Ryan Lessard

Correspondent

Before becoming a reporter for NHPR, Ryan devoted many months interning with The Exchange team, helping to produce their daily talk show.  He graduated from the University of New Hampshire in Manchester with a major in Politics and Society and a minor in Communication Arts. While in school, he also interned for a DC-based think tank. His interests include science fiction and international relations. Ryan is a life-long Manchester resident.

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NH News
11:05 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Sen. Shaheen Meets With Marathon Responders

Shaheen watches a presentation outlining N.H. SWAT Teams' involvement in the Watertown sweep following the Boston Marathon Bombings last year.
Ryan Lessard NHPR

New Hampshire police officers who pitched in after the Boston Marathon Bombings last year met in Manchester Tuesday with Senator Jeanne Shaheen.


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NH News
4:54 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

This Guy Makes Homebrewed Beer With Syrup, Just Not The Kind You Think

Peter Ashworth (right) watches as his son James hammers a tap into a black birch tree.
Ryan Lessard NHPR

Last week I tagged along with a man in Weare who’s tapping black birch trees for their sap. While its syrup is not as sweet as maple syrup, it can be an unexpected and tasty ingredient in home-brewed beer.


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NH News
5:30 am
Wed April 9, 2014

Republican Candidates For U.S. Senate Debate, Scott Brown Declines Invite

From left, Karen Testerman, Jim Rubens and Bob Smith at the Bedford Public Library.
Credit Ryan Lessard / NHPR

  Republican candidates for U.S. Senate Karen Testerman, Jim Rubens and Bob Smith debated in Bedford Tuesday night. The tone was cordial and while some disagreed on points of policy, they were united in their criticism of the absent candidate: Scott Brown.


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NH News
6:08 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

N.H. House Kills Recreational Marijuana

The New Hampshire house voted 192-140 Wednesday to kill a bill that would legalize up to one ounce of marijuana for recreational use.


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NH News
5:00 am
Fri March 21, 2014

New Program Helps Refugee Women Start Home Child Care Business

Nidhal Qaraghuli with some of her own kids in her Manchester apartment.
Ryan Lessard NHPR

A new program helps refugees earn money by training stay-at-home moms to be entrepreneurs in the child care industry.


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NH News
2:55 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Housing Discrimination Bill Narrowly Passes House

Apartments in downtown Manchester
agrippa93 Flickr

This week, the New Hampshire House narrowly passed a bill that would prohibit landlords from discriminating against renters with Section 8 vouchers and victims of domestic violence.

After the House initially tabled the bill last week, lawmakers amended it to more tightly define victims of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking. They now must have a current, final protective order.

The bill goes to the Senate next where it faces a tougher debate. 

NH News
10:54 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Hooksett Voters Say 'No' To Pinkerton Deal

The town of Hooksett said no Tuesday to a 10-year deal with Pinkerton Academy in Derry. Only about 44% of residents voted in favor of the contract.


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Education
5:00 am
Sun March 9, 2014

Hooksett Voters To Weigh In On Pinkerton Deal

On Tuesday, the town of Hooksett will vote whether to approve a contract with Pinkerton Academy in Derry. If voters approve the deal, it could spell the end for the town’s century-long relationship with Manchester schools.


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NH News
10:37 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

Rail Study Group Expects 3,000 Riders Daily Between Manchester and Boston

Concord to Boston.
courtesy NH DOT and URS Corp

New details released by the Capitol Corridor rail study group during a public hearing Wednesday night point toward higher ridership than expected.


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NH News
5:50 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Housing Discrimination Bill For Federal Renter's Assistance And Domestic Violence Stirs Controversy

This map of Manchester shows where section 8 vouchers are used.
courtesy of NHLA

The New Hampshire House is slated to vote this week on a bill to prevent housing discrimination. Renters who pay with federal subsidy vouchers, known as Section 8, and victims of domestic abuse would receive new protections.


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NH News
5:23 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Manchester Police Ensnare 30 Low-Level Heroin Dealers In Sweep

16 of the 30 dealers arrested so far.
MPD

Over the last two days, police in Manchester arrested 30 street-level heroin dealers. Three were on Wednesday and at least 27 on Thursday since 5 o’clock in the morning.


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NH News
4:24 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Senate Committee To Hold Gas Tax Hearing

Tuesday morning, the Senate Ways and Means Committee will hold a public hearing on a bill that would raise the state’s gas tax by a few cents every four years.


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NH News
4:32 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Death By Dancing Lion: Internationally Renowned Chocolate Here In N.H.

Ryan Lessard NHPR

Valentine's Day means you may be on the hunt for some good chocolate. How about chocolate that not only tastes good but is also high art?


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Education
4:11 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Final NECAP Scores For New Hampshire Show No Real Change

Flikr Creative Commons / Renator Ganoza

Fresh results from New England Common Assessment Program tests, or NECAP, are in. 

The New Hampshire Department of Education says student performance in math, reading and writing stayed essentially the same as last year.

The DOE says that while the percentage of students in the proficient or above level went up or down a few points in each category, the changes weren’t statistically significant.

Overall, 77% of students tested were proficient or above in reading. That’s down from 79% last year. 65% in math (down from 68%) and 58% percent in writing (up from 55%).

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NH News
5:51 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Hassan Reiterates Opposition To Legal Pot, Wants More Drug Treatment

Governor Maggie Hassan, during her State of the State Address, criticized efforts to legalize marijuana. Hassan expressed concerns about New Hampshire’s current drug problem.


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