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Jon Evans of WECT/Fox Wilmington has more than 30 years of television news experience. He's asked a lot of questions to newsmakers, and you've seen or heard their answers on his newscasts. Now Jon is asking different questions to those same newsmakers. going in-depth and learning things that only a few people know. Politicians, business leaders, entrepreneurs, athletes, entertainers - you'll know them better after hearing them go "1 on 1 with Jon Evans."
 
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The fifth season of the award-winning “1on1 with Jon Evans” podcast is in the books. Season five featured interviews with authors, actors, athletes, directors, television personalities, comedians and newsmakers with ties to southeastern North Carolina. This end-of-the-year compilation features several of the most interesting excerpts from some of t…
 
Reporters Nick Ochsner and Michael Graff covered the 2018 election fraud scandal in North Carolina’s Ninth Congressional District for different news organizations. The more time they spent in Bladen County, uncovering networks and identifying individuals working to influence elections, the more they realized politics in this rural county has its’ o…
 
Wiley Cash’s fourth novel, When Ghosts Come Home, represents several firsts in the New York Times best-selling author’s career. He’s crafted a murder-mystery and set it along the coast of his native North Carolina. Despite the mid-1980s timeframe, Cash’s characters deal with many of the same social issues making today’s headlines, while they work t…
 
Meredith Viera’s current project, the Fox-syndicated game show 25 Words or Less is now in its’ third season and seen on television stations across the country. It’s another success in Viera’s award-winning career that began in local radio more than four decades ago, and has taken her around the world to cover the biggest stories and newsmakers.…
 
They came out of Chicago and put the city’s name at the top of the music charts, where it stayed for decades. Trumpet player Lee Loughnane is one of three founding members of Chicago still touring with the rock and roll band 52 years after releasing their first album in 1969. Now back on the road after a pandemic-forced break, Loughnane talks about…
 
Actress Yaya DaCosta left NBC’s Chicago Med after six seasons to play the lead character of Angela Vaughn in Our Kind of People. The new Fox show, which shoots in Wilmington, NC, is inspired by Lawrence Otis Graham’s bestseller that goes inside America’s Black Upper Class. DaCosta talks about the importance of the show, what drew her to the project…
 
Dr. Muneeb Shah has had a meteoric rise to social media stardom. The fourth-year Dermatology Resident in Wilmington, NC posted his first TikTok video about skin care on May 1, 2020, and now has more than ten million followers. Dr. Shah’s videos on TikTok, Instagram and YouTube have more than three billion views. This is the story of how he became o…
 
John Maginnes accomplished his dream of becoming a pro golfer, playing on the PGA Tour for a decade and competing alongside some of the biggest names in the sport like Tiger Woods and Nick Faldo. But when an injury presented an opportunity, Maginnes grabbed it. Now, as a host, analyst and on-course reporter on Sirius XM PGA Tour Radio, Maginnes sti…
 
Jay Leno and Kevin Eubanks are working together again on television. Leno is rebooting the comedy show You Bet Your Life, and he wanted Eubanks to co-host. Their relationship goes back to the early 90s, when Leno took over as host of The Tonight Show and Eubanks became the bandleader. The two friends talk about what fans can expect to see when the …
 
Brad Thor tried once to launch a writing career, and it didn’t work. When the pieces started falling into place to give him a second chance, he jumped at it, and is now a #1 bestselling author of 21 thrillers, selling tens of millions of books around the world. Brad joins WECT’s Jon Evans to talk about the idea behind his new Scot Harvath book “Bla…
 
Kathy Reichs’ new book, The Bone Code, is the 20th in her bestselling Bones series that features forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. It’s a murder-mystery ‘ripped from the headlines’ that takes Tempe back to an unsolved case from her past. Reichs has also co-authored the young adult Virals books, and produced episodes of the long-running Bo…
 
Jack Carr spent two decades on the front lines of America’s war on terrorism. The former Navy Seal sniper and Special Operations Commander transitioned into a second career, and is now a New York Times bestselling author. While crafting novels like The Devil’s Hand, which keep readers riveted, Carr supports organizations that help other veterans be…
 
Hannah Black and Megan Petersen have taken different roads to their place in the film industry. Once their paths converged in an acting class, it set off a chain of creative events that resulted in the award-winning independent film, Drought. The co-creators, co-directors and co-stars talk about the project’s long road from start to finish, the mes…
 
Drew and Owen Scheid play two of the central characters in the award-winning independent film Drought, now streaming on Amazon Prime. While Drew has more acting experience, Drought marks Owen’s film debut, playing a young man on the autism spectrum who is fascinated with weather and storm chasing. The two brothers talk about the messages the movie …
 
Shaneequa Vereen took a leap of faith to move halfway across the country without a job. Now, as Public Affairs Officer and Live Mission Commentator at NASA, Shaneequa is helping document mankind’s leaps into the heavens and beyond, while showing other young women of color that anything is possible with hard work and dedication.…
 
Alex Highsmith is an imposing figure in his shoulder pads and Pittsburgh Steelers uniform. If you look closely, you will also see a little chip on his shoulder. It’s the fuel that has powered Highsmith’s internal engine, helping the Wilmington native reach the National Football League, where he is now paid to play the game he used to play for fun. …
 
Patrick Brien doesn’t look at complicated issues the way most people do. The Army veteran and CEO of Cape Fear Collective has a view from about ten thousand feet, where he sees potential partnerships and innovative opportunities to address issues like poverty, affordable housing and healthcare. By using data to light the way, and capital to fuel th…
 
Long before Greta Van Susteren became Chief National Political Analyst for Gray TV and the host of “Full Court Press” on WECT, before she anchored shows on CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC and Voice of America, and before she first gained national attention providing legal analysis during the O.J. Simpson Trial, the Wisconsin native had earned two law …
 
Cliff Cash hasn’t had many chances to make people laugh with his stand-up comedy since the pandemic hit. But fans can get their fill with Half Way There, Cliff’s new album that spent three days at #1 on the iTunes Comedy Chart. In our podcast, Cliff talks about his first on-stage performance, why some people cry during his shows, and the time he ha…
 
Chris Everett is now working on the follow-up to his award-winning 2015 documentary film Wilmington on Fire, which chronicled the 1898 Wilmington Massacre that overthrew the existing city government and resulted in the deaths of dozens of Black leaders. Chris talks about the film’s renewed importance in conversations about racial justice, the retir…
 
Actress Jen Lilley’s latest project for The Hallmark Channel brought her to Wilmington to shoot USS Christmas during the pandemic. Along with spreading holiday cheer through the movie, Jen also came up with a way to keep COVID-19 from cancelling Christmas for families and children in need. She’s also channeled her advocacy for foster children and a…
 
Takayo Siddle became the head coach of the UNCW Men’s Basketball Team in March of 2020. He’s had to work hard, on and off the court, to keep his team virus-free during the COVID-19 pandemic. Siddle talks about that challenge, his journey to becoming a head coach, and the tough love lesson he learned when his Mom did not pick up the phone.…
 
Dr. Charles Foust takes over as the Superintendent of New Hanover County Schools at a turbulent time. The COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges for students, families, teachers and staff. Three educators from inside the system were arrested and charged with sex crimes against children in the past two years, and the investigation into whether adm…
 
Trevor Donovan has been on hiatus since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. But the actor is getting back in front of the cameras, coming to Wilmington in September to star in another Christmas movie for the Hallmark Channel. Donovan talks about working under new pandemic-related safety rules, the importance of his breakthrough role on the CW's …
 
New Hanover Regional Medical Center has operated for more than 50 years as a public hospital. That's likely to change by the end of 2020, as negotiations are underway to sell NHRMC to Novant Health in a deal worth upwards of $5 billion. Jon interviews the two Chief Executive Officers, John Gizdic of NHRMC and Carl Armato of Novant, with questions r…
 
Beck Black grew up in rural North Carolina loving to sing and play music. Little did she know one day, she would be teamed up with one of the most famous musicians in the world. Beck’s new song, “Who’s Gonna Save Rock n’ Roll”, features Ringo Starr on drums, and the former Beatle also appears in the music video. Here’s the story of how it all came …
 
According to the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, 129 journalists were physically attacked while covering protests that followed the death of George Floyd. They were shoved to the ground, hit with batons, rubber rounds, tear gas, rocks, bottles and other projectiles, all while trying to document the history-making Black Lives Matter movement. Four telev…
 
After earning three degrees from Ivy League schools and handling multiple health crises on the federal and state levels, Dr. Mandy Cohen says she never anticipated having to help ten million people through a pandemic. Now, as Secretary of North Carolina's Department of Health and Human Services, Dr. Cohen is the face of the state’s effort to stop t…
 
Few partnerships in radio or television have lasted as long as the one forged by John Isley and Bill James. They met in 1980 and are still together today on the wildly successful “John Boy & Billy Big Show”, waking people up with laughter on radio stations across the country. We caught up with John Isley in Wrightsville Beach, where he spends a lot…
 
As a child growing up along the North Carolina coast, Christina Koch used to look up at the stars from her backyard and dream about exploring the heavens. Decades later, she rode a rocket to the International Space Station and set the record for longest single space flight by a woman. The NASA astronaut shares stories about her journey, almost miss…
 
The coronavirus pandemic could cost the North Carolina Community College System $2 billion. Future enrollment numbers are an unknown. Students are struggling financially and need assistance. Online learning must be improved, especially in rural areas. NCCCS President Peter Hans says schools are meeting these challenges and will be ready to offer ed…
 
Sanah Sayani had to close her spa business in March because of the coronavirus pandemic. But once the former television news reporter learned about the vital need for personal protection equipment in the fight against COVID-19, her space became headquarters for an all-volunteer effort to get free facemasks to anyone in need. So far, Tucker Makes Ma…
 
You’ve watched them on WECT News for years. Frances Weller and Ashlea Kosikowski continue to deliver vital information to viewers during the coronavirus pandemic, but they are not broadcasting live from the television studio. These award-winning journalists are anchoring newscasts remotely from their homes, practicing social distancing to stay safe…
 
They’ve covered hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters. But the deadly coronavirus pandemic is a different story for journalists. They are living the same reality as their audience, feeling the same emotions, while at the same time searching for and disseminating critical information that can help save lives. This week, three award-winni…
 
What’s it like steering a university community through the challenges of the current coronavirus outbreak? UNCW Chancellor Dr. Jose Sartarelli provides an update on the accelerated transition to all-online learning, shares his advice for college seniors preparing to launch their careers in a turbulent economy, talks about possible options for comme…
 
Leslie ‘Bud’ Hollenbeck was just 19 years old when fate put him on the U.S.S. Pennsylvania on the morning of December 7, 1941. As the Navy Signalman raised a flag on the battleship just before 8:00am, he spotted a group of planes approaching the harbor. Seconds later, the world changed. Now at age 97, Hollenbeck tells the story of how he survived t…
 
It’s the image many people remember from Hurricane Florence. A group of Wilmington firefighters gathered along the street in prayer after working for hours to rescue a man trapped inside his home by a fallen tree. The emotion and exhaustion evident on their faces, realizing they could not save the man’s wife and infant son. More than a year later, …
 
It was a $20 bet with his cousin that first got Basile Katsikis on stage to tell jokes. Since that night in 1986, ‘Basile the Comedian’ has entertained audiences around the world with his unique brand of humor, often sharing stories of growing up as the son of Greek immigrants. Since being a comedian, entrepreneur, voiceover actor and podcast host …
 
It’s the Christmas break that nearly changed Lacey Suggs’ life. After a stellar basketball career at East Bladen HS, her freshman year at UNC Wilmington brought the opposite result. More bench time, less playing time. In December 2016, Lacey thought about giving up basketball. But something told her to stick with it. Now she enters her senior year …
 
When the X Games launched BMX Freestyle to new heights, Ryan Nyquist soared as one of its’ young stars. Now more than 20 years later, Nyquist is still front and center as the sport prepares to make another jump in the 2020 Summer Olympics. The three-time world champion is the Head Coach of the U.S. Olympic Team, helping the country’s best athletes …
 
If you’ve watched the Avengers’ Infinity War and Endgame movies, you’ve seen Daniel Hargrave in action. You’ve also seen him in Atomic Blonde, Hunger Games and in dozens of other films and television shows. You just didn’t know it. The UNC Wilmington grad has become one of the sought-after stunt performers in the business. Here is the story of how …
 
Sydney Schneider said ‘no’ the first time she got the call. But when she received a second invitation to join the Jamaican women’s national soccer team known as the ‘Reggae Girlz’, Sydney accepted. Years later that decision, along with her talent and hard work, helped Sydney become part of soccer history on the world’s biggest stage: the 2019 Women…
 
Some communities have recovered from the devastation of Hurricane Florence. For others, the recovery may never end. Working Narratives, a non-profit group from Wilmington, received grant funding to ensure stories are told during the healing process, and the flow of vital information reaches the often forgotten areas in rural North Carolina.…
 
For two years, Suzanne McCormick knew what it’s like to be ‘different’. The Peace Corps assignment taught lessons she never learned in school about humility and service to those in need. The New Hanover High and Duke University grad has turned that passion into a career of service, leading to her new position as U.S. President for United Way Worldw…
 
He walked off the plane in 1993 as a 17-year-old who did not know anyone and did not understand English. Five years after arriving in the United States from Senegal, Boubacar Aw had graduated college with honors and set off on a pro basketball career. Now two decades later, Boubacar is the teacher and the coach, giving back what he received to help…
 
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