WBUR Staff

Benjamin Swasey

Digital Editor, WBUR

Ben is an editor — and occasional blogger — for wbur.org. When he reports, it’s most often on economic and transportation policy, social issues and politics.

Ben is from western Massachusetts, and now lives in Cambridge.

Recent stories

Boston 2024 Releases Its Revised Olympic Bid

June 29, 2015
A rendering of the proposed Olympic Stadium, during the games (Boston 2024)

Boston 2024 says the games would bring thousands of jobs and housing units to the area, and that its proposal would leave an estimated $210 million surplus.

Quotation(s) Of The Week: Tsarnaev Apologizes; Gay Marriage Legal Across U.S.

June 26, 2015
tsarnaev-apologizes

At his formal sentencing, Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev said: “I am sorry for the lives that I’ve taken.”

Boston Opens Expanded Southampton Street Homeless Shelter

June 25, 2015
The city-run homeless shelter at 112 Southampton St. is seen in January, when it first opened. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

The shelter opening coincided with the release of a Walsh administration action plan to combat veteran homelessness and end chronic homelessness.

Quotation Of The Week: Charleston Church Killings

June 19, 2015
charleston-obama

On Wednesday evening, a white man fatally shot nine people in a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina.

Mass. Adds 7,400 Jobs In May; Jobless Rate Ticks Down To 4.6 Percent

June 18, 2015

It’s the lowest Massachusetts’ jobless rate has been since December 2007.

Former Rep. Barney Frank Joins Bank Board

June 17, 2015
Former Massachusetts U.S. Rep. Barney Frank in Boston, in a 2012 file photo (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Frank, an architect of a 2010 law that reshaped the financial industry, has joined the board of New York-based Signature Bank.

Boston 2024 Sees Quincy For Beach Volleyball Host

June 17, 2015
A rendering of Boston 2024's proposed beach volleyball venue in Quincy

Beach volleyball events had initially been proposed for Boston Common — one of the most scrutinized of the proposed Olympic venues.

Boston Violence Prevention Program Targets 11- To 14-Year-Olds

June 16, 2015
A day after two Boston teens -- ages 14 and 16 -- were charged with fatally shooting a 16-year-old, Mayor Marty Walsh announced a new initiative to stem youth violence. A memorial to the 16-year-old victim, Jonathan Dos Santos, is seen on the corner of Washington and Fuller streets in Dorchester Monday. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Officials announced the initiative a day after two Boston teens — ages 14 and 16 — were charged with fatally shooting a 16-year-old.

Billerica Club Would Host 2024 Olympic Shooting

June 15, 2015
A rendering of the proposed Olympic shooting venue at Billerica’s Minute Man Sportsman’s Club

Another week, another new venue announcement. Boston 2024 had originally suggested that Long Island, in Boston Harbor, would host shooting.

Quotation Of The Week: Boston Teen Gunned Down

June 12, 2015
teen-shooting

On Wednesday evening, a 16-year-old who was riding his bike near his Dorchester home was shot and killed.

Find The Uninsured Rate In Your Mass. Town

April 02, 2015
(Courtesy of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation)

Massachusetts has the lowest rate of residents lacking health insurance. We know that. But the state figure masks significant variation on a more local level.

Boston Wants Your Ideas For Reimagining City Hall Plaza

March 09, 2015
Have an idea to reimagine the oft-barren landscape that is Boston City Hall Plaza?

Have an idea to reimagine the oft-barren landscape that is Boston City Hall Plaza? Mayor Marty Walsh wants to hear it.

The Smiley Face Was Made In Worcester, And It’s Now 50

October 03, 2014
Smiley face creator Harvey Ball, of Worcester, autographs posters in his office on July 6, 1998. (Paul Connors/AP)

The iconic yellow smiley face was created by Worcester artist Harvey Ball in 1963.

Tom Brady Posted His (Pre-Patriots) Resume

September 18, 2014
0918_brady-resume-crop

“Really thought I was going to need this after the 5th round,” the now-star QB wrote.

Miss Newport Folk Festival? NPR Has You Covered

July 28, 2014
Ryan Adams performs at the Newport Folk Festival. (NPR Music)

The 55th iteration of the iconic music festival happened this past weekend in Rhode Island, and NPR Music, as it does every year, is posting audio and photos.

Doc Says Pedal: Boston Launches ‘Prescribe-A-Bike’ Hubway Program

March 26, 2014
(gobanshee1/Flickr via Compflight)

Boston Medical Center physicians can refer low-income patients for a $5 membership to the area’s bike share system, under a new initiative.

Liner Note Nostalgia And Music Consumption Now

March 19, 2014
Ben found this CD, Soul Asylum's "Grave Dancers Union," from 1992, in WBUR behind the studio. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Was Ben’s love of music deepened because early on he often read while he listened? He mulls it over.

Guatemalan Children Serenade Kerry With ‘Sweet Caroline’

June 07, 2013
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry listens as students in a State Department educational program focused on impoverished and indigenous children serenade him with a rendition of "Sweet Caroline" during a visit to their school in Antigua, Guatemala, on June 5, 2013. (State Department/Flickr)

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry got a touching reminder of his Boston roots in Guatemala this week.

Storm Aftermath: Practicing Medicine Without Power

November 02, 2011
A stethoscope (nwxiang/Flickr)

The staff at one North Andover pediatrician’s office is, for the fourth straight day in an outage, “seeing sick kids in the cold, with no computers, no phones and no lights.”

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