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Regional Correspondent

Tom Banse

Tom Banse covers business, environment, public policy, human interest and national news across the Northwest. He reports from well known and out–of–the–way places in the region where important, amusing, touching, or outrageous events are unfolding. Tom's stories can be heard during "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered" on NPR stations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.

Before taking his current beat, Tom covered state government and the Washington Legislature for 12 years.  He got his start in radio at WCAL–FM, a public station in southern Minnesota. Reared in Seattle, Tom graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota with a degree in American Studies.

When not sifting through press releases, listening to lobbyists, or driving lonely highways, Tom enjoys exploring the Olympic Peninsula backcountry and cooking dinner with his wife and friends. Tom's secret ambition is to take six months off work and travel to a faraway place beyond the reach of email.

Contact Tom Banse

Recent Articles


Northwest Pro Soccer Stars To Face Off In World Cup

Northwest News Network | June 29, 2015 5:12 p.m.

A U.S. national team stocked with players from Northwest pro soccer teams faces its toughest test to date at the FIFA Women's World Cup.


Mobile App Links 911 Dispatch To Volunteer CPR Responders

Northwest News Network | June 26, 2015 8:49 a.m.

Would you let your smartphone share your location if it meant that one day you could come to a stranger's rescue?


Washington National Guard Rehearses For Cascadia Megaquake

Northwest News Network | June 24, 2015 9:35 a.m.

The Washington National Guard -- joined by officers from Oregon and Idaho -- are preparing for a massive military relief effort.

local | Environment

Expiring Tax Break Jolts Electric Car Sales

Northwest News Network | June 23, 2015 6:53 a.m.

Sales of expensive electric cars are getting a jolt from the impending expiration of a sales tax incentive in Washington state. It goes away June 30.


U.S. Open Director 'So Ready To Get This Thing Going'

Northwest News Network | June 17, 2015 6:38 p.m.

Golf's U.S. Open Championship tees off starting at 7 a.m. Thursday morning at Chambers Bay Golf Course near Tacoma, Washington.


No Home Field Advantage Says Local Boy Trying To Make Good At U.S. Open

Northwest News Network | June 16, 2015 2:25 p.m.

Six players with ties to the Northwest are entered in golf's U.S. Open as the event tees off in the Pacific Northwest for the very first time this week.


World Cup Games In Canada Feel Almost Like Home To US Women's Team

Northwest News Network | June 16, 2015 1:41 p.m.

Soccer fans from the American Northwest are expected to fill sold-out BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, Canada, Tuesday evening as the U.S. Women's National Team takes on Nigeria.


Chambers Bay Getting Better Reviews From Pros After U.S. Open Practice

Northwest News Network | June 15, 2015 5:06 p.m.

Some of the favorites to win this year's U.S. Open are saying nice things about the golf course after practice rounds at Chambers Bay near Tacoma,...


Duel For Steak Knives Adds Drama To Race To Alaska

Northwest News Network | June 15, 2015 7:28 a.m.

A steak-knife fight on the high seas has captivated Northwest yachting fans for the past day.


Seven Years Of Planning For Golf's 2015 U.S. Open About To Pay Off

Northwest News Network | June 13, 2015 2:44 p.m.

Many of the world's best golfers will descend on a public course near Tacoma, Washington, this week for the 2015 U.S. Open.


Trimaran About To Win Engineless Race to Alaska, Calamities Abound In Its Wake

Northwest News Network | June 12, 2015 11:19 a.m.

Team Elsie Piddock, a Seattle-based team of experienced open-ocean racers, are about to win the inaugural Race to Alaska.


First Stage Of Inside Passage Adventure Race Thins Field

Northwest News Network | June 6, 2015 10:34 a.m.

The starting horn for the inaugural, 750-mile Race to Alaska sounded at dawn Thursday at Port Townsend, Washington. The adventure contest began with a...


Adventurers To Race Up Inside Passage Beginning Thursday

Northwest News Network | June 5, 2015 2:43 p.m.

At 5 a.m. Thursday morning, a wide range of catamarans, sloops, kayaks and ocean rowboats will launch from Port Townsend, Washington, in the inaugural...


A Place Where Watching Grass Grow Is Anything But Boring

Northwest News Network | June 5, 2015 9:26 a.m.

They say there's nothing more boring than watching grass grow. But cultivating immaculate grass is a serious, intense and fascinating business when you...


Women's World Cup Host Canada Strives To Put Shine Back On Soccer

Northwest News Network | June 4, 2015 6:41 p.m.

The corruption investigations swirling around soccer's world governing body could cast a shadow over the FIFA Women's World Cup. It kicks off Saturday...


Confidence Reigns At Chambers Bay As U.S. Open Nears

Northwest News Network | May 29, 2015 3:20 p.m.

Organizers of the U.S. Open men's golf championship are exuding confidence that Chambers Bay Golf Course overlooking Puget Sound will be ready for the...


Northwest Drone Businesses Get FAA Clearance For Takeoff

Northwest News Network | May 19, 2015 8:40 p.m.

The Federal Aviation Administration has recently granted clearance for takeoff to big batches of private drone operators.

local | Environment

Wyoming Governor Makes Personal Appeals To Inslee, Brown For Coal Ports

Northwest News Network | May 18, 2015 6:15 p.m.

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead is in the midst of his second tour in less than a year to drum up support to export coal through the Northwest.


Inaugural Race To Alaska Likened To 'Iditarod With Chance Of Drowning'

Northwest News Network | May 15, 2015 4:18 p.m.

Souped-up paddle boards, custom rowing craft and high performance, carbon fiber sailboats have been entered in the inaugural Race to Alaska.


Freight Railroads In Northwest Unlikely To Meet Deadline To Install Safety Upgrade

Northwest News Network | May 15, 2015 7:09 a.m.

Freight railroads in the Northwest appear unlikely to meet an end-of-the-year deadline to install the type of system safety regulators say could have...