Karen Kasler

Ohio Public Radio and TV Statehouse Bureau Chief

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets.  She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.

Karen is a graduate of Otterbein College, and earned her Master’s as a Fellow in the Kiplinger Program for Mid-Career Journalists at The Ohio State University. Karen has been honored by the Associated Press, the Association of Capitol Editors and Reporters, the Cleveland Press Club/Society of Professional Journalists, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences/Ohio Valley Emmys, and holds a National Headliner Award. 

Ways to Connect

Ohio’s 27 prisons are a third over capacity with more than 50,000 inmates. The prisons department would get $3.6 billion in the governor’s proposed budget to maintain that system. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler spoke to the prisons director about a diversion program that could change that.

Kasich at the 2017 State of the State

Gov. John Kasich has been defending his budget, saying it’s the way to keep Ohio’s economy growing. But state lawmakers who are working on their own versions of the budget are looking at incoming tax revenues and raising critical questions.

In his State of the State speech in Sandusky last week, Gov. Kasich told state lawmakers, most of whom are his fellow Republicans – don’t add more spending to the budget.

Photo of the Statehouse Capola.

State lawmakers are working on the new state budget and are looking at state tax revenue coming in below estimates. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler reports that even Kasich’s Republican colleagues in the Legislature are showing signs that they’re concerned about the numbers.

photo of Tim Keen

For the fourth time in five months, the state has fallen short of predicted revenue. 

March’s personal income tax collections were down $203 million from what was expected. And overall income tax revenue for the year is off by more than half a billion dollars –  $615 million.


Gov. John Kasich doubled down on his plan to require teachers who are renewing their licenses to spend days shadowing business leaders, despite the fact that legislative leaders are not embracing that plan. 

In his State of the State speech, Kasich said again that requiring teachers to spend a few days working in a local business would be good for students.