Nikolai Mather covers rural communities for WHQR in Wilmington, North Carolina. Previously, he reported on religion for the Athens-Banner Herald in Athens, Georgia and social justice for Queen City Nerve in Charlotte, North Carolina. Mather was a Levine Scholar at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and served as the opinion editor of the student paper. He primarily studied genocide, winning a scholarship to study the Holocaust in Berlin with Humanity in Action. He has worked in Norway, France and the United Kingdom, but calls the South home.
Beat: The rural 'safety net'
Our reporter looks at how rural communities are served, or not served, by social services, law enforcement and the recently privatized hospital system for the region. We're concerned with issues like lack of access to physical and mental health care, disparate response times for EMS, law enforcement, and social services to rural emergencies, food insecurity, and lack of public transportation—all with a healthy dose of government accountability.