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.

A standing-room crowd attended the Trotwood State of the City address Monday night.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Miami Valley officials are still awaiting word on whether the White House will issue an official disaster declaration for communities recovering from the Memorial Day tornadoes.

The designation would allow FEMA aid and other federal disaster assistance from agencies, including the United States Small Business Administration, to begin flowing to the 10 Ohio counties affected by the storm.

Among the hardest hit areas was Trotwood, where hundreds of properties remain damaged.

FOA advocates against the stigma that often surrounds addiction
Maddie McGarvey / WYSO

Dayton will soon be home to a new addiction treatment center linked to Google's parent company Alphabet. Montgomery County health advocates say the high-tech facility intends to help pioneer evidence-based research into addiction medicine.

The center is named OneFifteen, after the number of Americans who died every day from an opioid overdose two years ago.

Debris is strewn for miles in Celina. The Tornado ripped through numerous streets and cul-de-sacs, and damage is still being accessed by the local government and the Red Cross.
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

Thousands of property owners affected by the Memorial Day tornado disaster could be eligible for a break on their 2020 tax bills. Greene, Mercer and Montgomery County officials are urging people with storm-damaged property to apply for help under a state tax-relief program.

Emergency officials are still working to assess the economic impact of the storm.

Preliminary estimates show at least 3,500 homes and businesses were damaged across Mercer, Greene and Montgomery Counties.

Storm-damaged building on North Fairfield Road in Beavercreek
Mike Frazier / WYSO

Last week’s Memorial Day tornadoes affected more than 200 businesses across Montgomery, Greene and Mercer Counties.

It’s unclear exactly how many people are out of work as a result of the disaster. Economic development officials are coordinating with city and county officials in hard-hit areas in an effort to identify displaced workers, and to help businesses whose employees are missing work as a result of storm damage to their homes or apartments. 

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

Special teams from the Federal Emergency Management Agency arrive in Ohio Tuesday to begin assessing the damage from last week’s tornado outbreak.

The storm damaged thousands of homes and businesses across the Miami Valley and FEMA’s visit is a critical step toward securing federal disaster assistance, but officials say it could take weeks before any potential disaster aid comes to Ohio.

EF4 tornado damage in Old North Dayton
April Laissle / WYSO

It’s been a week since the Memorial Day tornado outbreak left a path of widespread devastation across the Miami Valley and dozens of tornado-affected businesses in Greene County and Montgomery County are still struggling to resume their normal operations. City and county officials have been out canvassing hard-hit areas in an effort to assess the extent of the storm’s economic impacts.

The Red Cross Northern Miami Valley Chapter
The Red Cross Northern Miami Valley Chapter / WYSO

Inspectors from the Federal Emergency Management Agency are expected to arrive in the Miami Valley next week to begin surveying damage from Monday's tornado outbreak. Dayton city officials say the FEMA inspectors will not be distributing financial assistance during their visit.

Gov. Mike DeWine  requested help earlier this week from FEMA for the 10 counties that suffered tornado damage, including Montgomery, Greene, and Mercer Counties, as the National Weather Service's analysis of the tornadoes and their impact Memorial Day continues to evolve.

Tornado damage in Celina
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

Cleanup from this week’s devastating tornadoes continues around the Miami Valley. More than 130 people remain in emergency shelters. Now, low-income Ohioans affected by the disaster may be eligible for temporary emergency assistance through a special Ohio Department of Job and Family Services program.

The assistance is available for qualifying low-income people affected by the tornadoes in Montgomery, Greene and Mercer counties, where Gov. Mike DeWine has declared a state of emergency.

City of Beavercreek Facebook page

Emergency crews continue to clear downed power lines and reopen streets in Beavercreek. The city was among the hardest hit in Monday’s widespread tornado outbreak.

The National Weather Service has confirmed an EF-3 tornado with winds up 140 miles an hour struck the Beavercreek area Monday night.

Near Kemp Road and Grange Hall Road, the twister nearly wiped out one residential neighborhood and heavily damaged another. Streets that once featured large, well-established leafy trees are now unshaded.   

Donated water bottles are stacked in front of the Corinthian Baptist Church.
George Drake, Jr. / WYSO

In Dayton, tens of thousands of people remain without water and electricity. Dozens more are staying in emergency shelters. Red Cross officials say that number is likely to grow as storm recovery continues after Monday’s tornado outbreak in Indiana and Western Ohio that left one person dead and injured dozens more.