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Libby Denkmann

Host, Soundside

About

Libby Denkmann has covered veterans issues, homelessness and local politics during her radio journalism career. She became the host of KUOW's Soundside in November 2021. Previously she was a producer, reporter, anchor and host for stations KIRO, KFI and KPCC in Seattle and Los Angeles. During a yearlong hiatus from journalism in 2011, she worked as a congressional staffer in Washington, D.C.. Libby was born in Seattle, grew up on the eastside, and graduated from the University of Washington. Her favorite things include soccer, video games and her dog, Monty.

Location: Seattle

Languages: English, limited Japanese and Portuguese

Pronouns: she/her

Podcasts

Stories

  • caption: Aurora Pacheco was both a parent and teacher at Impact Public Schools' Tukwila school before she resigned in 2021.
    Soundside

    A KUOW investigation shows area charter schools broke their promises to parents and students

    Charter schools were legalized in Washington state in 2012, and were designed to serve students who often struggle with traditional education in public schools. Frequently, those students come from marginalized communities, including children of color, students with disabilities and refugee families, whose children are in need of English instruction. For the last six months, KUOW reporter Ann Dornfeld has been investigating the largest chain of charter schools in the region: Impact Public Schools. What she’s found is that charter schools are frequently failing to live up to the promises they’ve made to students, leaving staff, students, and parents frustrated.

  • It Starts With Listening
    Soundside

    Sound it out: messages from listeners

    At it's core, this show is about connecting with you. Bringing you stories of people and topics you care about, and that impact you here, in the Pacific NW. And that means we're not having a one-way conversation -- we love hearing from you, and your input is central to Soundside. So we want to take a moment to share some of the messages you've sent to us in recent weeks.

  • caption: Many parents are asking - 'how do I talked to my children about school shootings?'
    Soundside

    How to help your kids process what happened in Uvalde

    Yesterday, an 18 year old man entered an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. There, he killed 21 people - 2 teachers, and 19 students. It's the 27th school shooting to occur this year. It's not a situation you can simply brush off. So how do you help your children proc

  • caption: Photographs and flowers remain following a Trans Lives Matter vigil, shown here after the reading of the guilty verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd, on Tuesday, April 20, 2021, at Cal Anderson Park in Seattle.
    Soundside

    The murder of George Floyd galvanized the country in 2020. But what's really changed since then?

    Two years ago, George Floyd’s murder by a Minneapolis police officer forced the United States – at least temporarily – to reckon with its racist history and systemic violence against Black people. Soundside connected with local Black leaders and activists in the faith community and politics to share their perspectives on whether there's been meaningful change since the protests for racial justice in 2020.

  • caption: Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson looks on during a news conference in Seattle on Dec. 17, 2019.
    Soundside

    Washington AG weighs in on abortion rights, concealed carry, and Hanford

    Earlier this month, Politico reported a leaked decision from the US Supreme Court: Roe v Wade, the ruling protecting abortion rights in the county, would be overturned. While that decision isn’t finalized, states across the country are readying policies that would alter abortion access, should the ruling be struck down. Here in Washington protestors and politicians took to the streets, saying this decision wouldn’t pass in Washington State. One of those people was Washington AG Bob Ferguson.

  • caption: Jean Walkinshaw (far left)  with photographer Wayne Sourbeer and writer Ivan Doig.
    Soundside

    For 50 years, Jean Walkinshaw documented the 'Northwest mystique' through everyday people

    In 2013, an employee at KCTS — Seattle's PBS station — stumbled upon a box stacked in a hallway. Afraid that the rare tapes and reels would be thrown away, the employee tucked the box away. The decision saved an archive of Seattle's history considered so precious, the American Archive of Public Broadcasting added it to its collection, which also includes the Watergate hearings and interviews from the Stonewall uprising.

  • caption: San Juan Islands National Monument
    Soundside

    Changing the channel — San Juan locals propose new name for waterway

    If you take the ferry from Anacortes to the San Juan Islands, you pass through the Harney Channel. But the history behind the channel's namesake -- William S. Harney -- holds a gruesome legacy. After discovering this history, two San Juan locals submitted a proposal to change the name to the Cayou Channel, after famed local Henry Cayou.

  • caption: Darrell Hillaire is a Lummi Nation leader and executive director of Children of the Setting Sun Productions.
    Soundside

    The lasting effect indigenous boarding schools have had on Washington state

    Earlier this month, the Department of the Interior published a report on indigenous boarding schools in the U.S. These schools separated Native kids from their families, forced them to stop speaking their own languages, and often inflicted abuse in the name of "civilizing" indigenous children. The Interior Department says at one point the U-S supported at least 400 of these boarding schools across the country - including 15 here in Washington. The agency’s Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative also found at least 50 burial sites where children were left in unmarked or poorly maintained graves, and the department is still counting.

  • caption: While some wildlife can grow on old tires in Puget Sound, the presence of 6PPD-quinone is toxic, and can kill marine life like salmon.
    Soundside

    Puget Sound is full of old tires... on purpose?

    Decades ago, states began putting bundles of tires on the sea floor as "artificial reefs." Their aim was to build new habitats for local marine life. Today, researchers have found those tires are toxic. So who's job is it to pull these tens of thousands of tires back up?