Ryan Heinsius

Executive Producer/Local Content Manager

Ryan was born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma. After a trip to the Grand Canyon as a kid, he became entranced with the Southwest and the Colorado Plateau, and has now lived in Flagstaff for more than a decade-and-a-half.

Before joining the KNAU newsroom as local content manger, Ryan served as the editor for the local weekly paper, Flagstaff Live, for nearly 10 years. It helped Ryan develop strong ties to ­– and a deep love for –Flagstaff and northern Arizona.

As a longtime local musician Ryan has performed, recorded and hit the road with several bands over the years. He can currently be seen playing regular gigs with the Voluntary String Band around Flagstaff and many other Southwestern live-music locales.

Ryan also spends his spare attempting to keep up with his wife while mountain biking, and showing their baby daughter the amazing peaks, forests, canyons, and culture of northern Arizona.

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KNAU and Arizona News
2:15 pm
Wed July 1, 2015

Forest Service Releases Details of Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project

About 5,700 acres in the Dry Lake Hills near Flagstaff will be thinned as part of the Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project. Work will begin in 2016, but steep-slope treatments including helicopter and cable logging could begin as soon as 2017.
Credit Ryan Heinsius

After an environmental analysis and a public comment period, Coconino National Forest managers have outlined the details of the Flagstaff Watershed Protection Project. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it’s designed to prevent the effects of wildfire and flooding from threatening the city’s water supply.

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State Capitol News
12:41 pm
Tue June 30, 2015

Lawsuit Settlement Restores Local Control Over Minimum Wages in Arizona

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich
Credit AZ Central

A lawsuit challenging the state legislature over who would set the minimum wage in Arizona’s towns and cities has been settled. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it overturns part of a state law that unconstitutionally took power from the local level.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:00 am
Thu June 25, 2015

House Bill Would Expedite Forest Health Projects on Federal Lands

A wildland firefighter burns grasses with a drip torch during a prescribed burn at the Gus Pearson Natural Area in the Ft. Valley Experimental Forest on the Coconino National Forest.
Credit Jake Bacon/Ecological Restoration Institute

A bill making its way through Congress is designed to speed up the process of forest restoration and recovery projects on federal lands. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, the Resilient Federal Forests Act would streamline the process of combating catastrophic wildfire.

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KNAU and Arizona News
8:53 am
Wed June 24, 2015

Debate Continues Over Proposed Grand Canyon Watershed National Monument

Forest and meadow land along the Kaibab Plateau Trail north of the Grand Canyon. The area includes one of the largest swaths of old-growth ponderosa pine trees in the world.
Credit Shane McDermott/Arizona Highways

The most recent group to enter the debate surrounding the Grand Canyon Watershed National Monument is the Arizona Game and Fish Department. The proposal is designed to protect nearly 2 million acres of old-growth forest and other land near the national park. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, the agency says the plan would involve too much federal regulation.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:00 am
Mon June 22, 2015

Navajo Nation Zoo Relocates Snakes Out of Cultural Concern

A gopher snake formerly housed at the Navajo Nation Zoo. It, along with another gopher snake, were relocated to an aquarium in Utah in March. A rattlesnake from the zoo was sent to the Staten Island Zoological Society in New York last month.
Credit David Mikesic/AP

For the first time more than 30 years, the Navajo Nation Zoo is not exhibiting snakes. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, zoo officials made the decision to relocate the animals because many Navajos view them with deep suspicion.

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KNAU and Arizona News
11:30 am
Thu June 18, 2015

House Bill Would Reverse Controversial Land Swap and Copper Mine on Tonto NF

The Oak Flat Campground has been the site of a five-month encampment of protesters who oppose the proposed copper mine that would take place there.
Credit Ryan Heinsius

An Arizona congressman has introduced a bill to stop a proposed copper mine on the Tonto National Forest. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, Tucson Rep. Raul Grijalva wants to reverse the federal land swap that paved the way for the mine.

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KNAU and Arizona News
12:43 pm
Wed June 17, 2015

Arizona Ranks as the Strictest State for Drunk-Driving Enforcement

Credit Courtesy

A recent study ranked Arizona as the strictest state in the nation for drunk-driving enforcement. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it has the longest minimum jail sentence for first-time offenders.

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KNAU and Arizona News
3:26 pm
Tue June 16, 2015

Coconino and Kaibab National Forests Managing Lightning-Caused Fires

Flames from the Horse Tank Fire move slowly on the forest floor near Pine and Strawberry. Crews are letting the fire burn to rid the area of dry fuels that could potentially feed future wildfires.
Credit Payson Roundup

Multiple, low-intensity lightning-caused wildfires are currently burning on the Coconino and Kaibab National Forests. In each case, managers are allowing them to continue to burn in order to rid the areas of dry fuels and enhance plant and animal habitat. All three fires are expected to increase in size, but not necessarily in severity. 

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KNAU and Arizona News
7:57 am
Tue June 16, 2015

City of Flagstaff, Hopi Tribe Work Toward Settlement Of Lawsuit

Ski runs on the San Francisco Peaks at the Arizona Snowbowl ski resort in Flagstaff.
Credit Courtesy

The City of Flagstaff and the Hopi Tribe are working to resolve a lawsuit over selling reclaimed wastewater to Arizona Snowbowl ski resort to make snow. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, the Hopis claim snowmaking using the reclaimed water is a public nuisance.

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KNAU and Arizona News
3:23 pm
Mon June 15, 2015

Park Service Opposing Bill to Cull Grand Canyon Bison Herd

Bison within Grand Canyon National Park are destroying vegetation, tainting water supplies and trampling archaeological sites. A U.S. Senate bill would allow hunting of the animals within near the North Rim, but the Park Service says the legislation would interfere with its own ongoing internal bison management study.
Credit AP Photo/The Avalanche-Journal, Josie Musico

The National Park Service is opposing a U.S. Senate bill designed to reduce the number of bison at the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, park officials say it would interfere with their own bison management study currently in the works.

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