Michelle O'Neill

WVIK News Editor, Michelle O'Neill, is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years' experience. She serves as assignment editor, anchor, writer, reporter, producer, copy editor, photographer, and videographer (a.k.a., multimedia journalist). 


In 2015, Michelle won top honors for her radio reporting in two states. In the Illinois AP Broadcast Journalism Excellence Awards, judges named her Best Reporter in the Local News division (e.g., Lack of IL Budget Affects Tourism and Jobs). And in the Iowa Broadcast News Association's 2015 contest, Michelle won first place in Overall Excellence in Reporting in the Large Market division, along with winning first place in two other categories (QC Campuses Fight Sexual Violence and Water Quality and Farming). 

In the 2014 Illinois AP contest, the judges awarded her first place for Illinois Victims' Rights Proposal in the Hard News Feature category for Downstate Radio. 

In 2013, she won first place for "Immigrants and Driving" in the Best Series category. A fender-bender gave her the idea after a van, driven by a man who didn't speak English, side-swiped her car on Christmas Eve. In the same contest a year earlier, Michelle picked up first place in Best Investigative Report for "Cameras and Mics in Iowa Courts."


When she's not working, Michelle reads, walks her dog, crochets, kayaks, plays drums, and sings backup at church.
 

Since adopting Kensy, she's learned all about how to deal with a hound who counter-surfs and devours whatever happens to be there (e.g., a box of high fiber cereal, a large chunk of fudge, and a few Beano tablets). The resolution of one of these extra meals involved hydrogen peroxide, a baster, and heavy gloves. 

Lately I've been fascinated with widgets. So here's a flood widget for the Mississippi River.

This week, judges, lawyers, historians, and others will celebrate 200 years of Illinois justice.

Michelle O'Neill reports at a gala tomorrow in Springfield, the Illinois Supreme Court will host a gala 200 years to the day that the high court was created.

Two centuries of Illinois justice have obviously had a great impact on people, institutions, and society.

Wendy Caldwell/ The Monarch Lab

The first "Monarch Blitz" is over. 300 people in the U.S. participated by counting eggs, caterpillars, chrysalides, and butterflies. The citizen scientists then submitted their findings to the Monarch Lab at the University of Minnesota.

This first Monarch Blitz included the United States, Mexico, and Canada. Spokeswoman Cora Lund Preston said the results will help researchers find out where Monarchs reproduce, then learn what makes habitat good or bad for them. Their numbers have declined drastically over the past 20 years.

Carl Nelson / WNIJ

Governor Bruce Rauner made an unscheduled stop in Moline to talk to voters about redistricting.

He characterized last week's Illinois Supreme Court ruling, which found a proposal to put redistricting in the hands of an independent commission unconstitutional, as a tragedy.  

Rauner also called on local state legislators to put the question on the November ballot.

"Now that the court says the voter referendum can't go, you in the general assembly need to put it on the ballot so we, voters, can exercise our democratic right and vote on this issue," he said.  

Many elderly and disabled people who live in nursing homes need a lot more help taking care of their teeth.