Rick Holter | KERA News

Rick Holter

Vice President of News

Rick Holter is KERA's vice president of news. He oversees news coverage on all of KERA's platforms – radio, digital and television. Under his leadership, KERA News has won 39 awards so far this year, including the station's first-ever national Edward R. Murrow Award for a video in its series One Crisis Away: Rebuilding A Life. He and the KERA News staff were also part of NPR's Ebola-coverage team that won a George Foster Peabody Award, broadcasting's highest honor.

Rick returned to Dallas in 2012 after six years at NPR, where he edited the shows Weekend All Things Considered and Day to Day, and supervised the Digital News operation. Before that, Rick spent 15 years at The Dallas Morning News, after editing stints at what was then the St. Petersburg Times (now Tampa Bay Times) in Florida and the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C.

In addition to the Peabody, he’s collected honors including USC-Getty Arts Journalism Fellowships in 2005 and 2011, a National Headliners Award (2010), a NLGJA Award (2009) and numerous newspaper design awards. He also edited and designed a Pulitzer Prize-winning feature series (1992). A graduate of the University of Maryland, he grew up on a dairy farm in Middletown, Md.

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The city of Boston and surrounding suburbs are locked down as hundreds of law enforcement officers bear down on the one living suspect. PBS NewsHour is covering the story live.

The FAQ On Fertilizer

Apr 18, 2013

The Washington Post's WonkBlog has a standout look at the fertilizer business. One choice tidbit: The U.S. imports far more fertilizer ($13 billion worth) than it exports ($4.5 billion). And the biggest suppliers? Canada, Russia, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Update, 12:15 a.m.: "An unbelievable tragedy" -- that's how D.L. Wilson of the Department of Public Safety described Wednesday night's fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas. Speaking to the media just after midnight, he added that he'd toured the blast zone, and it looked "just like Iraq, just like the Murrah building in Oklahoma City," which was bombed 18 years ago this week.

Wilson said more than 100 were injured, and he confirmed that people have died, though he gave no number.

The NPR host was running the Boston Marathon with William Greer, a blind marathoner from Austin. Peter writes: "He ran the bravest and toughest mile of his life, not even able to see clearly what he was doing, just because he wanted to be able to say he did it, and by doing so, he crossed the line alive."

AJ Gazmen / flickr.com

Update, 6:25 p.m.: The man accused of stabbing 15 people on campus outside Houston is a 20-year-old student named Dylan Quick, the Houston Chronicle reports. The paper put together a profile of Quick based on a Lone Star College-CyFair blog that spotlighted him on April 1.

Google says Austin will be the next city to receive the search giant's ultra-fast Internet service starting next year. 'Google Fiber' is estimated to be about 100 times faster than basic cable service.

The Kaufman County Sheriff's Department issued a statement saying Chris Heisler did not speak for the family of slain District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife Cynthia. Heisler said some relatives were "furious" about the way the investigation has been handled.

The debut of a blog about race, ethnicity and culture draws a little Texas-born star power from the singer, who cut her teeth in Houston. Embedded are two very different "the real Beyonce" videos. And by the way, "Code Switch" refers to the different personas many of us snap into in different family, social and work situations.

Baseball Backs / Flickr

Opening day brought waves of emotion Friday for Texas Rangers fans -- from a somber first pitch to a chorus of boos to a late-inning rally over a bitter rival.

The choice to replace Veletta Lill as the head of Dallas' downtown arts haven is a familiar face: Catherine Cuellar, a member of the city's Cultural Affairs Commission and a former reporter at KERA.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

Five stories that have North Texas talking: 3D ghouls and long-awaited movies at SXSW, a huge stack of bills in Austin, and more...

The Digital Convergence Alliance will put the "master control" operations of a number of large public TV stations across the country under one roof.

Shutterstock.com http://www.shutterstock.com/index-in.mhtml

It's tough out there for commuters.

A new U.S. Census report shows that more than 10 million Americans commute an hour or more each way to work. (And more folks commute into Dallas County -- a half-million-plus -- than into just about any other county in the country. Plus ... you guessed it ... almost all of them arrive by car.)

'The Cliburn: 50 Years of Gold' / KERA

KERA produced a television documentary last fall on the life of Van Cliburn and the Fort Worth-based international piano competition that bears his name. It’s called The Cliburn: 50 Years of Gold and you can watch it here or tune in to Channel 13 on Friday night at 9.

It's hard to overstate what a crucial year 1963 proved to be. The Atlantic's In Focus blogger, Alan Taylor, takes a look back at 50 indelible photos of an indelible year. From the March on Washington to Vietnam. From Beatlemania to the crowning of "America's Junior Miss," 17-year-old Diane Sawyer. And, of course, those searing images from Nov. 22 and the days after, which transfixed a nation and haunted a city.

The Carnival Triumph, which launched from Galveston, is being towed to Mobile, Ala., where 4,000-plus people will finally be free three days after an engine fire disabled the ship. One passenger says, "Up on deck it looks like a shanty town, with sheets, almost like tents, mattresses, anything else they can pull to sleep on."

The polling folks at Gallup have done a post-election analysis, and for Lone Star politics-watchers, there's a shock: "Although Texas has voted Republican in each of the past nine presidential elections, Gallup classifies it as competitive, given that slightly more of its residents identify as or lean Republican than Democratic."

Gov. Rick Perry, an Eagle Scout, waded into the debate about Boy Scouts and gay members and leaders this weekend. The Scouts' national executive board is expected to discuss the issue when it starts a meeting Monday in Irving.

Templar1307 / flickr

Chris Kyle's story was already pretty startling: Rodeo rider turned Navy Seal, he became America's "most lethal sniper," killing more than 150 in Iraq. He came home, started a business, wrote a book. And Saturday, he and another person were shot and killed at a gun range near Glen Rose, Texas.

Lancaster police told The Dallas Morning News they arrested a former Marine who may have suffered from post-traumatic stress syndrome.

Last January, Kyle talked with KERA’s Krys Boyd about the book, American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History, about his his military career and about what life was like for a sniper in Iraq.


Updated, 2:40 p.m.: Lone Star College's North Harris campus near Houston has been evacuated and closed for the day, according to the community college's website.

​Updated, 2:26 p.m.: Three people have been injured in a shooting Tuesday at Lone Star College's North Harris campus near Houston, a police spokesman said.

More than 125,000 folks have signed a petition urging Texas to secede -- and it's one of eight states with such petitions. The White House responded with a polite statement. But the title makes the administration's position clear: "Our States Remain United."

North Texas' favorite football and hockey teams got to brawlin' Tuesday. But it wasn't on the ice or the gridiron; the battlefield was Twitter. And like the end of the 'Boys season, Tony Romo took the worst of it.

Daughter of the newspaper icon, she used his money to take the Fort Worth museum far beyond its Western-art roots. In doing so, she earned an international reputation in the art world.

With a 14th officer arrested on suspicion of DWI, Fort Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead vows to get tough.

No criminal charges have been filed since a train plowed through a parade float in November, killing four veterans. But a Midland County prosecutor says a grand jury will hear the case next week.

Former Secret Service Agent Clint Hill is the last living person to have rushed to Parkland with President John F. Kennedy's car after he was shot in Dallas. In an intense interview with BBC's Matthew Bannister, Hill speaks of the severe depression he suffered for years after JFK's death. Hill protected Jacqueline Kennedy from 1960-1964.

With the public TV sensation 'Downton Abbey' returning to American screens on Sunday night (locally 8 p.m. on KERA Channel 13), NPR offers a chance to test your knowledge of all things 'Downton.'

Ron Chapman, a fixture on North Texas radio dials for more than four decades, is recovering from a pre-Christmas stroke. He tells the Dallas Morning News' Robert Wilonsky, with tongue firmly in cheek, that while his trademark voice was spared, the stroke "will stall my burgeoning juggling career."

A trio of young achievers set off from Galveston five years ago with high school diplomas and great educational ambitions. But there was one big hurdle: All three came from families of modest means. Their struggles are captured by the New York Times in an eye-opening investigation.

Doomsday scenarios seem to be getting more common than solar eclipses. (Remember Harold Camping, the radio minister who declared May 21, 2011, as the day the world would end -- and then revised his doomsdate to Oct. 21?) The latest prophecy comes from the ancient Mayans, who supposedly identified Dec. 21, 2012, as the day of doom. NPR's David Greene talks with David Stuart, an expert on the Mayans from the University of Texas.