Lucas Willard

Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief/Weekend Host

Lucas Willard graduated from the State University of New York at Fredonia in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Communications. He also attended the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in 2010, where he studied audio and multimedia storytelling.  Prior to joining WAMC in 2011, Lucas worked with the Sound and Story Project of the Hudson Valley, the Big Shed Audio Documentary Podcast, the Albany Broadcasting Company, WDVL & WCVF-FM Fredonia, and WSUC-FM Cortland.  

Ways to Connect


Executive director Marcia White, who has served Saratoga Performing Arts Center for 11 years, announced her retirement Friday, saying the upcoming 50th season will be her last.

Code Blue Saratoga
Paulina Phelps / WAMC

On a recent cold February night, the Saratoga Springs Code Blue program was in full operation. Before the doors opened at 7, a crowd was already waiting outside.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The New York State Veterans App is designed to connect users with information about federal and state benefits, help them find a job, or locate housing.

Republican State Senator Kathy Marchione commended the New York State Division of Veterans’ Affairs for developing the free mobile app.

Democratic Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, an army veteran, said connecting veterans with services has been a main topic of conversation in Albany.

The app is available on Android and iOS devices.

Earlier this month, Saratoga Hospital’s $14 million expansion project hit a significant roadblock after two city council members, Commissioner of Accounts John Franck and Mayor Joanne Yepsen, recused themselves from any future votes on the project, due to conflicts of interest.

Fulton County

Fulton County on the edge of New York’s Adirondack Park has a new sheriff. In January, Richard Giordino took over the role after the retirement of longtime sheriff Tom Lorey.

Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has launched his so-called Fair Housing Enforcement Program to root out racial and sexual discrimination in the housing market.

Union College

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died suddenly on Saturday. The man known for his strong convictions and conservative stance was 79. Union College associate professor of political science Brad Hayes offered his thoughts on the outpouring of praise for Scalia from politicians on the right and left.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

New York State has begun planning for a possible alternate water supply for the Village of Hoosick Falls where residents have been instructed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to not drink or cook with contaminated drinking water.

A plan to locate a Dollar General distribution center in the Town of Wilton off Northway Exit 16 has fallen through.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Police in the City of Troy have released video of a fatal officer-involved shooting that took place last August.

Officers Joshua Comitale and Chad Klein were injured in the shootout with Thaddeus Faison in the city's Lansingburgh neighborhood after an attempted carjacking.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Glens Falls Civic Center has been awarded $2 million in state funding to make major improvements to its aging facilities.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

State education commissioner MaryEllen Elia made an appearance Thursday at the Early College Career Academy on the campus of SUNY Adirondack in Queensbury, in southern Warren County.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation on Thursday identified Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics and Honeywell International as parties responsible for the PFOA contamination in the Rensselaer County village of Hoosick Falls.

United States Senate

The New Hampshire primary is set for Tuesday and all eyes are on the Granite State as presidential hopefuls are drumming up support.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Up until recently, if you weren't a coffee fanatic, you may not have heard about Death Wish Coffee. But if you're among the many millions watching the Super Bowl this weekend, you will.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Residents of Hoosick Falls have been dealing with undrinkable water and having their blood tested as of this week. Meantime, a temporary system is being installed to filter the chemical PFOA from the village water supply.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

As work continues in the Rensselaer County community of Hoosick Falls to ensure clean drinking water, another town on the other side of the county is grappling with its own contamination problem.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Saratoga Hospital is hoping to build a new medical office building near its main campus in the city.

During Tuesday night's city council meeting, Finance Commissioner Michele Madigan had scheduled a discussion on the now compromised expansion plan.

Zika Map
WAMC Composite Photo by Dave Lucas

On Sunday Democrat Charles Schumer unveiled a three-point plan to address the virus .

A well known leader in our community is retiring. Rocco “Rocky” Ferraro has been the executive director of the Capital District Regional Planning Commission since 2003 and will retire after spending three decades with the organization.

Open Space Institute

A preservation group has purchased 836 acres near Lake George in the southeastern Adirondacks for eventual sale to New York state for incorporation into the Adirondack Forest Preserve.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

University at Albany President Robert Jones has responded to an alleged racially-based attack on a group of students on a bus.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 68 children in the U.S. is born with autism. It’s recognized as one of the fastest-growing developmental disabilities in the country.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Recently re-elected Democratic Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen, joined by Democratic Party officials from the surrounding region, introduced the latest candidate to enter the race for New York’s 43rd Senate District.

“And I now proudly introduce Shaun Francis!” said Yepsen.

Francis, a native of the Capital Region, is making his run for the state senate his first foray into politics. The 36-year-old addressed his crowd of supporters at the Saratoga Hilton saying he is seeking to bring a change to the state legislature.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued a statement regarding those with private wells in the Town of Hoosick and Village of Hoosick Falls.


New York U.S. Senator Charles Schumer is asking the Saint-Gobain company to cooperate with state and federal authorities as work begins to remove a chemical contaminant from the Hoosick Falls public water supply.

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has penned a letter to the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to accelerate development of a vaccine and treatment for the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

A Round Lake company boasting “the world’s strongest coffee” has won a coveted Super Bowl ad spot.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

UPDATED 1/28/2016: In a village faced with a water contamination issue, the Saint-Gobain facility in the Rensselaer County community of Hoosick Falls has been declared a New York State Superfund site after weeks of worry.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Even before state officials designated the village a Superfund site late Wednesday afternoon, residents of Hoosick Falls have been waiting for a solution to their water contamination issue.