Robert Garrova

Reporter, G.A./Demographics

Robert is a General Assignment reporter, with a focus on New Hampshire's changing demographics. He comes to NHPR’s newsroom from Los Angeles, where he worked as a reporter for member-station KPCC and a producer/director on APM’s Marketplace with Kai Ryssdal.

His work has been featured on Marketplace’s flagship program, Southern California Public Radio and the Los Angeles Review of Books. Robert has reported on a wide range of topics, including the largest fire in California history and the re-discovered costumes of a silent film star.

He’s looking forward to learning everything he can about New Hampshire and the people who call the Granite State home. 

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AP | NPR

Arizona Republican Senator Jeff Flake is scheduled to speak Friday morning at Saint Anselm College in Manchester.

 

Flake will be the featured speaker at the “Politics and Eggs” forum hosted by the college. Past speakers have included President Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

 

In an interview with NBC, Flake said he thinks Trump should be challenged during the 2020 Republican primary. But Flake has yet to announce a presidential run for himself.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Students across the country are marking one month since the Parkland, Florida, school shooting left 17 dead. Today, more than a thousand Concord High students stood outside at 10 a.m., the morning after a snowstorm hit the northeast. It was still snowing lightly as students held 17 minutes of silence to commemorate the 17 killed in Parkland and read the names of those lost.

 

Senior Jonathan Weinberg was one of the organizers. He says they purposely chose to hold 17 minutes of silence instead of a focusing on a walkout.

 

Courtesy the Okeny family

  Ageth Okeny fled war in Sudan with her four children. In Egypt, she says she applied for refugee resettlement.

 

“They asked me in interview: ‘You have specific place to go?’ I said no, I just want to leave with my kid[s], I need the safety place to be safe with my children,” Okeny says.

 

“So they brought me here to Manchester,” she says.

 

 


Robert Garrova for NHPR

It’s six o’clock at night on a Tuesday at New InkLand Tattoo. Two clients are getting ink done and the place is going to be open late, like it is most nights.

Angel Villanueva runs the shop. He says he’s originally from Los Angeles, where he had a tattoo shop for 20 years. But about eight years ago, he made a trip to New Hampshire.

The decades old cultural organization known as the New Hampshire Humanities has a new executive director.

Anthony Poore is the latest to take the helm of the group, which is funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The Manchester resident most recently worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

Poore says he believes the humanities are as important as ever for New Hampshire.

Ryan Lessard for NHPR

The University of New Hampshire is deciding to keep the list of final candidates in its search for a new president private.  

 

Last week the Seacoast NAACP and ACLU of New Hampshire sent a letter to John Small, Chairman of the University System of New Hampshire’s Board of Trustees. The message encouraged Small to allow for student and faculty input on the presidential search finalists.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

The Merrimack County Department of Corrections opened the Edna McKenna Community Corrections Center Monday. It's an almost $7 million renovation and expansion project, re-purposing a 1983-built jail that was left vacant for a decade.

 

Officials hope the 68-bed site will decrease recidivism rates in the county by offering classes on things like life skills, parenting, and workforce readiness.

 

But the McKenna facility will also offer drug treatment programs.

 

NHPR Photo

New Hampshire libraries are working to fix interlibrary loan automation, which has been out of commission since December.

 

State Librarian Michael York says the basement of the State Library in Concord is where to find the depot for interlibrary loan in New Hampshire.

 

“The library system supports one another by lending materials,” York said.  

 

 

That means transporting hundreds of thousands of books a year. But there’s a problem: the computer system that helps automate the process broke.

 

“This is a major problem for us,” York said. “The automated aspect of interlibrary loan has been a key feature since we automated in the early-80s.”

 

The show goes on though, it just means librarians are doing much more manual work to get your book to you. That means extra emails and phone calls from library to library to coordinate book distribution.

Reuters

The National Education Association New Hampshire has formed a coalition to look at school gun violence.

 

The union of educators, which has 17,000 members, says the coalition will be made up of educators, first responders, and mental health experts. The plan is to also have input on possible changes to legislation.

 

Forrest Seavey

The New Hampshire House of Representatives voted down a bill today, HB1542, which would allow revolvers and pistols on state college campuses.

The vote comes just weeks after a school shooting in Parkland, Florida left 17 students dead.

Dozens of mothers and supporters of the group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America showed up to protest the proposed legislation.

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Dartmouth-Hitchcock announced a $2.7 million federal grant today that will go toward treating pregnant women struggling with opioid addiction.

 

The non-profit health system says the two-year grant will allow it to help seven maternity care offices throughout the state build out Medication Assisted Treatment programs. The idea is that pregnant women suffering from opioid use disorder will be more likely to seek help in a maternity care environment.

 

Michael Brindley/NHPR

A state superior court judge heard arguments in a case challenging the controversial Senate Bill 3 voting law on Tuesday.

 

The bill requires proof-of-residency documents for voters registering within 30 days of an election. It’s been challenged by the League of Women Voters of New Hampshire for adding what it says are ‘confusing’ and ‘intimidating hurdles’ to voting.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Julián Castro, a possible presidential hopeful who was a former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama, addressed New Hampshire Young Democrats in Manchester Friday night.

Senator Maggie Hassan is calling on regulators to take a closer look at certain video game micro-transactions.

The Nashua Board of aldermen voted Tuesday to approve a new $15.5 million performing arts center. All but one of the aldermen voted for the complex, which is set to go in at the Alec’s shoe store building on Main Street.

Late last year the Board voted against the project, with some citing cost as a factor.

Robert Garrova for NHPR

The New Hampshire Senate Education Committee heard testimony on a bill today that would make certain adult education programs available only to legal residents of the state.

 

Republican Senator Andy Sanborn is the primary sponsor of the measure, which he said will direct funds toward students who can legally work in the state.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu’s new Council on Diversity and Inclusion held its first meeting Thursday evening.

 

One of the council’s objectives, as laid out by the governor, is to recommend changes to New Hampshire laws and policies which will advance equity in the state.

 

The council plans to hold public forums so that residents across the state can provide input.

 

thebearwalk.com

A Brooklyn-based travel startup is looking to lure tourists to Southern New Hampshire with an outpost of trendy cabins in the woods.

 

In recognition of Black History Month, website Mic.com launched what it’s calling the Black Monuments Project, which imagines new memorials for African American heroes in every state.

 

New Hampshire’s entry is Dinah Whipple, who’s credited with opening the first school for African American children in New Hampshire.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Dozens of supporters of what’s known as the “Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival” delivered a letter to the office of New Hampshire Senate President Chuck Morse Monday, calling out what the group sees as an unfair tax system and unequal access to education, among other things.   

 

Representatives with the Campaign filed into the State House Monday morning, singing the spiritual “We Shall Overcome.”

 

This week the Trump Administration announced it would reopen the door to refugees from 11 so-called “high-risk” countries it had previously banned. But the Department of Homeland Security is also calling for increased security measures which it says will bolster public safety.

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Controversial undercover video producer James O’Keefe returned to New Hampshire last night to speak at an event sponsored by College Republicans at UNH and the 603 Alliance.

Several of the two dozen or so in attendance were college students who listened intently as O’Keefe called out what he sees as media bias and corrupt journalism from outlets like The New York Times and CNN.

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