Michael Hibblen

News Director

As News Director, Michael Hibblen oversees daily news coverage for KUAR News. He directs activities of the news staff, helps develop story ideas and edits news copy.  Michael is responsible for starting a news-sharing network between public radio stations in Arkansas. He is also a regular panelist on AETN's Arkansas Week, where journalists discuss issues in the news.

A native of North Little Rock, Michael started in radio in 1988, spending his first five years as a music DJ for stations in central and northeast Arkansas.  After an internship in 1993 at the C-SPAN Cable Network in Washington, DC, he transitioned to news, working for commercial radio stations in Little Rock, Richmond, Virginia and Miami, Florida.  During his 12 years in Miami, Michael became a nationally-heard reporter for CBS Radio News and later served as Assistant News Director for the NPR station WLRN, which worked out of the newsroom of daily newspaper The Miami Herald.  He returned home to Little Rock in 2009 to work for KUAR. At that time he also resumed taking classes at UALR to finish his Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communication, graduating in May of 2013.

Phone: 501-683-7386



Local & Regional News
11:03 am
Tue December 31, 2013

Arkansas Governor Asks Lt. Gov. Darr To Quit Over Ethics Case

Gov. Mike Beebe speaking to reporters Tuesday at the Capitol, calling for Lt. Gov. Mark Darr's resignation for ethics violations.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

Gov. Mike Beebe is calling on Lt. Gov. Mark Darr to resign from office, after Darr admitted to misusing thousands of campaign and taxpayer dollars.

The state Ethics Commission found that Darr likely violated ethics rules by using the money for personal expenditures, while also collecting campaign contributions that exceed legal limits. In all, Darr has admitted to 11 violations, though he refuses to resign.

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Local & Regional News
4:49 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Little Rock's Airport Expects To See Decline In Passengers This Holiday Season

Credit Jason Burt / Arkansas Business

Passenger traffic at Little Rock’s Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport is expected to be down about five percent this holiday season compared to last year.

The Transportation Security Administration estimates 40,663 people will fly out of the airport between Friday and January 1.  The busiest day is expected to be Saturday, Dec. 21, when nearly 4,000 people will be departing.

"Traffic is already picking up," airport Spokesman Shane Carter said Friday, "but as we move through the next few days, of course Christmas will be busy for us."

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Legislative Ethics
10:25 am
Wed December 18, 2013

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Darr Goes Before Ethics Commission For Spending

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr leaving a meeting of the Arkansas Ethics Commission Wednesday, saying little to reporters.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr went before the Arkansas Ethics Commission Wednesday, as a staff report was presented saying that Darr misspent more than $44,000 of campaign and public money.

After allegations were raised earlier this year, Darr self-reported violations against himself, saying he was unaware of mistakes in how the spending was handled.

The meeting was closed to the public.  Afterward, as he left with his attorney, Darr refused to say much, telling reporters "We're going to comment later."

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Local & Regional News
12:12 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Former Arkansas Legislator Jim Hill Dies At 74

Former Arkansas legislator Jim Hill died Wednesday at his home in the southwest Arkansas town of Nashville.

Hill, a Democrat, served in the state House from 1993 to 1996, then in the state Senate, including one year as the Senate president pro tempore during the 84th General Assembly.

In a statement, Governor Mike Beebe, who served alongside him in the legislature, said:

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Local & Regional News
3:50 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Winter Storm Moves Into Arkansas, Governor Declares Statewide Emergency

Expected ice accumulations levels for Arkansas.
Credit National Weather Service

An ice storm warning is in effect for much of the state from 6 p.m. Thursday to 6 p.m. Friday. The warning means severe winter weather conditions are expected.

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Local & Regional News
11:06 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Winter Storm Watch Issued In Advance Of Wintry Weather

File photo of sleet in Little Rock last year.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

The National Weather Service Tuesday issued a winter storm watch for parts of northern, western and central Arkansas. It will be in effect Thursday afternoon through Friday.

A strong cold front will move into the region late Wednesday, bringing much cooler air. An advisory says it will stall out, with several upper level weather disturbances bringing widespread precipitation.

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Local & Regional News
8:15 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Investment Firm And Arkansas' Top Securities Regulator At Odds

Heath Abshure, left, and the Little Rock headquarters of Stephens Inc.
Credit Arkansas Business

Arkansas’ largest investment firm and the state’s top securities regulator are firing accusations back and forth alleging ethics violations.

Stephens Inc. is accusing Arkansas Securities Commissioner Heath Abshure of illegally steering more than $170,000 to his "favorite charities" and of retaliating when Stephens refused to make a similar donation while negotiating a recent settlement.

Arkansas Business has exclusive details in this week’s issue:

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Local & Regional News
10:49 am
Sun December 1, 2013

Getting The Word Out About Desegregation Settlement Before Hearing

Parties involved in the long-running desegregation lawsuit – who have agreed to a settlement – are now working to get the word out and give the public a chance to weigh in. It comes in advance of next month’s “fairness hearing,” where federal U.S. District Judge Price Marshall will listen to any objections.

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Local & Regional News
12:22 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Suspect Charged With Shooting SWAT Officer Makes Initial Appearance

Mark Dodson
Credit Pulaski Co. Sheriff's Office

An initial court appearance was made Wednesday morning by a man charged with shooting a Jacksonville Police officer during a drug raid last week.

53-year-old Mark Dodson went before a judge via a video hookup from the Pulaski County Jail. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports bond was set at a quarter of a million dollars.

A SWAT team was entering his home Friday when Dodson allegedly opened fire, striking one officer in the arm.

Dodson has been charged with seven counts of attempt to commit capital murder and a single charge of first degree battery.

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Local & Regional News
8:41 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

Rosanne Cash Reflects As Opening Of Johnny Cash Boyhood Home Nears

Rosanne Cash poses alongside cousin Jackie Cash in front of an exhibit at the Old State House Museum.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

As final work is being completed to open Johnny Cash’s boyhood home in Dyess, Arkansas as a museum, his daughter Rosanne Cash came to Little Rock over the weekend for a sold out show and to be honored for her work in helping to restore the small house.

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