Ryan Vasquez

News Host/Reporter

Ryan Vasquez is a reporter and the APR host of All Things Considered.  

A native of Miramar, Florida, Ryan comes to Alabama Public Radio after graduating from the University of Florida in 2006. While in Gainesville, Ryan worked for a sports-talk radio station as well as a WUFT-TV, but he gained his passion for public radio at Mid-Florida Public Radio. In his nearly eight years in public radio, Ryan has covered such stories as the 2004 and 2008 Presidential Elections, the 2010 Gulf Oil Spill and the deadly April 27th, 2011 outbreak of tornadoes. Ryan has contributed stories to Florida Public Radio, NPR and APM’s Marketplace Morning Report.

Ryan joined Alabama Public Radio in September of 2007. He also contributes to the Telecommunication and Film School at the University of Alabama as an adjunct instructor.


UA Sorority Racism
4:10 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Black Women Accept Bids, Break Racial Barrier At UA Sororities

According to several media reports two traditionally white sororities at the University of Alabama have broken the color barrier.
Credit Michelle Lepianka Carter / AP

Traditionally white sororities at the University of Alabama have broken the color barrier.

UA President Judy Bonner provided an update on the efforts to diversify Panhellenic sororities at Alabama in a video Friday.

Bonner says during the recently reopened continuous open bid process sororities have issued 72 bids this week.

Eleven African American women received bids. Three bids went to other minorities. Eighteen bids have already been accepted. Four of those bids were accepted by African American women and two by other minorities.

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Governor-Payday Loans
4:24 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

Governor Bentley Announces New Measure To Protect Borrowers From Excessive Debt

Governor Robert Bentley announced a new consumer protection measure aimed at helping people avoid excessive amounts of debt from payday loans.
Credit governor.alabama.gov

Governor Robert Bentley announced a new consumer protection measure today aimed at helping people avoid excessive amounts of debt from payday loans.

The measure will also help lenders by providing a method to ensure they are complying with state law. Under the Alabama Deferred Presentment Services Act, payday lenders are not to issue loans to customers who currently have more than 500 dollars in existing payday loan debt.

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Civil Rights-16th Street
4:28 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Searching For Addie Mae Collins

Forensic genealogist Liesa Healy-Miller is making a final plea for help in finding Addie Mae Collins' final resting place in Greenwood Cemetery.

As Birmingham prepares to remember the four little girls killed nearly 50 years ago in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing one woman is searching for answers. Liesa Healy-Miller is a forensic genealogist who is making a final plea for clues to where the final resting place is of one of the victims, Addie Mae Collins.

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Alabama-HIV Prisoners
4:57 pm
Wed September 11, 2013

Putting An End To Segregating HIV Prisoners In Alabama

Alabama was, until last week, the only prison system in the country to still have a policy in place to segregate HIV prisoners.
Ran Hu University of Michigan School of Social Work

Last week, the Alabama Department of Corrections announced the end of its practice of segregating prisoners with HIV. This came as a result of a successful lawsuit filed by the ACLU. Former inmate Louis Henderson is HIV positive and was one of the lead plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Alabama Public Radio's Ryan Vasquez recently spoke with Henderson, and asked about his experience in the Alabama prison system and what the end of the segregation policy means to him.

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Drone Testing Site
4:44 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

Alabama, Tennessee Team Up To Land Drone Test Site

A consortium of companies and universities in Alabama and Tennessee are hoping to develop a site where drones would be tested.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

A consortium of companies and universities in Alabama and Tennessee are hoping to develop a site where drones would be tested.

If approved, the facility could become one of only a half-dozen sites approved by the Federal Aviation Administration for research involving Unmanned Aerial Systems, more commonly known as drones.

Alabama and Tennessee have submitted a joint application in an effort to be selected as one of the six FAA UAS testing sites. Testing would be done at a site near Savannah, Tennessee.

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Civil Rights
5:58 pm
Wed August 21, 2013

How The Media Covered The Civil Rights Movement: The 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing

A small monument outside of the church remembering the 1963 bombing.
Ryan Vasquez

September 15th, 1963 started off just like any other Sunday for Barbara Cross with morning Sunday school class down in the basement of 16th Street Baptist Church.

“Our Sunday school lesson that day was “A Love That Forgives” I’ll never forget that as long as I live,” says Cross. “In my class particular we discussed the scripture from Matthew the fifth chapter talking about agape love the godly type of love and agape is the Greek word for godly love.”

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UPS Plane Crash
5:09 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Crash Investigation Focuses On Tail Section Of Jet

Investigators sift through the wreckage of a UPS cargo jet that crashed just outside of Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport on Wednesday.
Credit National Transportation Safety Board

Investigators say they have recovered the flight recorders on an ill-fated UPS cargo jet that crashed at Birmingham's airport this week, killing its two crew members.

Today's search focused on the tail section of the aircraft, where the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder are typically located. The National Transportation Board says they should know tomorrow if data is on the recovered flight data recorders.

The two devices could hold key evidence about what happened as the jet was attempting to land in Birmingham early Wednesday.

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UPS Plane Crash
5:11 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

UPS Jet Crashes Near Birmingham Airport, Killing 2 And Scattering Wreckage Over Neighborhood

Wreckage from Wednesday morning's UPS cargo plane crash just outside of Birmingham-Shuttlesworth Airport.
Credit Ralph Hicks / National Transportation Safety Board

Neighbors near the area where a UPS cargo plane crashed say they heard engines sputtering shortly before the fiery explosion.

The pilot and a co-pilot of the shipping company's Airbus A300 were killed early Wednesday when their plane crashed into a grassy field on approach to an airport in Birmingham.

Ryan Wimbleduff, who lives near the airport, said balls of fire rolled toward his property and shook his house.

Authorities say the plane was en route from Louisville, Ky., and the cause of the crash is unclear.

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Selma Synagogue
4:54 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Simcha in Selma! A Bar Mitzvah To Help A Selma Synagogue

Elijah Schulman was called to the Torah on August 3, 2013 at Temple Mishkan Israel in Selma, Alabama.
Ashley Johnson Selma Times-Journal

Being bar mitzvahed is a rite of passage every young Jewish man gets to go through at the age of 13. A mitzvah is a good deed and performing one is paramount to the process. When Elijah Schulman thought about what he would do for his bar mitzvah project he didn’t look to his hometown of Bethesda, Maryland. Rather Schulman looked to help out a Selma synagogue that had some old family ties. 

Alabama Public Radio's Ryan Vasquez talked to Schulman about how he came to help the Mishkan Israel synagogue as part of his bar mitzvah project.

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Voting Rights Act
4:44 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Southern States Gird For New Fight On Voter Laws

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder efforts to put Texas back under voting rights laws knocked down by the Supreme Court has other states waiting to see if they're next.
Credit ryanjreilly / Flickr

New efforts by the Obama administration to put Texas back under voting rights laws knocked down by the Supreme Court has other states waiting to see if they're next.

The Justice Department wants Texas to continue seeking federal preapproval to change voting laws. That's despite justices stripping that requirement from the Voting Rights Act last month.

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Caroline's Cart
5:46 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Drew Ann Long Discusses The National Launch Of Caroline's Cart

Caroline's cart won a 2013 DaVinci Award and now partnered with Technibilt should be available in grocery stores nationwide by the end of July or early August.
Caroline's Cart

An Alabama woman who has invented a grocery cart designed to help people with special needs is taking her product national. Drew Ann Long is inventor of Caroline’s Cart, a grocery cart designed to allow special needs people be a part of the shopping experience. The last time we talked with Long she was on Capitol Hill to promote special needs initiatives. Alabama Public Radio’s Ryan Vasquez caught up with Long ahead of Thursday’s national launch for Caroline’s Cart to talk about what this next step means for special needs individuals.

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Civil Rights-Dynamite Hill
9:57 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

Civil Rights Attorney Arthur Shores: The Gentle Giant Of Dynamite Hill

Attorney Arthur Shores' countless legal battles for civil rights made him and his family the targets of attacks and bombings.

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Voting Rights Act
2:21 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Supreme Court Considers Voting Rights Act Challenge

One of the exhibits at the Civil Rights Memorial Center in Montgomery.
Ryan Vasquez

All year long here on Alabama Public Radio, we’re looking at the 50th anniversary of some of the pivotal moments in the Civil Rights Era. Times of have changed for the better since 1963, but have they changed so much that we can move on from laws meant to protect minorities. Shelby County is challenging a key provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 saying it’s no longer needed. Today Mason Davis is an accomplished lawyer in Birmingham, but in 1958 he was just a young law student trying to register to vote in Alabama.

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Civil Rights
9:47 pm
Thu April 25, 2013

How The Media Covered The Civil Rights Movement: The Children's March

The Birmingham Fire Department point a hose at demonstrators.
Birmingham News/Birmingham Bar Foundation

Images of young black protesters being hit with fire hoses and police dogs in 1963 Birmingham are considered iconic. Hank Klibanoff saw them too. He was a fourteen year old paperboy in Florence when the Children’s march took place. He’s a Pulitzer Prize winner now. And what strikes him is where civil rights coverage wound up in the daily paper…

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Military Cultural Training
9:14 pm
Tue April 2, 2013

Foreign Military Officers Get An Education In American Culture At Ala. Air Force Base

Today's lesson is "Perceptions of Threats and Enemies."
Ryan Vasquez

A quick glance around a classroom at Maxwell Air Force Base looks more like a United Nations meeting. Flags for Nigeria, Japan, Macedonia and many more countries adorn the students green flight suits along with squadron patches and aviation accomplishments. That’s because this class is called “Understanding and Working With the U.S. Military.” Dr. Brian Selmeski is the instructor.

“We have one civilian, nine military ranging from Captain to Lieutenant Colonel they are from ten different countries and between them they must speak oh at least 25 languages”

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