Autumn Labbe-Renault's blog

COVID-19 Community Report Sept. 22, 2020

Today my guest is UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May, who happens to be my most-requested interview.

May became UC Davis’ 7th chancellor in 2017. He leads the most comprehensive campus in the University of California system, with four colleges and six professional schools. UC Davis enrolls more than 39,000 students, brings in nearly $850 million annually in sponsored research, and contributes $8 billion annually to California’s economy. It’s an institution that brought many alums, like yours truly, to Davis and helped us find a home and make a difference locally.

This week, UC Davis was once again rated among the top colleges in the country in the latest “Best Colleges” rankings by U.S. News & World Report, which ranked UC Davis the 11th-best public school in the United States, and the 39th-best school overall.

COVID-19 Community Report Sept. 8, 2020

Each week on the "COVID-19 Community Report," we share local news and resources, focusing on what’s impacting Davis and nearby cities in Yolo County during the COVID-19 pandemic. Today on Episode 35, I'll interview Koren Motekaitis about her longtime role co-directing youth swim program Davis AquaMonsters. We'll discuss impacts of the pandemic on youth sports, including how it's narrowing future options for recognition and scholarships.

I'll also talk with Stacie Frerichs, executive director of the Davis Arts Center, about how they've had to pivot and change during the pandemic.

Tune in live Tuesdays at noon on 95.7FM or online, where you can also see the entire show archive.

COVID-19 Community Report Sept. 1, 2020

This unparalleled time we're living through affects not only our physical health, but our mental health as well. Today I'll speak with Sara Gavin, LMFT/LPCC. She serves as Chief Behavioral Health Officer at CommuniCare Health Centers, overseeing a 100-person team of Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder services in Yolo County,  and also sits on the Board of Directors of National Alliance for NAMI-Yolo. We'll speak about current mental health challenges, how providers have pivoted in response to COVID, and what kinds of resources NAMI offers.

In our second interview, I'll also chat with Melanie Carr, a Davis resident who's been offering a "Tuesday Table" through the pandemic, a "take what you need" offering in one Davis neighborhood. We'll hear about why she started it, and what it offers.

Show airs live today, Sept. 1, at noon, and repeats and is archived at


COVID-19 Community Report Speaks with Dr. Larissa May - Interim Yolo County Public Health Officer -Aug. 25, 2020

My guest tomorrow will be Dr. Larissa May, MD, MSPH, MSHS, who began serving as Yolo County's Public Health Officer earlier this Dr. May is a professor of emergency medicine and a public health expert at UC Davis Health. She is a board certified emergency physician, with an interest in quality improvement and patient safety. Her work has often focused on the epidemiology and management of infectious diseases, including best practices for diagnostic testing, outbreak response and infection prevention. Dr. May has many accomplishments and awards in the medical field, including recently receiving the American College of Emergency Physicians’ Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Section Service Award. She also was honored with a Chief of Staff Award for her outstanding contributions as leader of the Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship Program at UC Davis Health. Dr. May received her Bachelor of Science (BS), Medical Degree (MD), Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) and Master of Science in Health Science (MSHS) from the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

COVID-19 Community Report Aug. 4, Episode 30

Since March, we’ve recorded 30 episodes of this show, and today marks interviews 49 & 50, respectively. Thank you to all who have participated, listened, and provided feedback! It’s been my goal to help provide a narrative for how individuals, organizations, communities, and cultural groups are weathering the pandemic.

We’re doing a deep dive into local theatre arts today, and we’ll hear how one venue and one theater company are working to survive and remain vital during the pandemic, and preparing for whatever comes next. How have they pivoted now? What will theatre shows and concerts look like in the future?

My guests are Joseph Fletcher, who is nearing his one year anniversary as the Theatre Manager for the City of Davis at the Veterans Memorial Theatre, and Sarah Marsh Krauter, who is the literary manager & company dramaturg for Bike City Theatre Company.

Tune in live at noon, or listen anytime at

COVID-19 Community Report July 21, 2020 - Joe DiNunzio

My guest tomorrow is Joe DiNunzio, who wears many hats. For this interview, I'm talking to him about the impacts of COVID-19 on two organizations where he has a leadership role: the Davis Joint Unified School District Board of Trustees, and the Davis Chamber of Commerce. I want to thank Joe for taking a break from his family vacation to squeeze in this interview.

The DJUSD Board of Education meets this Thursday, July 23 at 11:30 a.m. for a special meeting in which they'll hear more about the plan for opening schools online beginning Aug. 26. We talk about the recent school board appointment, the concerns about equity and accessibility for different types of learners, and how district staff, teachers, and families have been communicating and working through this difficult time. As a reminder, DJUSD board meetings are recorded and aired through a partnership between City Media Services and Davis Media Access, and can be watched live on Channel 17 on the Comcast system in Davis, or streamed at, where they are also archived.

COVID-19 Community Report July 14, 2020

Starting with Episode 28 on Tuesday, July 14, 2020, I'm officially doing something I've been unofficially doing: two interviews, the first substantive and directly related to some aspect of COVID-19, and the second, short, sweet, and designed to bring awareness to and lift up an arts/culture organization or individual, noting how they've been affected by the pandemic.

My first guest next week is Jenny Tan, Public Information Officer for Yolo County. You may know Jenny from her weekday daily live video updates on the county's Facebook page. Since the start of the pandemic, Jenny has been incredibly helpful in terms of helping me access COVID-19 information, as well as helping me book county public health personnel as guests for the show. We'll talk about her role within the county and the impact of COVID-19, and she'll have the latest news for us on the numbers within Yolo County, including hospital beds, testing sites, and recent changes to the county's public health orders.

COVID-19 Community Report Episode 26: Working Towards a Vaccine

My guest on Tuesday, June 30's show is Dr. Koen Van Rompay. I first met Koen many years ago when he attended a meeting of Soroptimist International of Davis to talk about his work with Sahaya International. Over time I learned about his groundbreaking work helping to develop and test the anti-viral drug tenofovir, used in the prevention and treatment of  HIV. He is another community member we are so fortunate to have access to due to proximity to UC Davis. He is a virologist at the California National Primate Research Center at UC Davis with expertise in nonhuman primate models of viral infections, and he'll tell us about his current work collaborating toward a vaccine for coronvirus.

We'll also speak about Sahaya International, the Davis-based non-profit he founded that builds awareness and support of healthcare, education, environmental and socio-economic grassroots programs in developing countries.


Juneteenth Celebrated on KDRT

Preacher Cleveland, host of “Praise Time with Preacher” on KDRT, takes over the “Listening Lyrics” spot this Friday, June 19 at 4 PM with a special show to commemorate Juneteenth, celebrated each June 19 to commemorate the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States. The holiday was first celebrated in Texas, the most remote of all slave states, where on that date in 1865, slaves were declared free under the terms of the 1862 Emancipation Proclamation.

Here in Davis, Juneteenth is typically celebrated at a huge community event sponsored by The Culture Co-op, the Yolo County Library and other community partners, but in the absence of large gatherings, Preacher is stepping up to offer this programming to the community.

The show will be a mix of history, touching on topics from the evolution of Juneteenth to the Tulsa Massacre, weaving in songs of protest and praise, and connecting it all to the current-day Black Lives Matter Movement.

COVID-19 Community Report for Episode 23: Begins With NFCB Tribute in Honor of George Floyd at Noon and Continues With Local Focus Interviews - Don Saylor and Dawn Myers

A Change is Gonna Come.

Sam Cooke wrote this classic anthem of the Civil Rights era in 1963, after being turned away from a whites-only motel. This song is burned into my brain by my father, who loved the music and made sure I understood how and why it was connected to the movements of our time. I grew up in a house always filled with labor organizers (my dad was a steelworker and a union man). Sam Cooke's music is part of the soundtrack of my life.

I was moved to goosebumps when I learned the National Federation of Community Broadcasters was inviting its member stations to honor George Floyd on the day of his memorial at noon PST by playing this song and reading some words, and that just happens to be when I do my radio show.  So tomorrow, on June 9 and Episode 23, we'll start with a song, and a message, joining over 100 other community radio member stations in lifting up George Floyd, and in acknowledging the work we need to do.

And then we'll chat with Yolo County Supervisor for District 2 Don Saylor, and Dawn Myers of Yolo Adult Day Health Center, because COVID-19 is still ravaging our country, as well.