Jackie Yamanaka

Senior Political Reporter/Special Projects

Jackie Yamanaka has been news director at YPR since 1986.  From her home base in Billings, Jackie covers a wide range of issues across Montana and Wyoming. During the Montana Legislative session, she re-locates to the state Capitol in Helena where she has another office.

During her tenure she has won numerous journalism awards from Public Radio News Directors, Inc.; The Society of Professional Journalists, The Montana Broadcaster’s Association EB Craney Awards; The Montana Associated Press; and elsewhere.

Jackie received a degree in Mass Communications from Eastern Montana College (now Montana State University Billings).  She is secretary of the Montana Freedom of Information Hotline (http://www.montanafoi.org/) and a past board member of Public Radio News Directors, Inc.  When she’s not working she enjoys running and hiking with her dogs, fishing, shooting sporting clays, and playing tennis.

Ways to Connect

Jackie Yamanaka

Governor Steve Bullock is touring Montana to listen to providers about the health and economic impacts of the state’s Medicaid Expansion program, also known as the HELP Act. It’s set to expire at the end of next year unless the 2019 Montana Legislature acts.

Jackie Yamanaka

There were general agreements on issue positions related to public lands and health care among the 6 candidates seeing the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House during their debate last night in Billings.  But some of the candidates also took the opportunity to stand out from the crowded field as Democratic voters have to decide which one to advance to take on the Republican incumbent. 

Jackie Yamanaka

Some Montana college students aren’t content to sit on the political sidelines.  Instead they are joining political party groups, registering voters and organizing and sponsoring debates.

Jackie Yamanaka

Former U.S. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson says the coal industry isn’t dead. He says it’s in transition and there needs to be a plan. Part of that plan may be forming a coalition with renewable energy producers.

Richardson envisions something akin to a Marshall Plan. It was a U.S. program that helped Europe rebuild after the devastation of World War II.

Jackie Yamanaka

A Westmoreland Coal Company says its 3 Montana coal mines are profitable despite its current financial crunch and the company is working to keep its mines open.

Jackie Yamanaka

A Montana civil rights panel wants to learn more about alleged discrimination that affects Native Americans when it comes to the criminal justice system and interactions with law enforcement. Billings Police Chief Rich St. John says he looks forward to discussing this issue in Montana’s largest community Thursday in Hardin.

Jackie Yamanaka

Montana’s 4 Republican U.S. Senate candidates pointed out the differences among each other, albeit in a collegial way, during their first debate last night in Bozeman. The event was sponsored by the College Republicans at Montana State University.

State of Montana

State wildlife and livestock officials say an elk captured in southwest Montana tested positive for exposure to brucellosis.

This is the first time a positive test was found in the Tendoy Mountains Southwest of Dillon, said officials from the Montana Department of Livestock.

Jackie Yamanaka

Public comment is being sought on whether Native Americans face discrimination from law enforcement and in the criminal justice system. The testimony gathered is part of a public hearing on bordertown racism to be held in Hardin, Montana on March 29, 2018.

Jackie Yamanaka

Stay energized. Don’t get complacent. Those messages were delivered at two large political gatherings in Montana.

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