Ben Lando

portrait of Ben Lando

Ben Lando, a 4th generation Kalamazooan, became a journalist more than 20 years ago covering Kalamazoo city and county governments and other community stories for local radio stations and newspapers. Based in Washington, D.C., from ’06-’09, he was a reporter and editor for United Press International covering U.S. and global energy/political/security stories. He moved to Baghdad in ’09 as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Time, and other news outlets. He founded which remains the premier outlet covering economic, security, and political developments. He returned home in 2013, started a family, and launched NowKalamazoo in 2019.

Ben's Latest Articles - community news. independent and truly local.

7/21/23: A wake-up call exit at KPS

A KPS trustee issues one final critique of district leadership before moving to new district to teach. Also: bus drivers, custodians, and food workers will get a raise in an effort to lure and keep enough staff. And the new state schools budget increases funding to local districts. - community news. independent and truly local.

07/19/2023: Worse than the state average for Kzoo’s working poor

The percentage of Kalamazoo residents who are both working and can’t pay their bills is higher than the state average. Also: A downtown developer says tax break reduction plan could scuttle their project. And, developers of a massive arena downtown got the final OK to close on a key county-owned property. - community news. independent and truly local.

7/17/23: Plans to keep the county green

Citizens who saw a victory in holding off a car wash near Asylum Lake see additional threats to green spaces. Also: The city of Kalamazoo plans to exceed lead pipe replacement plans in ’24, but supply chain has hampered operations this year. And, a new pilot boat washing station at Long Lake to fight a wildlife invasion. - community news. independent and truly local.

7/14/23: The smoking gun

What’s next? More than smoke, climate change coalition warns. Also: Kalamazoo keeps its Russian connection. And, marijuana may have been legalized in Michigan in 2018, but charges are only now being automatically expunged. - community news. independent and truly local.

7/13/23: How to keep teachers?

A survey of KPS teachers found frustration and calls for a better work environment. What is the district offering to retain teachers? Also: Residents near Portage’s Austin and West Lake say density concerns remain for nearby housing plans they previous thought were subsidized. And, a Kalamazoo teen used Make-A-Wish to make other young cancer patients smile.

KPS educators and administration at odds on solving teacher shortage

A survey of Kalamazoo Public Schools teachers finds widespread dissatisfaction, looming departures, and recommendations to make the classroom experience better for them and their students. District administration says retention rates are steady thus far into the summer, and they plan to retain and lure teachers with a focus on compensation and professional development.

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