Get story ideas on hot topics and contact information for faculty experts. For help scheduling interviews, please contact Julie Poppen at or 303-492-4007.

Firefighter fights Poomacha fire in 2007

Health hazards of California wildfire smoke

Colleen Reid, assistant professor of geography, is available to discuss the health hazards of smoke from the wildfires burning in California. Her research shows pregnant women, children and asthmatics are all vulnerable. Reid can be contacted at

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U.S. Supreme Court building

Masterpiece Cake Shop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission

Scott Moss, law professor, can speak to both the LGBTQ rights and First Amendment issues involved in this SCOTUS case. In 2015, he argued Colorado State Patrol discriminated against Brett Williams, a state trooper who was denied re-employment for revealing he was gay. Moss also argued the First Amendment “ballot selfie” case in 2016, securing an injunction against the state’s ban on ballot photographs. He can be reached at

Craig Konnoth, associate law professor, attended the oral arguments. He also wrote an amicus brief used in the case. Konnoth says the brief was cited by the American Civil Liberties Union and the State of Colorado during oral arguments. He can be reached at

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Bear Ears National Monument

Bears Ears National Monument

Charles Wilkinson, a distinguished professor at Colorado Law, has worked with the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition to advance conservation efforts. He was one of the main architects behind an October 2015 coalition proposal to Obama for the creation of the Bears Ears National Monument. Wilkinson can discuss the history embedded in the Bears Ears landscape, the formation of the Inter-Tribal Coalition’s proposal, Obama’s use of the Antiquities Act for the national monument designation and more.

Wilkinson can be reached at For his cell phone number, reporters should contact Elizabeth Lock at 303-492-3117 or

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U.S. House of Representatives

Tax overhaul bill

The Senate voted Wednesday to enter debate on a tax overhaul bill. A vote on the final version is expected late today or Friday, Dec. 1. CU Boulder experts are available to discuss the economic and legal impacts of the bill.

Miles Kimball is the Eugene D. Eaton Jr. Chair in Economics. He researches monetary policy. Contact:

Sloan Speck is an associate professor at the University of Colorado Law School. He researches corporate and international tax, and the relationship between taxes and societal structures. Contact:

Jeffrey Zax is an economics professor and fellow at the China Center for Human Capital and Labor Market Research. He is only available today. Contact:

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image of forest fire

Wildfires in the U.S.

Jennifer Balch is the director of CU Boulder’s Earth Lab and can speak to the decades-long expansion of wildfire niche and the human impact on the fire season. She may be reached at 303-492-6343 or jennifer.balch@colorado.eduRead more about her research, listen to a podcast and download audio clips.

Michael Kodas is the deputy director of CU Boulder’s Center for Environmental Journalism and author of the forthcoming book Megafire: The Race to Extinguish a Deadly Epidemic of Flame. He may be reached at 303-492-0523 or

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Map of Korean peninsula

North Korea

Professor Brian Toon of the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics can talk about the heightened military tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. Toon also is an expert on the environmental and human impacts of nuclear war. Toon can be reached at or 303-492-1534.

Professor Steve Chan of political science and the Center for Asian Studies can talk about national security as it relates to the U.S. and North Korea. Chan can be reached at or 303-492-7904.

Associate Professor Hun Shik Kim of the College of Media, Communication and Information, who was previously a network television reporter and news producer for the Korean Broadcasting System, can talk about issues related to North Korea and security in the northeast Asian region. Kim can be reached at or 303-492-0324.

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Person holds votive candle in hand

Las Vegas tragedy, strategies to prevent violence

Beverly Kingston, director of the Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence at CU Boulder, is available to discuss research-based strategies for preventing violence, including mass shootings. She can be reached at

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Man holds up DACA sign at apparent rally outdoors.

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

Violeta Chapin, clinical professor of law at Colorado Law, can discuss the recent announcement, specifics coming from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and what the news means for people who have pending DACA applications and those who would like to renew. She has expertise on the intersection of immigration law and criminal law and speaks fluent Spanish. She can be reached at

Ming Hsu Chen, associate professor at Colorado Law with faculty affiliations in political science and ethnic studies. Teaches immigration law, law and politics (race in America), and law and social change. She has written about executive action in immigration law and is a member of the Colorado Advisory Council to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. She can discuss constitutional and administrative aspects of DACA. She can be reached at

Fernando Riosmena, associate professor, Population Program, Institute of Behavioral Science. Riosmena is a social demographer/population geographer who specializes in the study of Mexico-U.S. migration. He can discuss the role of immigration policy in driving legal and undocumented migration to the U.S. and how DACA fits into that context. He is a native Spanish speaker. He can be reached at

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Capitol building dome in Washington, D.C.

Policy shifts under President Trump

On Afghanistan
Jennifer Fluri, associate professor of geography, can discuss various aspects of Afghanistan, including international development, conflict and conflict mediation, peace-building and gender. She recently co-authored The Carpetbaggers of Kabul and other American-Afghan Entanglements, a book which examines the actions of everyday people involved with the flood of aid and development dollars that entered the country following the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan by the United States. Fluri can be reached at

On health care
Dayna Matthew, professor of law and director of the Health Law and Policy program at Colorado Law, can discuss what it would take to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the confirmation hearing of Tom Price, as well as any changes in health care under the new administration. Matthew can be reached at

On immigration policy
Fernando Riosmena, associate professor in the department of geography, studies the drivers and motivations behind migration decisions. This includes undocumented moves or visa overstays and the impacts of immigration policy. Riosmena can be reached at

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a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia

Charlottesville and white nationalism

CU Boulder doctoral student Kevan Feshami of the College of Media, Communication and Information can talk about the white nationalist movement and the white genocide conspiracy theory. He also can talk about the evolution of the white nationalist movement in the age of digital media, including material being shared on reading forums, websites, blogs and social media accounts. Feshami can be reached at

CU Boulder Assistant Professor Benjamin Teitelbaum, an affiliate of the International Affairs Program, can talk about white nationalism and right-wing extremism. He authored an op-ed piece in Monday’s Wall Street Journal on what he calls the waning respectability of white nationalists. Teitelbaum can be reached at

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An army major general speaks with responders at an exercise at Fort Hood, Texas.

Immigration enforcement

Arturo Aldama can place into historical and ideological contexts such topics as nativism, immigration and the “push-pull” from Mexico, and the 1950s-era “Operation Wetback,” an immigration enforcement initiative with Mexico. Aldama can be reached at

Megan Hall can discuss issues related to immigration enforcement and immigration detention, including the interaction between the criminal justice and immigration systems; the asylum process; release options (including bond and parole) for people taken into immigration custody; and expedited removal (deportation without a hearing). Hall can be reached at

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Donald Trump

Executive orders: Pipeline, environmental review

Sarah Krakoff is the Raphael J. Moses Professor of Law and an expert in natural resources law, American Indian law, public lands management and environmental justice. She can address legal implications of the recent executive memoranda on expediting environmental review and the Dakota Access pipeline. Krakoff can be reached at

Liesel Ritchie is the associate director of the Natural Hazards Research Center. She has been involved in conducting impact assessments associated with oil and gas development activities with First Nations groups in British Columbia and northern Alberta, Canada. She can discuss potential social impacts associated with such activities, including community concerns about risks and hazards. Ritchie can be reached at

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Russian basilica

Russian cybersecurity and foreign relations

On cybersecurity
Joe McManus is an expert in network security, network forensics and Internet-of-Things security. He can discuss issues related to hacking, forensics and the current threat landscape. McManus can be reached at

On foreign relations
John O’Loughlin’s research on Russia has centered on Russia’s geopolitics and foreign policy toward Ukraine, internal conflicts within Russia (especially the North Caucasus), the creation and survival of Russian-supported separatist regions in the former Soviet Union and the conflict in Ukraine. O’Loughlin can be reached at

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Illustration of two neutron stars just before colliding (image courtesy of NASA)

Neutron star merger

John Bally, professor in the Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences, is available to discuss the recent discovery of two neutron stars merging, the first time that type of event has been observed by astronomers. Bally studies the formation of stars and planets and was a co-author on two papers published about the neutron star merger. For more information email Jim Scott in CU Boulder media relations at

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