Ann-Elise Henzl

News Reporter / Executive Director of Project Milwaukee

Ann-Elise Henzl has been a reporter at WUWM since 1993. She got her foot in the door three years earlier, as a newsroom student intern. Ann-Elise divides her time between daily general assignment reporting and working on longer, researched stories. Ann-Elise is also Executive Producer of WUWM's Project Milwaukee series.

Ann-Elise has won numerous awards, including the national Edward R. Murrow award from the Radio-Television News Directors Association (for best use of sound in a story). In addition, she has frequently been recognized for her reporting on the welfare system, the environment, and health care.

Ann-Elise earned English and Mass Communication degrees from UW-Milwaukee.

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We continue our series Project Milwaukee: Black and White with a look at school segregation. The push to integrate the schools flared racial tensions here in the 1960s and 1970s. The results of the fight were mixed. WUWM's Ann-Elise Henzl has our report.

Words used in the story may be offensive to some, but are integral to the report.

Ann-Elise Henzl

Every year, hundreds of young students go through intensive music training with the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra. Ann-Elise Henzl recently happened to hear one of them: a female violinist who played with confidence, in front of a crowd of local movers and shakers. Ann-Elise followed up to learn more about the eighth-grade Milwaukee Public School student, who's fallen in love with the violin.

Megan Dobyns

Today is what's known in some circles as Paczki Day, in Milwaukee. Paczki are a Polish doughnut, and a popular Fat Tuesday treat in cities with a strong Polish heritage. Ann-Elise Henzl went to a bakery that's buzzing with activity, surrounding the tasty snack.

Ann-Elise Henzl

There are lots of ways parents -- and sometimes schools -- try to prevent teen pregnancy. They may suggest abstinence or the use of condoms. But some people argue the best way to get through to teens is to give them a taste of what it's like to be young parent.

Ann-Elise Henzl

The Wisconsin Humane Society recently agreed to buy a mass breeding operation -- described by critics as a "puppy mill" -- in order to shut it down. It will take a couple of months to find homes for the more than 1,000 dogs of 40 different breeds, which were kept at the facility.

For the last week and a half, WUWM has been reporting on youth violence: the causes and the solutions. Many of the people we've talked to told us how important it is for kids to have mentors who show them the right way to live.

We've been exploring the issue of youth violence from a variety of angles for the past week on WUWM. We've met children who've been either victims or perpetrators of violent crimes. Some of the offenders wind up in the court system at an early age.

Children in some Milwaukee neighborhoods are likely to become involved in gangs. Teens and even younger kids may sell cocaine, move guns from one location to another, or act as "lookouts" while illegal activities are underway. Officers Louis Kopesky and Daniel Knitter are with the Milwaukee Police Department's 5th District Community Prosecution Unit.

They told Ann-Elise Henzl about the problem during a patrol on the city's near north side.

In some dangerous neighborhoods of Milwaukee, it seems as if there's a roadside memorial every other block. The stuffed animals, votive candles, photos, and bottles of liquor are left at a tree, in honor of someone who died of gang violence. Often the victims and perpetrators of gang crimes are teenagers. Experts say that's a sharp contrast to 30 years ago, when gangs were almost non-existent here.

Some Milwaukee employers who are concerned about the quality of the workforce are taking matters into their own hands. Super Steel on the city's northwest side chose to work with technical schools, to fashion customized training for welders. Ann-Elise Henzl visited Super Steel as part of our Project Milwaukee coverage on economic development. President and CEO Keith Trafton told her why he got into the training business.

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