J. Cindy Hill

GPB Savannah Station Manager

J. Cindy Hill joins GPB after three years serving as Arts Marketing Coordinator for Mercer University in Macon, her hometown. At Mercer she worked with The Grand Opera House, Townsend School of Music, the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings, Mercer Theatre and the new Tattnall Square Center for the Arts. She was the publicist for "A Grand Mercer Christmas", a co-production of Mercer and GPB featuring violinist Robert McDuffie, the Center for Strings and Mercer Singers, which was filmed on location at The Grand in 2012 and broadcast throughout the nation on public broadcasting stations in December 2013.

Prior to her work at Mercer, she served as Director of Marketing and Grants for Macon Arts Alliance, and Senior Marketing Producer for 13WMAZ-TV. She has also served as an arts columnist for The Telegraph and freelance writer for Macon Magazine. Her career began with a decade of film and television production in Atlanta, Los Angeles and Savannah. On her final film, "The Gift", Cindy spent six months living and working in Savannah, a place that felt immediately like home. She is excited to have the opportunity to return to this wonderful city and become a part of the community through her work at GPB.

She has served on numerous boards of state and local arts organizations. In her free time, Hill enjoys writing, photography, directing and producing theatre, attending arts events and doing almost anything at the beach.

Ways to Connect

Photo US Fish & Wildlife Service/SClardy

Visitors to the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge may hear blasts among the bird calls over the next few weeks. 

National Weather Service

The National Weather Service says Georgia will be spared the worst of Florence, which was downgraded to a tropical depression Sunday morning. 

J. Cindy Hill / GPB News

The latest forecasts show Hurricane Florence making landfall in the Carolinas, but the storm’s already causing dangerous conditions on Georgia’s beaches.

J. Cindy Hill

The number of nesting sea turtles along Georgia’s coast is down again this year following a record set in 2016. But that may not be something to worry about. 


The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender histories of New York and San Francisco are well known. But what about the South?


J. Cindy Hill

A record number of baby oysters were grown last year at the University of Georgia's nursery on Skidaway Island. 


U.S. Mint

Georgia’s Cumberland Island National Seashore is featured on the U.S. Mint’s latest commemorative coin, released on Friday.  Cumberland is Georgia’s largest barrier island, with nearly 10,000 acres of designated wilderness and the largest remaining maritime forest in the United States.


EatingInsectsAthens.com

There’s a conference happening in Athens, and its name tells you all you need to know: Eating Insects.  Members of the North American Coalition for Insects in Agriculture, scientists, chefs and others will discuss everything from the latest recipes to the ethics of eating bugs. 


Tybee Sea Turtle Project

Four seemingly unconnected homicides in three days have punctuated a seven-month stretch when Savannah's murder rate was down. Connect Savannah editor Jim Morekis joined us to discuss that story and this week's kidnapping and recovery of six rare loggerhead turtle hatchlings. 


Cindy Hill

Democratic candidate for governor Stacey Abrams kicked off a statewide tour Thursday in Coastal Georgia. She started the tour at an ironworkers apprentice workshop in Pooler, where she announced a plan to create 22,000 apprenticeships in Georgia by 2022.

Abrams also announced initiatives to help small businesses, military veterans and young people who are entering the workforce.  She said she wants rural communities to attract new jobs throughout the state.


Update 10:19 p.m.: Election results haven't been finalized, but with 99 percent of Chatham County precincts reporting, Joe Buck retains the lead in the Savannah-Chatham School Board President race with 64 percent of the vote to Betty Morgan's 36 percent. Antwan Lang continues to top the race for Chatham Elections board, with 60 percent over Joe Steffen's 40 percent.

Join host Emily Jones tomorrow on Morning Edition for more from today’s state and local elections.

Savannah’s new police chief says he plans to get out in the community and do a lot of listening when he takes office next month. 

Roy Minter complimented the police force and city leaders Thursday at his first press conference, saying he’ll build on the work they’re already doing. He laid out three goals for the community.


SavannahNow.com

Savannah-Chatham school officials held a forum Wednesday to discuss proposed changes to the district's recess policy. Board members, parents and the public are split on whether to make the unstructured break time mandatory or leave it up to principals and teachers to decide when and if to take it.

Susan Catron, executive editor of the Savannah Morning News, joined us to discuss the proposed changes and upcoming school board elections. 


Today we celebrate America’s independence from British rule. To get a sense of the role Georgia played in the struggle for liberty, we spoke with Stan Deaton, senior historian for the Georgia Historical Society. He takes us back to the time of the American Revolution, to the colony of Georgia’s first capitol in Savannah.

To learn more about the Georgians involved in the founding of the country, Deaton suggests checking out the Georgia Department of Humanities' New Georgia Encyclopdedia online.

Stephen Fowler, GPB News

Protesters of the Trump administration's policy of detaining families and separating children from parents who enter the Unites States illegally are gathering Saturday in cities across Georgia.

Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Brunswick, Dalton, Lawrenceville, Lumpkin, Savannah and Valdosta will be represented, according to the official website.


Thursday, June 14, 2018, is the last day for people to comment on Camden County’s plans to launch rockets off Georgia’s coast. 

The County wants to build a launch site for small and medium-size rockets.


Cindy Hill, GPB

The U.S Justice Department is investigating the police shooting of a 20-year-old black man in Savannah. This comes after a grand jury decided not to indict two police officers who killed Ricky Boyd outside his grandmother's home.

Body camera footage released today by Savannah Police shows Boyd standing in front of the house pointing what appears to be a gun at officers serving an arrest warrant. Investigators later discovered it was a BB gun. 

City of Savannah

Savannah residents and business owners will see their first fire fee later this year when Property Tax notices are issued. Jim Morekis is editor of Connect Savannah. He says though people have known it was coming for months, it's in the news again this week.

David Goldman / AP Photo

Savannah-Chatham School Board elections are less than two weeks away, on May 22, 2018. Several candidates are running for the first time. We spoke with The Savannah Morning News executive editor Susan Catron, who says this is the first time some incumbents are facing challengers.

Click the link below to hear more of my conversation with Catron including talk of the budget City Council passed yesterday, this week’s gang bust and a preview of a story from this weekend’s paper.

J. Cindy Hill

Here are some Coastal Georgia headlines for Friday, April 20:

  • Accused murder of slain Savannah civil rights leader is executed
  • Tybee bans public drinking during this weekend's Orange Crush
  • South Carolina revises beach building rules

Today's coastal news headlines include:

  • Savannah joins growing number of Georgia municipalities suing opioid makers
  • First stand-alone ER is coming to South Carolina's Lowcountry
  • Hurricane "Cone of Uncertainty" is shrinking

Jekyll ISland

Making news today on the coast:

  • Jekyll Island Authority studies the island's sustainability as it looks to grow
  • Savannah experiments with green bike lanes
  • Osprey hatching on Skidaway Island's Birdcam

The Savannah City Council this week heard arguments about rezoning that could change a current requirement that governs the type of windows allowed in the historic landmark district. Connect Savannah editor in chief, Jim Morekis, attended yesterday's meeting, which included heated debate on the subject. He says this decision is about more than just windows.

Here's more of our conversation, including what stories are coming up in the next issue of Connect Savannah.

Savannah Music Festival

On Fridays we often sit down with Savannah Morning News executive editor, Susan Catron, to discuss the biggest stories from the week.  This week Savannah's National Landmark status is on the minds of many, even as the renovated Kehoe Ironworks Building and new Trustees Garden Amphitheater prepares for its first big event. We talked about preservation in Savannah, but first we discussed last Friday's wreck on U.S. 80 which stopped traffic for more than four hours. It has renewed concerns about the only road on and off of Tybee Island. 

J. Cindy Hill

“What a perfect day for a parade." That sentiment was echoed by locals and visitors alike lining the route for Savannah’s 2018 St. Patrick’s Day celebration on a sunny, spring Saturday.

This year two longstanding traditions were challenged. First, the U.S Army asked that women not kiss their soldiers while they marched, citing concerns that it makes them look less professional. Plenty of other cadets and officers bore telltale bright red lipstick marks on their cheeks as they marched.

J. Cindy Hill

Savannah’s fountains are flowing green which means St. Patrick’s Day is here.  But this year there are a lot of changes. There's a new ban on the tradition of kissing soldiers and Vice President Mike Pence is visiting, so access in two squares will be restricted.  

 

Savannah Morning News executive editor Susan Catron says this bumps up against some longstanding Savannah traditions.

 

 

Cindy Hill-Williams / GPB

Hundreds of students at Savannah Arts Academy participated in today’s National School Walkout. The event was to protest gun violence and remember the seventeen students shot and killed one month ago at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida.

At first the Savannah-Chatham County School Board supported the student-organized events but later left each school to determine how to handle it on their own. Savannah Arts Academy’s principal, Gif Lockley, offered use of the school’s auditorium but students had other plans.

Savannah's City Council is considering proposals that would alter how people live and travel in parts of Savannah. Susan Catron is executive editor of Savannah Morning News and SavannahNow.com. She says both proposals raise questions about a common issue familiar to anyone who drives in Savannah.

Click here to read more about the proposed changes to parking on the south side of Forsyth Park.

It has been another busy week on the coast with news of Port funding, the future of Savannah's confederate monument and more. Susan Catron, executive editor of Savannah Morning News and SavannahNow.com, joined us to talk about news of the week. We started with why she says the 10th anniversary of the Imperial Sugar fire shouldn't be overlooked.

Savannah's Tourism Management Plan also proposes new restrictions on tours in the historic district. The City is scheduling public hearings to gather feedback about the plan.

In Savannah, two men work to bring Gullah-Geechee heritage to tourists.  James Pringle sits on a bench in Wright Square almost every day singing about history and slicing reeds in which he weaves into roses. 

Jamal Toure' teaches Africana Studies at Savannah State University and leads tourists on walking tours that highlight Gullah history in Georgia.

This project is supported in part by Georgia Humanities through appropriations made by the Georgia General Assembly.

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