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Exit Interviews, HCC, and Attica Locke: Wednesday’s Show (August 31, 2016)

It’s becoming a sort of tradition: as folks step away from some long-held positions here in Greater Houston, they drop by Houston Matters for an “exit interview.” Today, we bring you two. First, Maggie Martin talks with Mike Talbott, who’s retiring from his post as executive director of the Harris County Flood Control District after […]

Photo: Michael Hagerty, Houston Public MediaIt’s becoming a sort of tradition: as folks step away from some long-held positions here in Greater Houston, they drop by Houston Matters for an “exit interview.” Today, we bring you two. First, Maggie Martin talks with Mike Talbott, who’s retiring from his post as executive director of the Harris County Flood Control District after 35 years with the agency. Then: we bid a fond farewell to Houston Public Media’s own Paul Pendergraft, who’s retiring today after more than 30 years in radio — 20 of them with KUHF as a reporter, news director and producer, among other roles. (He’s also appeared on occasion as a panelist on the Houston Matters weekly segment The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly). We discuss how Houston radio and Houston Public Media have changed since the 1980’s.

Also this hour:

Houston Community College Chancellor Discusses Some Pressing Issues for the College

Houston Community College has been contending with a number of issues in recent years. The Houston Chronicle reported earlier this year on more than 350 acres of land the college owned that went unused. There’s also been controversy surrounding the college’s associate degree nursing program, which was put on probation because the state concluded the percentage of current nursing students passing examination fell below the necessary threshold. HCC also began scaling back a controversial agreement with a community college in Qatar earlier this year. We talk with HCC Chancellor Dr. Cesar Maldonado about how the college is addressing these issues.

A Conversation with Houston Native, Novelist, and Screenwriter Attica Locke

Houston native Attica Locke has written three crime novels and 50 screenplays. But her biggest claim to fame so far has come as a writer for the Fox television series Empire. We talk with Locke about the series and about efforts to engage viewers on important subject matter in the context of a primetime soap opera about a hip hop music and entertainment company. We also discuss her book Pleasantville, which garnered her the American Bar Association Journal’s 2016 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction.

Houston Matters offers a free daily, downloadable podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and various other podcasting apps.

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