Susan Sharon

Deputy News Director

Susan is the deputy news director who handles assignments and planning by the news staff. She's also a general assignment reporter who began her career at MPBN working at the State House in 1992. Since then she has covered major political and environmental stories, winning national awards for her beat reporting twice from the Society for Environmental Journalists. Her coverage of labor issues, including an investigative series on independent contractors, has also been recognized by the Public Radio News Directors, Inc and by the Associated Press. Susan is a graduate of the University of Montana where she got her first job in public radio news while still a student. She has also worked at television stations in Montana and Maine.


Climate change
6:06 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Hundreds of Mainers Head to NYC for 'People's Climate March'

Climate change activist Bob Kotz addresses supporters.
Susan Sharon MPBN

What's being billed as the biggest climate change march is taking place this Sunday in New York City, and more than 600 Mainers have already signed up to go on 11 sold-out charter buses.  Marchers are demanding that political leaders take action to replace fossil fuels with 100 percent clean, renewable power, like solar and wind, as quickly as possible.  And some activists are literally pedaling that message all the way to the Big Apple.


Read more
Courts and Crime
7:14 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Mistrial Declared for Woman While 2nd Person Convicted in Oil Protests

AUBURN, Maine — Two Androscoggin County Superior Court juries have reached two different verdicts against a pair of defendants who sat on train tracks in 2013 to protest the transportation of Bakken crude oil into Maine.

Dougles Bowen Jr. of Porter was found guilty of trespassing last August by his jury. A mistrial was declared against a separate defendant, Jesse Dowling of Unity, after her jury could not reach a verdict.

Read more
Police recording arrest
5:53 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Maine Couple Sues Portland Police after Arrest for Cell Phone Recording

The American Civil Liberties Union of Maine has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a Bar Harbor couple arrested in Portland last May after using a cell phone to record a police stop involving several officers. In their lawsuit against Sgt. Benjamin Noyes, Jr., the couple allege that the arrest violated their right to free speech, which includes the right to observe, photograph and record the police performing their work in public.  


Read more
7:47 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Portland City Council Debating General Assistance Options

PORTLAND, Maine — City councilors here are wrestling with their options now that the LePage administration has said it will deny state reimbursement to cities and towns that provide general assistance to some undocumented immigrants, including asylum seekers.

The city has filed suit over the policy on the grounds that it was improperly adopted without legislative approval. But while that lawsuit and a counter suit from the state work their way through the courts, the city must figure out how to budget for the possible fallout of the case.

Read more
6:41 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Bishop Deeley, Public Safety Officials Celebrate Blue Mass in Lewiston

The color guard at Blue Mass in Lewiston Sunday.
Susan Sharon MPBN

LEWISTON, Maine — More than 200 people, including dozens of police, firefighters, game wardens and public safety personnel, attended the annual Blue Mass offered by the Catholic diocese at the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul Church in Lewiston Sunday morning.

Read more
4:31 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Mike Michaud: It's Pronounced Mih-SHOW or MIH-shoo, Not MEE-show

Mike Michaud speaks at a Bath Iron Works christening in April. He is not, presumably, instructing the audience on how to pronounce his name.
Mark Vogelzang MPBN

When President Bill Clinton campaigns on behalf of Democrat Mike Michaud in Portland tonight, he may need to be reminded about the correct pronunciation of Michaud's last name. It's a subject that comes up most often among politicians and reporters, sticklers for accuracy who are often thrown by the candidate's Franco-American heritage. Here at MPBN we've also had inquiries from listeners and staff, so let's set the record straight.

Read more
Business and Economy
8:52 pm
Mon September 1, 2014

Labor Day Fairpoint Union Rally

People rally in Portland on Labor Day in support of Fairpoint workers.
Susan Sharon MPBN

Hundreds of people gathered for a rally in downtown Portland Monday morning to support unionized Fairpoint employees who are working under a contract imposed late last week by the company which declared that contract talks are deadlocked.   The employees are now working under terms of a new contract with major concessions.  Speaking at the rally, First District Democratic Congresswoman Chellie Pingree says the union has put three offers on the table.

Read more
Racism concerns
5:56 pm
Wed August 27, 2014

Michael Brown Killing Stirs Debate about Racism in Portland

Portland residents, left to right, Howa Mohammed, Hamdi Hassan and Hani Ali.
Credit Susan Sharon / MPBN

Nearly 200 people turned out in Portland Tuesday night to discuss the racial implications of Ferguson, Missouri, in one of the whitest states in the nation:  Maine.  Many say the killing of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer has raised the curtain on institutional racism in the U.S.  And blacks and whites at the meeting say they're committed to rooting it out.


Read more
Minimum Wage
3:10 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Report: Maine's Minimum Wage Earners Falling Further Behind

AUBURN, Maine - A new report authored by the national group Alliance for a Just Society finds that Mainers earning the minimum wage of $7.50 an hour are increasingly falling behind when it comes to paying for food, housing, utilities and household expenses.  Their problems are compounded when they take out loans to cover the cost of college.  

Read more
Your Vote 2014
5:35 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Judge Sides with Cutler Campaign in Financing Dispute

Independent gubernatorial candidate Eliot Cutler talks about tax policy at a news conference in April
Credit Tom Porter / MPBN

A federal judge has sided with four contributors to independent gubernatorial candidate Eliot Cutler's campaign. The four filed suit over a state law that limits the amount of money they can each spend on independent candidates to $1,500 dollars. The judge found that, in this particular election, the four have shown a strong likelihood that they have suffered "unconstitutional discrimination" compared to contributors to major party candidates.

Read more