year – that’s two and a half times as fast as the same salt marshes were rising in 1996.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency released new preliminary flood maps for New Hampshire on Wednesday. These updated flood maps could affect property owners in flood hazard zones from Coos County to Keene, to the Seacoast. 

The state’s businesses are clamoring for a labor force better prepared in the STEM fields, says Governor Maggie Hassan. "It has been very clear to me that the number one need that businesses identify is a 21st century workforce," she says.

She says both the state’s school districts and Universities aren’t doing enough. So, she's issued an executive order to establish a 14-member taskforce to plan the future of STEM or Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education in New Hampshire.

On Wednesday the Federal Railroad Authority announced it will propose new rules this summer for railroad safety. That comes amid safety concerns on the Seacoast following a proposal to transport propane to Newington by rail. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

  Superior judge Richard McNamara heard arguments Monday on whether New Hampshire's Attorney General has the authority to continue the suspension of Rockingham County attorney Jim Reams. The Attorney General suspended Reams in November, and then pursued an investigation into alleged employment discrimination and financial mismanagement.  

Joe Plaia -- a former Marine MP and public defender and current chief hearings officer for the New Hampshire Liquor Commission --  will run again for the position of Rockingham County Attorney.  Plaia is the first Democrat in this majority-Republican county to seek the seat of suspended  Attorney, Jim Reams. 

Plaia  says the Rockingham County Attorney's Office needs to be modernized. "There's a lot we can do to save taxpayer dollars," Plaia says, "there's a lot we can do to reduce recidivism." 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The French manufacturing company Safran and their American collaborator, Albany International, held an inauguration ceremony for their new manufacturing plant in Rochester on Monday. Nearly the entire New Hampshire delegation – as well as the French Ambassador to the United States -- showed up for the event.

At the new plant in Rochester, workers will build carbon-fiber airplane parts – like super-lightweight blades for the next generation of jet engines.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

  Scott Brown visited the Frisbie Memorial Hospital in Rochester on Tuesday. That hospital is not part of Anthem’s provider network on the health exchange and its leadership has vocally criticized the Affordable Care Act.  Brown’s appearance at the hospital coincided with Vice President Joe Biden’s arrival in Nashua.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

  For 36 years the Newington company Sea-3 has imported propane from Algeria and other countries. Ships come into port, off-load the fuel, and Sea-3 stores it and sells it locally. 

Then two years ago, hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in places like North Dakota led to a boom in production, and American propane actually became cheaper than foreign propane. And with that, says Sea-3s’ vice-president Paul Bogan, the company’s business model was no longer profitable.

“Essentially,” he says, “we’ve been out of business for the last couple of years.”

Flickr user "btckeychain."

  About 100 people -- both dedicated bitcoin devotees and the merely bitcoin-curious -- gathered Thursday night at the Music Hall for an hour-long symposium on the digital currency.  Event organizer Joshua Cyr says the purpose of the evening is to demystify the public about what bitcoin is.

Bitcoin being a new thing, we need to take care in how we’re describing it so that we’re describing it fully, because if people get bits of bad news and not the whole picture, it does more harm than good for the general public.