Tom Williams

Program Director | Access Utah Host

Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996.  He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.)  He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah” and “Opera Saturday.”  He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.

Ways to Connect

Amazon

Why has American politics fallen into such a state of horrible dysfunction? Can it ever be fixed? These are the questions that motivate Michael Tomasky’s deeply original examination into the origins of our hopelessly polarized nation. “One of America’s finest political commentators” (Michael J. Sandel), Tomasky ranges across centuries and disciplines to show how America has almost always had two dominant parties that are existentially, and often violently, opposed.

culturalfront.org

Tyehimba Jess is winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his book “Olio.” With ambitious manipulations of poetic forms, Jess presents the sweat and story behind America’s blues, worksongs and church hymns. Part fact, part fiction, his much anticipated second book weaves sonnet, song, and narrative to examine the lives of mostly unrecorded African American performers directly before and after the Civil War up to World War I.

Digital Journal

How can the stories we tell protect the places we love? Friends of Cedar Mesa and Torrey House Press are presenting a conversation on the unique ways desert communities can organize around and diversify narratives to protect Utah’s red rock landscapes. Desert Cabal Expanding the Desert Narrative is Friday, March 1 at 7 PM at the Bears Ears Education Center,

567 Main Street in Bluff Utah.

Amazon

  The story of history is a ceaseless conversation between past and present  In his new book “American Dialogue: The Founders and Us” Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Joseph Ellis focuses on the often-asked question “What would the Founding Fathers think?” He examines four of our most seminal historical figures through the prism of particular topics using the perspective of the present to shed light on their v

Amazon

“Bridge of Clay” is the new sweeping family saga from Markus Zusak, author of the international bestseller “The Book Thief,” which swept the world and was made into a movie.

“Bridge of Clay” is the story of five brothers who bring each other up in a world run by their own rules. As the Dunbar boys love and fight and learn to reckon with the adult world, they discover the moving secret behind their father’s disappearance.

Goodreads

Clouds, Mountains, Birds, Different Ways of Speaking. Things That Matter, and Things That Do Not Matter. Things Found in a Local Grocery Store. Things Found in The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon. Billboards, Clouds. One Week in April. Beautiful Things. Fires. These are some of the lists, poems, prose poems, improvisations, and lyric anecdotes compiled in The Logan Notebooks.

Amazon

In their new book “Breakpoint: Reckoning with America's Environmental Crises,” eminent ecologist Jeremy B. C. Jackson and award-winning journalist Steve Chapple examine the looming threats from recent hurricanes and fires, industrial agriculture, river mismanagement, extreme weather events, drought, and rising sea levels that, they say, are pushing the country toward the breaking point of ecological and economic collapse.

 

nebraska.gov

For forty years, Rick Hammond has raised cattle and crops on his wife’s fifth-generation farm. But as he prepares to hand off the operation to his daughter Meghan and her husband Kyle, their entire way of life is under siege.

Amazon

Author and ethnographer Rodney Frey won the 2018 Evans Handcart Award from Utah State University's Mountain West Center for Regional Studies for his book Carry Forth the Stories: An Ethnographer’s Journey into Native Oral Tradition (Washington State University Press, 2017).  

Amazon

Lily Hoang’s latest book is “A Bestiary,” In this genre-transcending work, selected by Wayne Koestenbaum as the winner of the 2015 Cleveland State University Poetry Center’s Essay Collection, Hoang teases apart mythology, familial memory, and investigative essay into searing fragments, then weaves them into a dazzling swarm. Hoang models her postcolonial bestiary on the Chinese zodiac—“A pack of dogs. A swarm of insects.

Yale Environment 360

A recent article in the online magazine Yale Environment 360 is headlined “The West’s Great River Hits Its Limits: Will the Colorado Run Dry?” And the sub-headline: “As the Southwest faces rapid growth and unrelenting drought, the Colorado River is in crisis, with too many demands on its diminishing flow. Now those who depend on the river must confront the hard reality that their supply of Colorado water may be cut off.”

Amnesty International USA

Our guest for the hour is Ann Burroughs, president and CEO of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles and newly elected chair of the Global Assembly of Amnesty Interational. She gave the keynote speech for the Tanner Center for Human Rights lecture series on August 30th at the University of Utah. The title of her lecture was "Never Again is Now: Remembering and Reaffirming Our Collective Commitment to Protecting Civil Rights."

CNN

The USU Institute of Government and Politics’ Foxley Forum presented a talk by former Arizona Senator Jeff Flake yesterday titled “Is Polarizing Partisanship the New Normal?”

We’ll feature a conversation with Sen. Flake on Tuesday’s Access Utah. Our guests will also include former Utah State Senator and current Utah Debate Commission Co-Chair Scott Howell. We’ll talk about polarization, finding common ground, reverberations from the Kavanaugh hearings, the partial government shutdown, the State of the Union Address, and much more.

American Folklore Society

In the age of the Nano-second, folklore studies claim a perspective on the critical importance of the short-lived, as observed in numerous traditional forms such as memorial altars, henna-painted Yemen brides, and evaporative moments, such as the traces left by marginalized queer encounters or the reformulation in art of Mormon legend by local Provo artist Bryan Hutchison.

Amazon

The received idea of Native American history–as promulgated by books like Dee Brown’s mega-bestselling 1970 Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee–has been that American Indian history essentially ended with the 1890 massacre at Wounded Knee. Not only did one hundred fifty Sioux die at the hands of the U. S. Cavalry, the sense was, but Native civilization did as well.

Amazon

Earl Swift began writing for a living in his teens. In the years since, the Virginia-based journalist has penned seven books and hundreds of major features for newspapers and magazines, and has earned a reputation for fast-moving narrative and scrupulous reporting. His editors have nominated his work for the National Book Award, the National Magazine Award, and six times for a Pulitzer Prize.

Amazon

In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk.

UPR

On opening day of the 2019 Utah Legislature we’re at the State Capitol. We’ll speak with Utah Governor Gary Herbert; Senate Majority Leader Evan Vickers; Senate Minority Leader Karen Mayne; House Executive Appropriations Chair Brad Last and House Minority Leader Brian King. We’ll discuss propositions approved by the voters last year on medical marijuana, medicaid expansion, and redistricting. We’ll also talk about air quality, education, the budget, taxes and more.

 

The independent

An event titled the “Southern Utah Clean Air Forum” was held recently in St. George. It was billed as “a discussion of proposed federal, state & local legislation focused on reducing energy emissions to improve our health and our children’s futures.” As we head toward the opening of the Utah Legislature next week, we’ll talk about clean air and the climate with three of the panelists from the forum on Thursday’s Access Utah.

Amazon

All her life, Emily felt different from other kids. Between therapist visits, sudden uncontrollable bursts of anger, and unexplained episodes of dizziness, things never felt right. For years, her only escape was through the stories she crafted. It wasn’t until a near-fatal accident when she was twelve years old that Emily and her family discovered the truth: a grapefruit-size brain tumor at the base of her skull.

Jackson Hole Book Trader

In this fresh and introspective collection of essays, Julia Corbett examines nature in our lives with all of its ironies and contradictions.

Each story delves into an overlooked aspect of our relationship with nature—insects, garbage, backyards, noise, open doors, animals, and language—and how we cover our tracks. Corbett confronts the owner of a high-end market who insists on keeping his doors open in all temperatures, and takes us on a trip to a new mall with a replica of a trout stream that once flowed nearby.

Women's March

Here’s what organizers of the national Women’s March are saying: “The 2017 Women’s March inspired hundreds of women to run, millions more to vote, and dozens to win elected office. The 2019 Women’s March marks two years of resistance to the Trump presidency, two years of training new activists, and two years of building power. And this time, we're coming back with an agenda. … The #WomensWave is coming.”

 

Amazon

Witty, inspiring, and charismatic, Oscar Wilde is one of the Greats of English literature. Today, his plays and stories are beloved around the world. But it was not always so. His afterlife has given him the legitimacy that life denied him. Making Oscar Wilde reveals the untold story of young Oscar's career in Victorian England and post-Civil War America. Set on two continents, it tracks a larger-than-life hero on an unforgettable adventure to make his name and gain international acclaim. 'Success is a science,' Wilde believed, 'if you have the conditions, you get the result.'

University of Toledo

If you are a bystander and witness a crime, should intervention to prevent that crime be a legal obligation? Or is moral responsibility enough?

UPR

Utah Valley University professor Susan Madsen has been focusing for several years now on helping more women graduate from college and helping more girls and women in Utah become leaders in their organizations and communities. She is the founder and director of the Utah Women & Leadership Project at UVU.  

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