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New England Public Media announces the addition of two multi-platform Host/Producers to its Content Team.

SPRINGFIELD, MA (January 26, 2021) Two journalists have joined the New England Public Media content team, bringing strong expertise in multi-platform hosting and reporting to the organization. The new hires have global and local news experience and will allow NEPM to broaden its regional news capabilities across all platforms.

Dara Kennedy is an international journalist who has broadcast around the world as a host, producer and speaker. She has been a part of Emmy-winning productions and covered newsroom beats from news and politics to sports and business. She has reported on top stories with worldly impact and sat with some of the biggest names for television networks in America, London, Europe and the Middle East. She has also served as a foreign correspondent covering Africa and the Americas. Her education includes the London School of Economics, Peking University in China and the Big Ten in America.

Dara will be familiar to viewers in New England as she served as the first woman of color to anchor the nightly flagship news show at NESN in Boston, and hosted several broadcasts of NEPM’s Connecting Point last fall, including the primetime television special, “Generation Vote.”


Maya Shwayder grew up outside Detroit and attended Harvard College and Columbia Journalism School. She spent four years in New York City as a local reporter writing for a variety of outlets, eventually becoming the UN Correspondent for the Jerusalem Post, before moving abroad to pursue a TV career.

Maya spent over 4 years based in Berlin, traveling around Europe and the US, as an international correspondent and anchor for Deutsche Welle/DW News, Germany’s international broadcaster. Her work has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Atlantic and the Daily Beast, among others. Most recently, she has worked as a host for WCRB, as well as a writer for Business Insider and The Boston Globe, covering education, privacy and technology.

“Dara Kennedy and Maya Shwayder represent the future of media presenters. They are digital-native, global in perspective and operate with the best of journalistic principles,” said Maxie C. Jackson, III, NEPM’s Chief Content Officer. “We are excited to have them join NEPM and look forward to their contributions across all of our media platforms.”

New England Public Media is a community-supported, independent non-profit organization based in Springfield, MA.Through a deep commitment to independent local journalism, trusted educational content, inspired cultural offerings, and civic engagement, NEPM endeavors to share new voices and inspire new conversations. It provides audiences with a broad array of local and national programs across all media—TV, radio, online, and mobile, including PBS and NPR programs as well as locally produced series, podcasts and specials. Its four digital TV channels, and two radio networks present news, jazz and classical music, documentaries, talk, drama, plus cultural and educational programming.NEPM brings quality public television programs to audiences across western New England, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs, to hear diverse viewpoints, and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS KIDS helps children build critical literacy, math and social-emotional skills, enabling them to find success in school and life. NEPM’s locally produced television programming includes the magazine-format public affairs show Connecting Point, the bilingual series Presencia, and the academic quiz show As Schools Match Wits. NEPM is available over the air on digital channel 57-1 and on cable throughout western Massachusetts and northwestern Connecticut and can be seen in high definition in western Massachusetts at Comcast 857, Time Warner 1221, Spectrum 782, and over the air on channel 57. Where to Watch

New England Public Media’s radio presence provides an essential and trusted voice for the region through local reporting and locally-produced music programming, and by connecting the region to the world through its partnership with NPR and other national and international public media organizations. Its flagship signal, 88.5FM WFCR, and 5 repeating stations in Berkshire County, presents news, jazz, and classical music, while the six stations of the NEPM News Network provide the region with news, talk, and cultural programming 24/7.