Rachael McDonald

News Director

Rachael McDonald is News Director at KLCC. She’s been with the station for more than 10 years. Previously, she established the Richland, Washington bureau for the Northwest News Network. She also worked as News Director at KAZU in Monterey, California. Rachael has won numerous awards for her reporting.
Rachael was named KLCC News Director in June, 2018.  From July, 2018 through January, 2019 Rachael served as KLCC's interim Program Director . Rachael has a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Oregon.

Ways to Connect

Brian Bull

Lane County Public Health officials say healthy individuals do not need to wear masks, despite some conflicting opinions.

Abbott Laboratories

Lane County is hoping to get shipments of a new rapid test for COVID-19 as soon as next week. The Abbott test was developed by a company in California. 

Melorie Begay

The City of Eugene has added more public bathrooms and handwashing stations around the city. It’s an effort to help people prevent the spread of COVID-19 by washing their hands frequently.

Alachua County (public domain) / Flickr.com

The number of coronavirus cases in Oregon is on the rise and could peak in May, says the Lane County Public Health Officer.

Oregon Department of Veterans' Affairs

The coronavirus pandemic has hit a Veterans’ Home in Lebanon hard. Monday , the Oregon Health Authority announced a 2nd death there to COVID-19, and there are more than 30 positive cases among the residents and staff. But, people from all over are sending messages of comfort.

Rachael McDonald

Oregon has 414 known cases of the novel coronavirus as of Friday, according to state and local health officials. The state has 12 known deaths related to the virus.

Ellen DeWerd

Gyms are among the non-essential businesses shut down this week by Governor Kate Brown’s Stay Home, Save Lives Executive Order. While gyms are going dark, many fitness instructors are taking to the virtual world to keep teaching classes. I spoke with the Fitness Director at the Downtown Athletic Club in Eugene.

Rachael McDonald

Oregon has 268 known cases of the novel coronavirus as of Wednesday afternoon, according to the Oregon Health Authority.  The actual number of cases is believed to be higher given the lack of tests available.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Lane County Health officials are reaching out to people who are homeless in the community to assess their needs amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Chris Lehman

Governor Kate Brown’s executive order Monday telling people to stay home, could help flatten the curve for coronavirus in the state. 

Rachael McDonald / KLCC

House Democrats are working on a spending plan to respond to the coronavirus crisis. Oregon 4th District Representative Peter DeFazio says the bill would get as much aid to people as possible. 

Rachael McDonald

Lane County Health officials say a staff member at Eugene 4J School District was in direct contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19.

Rachael McDonald

Lane County health officials say they’re tracing the contacts of a 60- year-old woman who died on March 14 from suspected COVID-19.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Health officials are reporting what they say is the first suspected death from COVID-19 in Lane County. The 60-year old woman died Saturday, March 14th at PeaceHealth Medical Center in Springfield. 

Rachael McDonald

Lane County has its first case of COVID-19. The announcement came Tuesday at a press conference.

Dr. Patrick Leudtke  is Lane County Public Health officer. He says the person is a 69-year-old man who lives in a private residence in Eugene / Springfield.

Rachael McDonald

In light of emergency declarations by federal and state leaders in response to the coronavirus outbreak, officials in Lane County sought to reassure the public Friday morning.

Brian Bull / KLCC

Oregon is closing schools and banning mass gatherings, as concerns about the new coronavirus spread. Governor Kate Brown says schools will close statewide from March 16th through March 31st, due to staffing challenges and health concerns.

Meerah Powell, US Census, Jordan Strauss, Associated Press, Rachael McDonald

Governor Kate Brown bans large public events to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Meanwhile the number of cases of COVID-19 grows in Oregon. 

Rachael McDonald

As of Wednesday morning, there are no known cases of COVID-19 in Lane County, but health officials announced a new measure to prevent its spread. It recommends people who are 60 years or older and those with pre-existing health conditions avoid large gatherings. 

Rachael McDonald

The Oregon Health Authority is working on guidelines on large public gatherings to prevent the spread of COVID-19.


Oregon U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, this week, filed to run for re-election. In a tweeted campaign announcement, Merkley said he wants to put America back on track.

Brian Bull / KLCC

A regional bloodbank says it’s facing a shortage of donations. They’re encouraging people to give blood this weekend.

Brian Bull, Our Children's Trust, Peacehealth

Coronavirus is in the Northwest, we discuss best practices for prevention and what state officials are doing.The short legislative session wraps up in Salem on March 8th. Will anything get accomplished amidst the Republican walk out?

City of Springfield

Springfield has chosen a new City Manager. Nancy Newton was extended an offer this week. She’s currently the Assistant Executive for Sacramento County in California. 


A law conference that has been held at the University of Oregon for 38 years has been cancelled due to concerns over coronavirus. The Public Interest Environmental Law Conference was set to take place this week. 

Our Children's Trust

Attorneys for 21 young people filed a petition Monday asking a full panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to review their climate change lawsuit. In January, a 3-judge panel dismissed the case. 

Rachael McDonald

There are no confirmed cases of coronavirus yet in Lane County, but officials say they expect it to show up here in the coming weeks.

OPB, Centers for Disease Control, Rachael McDonald, King5 screenshot, Oregon Athletics

The legislative session is at a standstill as Oregon GOP Lawmakers continue to boycott the cap and trade bill. 

Rachael McDonald / KLCC

Taylor’s Bar & Grill has closed permanently. This after years of complaints and problems including documented rapes, assaults, and druggings.