Sam Hudzik

Radio News Director

Sam has overseen local news coverage on New England Public Radio since 2013.

Before joining NEPR, he held a few positions at WBEZ Chicago – political reporter, newscast editor and newscast producer. Prior to that, he covered local angles on the federal government from Washington, D.C. for public radio stations in Illinois and Indiana.

Sam is proud to have edited his colleagues’ stories, including those recognized by the Third Coast International Audio Festival, the AP Broadcast Association of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, the Radio Television Digital News Association’s Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, Public Radio News Directors, Inc. (PRNDI) and the Missouri Review’s Miller Audio Award. Sam’s reporting has been recognized by the Illinois AP Broadcasters Association and the Murrow Awards.

He graduated from George Washington University and grew up in Park Forest, Illinois, and is grateful for his time in 2012-13 as a Knight-Wallace journalism fellow at the University of Michigan.

Before realizing he ought to be a reporter, Sam worked at a political research firm and as an aide to U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell.

Ways to Connect

Smith & Wesson's headquarters on Roosevelt Avenue in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Don Treeger / The Republican /

Updated at 9:45 p.m. 

After nearly 170 years in Springfield, Massachusetts, firearms manufacturer Smith & Wesson said it’s moving its headquarters and hundreds of jobs to Tennessee.

Springfield, Massachusetts, Mayor Domenic Sarno announces a citywide indoor requirement for indoor public spaces, effective September 13, 2021.
Screen shot / City of Springfield Facebook video

Masks will be required next week inside all businesses and other public places in Springfield, Massachusetts. The rule affects people regardless of vaccination status as city and hospital leaders noted COVID-19 cases continue to rise to levels not seen in many months.

A lawn sign in Lee, Massachusetts, designed by Reed Anderson of Great Barrington, calls for no local dumps for PCB waste from General Electric.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

Opponents of a waste dump containing PCB sediment planned for Lee, Massachusetts, took their case before the federal Environmental Appeals Board on Thursday.

Faculty at the Williston Northampton School in Easthampton, Massachusetts, cheer on their former student, Gabby Thomas, in the 2021 Olympics.
Submitted / Dennis Crommett

Gabby Thomas, a 24-year-old Harvard grad from Florence, Massachusetts, won the Olympic bronze medal Tuesday in the women's 200-meters.

Her mom, Jennifer Randall, watched the race from home.

Rashida Ellis of Lynn, Massachusetts, is competing in women's boxing in the lightweight division.
Courtesy / USA Boxing

The Tokyo Olympics begin this week, with the opening ceremonies scheduled for Friday.

Thirty-three members of Team USA list communities in New England as their hometowns. That includes almost a dozen rowers, a half-dozen runners and three rugby players.

Graduates of the Springfield, Massachusetts, Police Academy recite their oaths during their graduation ceremony at Symphony Hall on April 2, 2021.
Don Treeger / The Republican /

Western Massachusetts police departments under court order to diversify are making progress, but police supervisors continue to be overwhelmingly white.

Springfield, Massachusetts, Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood takes the oath from District Court Judge John Payne during her swearing-in ceremony, in October 2019.
Adam Frenier / NEPM

Updated at 6:40 p.m. 

A Massachusetts judge has largely sided with the Springfield City Council in its lawsuit against Mayor Domenic Sarno over control of the police department.

Nurses talk to a patient at the COVID-19 mass vaccination site at Eastfield Mall in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican /

New numbers from the state show Hampden County now trails all other Massachusetts counties in the percentage of residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

A 2019 protest in Springfield, Massachusetts, against the Palmer wood-burning plant.
Courtesy of Rene Theberge / via WBUR

Updated at 6:15 p.m. 

A Massachusetts state agency has revoked an air permit for a biomass plant long planned for Springfield.

In September 2015, then-Vice President Joe Biden greeted Pope Francis when he arrived at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland.
Pete Souza / Official White House Photo

There’s a rift in the Catholic Church about how a leading church official welcomed President Biden to power.

Asked about the controversy, the new bishop in western Massachusetts appears to be choosing his words on the matter carefully.

Mount Holyoke College students listen during a rally held to address historical allegations of sexual misconduct by a Mount Holyoke College professor, in December of 2018, at the college in South Hadley, Massachusetts.
Jerrey Roberts / Daily Hamphire Gazette /

College students in Massachusetts would be anonymously surveyed about their experiences with sexual misconduct on campus and would have access to new, confidential resources in the event of sexual assault, under a bill that's now on Gov. Charlie Baker's desk after a last-minute flurry of activity in the legislature this week.

U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern, center top, presided over the House chamber when it recessed during the lockdown. On the left, staff members motion for lawmakers to stay seated.
Screen shot / C-SPAN

Updated at 9:25 p.m. 

As pro-Trump extremists breached the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts was presiding over the House.

The Springfield City Council has voted to authorize a lawsuit seeking to force Mayor Domenic Sarno to appoint a police board of commissioners. It's the latest turn in a years-long disagreement between the council and mayor over control of the police department amid reports of officer brutality and corruption.

Alex Morse (center), the mayor of Holyoke, Massachusetts, before a debate in August 2020 against his opponent in the Democratic primary, U.S. Rep Richard Neal.
Don Treeger / The Republican/ / photos

Three weeks after signing on to a letter that shook up a congressional race in perhaps unexpected ways, leaders of the College Democrats at UMass Amherst are apologizing to Alex Morse.

MGM Springfield reopened in July 2020 after a four-month closure due to COVID-19.
Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican /

MGM Springfield is laying off more than half its staff as of Monday. 

A UMass Amherst staffer works inside the closed Berkshire Dining Commons in the Southwest Residential Area on August 27, 2020.
Kevin Gutting / Daily Hampshire Gazette /

UMass Amherst will place about 780 staff on "indefinite furlough” as it deals with a budget deficit caused by COVID-19 and efforts to stop its spread.

Mayor Alex Morse of Holyoke, Massachusetts, speaks to reporters during the launch of his congressional campaign on July 22, 2019.
Jerrey Roberts / Daily Hampshire Gazette /

Alex Morse says he is staying in the race for Congress. In a statement posted to social media Sunday night, the mayor of Holyoke, Massachusetts, defended himself against allegations he engaged in inappropriate behavior involving college students, while again apologizing for "making some students feel uncomfortable."

Teachers outside the Boland Elementary School in Springfield, Massachusetts, prepare to hand out laptops on April 6, 2020.
Alden Bourne / NEPR

The public schools in Springfield, Massachusetts, will keep classes remote-only through at least the first few months of the year. 

 A Black Lives Matter rally in front of Nathan Bill's Bar and Restaurant in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican /

Springfield's police commissioner, Cheryl Clapprood, has acknowledged no changes have been made to the department's use-of-force policy. This comes two months after the department said Clapprood accepted suggestions offered by the City Council.

Downtown Northampton, Massachusetts.
Carol Lollis / The Daily Hampshire Gazette /

The characters in Holyoke, Massachusetts, writer Sara Rauch's short stories largely live and work around western Massachusetts. But also in Vermont and California, and New York City after 9/11.

In her new collection, "What Shines from It," some characters make art. Some grapple with pregnancy. Others cheat on their partners — or get cheated on. They drink too much, get hurt and try to figure out life.

Soldiers' Home in Holyoke, Massachusetts.
Chelsie Field / WBUR

As many as 11 residents of the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home have died in recent days — potentially all from COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

That’s led to an abrupt change of leadership at the residential, nursing and outpatient facility for veterans run by the state of Massachusetts. 

A traffic camera in California.
Theron Trowbridge / Creative Commons /

When you're driving in your car this week to vote early in the Massachusetts presidential primary, make sure you aren't talking on your cellphone.

A PVTA bus in April 2019.
MTA3306 / Creative Commons /

The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority says Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker's budget proposal came up several million dollars short in funding for transit agencies outside the Boston area.

A Berkshire Regional Transit Authority bus.
David Wilson / Creative Commons /

With Governor Charlie Baker's State of the Commonwealth speech delivered and his budget unveiled, Massachusetts lawmakers, lobbyists, activists and reporters now have their chance to scrutinize it all.

Massachusetts U.S. Rep. Richard Neal (left) attended Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno's inauguration gala on January 11, 2020. Sarno (right) is shown here with his wife, Carla.
Frederick Gore / MassLive /

Massachusetts U.S. Rep. Richard Neal is declining to say if he agrees with Mayor Domenic Sarno's attempt to block refugee resettlement in Springfield. 

Ajinomoto is a food company based in Japan that makes MSG.
jun560 / Creative Commons /

Updated at 8:08 p.m. 

A company that makes the food additive monosodium glutamate (MSG) is aiming a social media campaign at Springfield, Massachusetts-based dictionary Merriam-Webster. 

Inside MGM Springfield.
Don Treeger / The Republican /

Encore Boston Harbor, the newest casino in Massachusetts, in December had its best month since opening. But the state's two other casinos saw gambling revenues drop to their lowest levels yet.

The Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Norfolk is the largest medium security level facility in Massachusetts.
Michael P. Norton / State House News Service

State auditors say Massachusetts prison officials failed to properly prepare some inmates before they were released. 

Massachusetts U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren talks with reporters outside her home in Cambridge after announcing that she is setting up an exploratory committee for a run for the presidency.
Robin Lubbock / WBUR

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and Vermont's Bernie Sanders have been campaigning across the country ahead of the presidential primaries. That time on the trail means the senators missed hundreds of roll call votes in 2019.

A personal check.
Scott J. Waldron / Creative Commons

The minimum wage goes up in half of New England on January 1, with a widening gap between the states.