Irwin Gratz

Morning Edition Producer

Irwin was born and reared in New York City and, while he never hiked miles to school, he did walk up six flights of stairs every day to the apartment his family lived in until he was nearly 19. Irwin remains a lover of subway rides, egg creams, and the New York Mets. He moved to Maine in 1978 and worked a dozen years in commercial radio in Sanford, then Portland, before beginning to freelance for MPBN in 1990. He's been local anchor of Morning Edition since September, 1992.

From September 2004 to October 2005, Irwin served as national President of the Society of Professional Journalists, the nation's largest and most broad-based journalism organization. He holds a Master's Degree in Journalism from New York University.

Irwin also has an interest in astronomy which he indulges to this day as an occasional show presenter at the Southworth Planetarium in Portland. And he swims - a lot. Irwin has completed 5 Peaks Island-to-Portland swims. Irwin is married and has a young son.

Ways to Connect

Irwin Gratz / MPBN

PORTLAND, Maine - The Salvation Army in Maine has set its sights high for this year's "Red Kettle" campaign.

"We are, optimistically, raising our Red Kettle goal this year to $180,000," Major Annette Luck told reporters today at a Portland news conference. "This is $40,000 over the total raised last year. And we know that's a very high goal, it's a very lofty goal to raise."

Luck said the cost of most necessities continue to rise making it "all too common for families to reach the end of their resources."

ORONO, Maine - Maine wardens are leading a search today for a University of Maine professor who failed to return from a day of hunting yesterday. Warden Dan Scott says the search for Robert Vadas began yesterday and continued until about 1 o'clock this morning.

"Last night was a challenge," Scott says. "It was very rainy and cold and damp and windy. It limited our ability to fly, as well as our ability to search with gunshots and sirens."

Scott says with better weather today an aerial and ground search is underway for Vadas, who is 79 years old.

Irwin Gratz / MPBN

FALMOUTH, Maine - Former U.S. Senator and Middle East diplomat George Mitchell says the U.S. should try to get other nations involved in the military effort to defeat ISIS and resolve the Syrian Civil War.  

But Mitchell, speaking with reporters today, said regional complexities make it hard for the U.S. to tap regional allies, such as Turkey.

Irwin Gratz / MPBN

PORTLAND, Maine — This has been a challenging year for investors, despite the fact that unemployment has fallen, inflation is virtually non-existent, and interest rates still hover near zero.

So, I asked Brett Miller, a private banking portfolio manager for Key Bank in Portland, why it's been so challenging.

Irwin Gratz / MPBN

PORTLAND, Maine — Among those visiting us on Super Thursday yesterday was Anton Araslanov, a radio journalist originally from Kirov but now working in Moscow, where he's hosting a program who's title translates in English to "Boring Sex."

"So actually we've had a number of programs," he says through his interpreter, Mainer Karin Elliot Whitney. "One was how to talk to teenagers about sex. Another one: Which is more sexy, the body or the brain? Is there sex after 50? And does it matter if you're kind of chubby or not? Does that interfere with your sex life?"