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Spencer Michels, correspondent and producer in the San Francisco office of the NewsHour, began reporting stories for the broadcast in 1983, while still anchor and correspondent for KQED. A native of San Francisco, he graduated from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1959 and then received his master's from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.
Michels began his professional career as a reporter with the Palo Alto Times, and then moved to KCRA in Sacramento. In addition to general reporting, anchoring and producing, he traveled around the world doing stories ranging from the Vietnam War and the Israeli war with Egypt, to socialized medicine in Scandinavia and bureaucracy in Italy. After working on news and documentary programs at the public station, KQED, for several years, he joined the NewsHour full time in 1991. Since then, he has produced hundreds of 5 to 10 minute reports on all manner of issues, including health, environment, science, politics, economics and arts. He has won several Emmys and other awards.
He lives in Marin County with his wife, Roberta. They have three grown children and three grandchildren.
In California’s Silicon Valley, some residents lament the ways industry giants like Facebook and Google are dominating suburban communities like Mountain View, Menlo Park and Palo Alto, by altering the housing markets, creating traffic problems and bringing in a monoculture…
Singing, prancing and chasing an errant cat is an odd way to remember an American tragedy that happened just prior to the D-Day invasion of Normandy in 1944. But somehow the imported play “946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips”…
More than half a century after his joyous, optimistic trip to Princeton, free elections and free speech remain unfulfilled promises.
The failure of almost all the public opinion polls to correctly predict the winner provides an opportunity to look at an alternative method of polling that has worked in the past, and that I took part in as a graduate…
I’ve been covering California water issues a long time. As the years have gone by, the water wars have ebbed and flowed. Mostly flowed.
Why would we spend much time worrying about whether dogs are allowed to run off-leash in a national park on the far western coast of the U.S.? The story is a lesson in how government works, or doesn’t, depending on…
Behind a gas station, just off the main highway that runs through Garberville, California, is a nursery that sells plants and seedlings. It’s called Wonderland, and by “plants and seedlings” it means cannabis. Its rooms and greenhouses are filled with…
Since the main job of district attorneys is to indict and prosecute criminals, you might find it odd that many of those prosecutors are whole-hearted supporters of a system that acts to treat — not to punish — the problems…
Fifty years ago this month, long before the Vietnam War, students on the U.C. Berkeley campus ignited protests over a ban on political activity -- a student movement that would morph into the huge, confrontational demonstrations of the early 1970s…
Biohacking is a fairly new practice that could lead to major changes in our life. You could it call citizen or do-it-your-self biology. It takes place in small labs -- mostly non-university -- where all sorts of people get together…
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