Louisiana: The State We’re In, Louisiana's only statewide news magazine and one of the longest running television programs in the nation, is in its 38th season on the air. The program currently airs Fridays at 7PM and Sundays at 4:30PM on the six-station LPB network that includes stations in Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe and Shreveport. It also airs on LPB’s sister station WLAE-TV32 in New Orleans on Fridays at 7PM.
Award-winning journalists Charlie Whinham and Shauna Sanford anchor and produce the show which combines in-depth coverage of about the important issues in the state along with expert analysis of those issues. That includes continuing coverage of stories like the lasting effect of the BP oil spill on Louisiana’s coastline, the Bayou Corne sinkhole and the ongoing court battles over education initiatives supported by the Jindal Administration.
Since its inception in 1976 with current LPB President Beth Courtney anchoring the show, the program has been a leader in coverage of the Louisiana Legislature. Its goal has always been to explain how legislation will affect the lives of the people of the state. That coverage expands during the legislative session to include nightly updates on the day’s events at the session on Capitol Beat and a wrap up of the week’s events on the Friday State We’re In broadcast that features live interviews with lawmakers and experts on legislation.
The program also has lighthearted features on the people and places that make Louisiana so unique. For example, Whinham’s Lost Louisiana: What’s In A Name series explored important issues like how the village of Mowatta and towns like Dry Prong and Zwolle got their names.
The newest addition to the show is Prescription for Health which features Dr. Rani Whitfield discussing important health issues including how to prevent cancer, heart problems and strokes. The segments air the first Friday of every month.
Emmy award winning broadcaster Charlie Whinham joined Louisiana Public Broadcasting in the fall of 2002. In addition to his duties with Louisiana: The State We’re In, Whinham has produced numerous programs for LPB including, Lost Louisiana: Places of Worship, What’s in a Name?, Castle on the Hill: Louisiana’s Old State Capitol, Louisiana Baseball Stories and Louisiana World War II Stories.
The Suncoast Chapter of the National Television Arts and Sciences recognized Whinham in 2010 with an Emmy for Lost Louisiana: Places of Worship. Two years earlier Whinham traveled to the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., to accept the Distinguished Reporting Award from the Military Reporters and Editors Association for Louisiana World War II Stories.
The University of Kentucky graduate began his broadcasting career in 1987 as a radio news director in Campbellsville, KY, and later moved to nearby Bowling Green as a news reporter for WBKO-TV. Whinham would branch out to sportscasting and served as sports director for WPBN-TV in Traverse City, MI, and then to WBAY-TV in Green Bay, WI, as a sports reporter and anchor. During his time in Green Bay, Whinham filed a number of stories for ESPN.
Since the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, Whinham along with co-anchor Shauna Sanford have served as contributing correspondents and commentators for the PBS NewsHour. LPB’s continuing GulfWatch coverage of the oil spill aftermath can be found at www.GulfWatch.org.
Kelly Connelly produces Capitol Beat, a nightly news segment during the legislative session, assists in the production of Louisiana Public Square, and contributes to Louisiana: The State We’re In as well as other projects. Prior to joining LPB, Connelly covered politics out of three southern Capitols, including Baton Rouge. Versed in broadcasting as well as print and online media, her work has been published in LaPolitics Weekly, Business Report’s Daily Report and Louisiana Sportsman Magazine. Connelly holds a bachelor’s degree in Film Studies and a minor in Politics from Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. She got her start in broadcasting in the Radio Training Program at Baton Rouge Magnet High School. She was hired as a part-time reporter and anchor her senior year of college at KUAR in Little Rock before continuing to KUT in Austin. When she’s not producing, Connelly enjoys cooking, practicing yoga and spending time on her front porch with her partner Steve Spires and their two dogs, Mr. Man and Miss Buttons. She is the second Connelly to work at LPB, after her father, former Baton Rouge newsman John Connelly.