Sydney Boles

Ohio Valley ReSource Reporter

Sydney Boles is the Ohio Valley ReSource reporter covering the economic transition in the heart of Appalachia’s coal country.

Sydney received her Master of Journalism from Medill School of Journalism, where she covered immigration and housing insecurity in Chicagoland.

Before her work in journalism, she studied oral history and postcolonial resistance strategies in Costa Rica, India, South Africa and Turkey.

Sydney grew up in upstate New York and enjoys baking, reading and exploring the outdoors.

Brittany Patterson / WFPL

The U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday passed a $1.5 trillion infrastructure bill that includes two provisions that would specifically help coal-reliant communities in the Ohio Valley.

  Environmental and economic advocacy groups from coal-producing parts of the country unveiled a policy agenda on Monday to help coal-reliant communities make a transition to a more sustainable future. 

Oakley Fugate

 

The courtroom was silent as 19-year-old Dayjha Hogg approached the lectern at a Letcher County fiscal court meeting, stared down a panel of county magistrates, and spoke. 

Alexandra Kanik / Ohio Valley Resource

 Kentucky’s state budget officials told lawmakers Friday that general fund receipts may decline by 495 million dollars next fiscal year. It’s just the latest example of the unprecedented financial hardships ahead for the Ohio Valley’s state and local governments due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Sydney Boles / Ohio Valley Resource

  Just 15 percent of Kentucky counties meet minimum recommended coronavirus testing levels, according to a new report from health care company Castlight. Sixty-seven percent of West Virginia counties and 31 percent of Ohio counties met the threshold. 

Alexandra Kanik / Ohio Valley Resource

With concerns mounting about how to conduct elections during a pandemic, states across the Ohio Valley are postponing their primary election dates and, in some cases, expanding access to voting by mail in order to allow people to cast ballots safely. But the implementation of last-minute changes is straining politics and the capacity of local elections officials region-wide. 

Sydney Boles

On March 17, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam banned gatherings of 10 or more people to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Mehyah Davis, 23, was in his second week of a new job waiting tables at the cryptid-inspired Wood Booger Grill in Norton, Va.

Alexandra Kanik / Ohio Valley Resource

  The coronavirus pandemic has already infected thousands in the Ohio Valley and upended life and work for nearly all of us. In such a fast-moving pandemic, it can be hard to keep all the information straight. The Ohio Valley ReSource and its partner stations asked you what you wanted to know, and took your questions to someone with answers.

Sydney Boles / Ohio Valley Resource

On a blistering August afternoon in Cumberland, Kentucky, David Pratt, Jr. stood in the middle of a two-lane highway, holding a sign that read “COAL MINERS AND TRUCKERS AGAINST CORPORATE AMERICA.” 

Peabody Energy, Inc., via Wikimedia Commons

  As states across the Ohio Valley order the closure of non-essential businesses to help slow the spread of the coronavirus, coal mines will remain open.

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