Lucas Willard | WAMC

Lucas Willard

Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief/Weekend Host

Lucas Willard graduated from the State University of New York at Fredonia in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Communications. He also attended the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in 2010, where he studied audio and multimedia storytelling.  Prior to joining WAMC in 2011, Lucas worked with the Sound and Story Project of the Hudson Valley, the Big Shed Audio Documentary Podcast, the Albany Broadcasting Company, WDVL & WCVF-FM Fredonia, and WSUC-FM Cortland.  

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A federally-funded study is examining the human health effects of PFAS exposure. The University at Albany and New York State Department of Health are working to study those affected in Hoosick Falls and surrounding area, and the City of Newburgh. Meantime, some in the Rensselaer County Town of Petersburgh feel regulators need to do more to address PFAS contamination.

A week after Black Lives Matter protesters were arrested in Saratoga Springs, angry demonstrators and local residents packed Tuesday’s city council meeting. A public comment period devolved into a shouting match, with some calling for moderated discussion between demonstrators and city leadership.

GlobalFoundries headquarters in Malta
Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Malta-based semiconductor manufacturer GlobalFoundries announced this morning it will move to meet the global demand for computer chips by building a second chip plant in Saratoga County.

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Playlist for WAMC Listening Party as aired on Saturday, July 17th, 2021:

Fans filled the backyard at Saratoga Race Course
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Fans returned to Saratoga Race Course Thursday for the first time in two years. 

The front gates at Saratoga Race Course pictured Tuesday
Lucas Willard / WAMC

After a 2020 season closed to spectators, fans are returning to Saratoga Race Course today for the 2021 summer meet. 

Officers in riot gear arrested five protesters in Saratoga Springs
Photo courtesy Patrick Dodson / Albany Proper

Five arrests were made after police in riot gear pushed a crowd of protesters out of the roadway in downtown Saratoga Springs Wednesday night on the eve of the summer tourism season. 

The Saratoga Springs Assistant Police Chief has released a statement addressing controversial remarks he made during a June 28th press conference.

Officials cut the ribbon on the Promenade Apartments complex in Saratoga Springs
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Officials cut the ribbon Tuesday on a new affordable housing development in Saratoga Springs, a city that is becoming an increasingly expensive place to live.

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Playlist as aired on Saturday, July 10th, 2021:

Rep. Paul Tonko and Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy on the Craig Street bridge
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Included in the new transportation bill passed by the House of Representatives is a project to improve a main corridor in the City of Schenectady.

Saratoga Springs City Hall (file photo)
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Saratoga Springs residents and Capital Region activists are objecting to recent remarks by the city’s assistant police chief that linked a violent late-night incident with racial justice advocates. 

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WAMC Listening Party playlist as aired on Saturday, July 3rd, 2021: 

NYSNA-affiliated nurses pose for a photo after voting to approve a three-year contract with Albany Medical Center Thursday
Lucas Willard / WAMC

With 97 percent of union members voting in favor, Albany Medical Center nurses affiliated with the New York State Nurses Association have approved a three-year contract.

State Senators James Tedisco and Daphne Jordan are joined by local landlords in Halfmoon
Lucas Willard / WAMC

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court allowed a federal moratorium on evictions — extended in March by President Biden — to remain in place. Meantime, a pair of Republican state Senators in New York –  which has its own eviction moratorium in place — are seeking to assist struggling local landlords.

A Tentrr site at the Yankee Hill Lock on the Mohawk River
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Four new “hassle-free” campsites are preparing to welcome visitors along the Erie Canal.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in Albany
Lucas Willard / WAMC

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is seeking to include legislation to strengthen workers’ rights in a federal infrastructure package. The Democrat gathered with union leaders and local officials in Albany this morning. 

Saratoga Public Safety Commissioner Robin Dalton
Jackie Orchard / WAMC

Police in Saratoga Springs are investigating after a stabbing and shots fired incident early Saturday morning. According to authorities, a fight broke out on Caroline Street near Broadway involving 15 to 20 people just after 2 a.m.

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Playlist for WAMC Listening Party as aired on Saturday, June 26th, 2021:

New York State Police

New York State Police are investigating a new lead in the disappearance of a Scotia teenager 17 years ago.

Wikimedia Commons/Diego Grez

Police in Watervliet say the human remains found in a yard were those of a newborn child.

Brent Birnbaum stands in the new Walter Elwood Contemporary gallery
Lucas Willard / WAMC

In a museum full of trinkets and artifacts in the City of Amsterdam, an effort is underway to bring contemporary art to the Montgomery County community.

From left to right: Deputy Chief Dan DeWolf, Troy Mayor Patrick Madden, and Police Chief Brian Owens
Photo Provided / Office of Mayor Patrick Madden

Troy Police Chief Brian Owens is retiring.

The Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics facility on McCaffrey Street in Hoosick Falls
Lucas Willard / WAMC

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is taking comments through today on a proposed remedial action for the Rensselaer County Village of Hoosick Falls. It comes more than five years after a do-not-drink order was declared over PFAS contamination in the community’s drinking water.

Schenectady City Hall
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Tuesday’s Democratic primary contests in the City of Schenectady will be decided by absentee ballots. But change is coming to the city council.

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WAMC Listening Party as aired on Saturday, June 19th, 2021:

A giant American flag at West Point
Ian Pickus / WAMC

Earlier this month, in the final days of the New York State legislative session, lawmakers passed a bill to establish a commission to prepare for America’s 250th birthday.

Sean O'Brien (left) and Chris Hawver (right)
Lucas Willard / WAMC

Albany’s Pine Bush Preserve got a visit Thursday from a scientific data company that has worked to help conservation groups protect endangered species and ecosystems.

Opponents of the Dunn Landfill line up Wednesday outside Rensselaer City Hall
Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Rensselaer Common Council last night voted to approve a resolution urging New York State to revoke the operating permit for a construction and demolition debris landfill that has drawn the ire of neighbors for years.

Removed pipe with tuberculation
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Three bills intended to upgrade U.S. drinking water systems and address toxic pollutants took a step forward Wednesdsay as the conversation in Washington D.C. focuses on a wide-ranging infrastructure package.