Shelley Kofler

News Director

Shelley Kofler is managing editor/senior reporter for KERA News. She is an award-winning reporter and television producer who has served as KERA news director and the Austin bureau chief and legislative reporter for North Texas ABC affiliate WFAA-TV. Her expertise on legislative policy issues includes school finance, foster care and transportation; and her stories on the overmedication of foster children captured the attention of state officials who strengthened laws for the use of psychotropic drugs.

Shelley also covered government issues for North Texas NBC affiliate KXAS-TV and worked with KERA on numerous public affairs projects including nationally broadcast programs. She has reported on statewide elections and presidential primaries since the late 1980s. She also founded and operated her own communications firm, Kofler Communications, in Dallas and Austin. She served as a communications strategist and media trainer for various companies, agencies and public officials.

Shelley and the KERA news team have received numerous journalism awards for their public radio and television work. In addition to all-staff honors she has been individually singled out with a first place Edward R. Murrow award for a series of reports on the Trinity toll road decision; first place honors for political reporting from the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters Association and the Houston Press Clubââââââââ


 This week on Fronteras: 

·         We’re looking at the impact of the environmental accident along the Animas River.   EPA cleanup workers accidentally released three million gallons of mining pollution into the river, which flows through Colorado and New Mexico.  Its– threatening drinking water, fishing and the environment.  Reporters talk with the Navajo people and residents with homes along the river.   We hear from water managers who are testing ditch irrigation systems for possible contamination.

Shelley Kofler / Texas Public Radio

Bexar County Republicans gathered for Thursday night’s presidential debate applauded Donald Trump’s brash, unfiltered comments. But many were more interested in the performance of a fellow Texan. 

The hype leading up to the first Republican presidential debate was all about the irreverent, colorful, sometimes insulting front-runner, Donald Trump. He had Bexar Republicans howling as he fielded an early question about his credibility with female voters after he’s referred to women as “fat pigs, dogs, slobs fat pigs, dogs, slobs and disgusting animals.”

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

This week on Fronteras: 

--Federal judges have ruled that Texas’ controversial Voter I-D law violates the Voting Rights Act.

--New research says global warming threatens Texas’ economy.  A group of business leaders say the data makes a financial case for the reduction of greenhouse gases now.  

--A new digital app developed in Houston helps disaster victims file for assistance.

-- Two Dallas non-profits are working together to provide housing for homeless veterans.

Todd Wiseman / Texas Tribune

Texas’ four-year-old voter ID law violates the Voting Rights Act but is not a “poll tax” barred under the U.S. Constitution, a federal appeals court has ruled.

The U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday ruled that the Texas voter ID law – signed into law in 2011 – has a “discriminatory effect” that violates the 50-year old federal law that prohibits racial discrimination in voting, but it is not an unconstitutional “poll tax.” 

Perry for President Campaign

Texas will be well represented in the first GOP presidential debate Thursday that’s being broadcast by Fox TV.  But the Texan who led the state Republican Party for more than a decade didn’t make the cut. 

As expected Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul- all raised in Texas -will be invited to the first debate being held in Cleveland.  They’ve consistently polled in the top third of the 17 GOP candidates, and polling numbers were used to decide which 10 would be invited. 

Austin-born Carly Fiorina didn’t make it.