Center for Leadership

Eugene Sonn, WHYY Audio News Director

Since 2010, Eugene Sonn has been audio news director at WHYY. In his time here, he helped launch NewsWorks Tonight and The Pulse and grow the ranks of reporters in the WHYY newsroom. Under his direction, WHYY has won many honors, including from PRNDI (Public Radio News Directors Inc) for coverage of the 2015 Amtrak crash. WHYY has also taken home the Joe Snyder Award for overall excellence from the Pennsylvania Associated Broadcasters Association four times.

For nine years Gene was the familiar voice covering New Jersey politics and the state house in Trenton for WHYY, in partnership with WBGO FM in Newark, N.J.

While on that beat, Gene won awards for stories such as former Gov. Jim McGreevey’s resignation speech in 2004, the anthrax attacks on the postal system after 9/11, the 2006 New Jersey government shutdown, racial profiling by the state police and James Dale v. Boy Scouts of America (challenging ban on openly gay scout leaders, which went to U.S. Supreme Court).

Gene first came to our region to attend Swarthmore College. He spent three years working for public radio station WRVO in Oswego, N.Y. before leaving behind that town’s annual epic snowfalls.

These days Gene lives in Bucks County and daydreams of spending more time biking on the quieter roads there. However, he and his wife Jess are busy raising two sons. Having grown up in Carlisle, Mass., he’s still a rabid fan of the Boston Red Sox.


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