Author: Russ McNamara

Russ McNamara is a reporter and host of All Things Considered for 101.9 WDET, presenting local news to the station’s loyal listeners. McNamara has been working in radio since he was 17 - and in news since 2012. He also worked as play-by-play announcer for Wayne State University basketball for seven years. Born in the Upper Peninsula, McNamara is a lifelong Michigander. He is a 2002 graduate of Central Michigan University’s Broadcast and Cinematic Arts Program.

McNamara has been honored by the Associated Press, the Radio and Television Digital News Association, and the Michigan Association of Broadcasters for his work.

He is an amateur photographer, enjoys backpacking, bonfires and traveling with his wife, Sara.

“X” Designation on Michigan Driver’s Licenses for Nonbinary People Goes Into Effect

Anyone in Michigan who doesn’t feel as though the standard “male” or “female” driver’s license designations is the best description for them can change it.  People who identify as nonbinary have the option to be listed as “X” under the sex designation on state driver’s licenses. The move was announced last week and went into effect Wednesday. Speaking to those..

After Outcry from Activists, Redistricting Commissioner Works to Create More Representative Map for Detroit

As the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission continues to draw new legislative and congressional district maps, tensions are still high over what to do with Detroit.   Ahead of a redistricting meeting in Detroit, there was a call by the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus to draw lines that made majority-minority districts in the city. And two weeks later, according to State Rep. Karen Whitsett (D-Detroit), it’s the..

Coalition Calls on Michigan Lawmakers to Allocate $600 Million into State’s Clean Fuel Industry

Big investment in workforce training and clean fuel technology is the way to spur growth in Michigan, according to a coalition of more than 25 organizations and businesses.    Hundreds of millions of dollars left over from the American Rescue Plan has still not been allocated by the GOP-led Legislature. The groups are calling on lawmakers to put $600 million toward electric..

Administering Elections Has Become Unnecessarily Politicized, Benson Says

Municipal elections are taking place across Michigan today. Last year, a contentious presidential election led to many supporters of former President Donald Trump refusing to accept those results.   As Michigan residents head to the polls Tuesday to vote in municipal elections across the state, turnout is expected to be down from last year’s contentious presidential election. But the hangover from 2020 continues.  “Despite the enormous scrutiny..

Detroiters Call for Stellantis to Clean Up the Air Around Jeep Plant on City’s East Side

Residents and activists want Stellantis to clean up the air around the automaker’s east-side Detroit Jeep factory.    Last month, following complaints by residents, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy issued a violation to Stellantis for a strong paint smell coming from the plant.    The most recent violation is for failing to remove volatile organic compounds and hazardous compounds from the plant’s..

GOP-led Michigan Senate Passes Bills Banning Vaccine and Mask Mandates in Schools

The Michigan Senate passed on Tuesday a series of bills that would ban vaccine and mask mandates to stop the spread of COVID-19 in schools.   The votes were along party lines with the Republican majority pushing them through.   Republican senators say they want parents to have the final decision on whether their children are vaccinated or wear masks in school.  ..

Detroit Activists and Politicians Urge Redistricting Commissioners to Make More Representative Maps 

After the state’s redistricting commission introduced maps that only offered one majority-minority district in the City of Detroit, activists and politicians raised the alarm.    More than 100 people spoke at the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission meeting Wednesday in Detroit -- many expressing the same anxieties.    Detroit politicians and activists have criticized the commission’s proposed maps for Metro Detroit. The country’s..

Proposed Michigan Redistricting Maps Would Marginalize Black Voters, Detroit Activists and Politicians Say

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission will hold a meeting in Detroit Wednesday to allow for the residents of the country’s largest Black-majority city to give feedback on proposed new state and congressional districts.   Black politicians and activists are expressing concern about the process.   “We cannot afford to lose our democracy. We cannot afford to the pain, the blood,..