Chris Bolt

News Director

Maybe I was destined for a career in radio when I built my first stereo receiver from a Heathkit box…then later spent time running wires over beer-stained floors for local bands in Colorado bars.  I remember becoming enamored with Public Radio's story-telling style covering an exiled music group that had come to Syracuse from El Salvador.  The piece involved interviewing through an interpreter and mixing in the music with a strongly-political story of death squads.  Over the next 23 years I’ve enjoyed covering the issues, people, events, challenges and accomplishments of Central New York. 

I came to Syracuse to finish a Broadcast Journalism degree at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School.  I’ve worked at WAER since 1990 and truly enjoy our mission of educating and engaging the community, while training aspiring journalists and broadcasters.  I’m passionate about the area’s lifestyle and efforts to improve its vitality.   When not on a story, in a studio or editing and mentoring students, I can probably be found outside.  I love Central New York’s natural areas and waterways, as well as golfing and biking opportunities.  

Ways to Connect

Evan Beebe/WAER News

The Michael Greene for Mayor campaign kicked off in earnest this weekend when volunteers assembled outside the Staffworks employment agency in Syracuse. Ten new volunteers and campaign staff began dropping leaflets on the doorsteps of East Syracuse residents.

The Stand File Photo


This past summer marked a pivotal moment of Syracuse’s battle against childhood lead poisoning. The Common Council passed the city’s first lead ordinance, codifying some of the best practices for mitigating the impact into law. Council Member Joe Driscoll pushed hard for this legislation.


Geoffrey Goose/WAER News

Tenants of Skyline Apartments are speaking out about the conditions in the building that have come to light after the death of a resident last month.  Several of them spoke out this weekend to shed light on the ongoing problems.

Victoria Pickering /

The March shooting in Atlanta that left six Asian women and two others dead along with other recent acts of violence against Asians across the country have exposed previously overlooked anti-Asian racism in America,  and even here in the city of Syracuse.


Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon couldn’t avoid the devastating impacts of the COVID pandemic in his state of the county address Wednesday night.  But he also laid out plans to spend stimulus funds and restore parts of the community.

Chris Bolt/WAER News

  The covid-19 pandemic has upended many aspects of our community, and childcare schedules and norms are one of them. Providers are struggling to stay afloat while parents are trying to figure out when and what kind of childcare is the safest, best option, while trying to make sure their children are moving forward in their education.


Chris Bolt/WAER News

  The dangers E-cigarettes pose to young people are not fully known.  But deaths and hospital visits due to vaping are raising concerns among parents and health experts, even as e-cigarette usage grows among younger and younger children.  Now a health program at Cornell University has new way to open the eyes of youth to the potential dangers.


Chris Bolt/WAER News

Syracuse Police would provide a special patrol to the Skyline Apartments with the property owner footing the bill, under an agreement approved by the Common Council Monday.  Skyline is the site of a suspected murder of a 93-year-old woman earlier this month, as well as numerous police calls including a stabbing Monday morning.  Councilor Joe Carni says the measure holds the property owners responsible for beefing up safety. Syracuse

Central New York was hit hard during the second wave of the Coronavirus, and the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Syracuse was no different. Director of the Medical Center Dr. Frank Pearson says despite the expected challenges, the hospital was able to successfully weather the storm.

W2O Center for Social Commerce

New research on Syracuse University students during the pandemic shows they’re feeling extra stress, isolation, but also some silver linings.  The findings could help improve education that’s had to keep people apart.