Karen is a veteran editor in WNYC’s newsroom, and directs the long-form narrative unit that created the acclaimed podcast series There Goes the Neighborhood and The United States of Anxiety…
Karen lends her expertise as a story whisperer to the New Yorker Radio Hour for the development of long-form features and special episodes like “Syria, The World’s Nightmare.”
As a producer, she launched Senior Edition which helped establish WNYC as a destination for talk and public affairs. She worked for five years as a freelance reporter and producer contributing to National Public Radio and the Canadian Broadcasting Company. As a senior producer at Simon and Schuster Audio, Karen worked with Alice Walker, Bob Woodward, Hunter S. Thompson, Stephen Ambrose and many other notable authors. She returned to public radio as an editor and co-producer for a series of documentaries which included an exploration of the changing NY Waterfront, the 1968 New York City teacher’s school strike and the changes in the city six months after the attacks of September 11th. She took on the senior editorial position in the newsroom in 2003.
Awards for her reporting and editing achievements include recognition by the Society of Professional Journalists, the Armstrong Award, the Dupont-Columbia University Awards, the National Federation of Community Broadcasters, The Investigative Reporters and Editors’ Award, The Associated Press Broadcasters Association, the Newswomen’s Club of New York and the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences from whom she received a Grammy nomination for her production of “War Letters: Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars.”
Growing up in southeast Queens and having lived in various neighborhoods around the city, Karen is very happy to continue to document and report on her hometown. On summer weekends, she can be found swimming upriver in the Hudson where she has helped to establish a free floating river pool in Beacon, NY.
Karen Frillmann appears in the following:
Monday, October 26, 2020
From poll taxes to the canard of “voter fraud,” it’s always been a struggle to cast a ballot in America. We review the record, and investigate the anti-democracy enablers of 2020.
Monday, October 19, 2020
Conservatives who’ve shunned the GOP say it’s given up on democracy. Which begs the question: How long ago did that happen?
Monday, October 12, 2020
What can we learn from our short, grim history with Covid-19? Former New York City health commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot reflects on the opening weeks of the nation’s largest outbreak.
Monday, October 05, 2020
The president has made clear he will dispute the results if he loses in November. But actually, the fight over the count has already begun.
Monday, September 28, 2020
Many of the conflicts that we face today echo from the often forgotten Reconstruction era. We go back 165 years to understand the unfulfilled promises of our past and how we got here.
Monday, September 21, 2020
Voting rights cases are moving fast. The Affordable Care Act faces yet another life or death hearing. And that’s before we even get to the fight over who’ll replace Justice Ginsburg.
Sunday, September 20, 2020
As the country mourns the loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, we gather together to honor the life and legacy of the woman, the pioneer, the icon and the daughter of Brooklyn.
Monday, September 14, 2020
Despite empty stands, athletes are making waves across the sports industry speaking out against anti-black violence. Many Americans support, but not everyone is a fan.
Monday, September 07, 2020
Public and care workers have been on the frontlines of the pandemic, but who takes care of them? We explore the histories, realities and hopes of these very essential workers.
Monday, August 31, 2020
The suburbs have long been considered safe spaces for white Americans to retreat from ‘dangerous’ big cities. Now violent unrest around the country threatens that sheltered way of life.
Monday, August 24, 2020
For our first LIVE episode we take calls and reflect on last week’s Democratic National Convention by exploring what it means to be a member in a party divided.
Thursday, August 13, 2020
Solitary confinement has been proven gravely dangerous for young people. For some, it represents another way to survive, but often at the expense of making it home. Where is Z now?
Thursday, August 06, 2020
Just one diagnosis can make or break a seemingly endless cycle of incarceration, but for 16-year-old Z, it’s complicated. And frustrating. Our presentation of Caught continues.
Thursday, July 30, 2020
What happens once we decide a child is a criminal? We return to Caught as the nation continues to grapple with long-standing systemic racism in our policing and justice systems.
Friday, July 17, 2020
Afro-Italians like Bellamy Ogak are not born citizens by law. Their story is a reminder why U.S. birthright citizenship is a radical idea: It ended slavery.
Friday, July 10, 2020
Chicago’s Little Village has been hit hard by COVID-19, but after a botched demolition left it coated in dust, one lifelong activist and her community are standing together while apart.
Friday, June 26, 2020
As the nation grapples with a reckoning, we pause to celebrate Juneteenth. Our holiday special, for Black liberation and the ongoing birth of the United States.
Thursday, June 18, 2020
Something has been pushed to the surface that can no longer be repressed. And it’s transforming everything— from what we tolerate politically to how we mourn those we’ve lost.
Friday, June 12, 2020
People all over the country are stepping up to make change. But as they do, they face challenges that go beyond Covid-19 and police violence. Two stories, from Chicago and New York City.
Thursday, June 04, 2020
What if we release prisoners with no one to help them? We follow a psychiatrist and social worker as they try to find and support mentally ill inmates being released during a pandemic.