Travis McMillen

Video Producer

TRAVIS McMILLEN is the video producer for the Futures Lab, located on the lower level of the Reynolds Journalism Institute. As video producer, McMillen directs and produces regular and occasional programming from RJI’s own production studio, including KBIA-FM’s Views of the News, Global Journalist and Radio Friends with Paul Pepper. He is a Columbia native who started working at KOMU-TV, the University of Missouri’s NBC affiliate, at the age of 16. At 18 McMillen became the audio operator for Pepper and Friends, a community variety and talk show that aired on KOMU for 27 years. It was a position he held for almost 10 years. Aside from audio, McMillen’s duties on the show included field segment videographer and editor and, from 2001-2007, primary fill-in director. McMillen also directed KOMU’s daily two-hour morning newscast from 2001-2008. He is married to Jennifer, whom he met at KOMU. She currently produces the CW News at Nine for the station. They have three boys.

Ways to Connect

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back local storyteller LARRY BROWN! Normally, holidays don't double-up, so to please everyone on this Valentine's Day/Ash Wednesday, Larry tells the perfect story about "sacrifice on behalf of someone else." February 14, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with TERRI GRAY and SALLY SILVERS about the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri! For 35 years now, families from out-of-town have stayed at this home away from home while their child receives some kind of medical attention. The operation benefits greatly from volunteers and donations - watch for details on how you can get involved! At [4:25] CAROL BEAHAN, Executive Director of Primaris Foundation, explains the new Medicare card. The biggest change, in an effort to prevent identity theft, is that your social security number is no longer printed on the card. But that's not all! Find out what else will change, and when you'll be seeing yours in your mailbox. February 13, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with DEBBIE PARKER, Center for English Language Learning at MU, and SARA HUACO, a student from Peru who's taking part in the CELL program. Debbie explains how this program benefits both the American student and the international student: "I think it increases understanding and empathy and just gives us more knowledge - it enriches our lives." Sara, who's been in the U.S. for about 15 years, tells us about some of the not-so-obvious differences between Columbia and her hometown of Lima. Watch! February 12, 2018

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back the Boone County Hams! Their annual "Say It With A Song" Valentine's Day campaign is back February 13th and 14th! Let four guys in tuxedos tell your special someone that they mean the world to you the best way they know how: by singing! Enjoy two numbers on today's show: "Let Me Call You Sweetheart/Heart of My Heart" medley at [1:30] and "The Recipe For Making Love" at [4:38]. February 9, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with KELLY MYERS, Development Director of Coyote Hill, about the 21st annual pancake breakfast fundraiser! Proceeds from this popular event will send the families of Coyote Hill on vacation this summer - something that, as Kelly says is, "an experience that almost none of the children have had an opportunity to do." At [4:30] KRISTIN BOWEN and MARGARET BOOKER invite everyone to join Moms Demand Action (For Gun Sense In America) for 'Advocacy Day' at the State Capitol in Jefferson City. Let your voice be heard in the very building where gun laws are decided! February 8, 2018

It’s prime time for moviegoers, gearing up for the Academy Awards at the end of the month. Many of them are seeing as many films as they want for only $10 a month thanks to a new subscription service called MoviePass. How does it work and why are movie chains so against it? Also, Newsweek’s senior management fired in what might have been an act of retaliation, Tronc sells the Los Angeles Times and why the Las Vegas Review-Journal spiked a story about allegations of sexual misconduct against casino magnate Steve Wynn’s two decades ago. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean: Views of the News.

Today Paul Pepper and MEL ZELENAK continue their discussion about financially-sound resolutions you should be making for 2018. Topics covered include: how to keep a healthy skepticism in the marketplace; investment advice from Dan Solin; buying life insurance and more! February 7, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with NICOLE KNAPP-WEBER about a special fundraiser for City Garden School next month at Sager | Braudis Gallery in Columbia! "Tales From the Garden: Mythical Magic" is a gala featuring a cake competition, live music, a silent auction and more! At [4:12] actor ADAM BRIETZKE invites everyone to come see Talking Horse Productions' latest show, "Louie, Louie and la Dolce Vita." With a cast of only two, this intimate love story about a bi-racial couple under the thumb of J. Edgar Hoover in the late '60s is sure to keep you captivated until the end. February 6, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with VALORIE LIVINGSTON, Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Columbia, about the 13th annual 'Rootin' Tootin' Chili Cookoff'! This popular event is the primary fundraiser for the services and programs that benefit over 1,200 kids in our community. At [4:45] JEN DAVIS invites everyone to the Wild and Scenic Film Festival February 11 at The Blue Note in Columbia! See a "diverse array" of short and medium films from around the country and right here locally. Proceeds benefit Missouri River Relief. February 5, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with HEATHER HARLAN, Phoenix Health Programs, Inc., about opioid addiction. All it takes is a very small amount of fentanyl combined with a very small amount of heroin to create a lethal combination. Thankfully, an overdose is not a death sentence. Heather tells us about an over-the-counter drug that can reverse the effects. At [4:16] JOE GEIST, Curator, and JERRY BENNER, Photographer, invite everyone to come see two new exhibits at the Ashby-Hodge Gallery in Fayette. Jerry will have a number of photographs on display from his eight-day stay in Cuba - three of which he brought with him today! February 2, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with MARILYN McLEOD about the League of Women Voters' annual Legislative Night next Thursday at the Columbia Public Library. This is your chance to hear from, and ask questions of, our State Legislative Delegation. At [4:45] NICK FOSTER, Executive Director of Voluntary Action Center, talks about the percentage of individuals living at or below the federal poverty level in our community. That number: 24.6%. Nick has some thoughts as to why is that number is so high in an area with such low unemployment figures. February 1, 2018

President Trump delivered his first State of the Union address last night. Was it effective? We'll discuss. Facebook says it's going to increase the number of local news stories in your feed. How exactly will that work? Plus: Twitter bots, the Pope's take on fake news and a look at the news organizations that are being credited for exposing sexual abuse by U.S. Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar. From Missouri School of Journalism professors Mike McKean, Earnest Perry and Ryan Thomas. Views of the News.

Today Paul Pepper visits with author DIANNA O'BRIEN about her book, "From Melon Fields to Moon Rocks." This rags-to-riches story of scientist and local entrepreneur, Charles Gehrke, is an inspiring tale of hard work, persistence and following your dream. At [3:38] CHERYL UNTERSCHUTZ tells us about Girls on the Run, a program that aims to inspire and encourage little girls to be "who they are and not what they are," all the while training for a 5K. January 31, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with JO TURNER and CARLA McFARLAND about the return of the Assistance League of Mid-Missouri's quarterly cookie sale! Proceeds from this and all "Cookie Connection" fundraisers go into programs that support women and children in our community. Get your orders in by February 6th! At [4:52] LAUREN WAGNER and SECUNDA KARIUKI invite everyone to come see Hickman High School Theatre's production of "The Miracle Worker." Be inspired by this true story of the teacher who helped a blind and deaf Helen Keller overcome the hardships she faced throughout her childhood. January 30, 2018

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back local harpist MARIA TREVOR! She performs two pieces of music, including 'Amazing Grace'. Catch her at "Harp and Healing" every first Tuesday of the month at Broadway Christian Church in Columbia - watch for details! January 29, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with ALEX LaBRUNERIE, President of LaBrunerie Financial, about three important financial topics: the new tax reform law and the changes it makes to the MOST 529 plan; how to make the most of the new tax bill by investing in the banking sector; and should you put real money into virtual money? Alex shares his thoughts - watch! January 26, 2018

Today Paul Pepper welcomes back author/poet WALTER BARGEN! He reads two original poems: "Utterly Gone" at [1:58], and the response, "Utterly Again," at [3:25]. Walter wrote the latter a few years ago based on a phone call he received one night from someone on the east coast. Who was on the other line, and why were they questioning the last two lines of an obscure poem about cattle mutilation written in 1977? The mystery remains unsolved! January 25, 2018

Think you’ve spotted fake news? Feel like you need to report it to someone? In Italy, news consumers are being asked to report fake news to a police agency who will fact check it, and if need be set the record straight. It might limit misinformation, but what effect might it have on freedom of the press? Also, coverage of the government shutdown, Rupert Murdoch’s suggestion that Facebook should pay publishers carriage fees like cable companies do the networks and the HuffPost ditches the model that’s defined it for years. 

Today Paul Pepper visits with NADIA NAVARRETE-TINDALL about the many native plants in Missouri that actually stay alive during the otherwise dormant winter months. Poverty grass, ragwort and pussytoes are just three of the examples she brought to talk about. Remember: grow native! January 24, 2018

Today Paul Pepper and KIT SALTER talk about the "hidden joys" of the ongoing Saturday Morning Book Talks series. Kit takes us back to the beginning - five years ago! - and then tells us about the authors invited to speak at the February and March 'Talks'. If you've never been, it's a great way to start a weekend! January 23, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with WALLY PFEFFER about the 16th annual Boone County Legislative Forum on Higher Education. This is your chance to visit with legislators like Sen. Caleb Rowden and Rep. Martha Stevens, among others, about the future of Mizzou. This event is open to MMA members, non-members and students - reserve your seat today! At [4:48] JENNIFER SNAWDER, RD, Central Missouri Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, shares tips on how to eat healthy during these cold winter months. Get her take on eating in versus eating out; and just what makes those green veggies so good for us? Watch! January 22, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with JOAN STACK, Curator of Art Collections at the State Historical Society of Missouri, about a new exhibit based on David Weiser's book, "Missouri Courthouses: Building Memories on the Square." This exhibit, featuring historical and current images from 36 of Missouri's 116 courthouses, is a collaboration with the Missouri Alliance for Conservation. January 19, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with author CHRISTINE J. GILBERT and illustrator DAVID HARRIS about "Super Grandma and Super Grandpa: The Unknown Superheroes." This three-book series has a lot of action and a positive message that's entertaining enough for children, parents and, of course, grandparents! Also, David tells us about his own children's book - a work in progress - that deals with how to be a best friend. January 18, 2018

At least one Republican lawmaker is calling for Gov. Eric Greitens to resign following reports of an extramarital affair. Greitens denies details in a KMOV-TV report that he photographed the woman without her consent and used them to blackmail her. The station’s reporting is salacious and scandalous, but it is news? Does the public’s right to know about their elected officials’ behavior outweigh an individual’s right to privacy? Also, coverage of sexual misconduct accusations against Actor Aziz Ansari take a very different tone, President Trump’s use of language and drastic changes to the Facebook algorithm. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean: Views of the News.

Today Paul Pepper visits with SID POPEJOY about 'Bike to the Future,' an organization that provides used bicycles to citizens of Columbia who don't otherwise have a basic means of transportation. If you have a bike you don't ride anymore, even if it's not in 100% working condition, donate it and help someone get around town! At [3:12] EMILY EDGINGTON ANDREWS and LaMONT WALKER invite everyone to "Unity," a benefit concert for United Community Builders, January 20th in downtown Columbia! Enjoy toe-tapping, hand-clapping music by the Columbia Community Gospel Choir, the Columbia Kids Gospel Choir and the Columbia Chorale. This event is free and open to the public. January 17, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with our resident money man, MEL ZELENAK, about good financial resolutions you should make right now for 2018! Get his take on low-cost index funds and the American Heart Association's amount you'll save by staying healthy. At [4:44] SCOTT MINIEA, Insurance Counseling Services, talks about a special enrollment period for those who, for example, let their 2017 Affordable Care Act plan lapse. Other circumstances apply - watch for details! January 16, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with STEPHANIE SHONEKAN and BRIAN BOOTON, MLK Planning Committee Members, about two events celebrating the life and message of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The first event, a free showing of the film "Harvest of Empire," is TODAY at Ragtag Cinema; the second event, a talk by activist and author Junot Díaz, is next Monday at Jesse Auditorium. Watch for details! January 15, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with LYNN ROSSY, Health Psychologist, about the 4th annual Mindful Eating Day! The theme this year is 'compassionate self-care to promote health and well-being', and you're invited to watch via two live broadcasts featuring interviews with knowledgeable practitioners. It all happens on January 25th. Watch for details! January 12, 2018

Today Paul Pepper visits with DR. MAR DOERING, DVM, All Paws Medical and Behavioral Center, about getting to know your dog. Find that little something that the two of you enjoy doing, and your pooch will be set for the day! This is because every dog has a unique "something." When you find out what that is, your bond will be stronger than ever! January 11, 2018

What happens when the president’s attorney’s try to block the publication of a White House tell-all? Sales go through the roof, of course… and buzz on television and radio gets louder and louder, quite literally. Where Wolff’s reporting techniques sound? Did the president’s surrogates hurt argument that anecdotes weren’t accurate? Also, how rumors of Oprah Winfrey’s 2020 presidential run made news, why the BBC’s China editor resigned her post, and a new publisher at the Columbia Daily Tribune. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean: Views of the News.