Sam Hendren

News Reporter

Sam Hendren brought more than two decades of experience to WOSU when he arrived in August of 2005. Born in Tennessee and raised in North Carolina, Hendren began his journalism career at the University of Alabama's public radio station (also his alma mater).

He's reported extensively from across the Southern U.S., the inter-mountain West and the Great Plains states. His work has appeared on NPR, Marketplace, and the Voice of America. He served as executive producer of the environmental radio magazine High Plains News, based in Billings, MT, and was news director at public station KMUW, in Wichita, KS.

Sam is the recipient of many national awards for journalistic excellence.

Ways to Connect

Coroner's Office sign
Lexington County Coroner's Office / Facebook

Of the death’s investigated by the Franklin County Coroner’s Office in 2016, drug overdoses accounted for more than twice as many casualties as car accidents.

dcJohn / Flickr

State auditors say a large north Columbus school that suddenly closed in 2015 still owes the state hundreds of thousands of dollars.

A rendering depicts the rental car facility (right) in relation to the future terminal and other development at John Glenn International Airport.
John Glenn International Airport

Construction of a new rental car facility is scheduled to begin next year at John Glenn Columbus International Airport. It’s the first phase of a decade-long plan that will culminate with the opening of a new terminal.


Cities around the country are changing colors, from a warm yellow shade to more of an institutional blue. The change comes from above: They're replacing old streetlight bulbs with new, energy-efficient LED bulbs.

Several online commentators from opposite ends of the political spectrum have joined forces to challenge the constitutionality of an Ohio law prohibiting internet harassment.

Columbus Restaurant History

This story is part of the Curious Cbus project. You ask the questions, you vote for one of the questions and we answer.

Everyone knows The Continent has fallen on hard times. But once, it bustled the way Easton Town Center does now. 

City of Columbus

More than a month after the ambitious proposal was unveiled, critics of a plan to replace the North Market parking lot with a 35-story mixed-used building got a chance to gripe to city leaders and developers at a community forum on Tuesday.

Cedarville University

Trustees at a small private university near Dayton have approved allowing faculty and staff with permits to carry concealed weapons on campus.

WOSU/Google Maps

This story is part of the Curious Cbus project. You ask the questions, you vote for one of the questions and we answer.

Traffic thunders along State Route 315 between downtown Columbus and I-270 North. Running alongside is a popular bike trail and beside it, the Olentangy River. 

Sam Hendren

Peter Louis is the son of Haitian immigrants, who grew up in a single-parent home in Brooklyn, New York. By the time he got to college, he knew he could help people by pursuing a career in medicine.

School bus
Flickr / Creative Commons

An annual study co-authored by Johns Hopkins University says the U.S. high school graduation rate is at an all-time high: 83.2 percent. But the report released Wednesday finds that Ohio’s graduation rate has stalled.

Hopper Carts

Two young entrepreneurs think a mobile app and a small cart can help solve traffic congestion and parking problems in the Short North and downtown Columbus.

Ben Carson/Twitter

Former neurosurgeon and new U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson began a three-day visit to Columbus on Wednesday. Carson is meeting with local officials and touring public housing.

Library of Congress

Early on a sunny April morning, the North Market parking lot is still empty. It’s on this spot that developers plan to build a 35-story high rise.

There’s just one problem, says archeologist Ryan Weller.

Sam Hendren

Columbus officials have struggled for years to regulate parking in the Short North.  Now that a series of public meetings has concluded, the city wants more input through an online survey

Sam Hendren

The call to 911 came in at 7:49 a.m. on April 22, 2016.  In the hours that followed, authorities would find eight members of the Rhoden family shot to death at four rural Pike County locations. 

Sam Hendren

As the one-year anniversary of a massacre in Pike County nears, investigators still have no arrests and little new information to show for it.

At a press conference Thursday, neither Ohio's attorney general nor the Pike County sheriff would divulge details, while still insisting that "significant progress" has been made on solving the eight murders.

City of Columbus

Columbus city leaders say a 35-story skyscraper will take the place of the North Market parking lot, a piece of prime real estate tucked between downtown, the Short North and the Arena District.

Messer Construction

A man who arrived by ambulance at Westerville’s Mount Carmel Saint Ann’s Hospital was shot and killed by a Columbus Police officer Thursday.

File photo

Oil and gas drilling operations in southeastern Ohio were shut down on Sunday after a 3.0 magnitude earthquake hit the Wayne National Forest, according to the Ohio Environmental Council. The state continues to investigate the causes.

Columbus Downtown Development Corp

What once was vacant land adjacent to COSI, will, in a few years time, be a thriving urban neighborhood of high-rise residential buildings, shops and restaurants, office buildings and a hotel or two.  

Sam Hendren

Randy Rogers drives up to the Field family mausoleum, within Columbus' Green Lawn Cemetery. Its columns are covered by police tape, and the glass in one door is splintered.

But the worst of the damage is on the other side.

WOSU Archive

A major re-configuring of Central Ohio Transit Authority bus routes is in the final stages, with COTA refocusing away from downtown Columbus as it nears a launch date of May 1

The city of Columbus and a group that works to free wrongly convicted people ended a years-long fight this week. 

State of Ohio

Ronette Burkes, head of the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville, has been named Ohio's Warden of the Year. It's a long way from when Burkes started volunteering for the prison system nearly 20 years ago.

Hotel LeVeque

The interior of Columbus’ iconic skyscraper, the LeVeque Tower, is getting another makeover.  When renovations to the 90-year-old structure are complete in about a month, LeVeque Tower will feature a boutique hotel, apartments and condos and commercial office space. 

Sam Hendren

In a home in southeast Columbus, the cheery glow of a Christmas tree brightens the living room. The holiday may be more than a week away, but for Allison Carlisle’s family, gift-giving has already started.

And she has Nationwide Children's Hospital, not Santa, to thank.  

The Kaiser Family Foundation says that in 2014, Ohio had the highest number of deaths from opiate overdoses in the U.S.

YouTube/Columbus City Attorney's Office

The second-longest serving city attorney in Columbus history, Rick Pfeiffer, says he will not seek another term. 

Ohio State University

As Ohio State University recovers physically and emotionally from Monday's attacks, hundreds of people gathered at St. John Arena Tuesday night for a vigil that emphasized the campus's strength in unity.