Sam Baker

Senior Editor and Morning Edition Host

Sam Baker is KERA's senior editor and local host for Morning Edition. The native of Beaumont, Texas, also edits and produces radio commentaries and Vital Signs, a series that's part of the station's Breakthroughs initiative. He also was the longtime host of KERA 13’s Emmy Award-winning public affairs program On the Record. He also won an Emmy in 2008 for KERA’s Sharing the Power: A Voter’s Voice Special, and has earned honors from the Associated Press and the Public Radio News Directors Inc.

Sam worked in commercial television at NBC and CBS affiliates for six years before moving to public broadcasting. He was news director and Morning Edition host at KWGS-FM in Tulsa, Okla., for three years and moved to KERA in 1991. He has served on the board of Public Radio News Directors Inc. and is a member of the Dallas-Fort Worth Association of Black Communicators.

As a volunteer, Sam produces a weekly series, Jazz in Words and Music, for Reading and Radio Resources, an agency serving the visually impaired. He also serves on the board of Southwest Transplant Alliance, a private non-profit organization that provides organs and tissues for transplantation.

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Vital Signs
6:28 am
Mon September 15, 2014

COPD: One More Reason To Quit Smoking

X-ray of cardiac obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
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You’re short of breath after a flight of stairs or other daily activities. It might be fatigue, lack of exercise – or maybe COPD.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a group name for lung diseases like chronic bronchitis and emphysema that block airflow and make breathing difficult. It’s also a condition the Affordable Care Act’s keeping closer tabs on beginning next month. 

In this edition of Vital Signs, Tom Kallstrom, CEO of the American Association for Respiratory Care, explains more about COPD.

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Health/Science
11:27 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Five Things To Know About Ectopic Pregnancy

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In a new memoir, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis revealed she terminated two pregnancies. One, in 1996, involved a fetus that had developed a severe brain abnormality. The other was what is known as an ectopic pregnancy.

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Vital Signs
6:28 am
Mon September 8, 2014

What You Should Know About Gestational Diabetes

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Despite prenatal care, around five percent of women will develop diabetes during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is a temporary, but potentially serious problem.  

In this edition of Vital Signs, Dr. Brian Casey, an obstetrician with Parkland Hospital, explains gestational diabetes is part of the physiology of pregnancy.

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Vital Signs
6:28 am
Mon September 1, 2014

When You Take Drugs, Be Careful What Else You Put In Your Mouth

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Three important words when taking medication: Read the label.  Not only for how much to take or when, but also the warnings about what you can eat or drink. Failure to follow that advice can make the drug less effective and cause other physical problems.  

In this edition of KERA's weekly consumer health series Vital Signs, David Adams, an ambulatory clinical staff pharmacist with Parkland Hospital, explained some of the most common food and drug interactions.

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Health/Science
11:13 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Relief From Back Pain: A Promise Unfulfilled For Some

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For those who suffer frequent back pain, it was a promise of relief.  Dallas-based North American Spine spent years building a business with a procedure called AccuraScope. Some swear by it. But others had disastrous results. Doug Swanson, an investigative reporter for the Dallas Morning News, spent months investigating North American Spine and talks about what he learned.

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Vital Signs
6:28 am
Mon August 25, 2014

A Good Day At School Begins At The Breakfast Table

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What kids eat before school can greatly impact how they perform in the classroom.

In this edition of Vital Signs, Navin Hariprasad, a nutritionist and Operations Manager of Patient Food Services at Parkland Hospital, explains the difference a healthy breakfast and a balanced diet throughout the day can make.

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Vital Signs
10:18 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

New FDA Rules On What's Really 'Gluten-Free'

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Not all products labeled as “gluten-free” or some variation of it were actually free of the protein that can cause life-threatening illness in millions of Americans.

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Politics
6:18 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

What's Ahead For Gov. Rick Perry After His Indictment

Gov. Perry at his August 16, 2014 press conference
The Texas Tribune

Gov. Rick Perry still plans to meet with Republican activists in New Hampshire this weekend.  That’s as his lawyers meet with prosecutors about his indictment on two felony counts in his home state.

Sam Baker talks about the case with Ross Ramsey of The Texas Tribune.

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Vital Signs
6:28 am
Mon August 11, 2014

FDA: Pregnant Women Should Eat More Fish

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The Food and Drug Administration is issuing new recommendations about pregnant women and fish: Eat more of it. Most types are fine, save for a few. 

In this edition of Vital Signs, Dr. Sheri Puffer, an OB-GYN at Texas Health Arlington Memorial Hospital, says the new recommendations eliminate a source of concern for pregnant women.

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Business/Economy
6:38 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

New Report Shows A High Growth Rate Of Women-Owned Businesses In Texas

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A report out this year found the number of women-owned businesses has increased at one and a half times the national average between 1997 and 2014. During that time, Texas saw a 98% percent growth in women-owned businesses – the second highest in the nation behind Georgia.

Michael Cox, the current director of SMU’s O’Neil Center for Global Markets and Freedom and a former chief economist for the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank, says some of what fueled growth for women applied to business owners across the board.

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