Ryan Heinsius

Executive Producer/Local Content Manager

Ryan joined KNAU's newsroom staff in 2013. He covers a broad range of stories from local, state and tribal politics to education, economy and public lands issues. Ryan also regularly interviews both internationally known and regional musicians, and is a frequent contributor to NPR News and National Native News.

Before making the leap to public radio, Ryan spent more than a decade in print media. As the longtime editor of an alternative weekly paper, he covered arts and culture and wrote about a broad range of topics in a weekly column. 

He earned his bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University in political science and journalism, and has returned to teach at his alma mater. 

Ryan is also a Flagstaff-based musician and has performed and recorded with many bands in the Southwest. He spends as much time as possible with his wife and daughter hiking and cycling the amazing terrain of northern Arizona.

Ways to Connect

National Park Service

A Trump administration policy changes how the Bureau of Land Management conducts environmental review and public comment for oil and gas leases. It could affect the development of 3,000 acres recently leased near Holbrook for helium exploration. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports.


TJ Sokol/Associated Press

Former Arizona Gov. Fife Symington says he is considering running in the 2020 special election to fill the seat held by the late Sen. John McCain.

Timothy Duffy

Singer-songwriter Dom Flemons’ newest album, Black Cowboys, takes a rarely seen look into a nearly lost piece American history. Its 18 tracks are a mix of originals, traditional folk tunes, and many seldom-heard songs that chronicle the role played by African-Americans in settling the West after emancipation in the 19th century. Flemons’ is a fifth-generation Arizonan and a former Flagstaff resident, and tomorrow he returns as one of the headliners at Pickin’ in the Pines. For the latest installment of KNAU’s series Eats and Beats, I had a chance to talk with Flemons about the very personal genesis of Black Cowboys.


Denver Post, file

Nearly 300 Navajo farmers and ranchers have filed a lawsuit over damages suffered from the 2015 Gold King Mine spill. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports, they’re seeking about $75 million from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and several private companies.


Stephen Eginoire

The Grand Canyon is famous for its complex geology that displays more than a billion years of Earth’s history. Now, park managers are just beginning to explore what’s beneath the visible surface—an extensive maze of caves.


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