Bonnie North

Lake Effect Producer / Co-host

Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.

Bonnie spent over twenty years working as a director, technician and stage manager in professional, educational, and community theaters. She comes from a family of musicians and artists and grew up playing all kinds of music. But her interest in and love of the arts is not limited to performance. She enjoys other art expressions as well, including painting, sculpture, photography, textiles, and writing.

Bonnie's introduction to Public Broadcasting came at Vermont Public Radio (VPR) in 1992. She spent 7 years there in various positions, including hosting classical and jazz shows and as a production associate and operations manager.

Just prior to joining WUWM, Bonnie worked in the defense industry. She spent two years in the Balkans, first in Sarajevo, Bosnia, where she managed a group of linguists that provided Serbo-Croatian interpreting and translation services for the US and NATO stabilization forces. She then went to Kosovo to manage the overall linguist program for Kosovo, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Romania.

Bonnie holds a bachelors degree in English Literature/Drama Studies from Purchase College-State University of New York.

Ways to Connect

majunznk / Flickr

It began with a chance remark, as such things often do. But it took pianists Sue Medford and Stefanie Jacob another five years before the first PianoArts competition took place in June 1999. Over the past 20 years, the organization and its reputation has grown to attract young pianists from around the world.

"We believe strongly that young people today can make a living in classical music playing the piano," Medford explains. "But they’ve got to look at it from a very broad point of view and be able to step into it in many different ways."

Bonnie North

The pipe organ at St Jude the Apostle Church in Wauwatosa is one of the instruments being showcased during the 2019 North Central Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists. The convention runs June 16-19.

Geoff Trotier

Milwaukee poet David Southward has won the 2019 International Frost Farm Prize for metrical poetry for Mary's Visit, a poem written in a sestina form. Southward is a senior lecturer in the honors college at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and says winning this year's prize is a great honor as Robert Frost was, and is, one of his biggest poetical influences.

James Thew / Adobe Stock

Most of us think of technology as a neutral force. Objects or processes are designed and implemented to solve problems and there are no biases, implied or overt, at work. But Sabelo Mhlambi says, not so fast. The computer scientist and researcher says technology cannot be neutral. What gets made, who makes it and uses it, and why is dependent upon our societies — and all societies are biased.

Mitch Teich

Now that summer seems to be here, it’s time to get out and explore what the city has to offer. And there’s a lot to see and do.

"The fortunate thing is that there is so much to do in Milwaukee in the summer that we always find new things," says Milwaukee Magazine publisher Carole Nicksin. The summer city guide issue is now available. It's packed full of information for all 14 weekends of summer.

Nicksin joined Lake Effect's Bonnie North to offer a few of her favorite suggestions to help you plot your best course of action:

Maayan Silver

Art is sprouting along Wisconsin Avenue. From John Baldessari’s penguin statue in Northwestern Mutual's garden, to Beverly Pepper’s steel curves at the western edge of the project, this third year of Sculpture Milwaukee has brought more whimsy, beauty, and thought-provoking work to the city.


Image courtesy of Robert Cohen

Every month, cellist Robert Cohen joins us to talk about the life of a working, touring, professional musician. He’s talked about concerts and venues, taking an instrument on the road, and teaching a new generation of cellists.

This month, Robert is hearing ear worms. Or rather, he’s trying not to hear them. It turns out that unlike an advertising jingle or a pop song that might get stuck in my head, the ear worms Robert gets are on an entirely different level.

Sergey Ryzhov /

Engineering touches everything — from our cars to our smartphones, to how our roads work and to putting humans in space. But sometimes, it seems that products or designs aren’t completely thought through before they come to market. Ideas might seem really good on paper, but they don't always make sense for the reality of a person's lifestyle, culture or identity. 

Simon and Schuster

David Maraniss is used to doing exhaustive research on his subjects. The Pulitzer Prize winning author and journalist has penned best-selling books about former presidents, baseball legends, and the writer's craft. But his newest book is much closer to home.


Every month, astronomer and contributor Jean Creighton joins us to talk about the cosmos. While the cosmos, full of its different stars, planets, and physics concepts can be intimidating, Creighton says we should allow ourselves to wonder at the beauty. Plus, it's actually healthy if you feel like some of the concepts allude you.


Feast of Crispian, a Milwaukee theater troupe that uses Shakespeare to help veterans cope with trauma and reintegration issues, is taking their mission one step further this week. Thanks to a partnership with the Milwaukee Rep, the country's first National Veterans Theater Festival is running Thursday, May 23 through Sunday, May 26 the Rep's Stiemke Theatre.

Courtesy of Francis Annan

Gullah is the Creole language of the Gullah people who live on the coast of South Carolina and nearby islands. Gullah has an English base with elements from various West African languages incorporated into it.

Jay Lawrence

Every month, cellist Robert Cohen talks about his life as a touring, classical musician. Yet over the years, he has never talked about one of the most essential parts of any musician's life: the audition process.

Cohen says he's fortunate to be past the point in his career where he has to worry about upcoming auditions. But for most musicians, auditions are a necessary entry point to work. Cohen talks with Lake Effect's Bonnie North about the audition process for classical musicians:

Audrey Nowakowski

WUWM's Project Milwaukee series Great Lakes, Troubled Waters is examining the topic of clean water, or the lack thereof, in southeastern Wisconsin — particularly in a place like Milwaukee that considers itself to be a "water hub."

Water hubs are places where industry, research, and academia converge in their efforts to create sustainable efforts or create new technology utilizing one of our most precious resources.

Courtesy David Crosby / Facebook

From the Byrds to Crosby, Stills and Nash, to his own solo career, David Crosby has sailed his own ship. In more than a half century, the California native has penned scores of classic songs. And at 77 — after a liver transplant, two heart attacks, and diabetes — he’s still going strong.