WYSO

Jess Mador

Managing Editor, Economics Reporter

Jess Mador comes to WYSO from Knoxville NPR-station WUOT, where she created an interactive multimedia health storytelling project called TruckBeat, one of 15 projects around the country participating in AIR's Localore: #Finding America initiative. Before TruckBeat, Jess was an independent public radio journalist based in Minneapolis. She’s also worked as a staff reporter and producer at Minnesota Public Radio in the Twin Cities, and produced audio, video and web stories for a variety of other news outlets, including NPR News, APM, and PBS television stations. She has a Master's degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in New York. She loves making documentaries and telling stories at the intersection of journalism, digital and social media.

FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration are urging people affected by the tornadoes to apply for financial help.
Jess Mador / WYSO

The deadline for tornado survivors to apply for disaster assistance through FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration is just weeks away on Aug. 19. Miami Valley officials are urging anyone in need to apply, even if they’re still waiting to hear about an insurance claim.

So far, FEMA reports more than 4,000 people have sought help across the Ohio counties affected by the Memorial Day storms.

Montgomery County
Montgomery County Facebook page

A union representing more than 270 Montgomery County child-welfare caseworkers has announced its intent to strike.

The Professionals Guild of Ohio filed an official 10-day notice with the state.

If a deal over wage increases isn’t reached, the union could walk out as early as July 19.

In a statement, Montgomery County officials say they’re working on plans to keep child and family services operations going in the event of a strike.

Messages left with The Professionals Guild of Ohio were not immediately returned.

A truckload of shoes arrives at Corinthian Baptist Church, ready for donation to people affected by the recent tornadoes.
George Drake, Jr. / WYSO

A fund set up to help survivors of the Memorial Day tornadoes has so far raised nearly $1 million. The Dayton Foundation’s Greater Dayton Disaster Relief Fund reports roughly half that amount has already been distributed to Miami Valley nonprofits assisting with recovery.

Four FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers will be open Thursday, July 4, to help people affected by the storms.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is requesting additional disaster aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The assistance would help counties affected by the Memorial Day tornadoes pay for ongoing recovery efforts. 

traffic camera red light camera
Robert Couse-Baker / Flickr/Creative Commons

Dayton officials say the city’s red light camera program will continue after a Lucas County judge blocked new state restrictions from taking effect. Under a provision in the Ohio transportation budget Gov. Mike DeWine signed into law back in April, the restrictions were set to begin Wednesday.

(from left) FBI special agent Joseph Deters, U.S. Attorney Benjamin Glassman, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost
Jerry Kenney / WYSO

One of four men indicted on federal corruption charges has pled guilty. Former State Rep. Clayton Luckie entered his guilty plea to a single count of mail fraud, though his indictment under an ongoing Department of Justice investigation into alleged public corruption in the city of Dayton also included a felony count of wire fraud.

FEMA inspectors conduct damage assessments in Trotwood, where several large apartment complexes were destroyed in the tornadoes.
April Laissle / WYSO

It’s been a month since the Memorial Day tornadoes cut a wide path of destruction across the Miami Valley.

Damage assessments continue, but the latest numbers already show roughly 5,700 Montgomery County properties were damaged in the storm. Hundreds more homes and businesses were affected across Mercer and Greene Counties.

It’s still unclear exactly how many residents remain displaced. And, Dayton-area advocates want more people affected by the tornadoes to come forward for FEMA assistance.

Montgomery County Commissioner Debbie Lieberman addresses representatives at a Trotwood meeting designed to coordinate tornado recovery.
Jess Mador / WYSO

The first of several FEMA disaster recovery centers opens Saturday in Trotwood. 

Agents from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the United States Small Business Administration will be on hand at the center to help survivors of the Memorial Day tornadoes with information about disaster assistance. 

The Trotwood center will be open to Miami Valley homeowners, renters and small-business owners affected by the storm, and include experts from Ohio, and Dayton-area agencies to help connect survivors with the services they need to get back on their feet.

A home in a heavily storm-damaged area of Trotwood
Jess Mador / WYSO

Rebuilding after last month’s tornado disaster will take at least two years, say Montgomery County emergency officials, who held a summit in hard-hit Trotwood Wednesday with dozens of other government, religious and community groups to begin mapping out the county’s longterm recovery plans. The meeting was organized ahead of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's anticipated return to the Miami Valley by this weekend.

Celina Mayor Jeffrey Hazel, Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio First Lady address the media the morning after an EF3 tornado killed one resident and left 40 with uninhabitable homes.
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

The 10 Ohio counties impacted by the Memorial Day tornado outbreak are now eligible for federal disaster recovery aid. Dayton-area officials say the FEMA and other funding could play a crucial role in the Miami Valley’s ongoing recovery.

President Donald Trump issued a federal disaster declaration Tuesday, one week after Gov. Mike DeWine formally requested it.

The declaration means affected Ohioans are now eligible for aid through FEMA’s individual assistance, hazard mitigation, and disaster legal services programs.

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