Sheila Brummer

Reporter & Special Projects Producer

Sheila Brummer returns to her radio roots as a Reporter/Special Projects Producer for Siouxland Public Media KWIT-KOJI.


She grew up on a farm on the borders of Crawford, Shelby and Harrison counties in west-central Iowa.  Receiving a typewriter at the age of five launched a life-time love of journalism.


While attending Morningside College, Sheila worked in television production and as a disc jockey.  The highlight of her collegiate career came as a foreign exchange student at Edge Hill College outside of Liverpool, England. 


After college graduation, Sheila landed a job as a radio news reporter for KSCJ in Sioux City, Iowa.  When budget cuts slashed hours, she turned to television.  She first worked “behind the scenes” as a photographer and editor, then reporter, for KTIV-TV in Sioux City, Iowa.  Her on-air career took her to Wausau, Wisconsin, Des Moines, Iowa and Omaha, Nebraska.  While working as a producer in Las Vegas, Nevada, KTIV-TV offered an opportunity to return “home."  Her career came full circle when she took over as main anchor five years ago.


The Upper Midwest Emmy Awards, Iowa Broadcast News Association and Associated Press honored Sheila for her reporting. 


Sheila thrives on giving back to her community.  She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Girls Inc. of Sioux City and is a member of Junior League, Perry Creek PTA, FBI Citizens Academy and Sioux City Press Club.  She has volunteered for even more charities; including the American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, Camp High Hopes, Little Giants Foundation, MS Society, Iowa Caregivers Association and Easter Seals of Iowa.


Sheila lives in Sioux City with her husband, Ed, and their five-year-old daughter, Anna.  


Sheila loves talking and telling stories, so public radio is the perfect place for her enthusiasm and talent.  You can hear her afternoons from 3 to 6 p.m. and with news coverage throughout the day on Siouxland Public Media KWIT-KOJI.

State of Iowa

House Democrats in Congress lost enough seats in this month's elections that they'll have the smallest majority in more than a century according to the Associated Press.

To find out what happened, the party has already begun a “deep dive” examination, looking at the party’s move farther left on national issues and how they would fix the economy greatly impacted by COVID-19.


The state of Iowa recorded 13 more deaths due to complications of COVID-19 in a 24-hour period.  Four of the deaths from Woodbury County; three older adults and one elderly woman over the age of 81.  Since the start of the pandemic 115 Woodbury County residents have died.  Local health officials say to avoid nonessential gatherings when possible. 

Siouxland District health reported 36 additional cases today. There were 109 added yesterday, including one more death, a man between the ages of 41 and 60.

The Sioux City Community School District issued its weekly COVID-19 report on Friday afternoon.  The update shows the highest number of cases this school year, with 34 students and staff members in all testing positive in about a dozen (11) buildings. 

There were 32 last week. No classes were put into “emergency response virtual learning”. Last week, West Middle and four individual classes were moved to on-line learning until after the Thanksgiving holiday. 

Erika Hansen/Instagram/@re.arranged

The COVID-19 pandemic forced non-profits to make modifications to host must-needed fundraisers.  Many moved to virtual events and auctions.  As Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer reports one local organization launched an in-person event today with safety a top concern.

For more than 40-years, Big Brother Big Sisters of Siouxland has hosted an annual “Tour of Homes” as its major fundraiser.


If people and businesses in Sioux City don’t follow new health guidelines issued by the state of Iowa this week to stop a big spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, they could face legal action. 

That’s the word today from Sioux City police who say they will enforce the rules, including wearing masks in public buildings.

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds today talked about rising numbers of infection in long-term care facilities.  Siouxland Public Media’s Mary Hartnett has more.

City of Sioux City

New restrictions imposed by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds kicked in Tuesday to try and reduce infection numbers and hospitalizations due to COVID-19.  They include requiring masks in all public and state  

buildings in certain circumstances.  Siouxland Public Media reached out to Sioux City Mayor Bob Scott and he shared his thoughts on enforcement, the local hospital surge and pandemic fatigue as he faces an autoimmune disease putting him at higher risk for complications if he contracts the virus.

The Iowa Department of Public reports 35 more deaths due to complications of COVID-19 in the past 24-hours and more than 3,500 new cases.  Plus, the state set another record for hospitalizations linked to the virus.

At a news conference today, Governor Kim Reynolds says if current trends don’t change more restrictions will be put in place to prevent the spread of the virus and ease the health care surge.

Unity-Point Health-St. Luke’s is once again urging the Siouxland community to step up and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Siouxland Public Media reached out to Sioux City’s two hospitals today after concerns on social media that patients were being transferred to other facilities. One post on Twitter that appears to be from a lung expert in central Iowa said “Patients are coming to Des Moines from Sioux City to Davenport.” 

Sioux City Community Schools

Emotions run high when it comes to education during COVID-19; parents with varying outlooks, teachers' unions worried about safety and school leader trying to balance health and education.  Siouxland Public Media reached out to members of the Sioux City Community School District's Board of Directors for their opinions.

Statement from Sioux City School Board Member Dan Greenwell:

UnityPoint Health-St. Luke's

The number of hospitalizations due to the novel coronavirus continue to rise in Sioux City.  Siouxland District Health reported a total of 91 patients with 65 patients battling COVID-19 alone on November 13, 2020.  The two facilities are four patients away from the level experienced in late May.

Siouxland Public Media reached out to both UnityPoint Health-St. Luke’s and MercyOne for comment on increases this week.

MercyOne orginally sent out the same statement released on November 2nd when there were 9% fewer patients. 

New York Times

The New York Times highlighted Sioux City in a story released today on places hard hit by the coronavirus.

Rachael Chapple

Veterans Day was originally known as Armistice Day, a holiday created at the end of World War I to remember those who fought in “the war to end all wars” on the 11th hour, of the 11th day of the 11th month.

Siouxland Public Media reached out to a few members of our local community to hear about their service and sacrifice as veterans and military family members.


Iowa coronavirus trends continue to worsen as increasing numbers of hospitalizations further stress hospitals and health care workers as they try to keep up with the surge.

Iowa Department of Public Health data showed almost 4,800 additional cases in the past 24 hours, and 26 more deaths, bringing the state total to 1,898.  There are two more deaths in Woodbury County, for 105 in all.

It was the fifth consecutive day Iowa reported more than 4,000 new cases a day. 

Sioux City, IA - 11.6.20
Siouxland Public Media/Sheila Brummer

The Morningside Marching Mustangs performed for residents of Sunrise Retirement Community on November 6, 2020.

The group paid tribute to veterans with their song selections with temperatures in the 70s.

Shane Macklin, the Director of Bands at Morningside College shared details of their performance with Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer.  He also talked about the challenge of playing during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Majestic Pomp Fanfare

National Anthem

America- Let Freedom Ring

Battle Cry of Freedom


Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds says the state has reached a point of serious community spread of COVID-19. 

During a news conference today, she issued a partial mask mandate for social gatherings to slow the spread of the virus.  She also extended the public health emergency for another 30 days with more restrictions. 

“If we want to protect our health care workers, keep our businesses, schools and hospitals open now is the time for every Iowa to carefully decide what you can to stop the virus and stop from spreading it.”

Large numbers of coronavirus cases have been trending for the last week in Iowa and Siouxland.  In Woodbury County, since yesterday there have been 121 new cases for almost 8,200 in all.  Three-quarters of people have recovered, including nurse Pam Venturi. The single mother of five is taking part in Siouxland Public Media’s special media project this school year called, “Going Viral: Lessons Learned During the Pandemic."  Pam provided an update for us after she tested positive on October 9, 2020.

The head of the Sioux City Education Association again expressed concern about school buildings being used as voting locations.

During Monday night’s Sioux City Community School Board meeting, union leader Kris Snavely urged board members to change future calendars to give students the day off during major elections. She suggested teachers participate in a professional development workday instead.

Sioux City Community Schools

The Sioux City Community School District addressed increasing absences with staff and students due to COVID-19.  Even though no official action was taken, Siouxland Public Media's Sheila Brummer has more on the increasing concern with some school leaders when it comes to keeping students and staff safe.

Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Paul Gausman says some buildings in the district are getting close to moving to virtual learning only.

The state of Iowa allows a school district to move to virtual learning if the 14-day positivity rate exceeds 15% with 10% absentee rates. 

Nebraska Department of Human Services

Today, Nebraska’s governor announced additional measures to help stop the spread of COVID-19, but he still rejects the idea of a statewide mask mandate.

The Sioux City Musketeers take to the ice in Sioux City on Saturday night for the first time since the start of the pandemic. New CEO Travis Morgan talked to Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer about safety during this era of COVID-19.

The Sioux City Community School District reports 13 news COVID-19 cases; 8 students and 5 staff in 9 buildings across the district.  Two multi-grade classes at West Middle School moved to Emergency Response Virtual Learning.  Woodbury County’s 14-day test positivity rate is almost 21%.  Anything above 15% is one criteria for a school district to move to on-line learning only.  District also need at least a 10% absenteeism rate.  A spokesperson for the Sioux City Community School District told Siouxland Public Media this week, that level hasn’t been reached yet.  The topic will likely be br

Associated Press

Today, Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds announced plans for a new public service campaign as cases continue to climb.  She says Iowans need to made an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 during the next three weeks. 

Reynolds also says the success of Republican candidates in the general election was proof that most Iowans support her decision to not require masks and quickly end most restrictions on businesses.

Reynolds says the media campaign would begin next week and would include newspaper, television and radio advertising.


Iowa saw the most new cases of COVID-19 in a 24-hour period since the start of the pandemic, with more than 2,800 new infections and 26 deaths.  That includes a man in Woodbury County between the ages of 61-and-80 for 101 deaths in all and 95 news cases.

Woodbury County’s 14-day test positivity rate is the highest since the state started releasing that data at 20%.

Iowans set a new voter turnout record on election night. More than 1.69 million people voted, surpassing the 2012 record by about 100,000.

According to Secretary of State Paul Pate, 76 percent of registered voters participated, compared to 73 percent in 2012.

Iowans also shattered the early voting record, with more than 1-million absentee ballots received as of Wednesday morning. Absentee ballots postmarked by November second will also be counted if they arrive by noon on November ninth.

President Donald Trump and Sen. Joni Ernst have held off challenges in Iowa, which had been considered a swing state after voters chose Democrat Barack Obama twice but swung to favor Trump four years ago. The Republican president and Democrat Joe Biden held events in Iowa in the days leading up to Tuesday’s election indicating what had appeared to be a tight race. Ernst had breezed to an easy win in 2014. She won again but by a narrower margin against Democrat Theresa Greenfield, who heads a Des Moines property development company.

Siouxland District Health Department

Siouxland District Health says Woodbury County to see a significant number of COVID-19 cases.  There are also higher hospitalizations.  There were 97 new cases recorded today.  The running total of cases Monday afternoon was 7,800 and 100 deaths. Sioux City’s hospitals are treating a total of 84 COVID-19 patents with 60 hospitalized due just to the disease.  On Friday, there were 71. 

Statement from UnityPoint Health-St. Luke’s:

OCTOBER 30, 2020
Associated Press

Democrat Joe Biden is making his case against President Donald Trump on the coronavirus in Iowa, one of the states hit hardest by the pandemic.

Speaking Friday at a drive-in rally at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, Biden rattled off a litany of statistics about how the pandemic has hit the state, noting Iowa has hit a daily record number of cases and hospitalizations this week and highlighting the steep job losses there since the pandemic hit.

OCTOBER 30, 2020

Ninety-nine people have died in Woodbury County due to complications of COVID-19 after the addition of the death of an elderly man.  There were another 93 cases for a total of almost 7,500 since the start of the pandemic, with two-thirds recovered.  

South Dakota Department of Health

A grim record set by the state of South Dakota when it comes to COVID-19.  The number of deaths recorded in one day was 19.

Previously, the most fatalities was 14, reported on October 8th and 22nd.  There were almost 1,000 new cases added in one day. 

South Dakota has the worst rate of positive tests, hospitalizations and cases per 100,000 people in the country, according to data compiled by the New York Times.

North Dakota still leads the nation in deaths.

Associated Press

More Iowans than ever before have been hospitalized due to complications of COVID-19.  The current number, according to the state coronavirus website is 596 including 75 at Sioux City’s two facilities.  The statewide rate of hospitalizations is more than 30% higher than peak during the spring.

Twenty-two have died from the virus in the past 24-hours with more than 1,800 testing positive.

Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, Theresa Greenfield, paused campaign events today after a staffer was exposed to the disease.