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

Todd V. Wolfson / jpcutler media

George Winston might be best known for his piano recordings and concerts.  But the musician, who visits Central New York this weekend, is a multi-instrumentalist with a history of helping others. 

Dignelly Torres/WAER News

The Sikh Temple, Gobind Sadan, in Central Square remembered the 18th Anniversary of being burned down shortly after the September 11th terrorist attacks. WAER’s Dignelly Torres reports the message of their weekend celebration was forgiveness.

“Gathering Around the Light” remembered the arson attack back in November 23, 2001. The Sikh Temple was set on fire by three teenagers. They mistakenly related them to the 9/11 attacks. Founding member of Gobind Sadan Ralph Singh says forgiveness helped transformed the lives of the kids.

Bloomberg for President? How Much Catching-up Does He Have to Do?

Nov 25, 2019

A SUNY Cortland Political Science professor sees Michael Bloomberg’s quest for the Democratic presidential nomination as a long shot.  Bob Spitzer says the former New York City Mayor faces an uphill battle because of his late entry into the race, and a strategy to skip the early primaries. 

Wainwright Photography /

A range of businesses that call Syracuse and Central New York home will come together Monday to try and convince people to spend their money locally.  The 10th Buy Local Bash and has spent the last decade trying to support local buisnesses. 

WAER file photo

  UPDATED 11/22

After University officials announced agreements on most of student demands, the #NotAgainSU protest leaders read a statement that they did not agree to the memorandum signed by the Chancellor. 

Chris Bolt / WAER-FM 88.3

Law enforcement officials in Central New York and across the state are sounding the alarm about pending justice reforms set to take effect January first.  Surrounded by dozens of deputies, officers and supporters, Onondaga County Sheriff Gene Conway says they had no opportunity to offer their insights to lawmakers or the governor when they crafted the new laws. 

Chris Bolt/WAER News

Updated 10:11 a.m. to add Chancellor, Vice Chancellor and Provost comments.   

A forum at Syracuse University to try and ease fears on campus over racist incidents and improve policies on diversity and safety did not meet either goal.  But students and some staff members did get promises from the Chancellor and administration to make changes that could improve inclusion and the handling of future racist incidents.

Syracuse Univ

Syracuse University has pledged to keep campus open despite the ongoing crisis of racist actions and student protests.  The tension and fear on campus ramped up after the announcement of a white supremacist diatribe being posted on a website related to SU fraternities.  That brought in FBI investigators, who are working with the State Police Hate Crimes Task Force, already looking into the spate of incidents from the past 10 days.


Syracuse City Police and FBI agents made public statements today that they are working together to follow up on the positing of a white supremacist manifesto that was posted on a digital media site and sent via air drop to students at a Syracuse University library.  

@notagain_su / Twitter

Students are continuing their sit-in at Syracuse University over the school’s handling of a series of racist vandalism incidents and verbal attacks.  Chancellor Kent Syverud and other administration officials sent students a video announcement detailing the closing down of a fraternity implicated in a verbal racist attack, along with increased safety patrols and promises to improve diversity training and curriculum.