Ryan Heinsius

Executive Producer/Local Content Manager

Ryan joined the KNAU staff as newscast manager in 2013. He’s covered a broad range of stories from local and state politics to environment, education and economic issues. He’s also covered wildfire in northern Arizona, including the 2014 Slide Fire that became the largest in the history of the Coconino National Forest. From time to time, Ryan interviews both internationally known and regional musicians, and he’s a regular contributor to NPR News and National Native News.

Before making the leap to public radio, Ryan spent a decade working in print media. As the editor of an alternative-weekly paper, he covered arts, entertainment and local culture and dabbled in political writing with a weekly column.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University in political science and journalism, and in the past has returned to teach at his alma mater.

Ryan is also a Flagstaff-based musician and has performed and recorded with many bands in the Southwest. He spends as much time as possible with his wife and daughter hiking and cycling the amazing terrain of northern Arizona.

Ways to Connect


A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators wants to speed up and expand payments to those affected by last year’s toxic Gold King Mine spill in Colorado. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency stopped covering emergency responses for tribes, local governments and individuals. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.


The federal minimum wage may be affecting year’s elections. A new poll shows a majority of Arizonans support an increase. And that could determine how they vote for the state’s U.S. Senate seat. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports. 

Jen Lebron Kuhney/The Republic

Navajo officials say they’re overwhelmed with public opposition to tribal legislation regarding the Grand Canyon Escalade Project. It would pave the way for a gondola to the confluence of the Colorado and Little Colorado rivers. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.


Hopi Chairman Herman Honanie says a proposal by Navajo Nation lawmakers to build a gondola to the Colorado River could reignite litigation between the tribes. In a recent letter to the Navajo Council, he wrote the Grand Canyon Escalade would violate a sweeping 2006 land-use agreement. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports. 

Laura Segall /Reuters

Democratic Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick has called on Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to resign immediately. It follows a recent judge’s ruling that the sheriff may have committed criminal contempt of court. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.