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

PORTLAND, Maine - York residents and officials continued today to argue against moving the Maine Turnpike toll plaza. The Turnpike Authority has, for years, looked at alternative sites, saying the current location is poor.

A new study, by Jacobs Engineering, suggests that a site 1.3 miles north of the current location would be safer, and $20 million less expensive, than rebuilding at the current location.

At a meeting of the Turnpike Authority Thursday, York resident Dick Boldin wondered if Jacobs Engineering had done its job.

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — The first successful hot-air balloon crossing of the Atlantic will be remembered Wednesday afternoon here.

Kim Smith of the Presque Isle Historical Society will talk about the 1978 accomplishment of Ben Abruzzo, Maxie Anderson and Larry Newman.

Many others had tried the feat and failed, and some died trying.

As Smith recalls, the Double Eagle Two was named that for a reason.

Rick Tozier / MPBN

Until she retired earlier this year, Patty Counihan directed the University of Maine's Career Center.   For the Maine Policy Review issue on the humanities, Counihan wrote an essay titled "What Are You Going to Do with 'That' Major?"  It's a question both students and their parents have asked. In the last of his series on the humanities, MPBN Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz talks with Counihan.

Irwin Gratz / MPBN

PORTLAND, Maine - Developers offered a glimpse today of what a redeveloped Portland Company complex might look like.

Developer Jim Brady unveiled a couple of artist drawings that showed the more historic buildings on the site restored and a new, pedestrian corridor that would lead from Fore Street down steps to the waterfront.

Brady told a gathering this was in keeping with Portland's long-time desires for the site. "Number one among those is reconnecting the public to Portland's waterfront."

The current issue of the Maine Policy Review, published by the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center at the University of Maine, takes a multifaceted look at the role the humanities play in our lives. In part three of our series on the issue, MPBN Morning Edition host Irwin Gratz talks with University of Maine professor Michael Grillo and UMaine Archivist Desiree Butterfield-Nagy about the future of archives in a digital age.