Tony Wagner

Digital producer


I work on digital and publishing strategy for Marketplace's podcasts “Make Me Smart,” “The Uncertain Hour” and “Corner Office,” along with upcoming projects and the podcast versions of our flagship radio shows.

What was your first job?

I was a "party coach," serving pizza and cutting cake at The Play Station, a birthday venue in my hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It was kind of like a Chuck E. Cheese, but train-themed.

What is something that everyone should own, no matter how much it costs?

A good pair of boots is not cheap, but they'll last your whole life.

What’s something that you thought you knew but later found out you were wrong about?

I used to think I didn't like tacos, because when I was growing up in a small mostly white suburb in the Midwest, "tacos" meant ground beef, limp lettuce, pre-shredded cheese and a seasoning packet in a hard shell. It took moving to LA for me to realize how narrow my view was and start exploring the endless varieties and rich history of my absolute favorite food.

What’s the favorite item in your workspace and why?

For Christmas a few years ago, my good friend (and Marketplace colleague) Sarah Menendez gave me a framed photo of the animatronic baby Grinch from the 2000 Jim Carrey adaptation of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." It's been on my desk ever since, and when people ask, I say he's my son.

Latest Stories (398)

What you need to know about the NCAA and paying student athletes

Nov 13, 2019
This week on "Make Me Smart," we're talking about a longtime controversy that's starting to boil over. Here's a refresher.
The Virginia Cavaliers celebrate with the trophy after their 85-77 win over the Texas Tech Red Raiders during the 2019 NCAA men's Final Four National Championship game at U.S. Bank Stadium on April 08, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Here are some more of your money horror stories

Oct 31, 2019
Boo! More tales we couldn't fit in the podcast, including bad breakups, discounted patio furniture and an act of god.
Your trusty blogger, left, dressed as Regis Philbin circa "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire," Halloween 2000.
Courtesy: Tony Wagner

Tell us your money horror stories 🎃👻

Oct 21, 2019
Help us with an upcoming episode by sharing your money secrets, fears and regrets.
Tony Wagner/Marketplace, screenshots via Amazon

Crying at work is uncomfortable, and that's OK

Jun 25, 2019
One of the country's foremost crying-at-work experts set us straight on shedding tears at the office.
It's ok, let it out.
AMC/screengrab via Netflix

We're still not sick of Christmas music, believe it or not

Dec 24, 2018
Holiday music is more popular than ever, but that doesn't mean it's easy to make jingle bells rock.
The brothers in Hanson — Zac, Taylor and Isaac — are reissuing their 1997 holiday album "Snowed In" this year. Their second holiday album, "Finally it's Christmas," came out in 2017.
Peter Balonon-Rosen/Marketplace

We did the numbers on our filter bubbles

Nov 20, 2018
Kai and Molly hand over their Twitter data to see what they're not seeing.
Diptendu Dutta/AFP/Getty Images