Author

Noah Taborda

Noah Taborda

Noah Taborda started his journalism career in public radio at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri, covering local government and producing an episode of the podcast Show Me The State while earning his bachelor’s degree in radio broadcasting at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Noah then made a short move to Kansas City, Missouri, to work at KCUR as an intern on the talk show Central Standard and then in the newsroom, reporting on daily news and feature stories.

Removing roadblocks for Latino voters is slow work in Kansas

By: - August 22, 2020

TOPEKA — Alejandro Rangel-Lopez didn’t think twice about taking legal action when Ford County Clerk Debbie Cox moved the only polling location outside of Dodge City limits in 2018. “Voting is one of the most important rights we have,” Rangel-Lopez said. “I learned from my father at an early age. He became a citizen in […]

Calls for criminal justice reform usher sympathetic DA candidates

By: - August 21, 2020

TOPEKA — Joshua Luttrell used to talk fervently with fellow attorneys about criminal justice reform he had hoped for, but didn’t see, under Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay. Now, Luttrell will look to unseat Kagay by running on the same platform he hoped his opponent would adopt. “I ran because I felt somebody had […]

The Commission on Racial Equity and Justice, which meets every other week, is charged with making recommendations to the governor, Legislature and local governments. (Noah Taborda/Kansas Reflector)

Governor’s commission seeks added diversity in Kansas police training, hiring practices

By: - August 20, 2020

TOPEKA — A leader of Gov. Laura Kelly’s Commission on Racial Equity and Justice on Thursday called for refreshed police training programs focused more squarely on historical context and the role of police in perpetuating inequalities. Shannon Portillo, associate dean for academic affairs at the University of Kansas Edwards campus, suggested every officer take a […]

ACLU calls out Overland Park police for ‘militarized response’ to Black Lives Matter protest

By: - August 19, 2020

The American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas this week condemned the Overland Park Police Department for an “overly reactive and militarized response” to a Black Lives Matter protest. In a letter addressed to Overland Park Police Chief Frank Donchez, the civil rights group highlighted concerns with officers’ handling of a peaceful protest on July 24. […]

Advocates say Title IX changes announced by U.S. Department of Education secretary Betsy Devos creates hurdles for survivors who report sexual assault to campus authorities. (March 28, 2019, photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

‘Already difficult enough’: New directive puts onus on college sexual assault survivors

By: - August 18, 2020

Controversial new regulations for how universities respond to sexual assault reverse a decade of survivor advocacy work, said Sara Rust-Martin, legal and policy director for the Kansas Coalition against Sexual and Domestic Violence. Changes to the Title IX guidelines, which took effect on Friday, have been heavily criticized for over-expanding the rights of the accused. […]

Kansas professor’s experience with COVID-19 heightens concern for campus safety

By: - August 16, 2020

TOPEKA — Richard Sleezer could only watch the careless attitudes many have taken toward the pandemic for so long before he felt compelled to share his ongoing COVID-19 experience. In mid-June, after coping with what he described as a “really bad allergy attack,” Sleezer was tested for the virus. He expected to hear good news […]

Emporia State University alumni data exposed in ransom attack

By: - August 14, 2020

TOPEKA — The Emporia State University Foundation says the personal information of 67,000 alumni was exposed in a data security breach involving Blackbaud Inc., a fundraising service provider for the higher education sector. Blackbaud fell under a ransomware attack in May 2020, and the perpetrator was able to obtain several sets of data from clients […]

Additional positive COVID-19 cases send Hutchinson Correctional Facility into lockdown

By: - August 12, 2020

Kansas Department of Corrections secretary Jeff Zmuda said Wednesday a lockdown has been initiated at the Hutchinson Correctional Facility central unit after additional staff and inmates tested positive for COVID-19. This week, 84 inmates and 10 staff tested positive, bringing the total number of people infected in the facility to 99 inmates and 17 staff […]

Kansas State University athletic director Gene Taylor said the decision to play this fall is in line with the desires of players, coaches and administrators (Noah Taborda/Kansas Reflector)

Big 12 announces plans to play fall sports with intensified testing

By: - August 12, 2020

TOPEKA — Student-athletes and coaches in Manhattan and Lawrence let out a collective sigh of relief Wednesday morning as the Big 12 conference announced its intentions to carry on with plans for fall sports. All fall sports will commence after Sept. 1. Football conference play begins Sept. 26 with any nonconference games to be played […]

Kansas college towns await potentially ‘disastrous’ verdict on Big 12 fall sports

By: - August 11, 2020

TOPEKA — Business leaders and owners in Kansas’ biggest college towns are bracing themselves for an announcement on the status of fall sports for the Big 12 conference — a decision which could further damage already weakened local economies. The Big 12 board of directors, along with key administrators from each of the 10 member […]

Mark Pringle and his wife, Mary Jane Shanklin, say the pandemic has exacerbated issues that already existed in farming communities (Submitted)

Kansas farmers find themselves increasingly isolated, in need amid pandemic

By: - August 11, 2020

TOPEKA — Mark Pringle has seen the self-sufficient mindset of many Kansas farmers and their families challenged by COVID-19 as the virus disproportionately impacts rural communities. Pringle is a fourth-generation farmer and the Democratic candidate for the Kansas House in the 13th District. He and his wife, Mary Jane Shanklin, a registered nurse, have watched […]

Payment Protection Program loans kept health care facilities across Kansas operating through the pandemic (University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita Medical Practice Association)

PPP loans keep hospitals, clinics financially stable

By: - August 9, 2020

TOPEKA — Hospitals and clinics in Kansas, which were struggling to pay employees and stay above water financially before COVID-19, were buoyed by millions of dollars in Payment Protection Program loans. Since 2010, seven rural hospitals have closed across Kansas, including Sumner Community Hospital and St. Luke’s Cushing Hospital this year. A 2019 study indicated […]