KUCB has a new interim reporter.
Caroline Lester arrived in Unalaska last week and will be covering local and regional news for the next three months.
To introduce herself to the community, she sat down for an interview with KUCB's Laura Kraegel.
LESTER: My name is Caroline Lester. I am coming from Brooklyn, New York City. Grew up in Brookline, just outside of Boston. And I used to live in Sitka a little while ago. But this is my first time in Unalaska, and I'm thrilled to be here.
KUCB: Tell us a bit about your background in radio and reporting.
LESTER: I got my start in radio volunteering at [KCAW] Raven [Radio] down in Sitka. From there, I've worked at WNYC, which is a radio station in New York, WGBH, which is a radio station in Boston, and freelanced for WNPR, which is the Connecticut radio station. So I've sort of been all over the East Coast on public radio stations there. I've worked as a freelance reporter for the past three years, and I'm really excited to be working in a community radio station where I can really get my hands dirty reporting on all of the local issues.
KUCB: With that in mind, what are you looking forward to? What are you most interested in — in terms of the island and what you see happening here?
LESTER: I did just get here, so I'm still learning. Generally, I'm most excited to learn about all of the issues facing the island. I have a background in fishing — I sold fish for a while — so I'm thrilled to be learning more about that. I will be working on a longer project on World War II internment. My grandmother was interned. She was Japanese. I'm working on a project about the reparations that both Japanese-Americans and Alaska Natives were paid out — and sort of how both communities worked together to get that to happen.
KUCB: Outside of work, what are your initial impressions of Unalaska? What are you noticing about the island and what do you look forward to doing in your downtime?
LESTER: The one thing I've noticed is the weather changes here very quickly. I cannot believe how quickly the weather changes. I love it. It's really beautiful here. Everybody has been so kind and friendly and welcoming, and I'm so appreciative of the community for that. In my spare time, I love to read. I love to walk my dog. Maybe you guys will see me around with my little dog. And I'm a certified yoga teacher. I'm hoping to do yoga and hopefully teach some community classes.
KUCB: I think there'll be a demand for that for sure. Well, it's really great to get that initial snapshot of who you are. We're looking forward to seeing more of you in town and more of your work on the airwaves. But for folks in the community, is there anything else you would want them to know right now?
LESTER: If you see me wandering around, please come say hello. I'm really looking forward to meeting all of you. And actually, because I am also a reporter, I have a follow-up question for you, Laura. What is the outgoing advice you would give to a new reporter, fresh to Unalaska?
KUCB: Oh, man. Coming into a new community or reporting in any community, I think it just serves you well to take the time to get to know the people here and what they care about — and let their knowledge and interest help to guide your work.
LESTER: Great advice to live by.
KUCB: It's a great town. I'm excited for you to interact with them and for all of the stories that will come from it. So thank you, Caroline.
LESTER: Me too. Thank you.
Contact Caroline Lester with news tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.