Jennifer Rooks

Public Affairs Host & Producer

As public affairs host at MPBN, Jennifer's been involved in numerous projects on both television and radio. She currently co-hosts and helps produce Maine Calling, MPBN's statewide daily (M-TH) radio call-in program. Previously, Jennifer was host and executive producer of Maine Watch with Jennifer Rooks. She has moderated more than twenty broadcast debates between candidates for statewide office. And, at MPBN, she has produced three television documentaries. Broken Trust: Elder Abuse in Maine, Winds of Change - both Maine Watch Special Reports - and A Matter of Duty: The Continuing War Against PTSD. Co-produced with Charlie Stuart, A Matter of Duty was shown on PBS television stations throughout the U.S. and in multiple screenings, including at the National Sheriff's Association national conference.

Jennifer joined MPBN in June of 2007 after spending more than 13 years at WCSH-TV in Portland, where she worked as a general assignment reporter and weekend news anchor. Since 1994, Jennifer has covered a broad number of Maine issues in every corner of the state. She has twice won an Edward R. Murrow award: in 1998, for coverage of Maine National Guard and Reserve soldiers deployed in Bosnia and Hungary, and in 2003, for the documentary Citizen King, about then-Governor (and former Maine Watch host) Angus King.

Jennifer grew up outside Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her B.A. from the University of Virginia (where she started her broadcast career in college radio) and her Master’s in Journalism from the University of California at Berkeley. She worked at television stations in San Francisco and Monterey, California, before coming to Maine. She and her husband Mike have two children.

Ways to Connect


17 hours ago

People are inundated with information about healthful living in today’s media, but much of it is conflicting.  What advice is most important?  What can we ignore? What are small changes each of us can make to improve our lives and our future health?  We’ll also discuss the concept of wellness-based medicine. 

Guests:  Mike Noonan, DC, Dipl. Ac. (AACA) Noonan Wellness and Chiropractic  Old Town, ME, and columnist for Bangor Daily News.

Christopher B. Scott, Department of Exercise, Health and Sport Sciences, University of Southern Maine.

Literacy experts now encourage parents to start reading to their children every day as soon as they’re born.  We’ll discuss the lifetime impact of early literacy and what the state is doing to increase literacy levels in Maine, including the “Read to Me Challenge” underway for the month of February. Guests:  Lee Anne Larsen, Maine DOE Literacy Specialist   Shannon Schinagl, Early Literacy Consultant at the Maine State Library


Fire Safety

Feb 4, 2016

Despite years of fire prevention and education efforts, Maine people (from every socioeconomic group) still die in house fires every winter.  There have already been two fatal fires in Maine this year.  We'll discuss fire safety and prevention.

Guests:  Joseph Thomas, Maine State Fire Marshall

February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. Nationally, one in three girls in the U.S. have experienced physical, emotional, or verbal abuse from a dating partner - far exceeding all other youth violence.  And yet only 19% of parents believe teen dating violence is an issue. Although 82% of parents feel confident they could recognize the signs if their child was experiencing dating abuse, only 42% could correctly identify the signs of abuse.

A look at Maine’s Fiber Arts industry, which has been growing in size and reputation over the past 15 years.  Thousands of people come from all over the country for Maine’s fiber arts tour and a chance to meet Maine artists.  Fiber arts – from knitting to spinning and weaving – are also increasingly popular hobbies.

Guests:  Linda Cortright, owner and editor of Wild Fibers Magazine.

Mim Bird , Owner of Over the Rainbow Yarn Shop and self-proclaimed knitting genius extraordinaire.