Shelley Kofler | KERA News

Shelley Kofler

Former News Director/Reporter

Shelley Kofler is a former KERA managing editor and news director who most recently served as Texas Public Radio’s news director. She moved from KERA to TPR in December 2014. Before moving to public radio, Shelley was Austin bureau chief and legislative reporter for North Texas ABC affiliate WFAA-TV.

Her expertise on legislative policy issues includes school finance, foster care and transportation. Her stories on the overmedication of foster children captured the attention of state officials who strengthened laws for the use of psychotropic drugs.

Shelley also covered government issues for North Texas NBC affiliate KXAS-TV and worked with KERA on numerous public affairs projects, including nationally broadcast programs. She has reported on statewide elections and presidential primaries since the late 1980s. She also founded and operated her own communications firm, Kofler Communications, in Dallas and Austin. She served as a communications strategist and media trainer for various companies, agencies and public officials.

Shelley’s radio and television work has been honored by the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters Association, the Houston Press Club, and the Radio-Television Digital News Association, from whom she received a prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award for a series of reports on the Trinity toll road decision.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

President Obama and Gov. Rick Perry put aside partisan differences, at least briefly, this week to share a helicopter across Dallas and discuss securing the border. The president and the governor then sat down with a group of local officials and religious leaders who are preparing to shelter 2,000 immigrant children who've been housed in cramped detention facilities. 

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Committee members choosing a site for the 2016 Republican National Convention said repeatedly they’d make a business decision, not a political one.  But following the selection of Cleveland over Dallas Tuesday, those close to the negotiations said politics played a role.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Round the clock, D/FW International Airport employees are scouring the grounds looking for dangerous intruders. Not human terrorists. Those with feathers.

Doualy Xaykaothao / KERA News

Dallas County plans to soon welcome 2,000 of the 52,000 children who’ve entered the country illegally in recent months. They’re coming from Central America and crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Many are trying to escape violence and drug cartels.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

Community meetings could begin by the end of the week to discuss the thousands of immigrant children who will soon be cared for in Dallas County.

On Saturday, at the Democratic state convention, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins announced plans to open facilities that will house at least 2,000 of the 52,000 children who’ve entered the country illegally in recent months.

Alyssa Banta / Texas Tribune

The candidates at the top of the Texas Democratic ticket are back on the campaign trail Monday after pumping up party members at their state convention in Dallas over the weekend.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

In Texas, it’s generally assumed Republicans get the gun vote. But there’s a group of Democrats who are hoping to turn that around at the state convention in Dallas this weekend. Gun owners want to make sure the Democrats’ state platform doesn’t shoot the party in the foot.

Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Wendy Davis, and the party's candidate for lieutenant governor, Leticia Van De Putte, pumped up party faithful at their state convention. It's the first time Texas has had two women leading a political ticket, and the invitation to female voters rang out loud and clear in their Friday night speeches.

Bob Daemmrich/Laura Buckman / The Texas Tribune

Democrats will hit high gear at their convention Friday night with speeches by Wendy Davis, their candidate for governor, and Leticia Van de Putte, their nominee for lieutenant governor.

On Thursday, both candidates talked about their vision for education at the Texas Classroom Teachers Association conference in Fort Worth.  Davis’ Republican opponent, Greg Abbott, also spoke. 

Callie Richmond / Texas Tribune

Texas Democrats will shine a spotlight on their top-of-the-ticket female candidates as they begin their three-day convention in Dallas Thursday.

In an interview with KERA, Texas Democratic Party Chairman Gilberto Hinojosa said his party will also contrast its beliefs with those Republicans enshrined in their state platform earlier this month.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

And then there were two.

Dallas and Cleveland have been named the two remaining finalists to host the 2016 Republican National Convention.

Katherine Welles / Shutterstock.com

Dallas hosted two big events in recent days -- the New Cities Summit, which attracted hundreds of scholars and planners, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors, which brought in more than 200 mayors from around the country.

Kenny Tong / Shutterstock.com

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said over the weekend he wants the City Council to consider raising the minimum wage for workers employed by city contractors. The mayor's announcement comes after Dallas County is considering a similar increase -- and as cities and states across the country are raising the minimum wage, saying their workers should be earning more.

KERA News

Mayors from more than 200 cities are in Dallas for the U.S. Conference of Mayors -- the gathering begins today. This morning, many of them joined Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings on the new Continental Avenue pedestrian bridge. 

Paul Moseley / Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis talked Tuesday about building the Texas economy while her Republican opponent Greg Abbott zeroed in on Hispanic voters by releasing a Spanish language television ad.

Dallas Arts District

This week, Dallas is hosting top city planners and officials at two big conferences.  On Friday, 200 mayors from around the country will be here to discuss issues like education and urban poverty.  On Tuesday, 800 public, business and academic leaders from 40 countries are meeting in the arts district at the third New Cities Summit.

Frank Librio / Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau

The site selection committee left town Friday, and Dallas feels good about its odds for being chosen to host the 2016 Republican National Convention. 

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Republicans choosing the 2016 site for their national convention found out Thursday why Dallas is called “Big D."

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Cowboys mascot Rowdy offered high-fives and several team cheerleaders waved pompoms Wednesday at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport as they welcomed members of the committee choosing a site for the 2016 Republican National Convention.

Texas Tribune

Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has announced a major change in her campaign staff. 

Sen. Ted Cruz was notified Tuesday that he no longer has Canadian citizenship, something he automatically received because his parents were living in Canada when he was born. Cruz, a possible presidential candidate in 2016, filed papers to renounce his Canadian citizenship. He is a U.S. citizen because his mother is an American but the debate over whether he is "natural born" and qualified to be president may not be over.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

The Texas Republican Party over the weekend endorsed counseling aimed at making gay people straight. 

Bob Daemmrich / Texas Tribune

Texas Republicans have abandoned a guest-worker program and taken a harder position on illegal immigration in their party platform.

The platform adopted Saturday also borrows from some positions State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican lieutenant governor nominee, has listed on his website.

In their new state platform, Texas Republicans suggest reparative therapy" for patrients seeking healing and wholeness from their homosexuality." The platform also says "homosexuality is a chosen behavior," something most gays and lesbians reject. Gay Republicans say they had convinced many party delegates to back their efforts to remove offensive comments from the platform, but convention rules prevented the delegates from addessing the audience.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Texas Republicans have taken a tougher stand against undocumented immigrants already living in the state by dropping support for a guest-worker program from their party platform.  

Bob Daemmrich / Texas Tribune

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz clobbered 13 other potential presidential candidates in a straw poll decided by delegates at the Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth. Cruz captured 43 percent of the vote. 

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

In meeting rooms and hallways at the Texas Republican Party Convention, delegates Friday hotly argued over whether a guest worker program should remain in their party platform. Gay Republicans fought to eliminate a plank that suggested reparative therapy be available for those who want to escape their gay "lifestyle."

Ron T. Ennis / Fort Worth Star-Telegram

On stage at the Texas Republican Convention Friday in Fort Worth, the spotlight was on Greg Abbott, who left little doubt his campaign for governor against Democrat Wendy Davis will be a slug fest.

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

The Texas Republican Convention continues in Fort Worth through Saturday. Click on the slideshow to see pictures.

Bob Daemmrich / Texas Tribune

Gov. Rick Perry was the first of three likely presidential candidates to address Texas Republican delegates who opened their state convention in Fort Worth on Thursday.

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