Joy Powers

Lake Effect Producer

Joy Powers joined WUWM January 2016 as a producer for Lake Effect. Most recently, she was a director and producer for Afternoon Shift, on WBEZ-fm, Chicago Public Radio.

Joy grew up in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, where she started off her career in radio as an intern at WLKG-fm, The Lake. She has worked as an intern with several companies, including SiriusXm, Fujisankei Communications and the Department of City Planning for the City of New York. At SiriusXM, she was a programming intern and helped launch Studio54 Radio.

She earned a bachelors degree in broadcast journalism from Emerson College, Boston, where she worked with several radio and television stations. She was the public affairs director at WERS-fm, and produced the station’s AP-Award Winning program, You Are Here.

» Twitter: @thejoypowers

John Flannery / Flickr

If you walk near the lake at night, there’s a good chance you’ll see bats swooping through the air to feast on insects. What you might not see - or hear - is the aerial warfare at play dividing the weak and the strong in a battle for survival that has spanned 50 million years.

Tiger moths - also known as Arctiinae - are a diverse subfamily of moths with around 11,000 species, including more than two dozen species which make their home in Wisconsin. For millennia, their survival has been dependent on their ability to avoid and evade bats. 

Courtesy of Planned Parenthood

This week, the US House of Representatives passed a 20-week abortion ban. The announcement came just days after both houses of Congress failed to renew the Children's Health Insurance Program, and a day before the Trump Administration issued a rule limiting women's access to birth control.

Peabody Awards / Wikimedia

You might know Jane Lynch from her work on Glee as the antagonistic gym teacher, Sue Sylvester. Or maybe you know her from one of Christopher Guest’s mockumentary films like Best in Show or A Mighty Wind. Or maybe you've seen her in The Forty-Year-Old VirginTwo and a Half Men, Arrested Development, Weeds... The list could go on and on. 

Sue Vliet

In 2014 the number of people receiving FoodShare benefits in Wisconsin dropped precipitously. And that sounds like a good thing: less people needing financial help to buy food should mean that there are less people in need. But it seems that might not be the case. As reporter Jabril Faraj found out, the change in recipients could have more to do with changes to eligibility requirements.

Sollok29 / Wikimedia

When the Panama Papers were released in 2016, the investigative report led to protesting in countries around the globe and deposed several world leaders.

USFWS/Ann Froschauer / Flickr

It was a Sunday night in late May when WUWM listener Josephine Gomez first saw it. 

"I just see something whiz past my head in the living room and I couldn’t fathom this was a bat. I thought it was a bird who got in. You know, I really don’t leave the doors open, so I didn’t really know how it got in. And then I noticed it just starting to fly back and forth and of course I, you know, freaked out," she says. 

It was an ordeal that would end a couple days later, with the bat fleeing her home. 

mariordo59 / Flickr

There are many things brewing in downtown Milwaukee. Perhaps the most notable project this summer has been the laying of the tracks for the new Milwaukee Streetcar, which has torn up roads throughout downtown and the Third Ward.

Residents have many lingering questions about the new streetcar, but the most persistent one seems to be: Why? Like many cities, Milwaukee once had a streetcar system that was removed in the 1950s. 

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

The Cheesehead has become an iconic piece of Wisconsin culture and as we await the start of Packer season this weekend, we can expect to see a lot more of them in the coming months.

But the Cheesehead itself is a relatively new item, created 30 years ago by a man named Ralph Bruno. He's now the owner of Foamation, the company that produces the Cheesehead and other related products, which just set up shop in Milwaukee's Walker's Point neighborhood. 

Hari Kondabolu / Facebook

Undoubtedly, President Donald Trump has had a “yuge” impact on the comedy world, and some are touting this as a golden age for satire and political comedy. But for comedians like Hari Kondabolu, the so-called Trump Bump has just made their brand of humor more immediately relatable for audiences. 

"He sadly creates a very easy segue into very difficult material. I mean, I wish it wasn’t the case, but unfortunately it does kind of make it a little easier," Kondabolu says. 

Feng Yu / Fotolia

In the last few decades autism rates have skyrocketed in the United States. There are theories as to why, but many point to increased awareness and thus diagnosis, as at least partly responsible for the uptick.

Forty years ago, the condition was still relatively unknown to the general public and a diagnosis of autism could mean a lifetime of abuse and discrimination. 

For a second year, the Strange Fruit Music Festival is returning to Milwaukee. Named after the 1939 song made famous by Billie Holiday, Strange Fruit is dedicated to exploring race relations through music and art. 

Jabril Faraj

The City of Milwaukee is touting the early success of a program in Sherman Park meant to renovate foreclosed homes and put unemployed individuals to work. However, progress has been slow and it is still uncertain whether the program will be able to meet its goals, according to community leaders and a participating developer.

U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr

Farmworkers in the U.S. face unique challenges, complicated by a lack of workplace protections and immigration status that makes it difficult to hold employers accountable. Combined with amplified threats of deportation, many farm laborers are finding their jobs increasingly more difficult.


On Monday, part of the United States will experience a total solar eclipse, where the moon completely covers the sun. Milwaukee won’t get totality, but we will still experience a partial eclipse. 

"In Milwaukee we're going to see a partial solar eclipse, 86%... most people, if they've seen a solar eclipse at all, it's likely to be partial," says Jean Creighton, Lake Effect astronomy contributor and director of the Manfred Olson Planetarium. 

There’s a lot of talk about the violence that affects urban America: drive-by shootings, carjackings, and other crime that continue to affect the fabric of this country. But very little of that violence has the sectarian underpinnings of the time known as “The Troubles,” which plagued the Northern Ireland city of Belfast for three decades starting in 1969.