Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who works with NPR's Morning Edition and Digital Media group. In addition to coordinating Web features, he frequently contributes to NPR's blogs, from The Two Way and All Tech Considered to The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to leading the London 2012 Olympics blog, The Torch. His assignments have included being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road, as well as establishing the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR.org.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, the site won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell trains both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" — promoting more collaboration between departments. Other shows he has worked with include All Things Considered, Fresh Air, and Talk of the Nation.

Prior to joining NPR in late 2003, Chappell worked on the Assignment Desk at CNN International, handling coverage in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America, and coordinating CNN's pool coverage out of Qatar.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, as well as editing and producing stories for CNN.com's features division. He also worked at the network's video and research library.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

From 2002-2003, Chappell served as editor-in-chief of The Trans-Atlantic Journal, a business and lifestyle monthly geared for expatriate Europeans working and living in the United States.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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The Two-Way
2:49 pm
Mon January 19, 2015

Origin Unknown: Study Says Blast Of Radio Waves Came From Outside Our Galaxy

Australia's giant Parkes radio telescope detected a "fast radio burst," or FRB, last May. Researchers call FRBs, whose origins haven't been explained, "tantalizing mysteries of the radio sky."
CSIRO EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 20, 2015 9:52 am

On a graph, they look like detonations. Scientists call them "fast radio bursts," or FRBs: mysterious and strong pulses of radio waves that seemingly emanate far from the Milky Way.

The bursts are rare; they normally last for only about 1 millisecond. In a first, researchers in Australia say they've observed one in real time.

NPR's Joe Palca reports:

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The Two-Way
1:22 pm
Mon January 19, 2015

Prosecutor Who Accused Argentine President Of Cover-Up Is Found Dead

A woman leaves a rose in front of the AMIA Jewish community center facilities in Buenos Aires Monday, after Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman was found dead. Nisman had been investigating a 1994 bombing at the center.
Martin Di Maggio EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon January 19, 2015 5:25 pm

One day before he was to testify about an alleged cover-up after a deadly terrorist bombing at a Jewish center in Argentina, a federal prosecutor was found dead of a gunshot wound in his Buenos Aires apartment.

Alberto Nisman's body was found Sunday. Officials say they also found a gun, but no note that might indicate his death was a suicide, according to local daily Clarin. An autopsy is being performed today, the newspaper adds.

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The Two-Way
11:05 am
Mon January 19, 2015

NFL Investigates Reports Of Deflated Balls After Patriots Rout Colts

Questions over out-of-regulation footballs have come up after the New England Patriots won the AFC Championship Game Sunday. Running back LeGarrette Blount ran for 148 yards and three touchdowns in the Patriots' 45-7 win over the Indianapolis Colts.
Elsa Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 19, 2015 11:38 am

Did the New England Patriots tamper with the footballs used in the AFC Championship Game? The NFL is asking that question, after the host Patriots beat the Indianapolis Colts, 45-7, in rainy conditions Sunday.

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The Two-Way
10:24 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Boy Says He Didn't Go To Heaven; Publisher Says It Will Pull Book

Alex Malarkey, seen here in a 2009 photo, has written an open letter saying that events described in the best-seller The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven were made up.
John Kuntz The Plain Dealer/Landov

Originally published on Fri January 16, 2015 12:36 pm

Nearly five years after it hit best-seller lists, a book that purported to be a 6-year-old boy's story of visiting angels and heaven after being injured in a bad car crash is being pulled from shelves. The young man at the center of The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven, Alex Malarkey, said this week that the story was all made up.

The book's publisher, Tyndale House, had promoted it as "a supernatural encounter that will give you new insights on Heaven, angels, and hearing the voice of God."

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The Two-Way
9:25 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Oklahoma Executes An Inmate For 1st Time Since Lethal Injection Disaster

The gurney in the the execution chamber at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary is pictured in McAlester, Okla. Oklahoma resumed executions Thursday, Jan. 15, 2015, after botching its last one.
Sue Ogrocki AP

Originally published on Fri January 16, 2015 9:24 am

More than eight months after Oklahoma officials struggled to perform the execution of a condemned man who eventually died of a heart attack, the state executed another prisoner, Charles Frederick Warner, Thursday night. The Associated Press reports that Warner was declared dead at 7:28 p.m. CST. Warner was convicted in the 1997 rape and beating death of an 11-month-old girl.

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The Two-Way
7:57 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Pizza Delivery Driver Won't Be Fired For Shooting Robbery Suspect

Originally published on Fri January 16, 2015 7:41 am

A Papa John's pizza delivery driver who says she shot a would-be robber in the face will not be fired, despite her violation of the company's policy against employees carrying guns. Instead, the employee will be reassigned to work inside a store.

The shooting occurred in the Atlanta area Sunday night, when the driver was making a delivery that police now suspect was a setup for a carjacking and robbery.

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The Two-Way
6:24 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Hero Of Kosher Grocery Siege Will Become A French Citizen

Lassana Bathily, a Muslim born in Mali, will become a citizen of France. Bathily saved Jewish shoppers at the Parisian kosher market where he works from an Islamist gunman by hiding them in a basement walk-in refrigerator.
Francois Guillot AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 8:10 pm

Less than a week after his actions were credited with saving the lives of customers at the grocery store where he works, Lassana Bathily has learned that France wants to give him citizenship.

Citing Bathily's "act of bravery," Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve says France will expedite a citizenship application that Bathily filed last July. The minister will also head Bathily's naturalization ceremony next Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
4:28 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Obama Shifts Federal Sick-Leave Rules, Urges Congress To Follow

President Obama discussed the need for paid sick leave with women at Charmington's Cafe in Baltimore Thursday. With him are Vika Jordan (from left), Amanda Rothschild and Mary Stein.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 4:57 pm

Federal workers with a pressing need can take an advance of up to six weeks of sick leave under a new policy unveiled by President Obama on Thursday. The White House is urging Congress to make paid sick leave mandatory in the U.S.

The president signed a memorandum today instructing federal agencies to advance up to six weeks of paid sick leave to workers who need the time to care for a new child, a family member or for similar uses.

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The Two-Way
9:10 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

CIA Report: No 'Bad Faith' In Accessing Senate Computers

Originally published on Wed January 14, 2015 9:13 pm

An "accountability board" assembled by the CIA has cleared five of the agency's employees of any wrongdoing related to improperly accessing the Senate Intelligence Committee emails and computer network. Sen. Dianne Feinstein says the breach violated the Constitution.

NPR's David Welna reports:

"The five-member Agency Accountability board, which included three veteran CIA officers, told the top members of the Senate Intelligence Committee that the CIA officials who broke into the panel's computer system had acted 'reasonably.'

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The Two-Way
5:56 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Ohio Man Is Arrested For Allegedly Plotting Attack On U.S. Capitol

Originally published on Wed January 14, 2015 6:05 pm

The FBI arrested Christopher Lee Cornell of Cincinnati, charging him with buying weapons to carry out a terrorist attack on Washington, D.C. Cornell, 20, was monitored by federal agents who say he used Twitter to express support for the extremist group Islamic State as well as "violent jihad."

The arrest warrant for Cornell, who authorities say was known online as Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, says that he "purchased and possessed firearms in furtherance of a plan to shoot and kill United States Government officers and employees."

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The Two-Way
4:51 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

French Ambassador To U.S. Outlines 'Predicament' Of Immigration

French Ambassador to the U.S. Gerard Araud addresses a solidarity gathering at the Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Araud said last week's attack was "in a sense maybe worse than what we were expecting, because it was done in a very professional way."
Nicholas Kamm AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 14, 2015 6:33 pm

As it mourns the tragedy of last week's attack in Paris, France's government is also concerned about more attacks and how to adapt to prevent them. The concerns range from coping with 5,000 radical youth to becoming a society of immigration, France's ambassador to the United States, Gerard Araud, says.

While France's leaders had feared a terrorist attack within its borders, Araud says that "what happened was in a sense maybe worse than what we were expecting, because it was done in a very professional way."

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The Two-Way
9:50 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

NASCAR's Kurt Busch Testifies That Ex-Girlfriend Is An Assassin

In this May 22, 2014, photo, Kurt Busch walks with Patricia Driscoll before a race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. The former couple has been in court over Driscoll's claim that Busch assaulted her.
Terry Renna AP

Originally published on Wed January 14, 2015 11:05 am

Testifying about a request for a protective order against him, race car driver Kurt Busch told a Dover, Del., court this week that his former girlfriend is an assassin. Patricia Driscoll, who dated Busch for four years, requested the order last November, shortly after their relationship ended.

Driscoll has also filed a criminal complaint against Busch, alleging that he grabbed her and slammed her head into the wall of his motor coach at Dover International Speedway last fall. Busch denies those claims, which the authorities have been considering separately.

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The Two-Way
7:13 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

College Football Championship Sets A New Cable Ratings Record

The first-ever college football playoff championship turned in record ratings, attracting an average of 33.4 million viewers.
Sarah Glenn Getty Images

Monday night's game between Oregon and Ohio State was a hit with viewers, as the first-ever college football playoff championship turned in the highest ratings in the history of both ESPN and cable TV. The broadcast averaged 33.4 million viewers.

"That was a 21 percent increase over the ratings for last year's BCS National Championship between Florida State and Auburn, which was a far closer game," NPR's Nathan Rott reports.

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The Two-Way
4:45 pm
Tue January 13, 2015

How Urbane: Dog Rides Seattle Bus To Get To The Park

A black Labrador named Eclipse rides between two fellow passengers on her way to a dog park in Seattle. Her owner says he catches up with Eclipse at the park if she goes on without him.
Jensen, Eric AP

Originally published on Tue January 13, 2015 7:01 pm

"Did that just happen?"

That's the reaction one bus rider had in Seattle, after realizing a dog had just joined him for a ride through the city, traveling several stops to her destination: a dog park.

The story comes to us from Seattle's KOMO 4 TV, which reports that Eclipse, the black Labrador who is winning fans for riding a city bus by herself, lives very close to a bus stop.

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The Two-Way
8:51 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Poisoned Homemade Beer Is Blamed For 69 Deaths In Mozambique

A total of 69 people died this weekend after drinking traditional beer in northwestern Mozambique. Here, men load the coffins of victims onto a pickup truck at the Chitima health center in Tete province Sunday.
- AFP/Getty Images

The brewer of a batch of traditional homemade beer is listed among nearly 70 people who died after drinking it following a funeral in Mozambique, leaving authorities with many questions.

Mozambique has declared three days of mourning over the deaths that occurred this past weekend. More than 100 people were hospitalized; dozens of them remain in the hospital.

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The Two-Way
5:39 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Ohio State Stops Oregon To Win NCAA Title

Ohio State's Cardale Jones (12) runs for a touchdown Monday night during the NCAA college football playoff championship game in Arlington, Texas.
Tony Gutierrez AP

Originally published on Tue January 13, 2015 10:03 am

A game between two of the most high-powered offenses in college football, came down, time and again, to which team could grind out one or two yards.

Ohio State converted all through fourth down attempts and eight of 14 third down tries, while the Buckeyes defense stopped one University of Oregon drive just inches from the goal line. College football's first playoffs is sending a trophy home to Columbus following the Buckeyes' 42-20 win.

It's the Buckeyes' eighth national title, and their first since the 2002 season.

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The Two-Way
2:24 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Albuquerque Police Officers Face Murder Charges Over 2014 Shooting

An image taken from a camera worn by an Albuquerque Police Department officer shows a standoff with James Boyd in the Albuquerque foothills, in March of 2014. Two officers will face murder charges over Boyd's death.
AP

Originally published on Mon January 12, 2015 3:58 pm

Months after a deadly encounter that touched off contentious protests, two police officers who were captured on video shooting and killing a man in the foothills of Albuquerque, N.M., will face murder charges. James Boyd, 38, was killed after illegally camping in the city.

Bernalillo County District Attorney Kari Brandenburg announced Monday that "a single count of open murder" has been filed against each of two officers: Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez of the Albuquerque Police Department. Sandy retired late in 2014 at the rank of detective.

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The Two-Way
9:26 pm
Fri January 9, 2015

Massive Pile-Up Snares 123 Cars On Michigan Interstate

A multi-vehicle crash reportedly killed one person and set off explosions in a truck carrying fireworks on I-94 west of Battle Creek, Mich., Friday.
Mark Bugnaski MLIVE.COM /Landov

Originally published on Mon January 12, 2015 4:15 pm

Some 123 cars were caught by a massive crash that shut down Interstate 94 in Michigan Friday. One fatality was reported, from a scene a witness calls "unreal." Several vehicles caught on fire, including a semi carrying fireworks; video footage shows flames and smoke billowing out amid a barrage of explosions.

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The Two-Way
7:24 pm
Fri January 9, 2015

Retired Gen. Petraeus Should Face Charges, Prosecutors Say

Federal prosecutors recommend filing charges against retired Gen. David Petraeus over classified documents that he's accused of leaking when he headed the CIA. When Petraeus resigned his post in 2012, he cited an extramarital affair with a woman whom investigators suspected of receiving secret data.

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The Two-Way
9:24 pm
Thu January 8, 2015

Manhunt Moves To Industrial Town; Details Emerge About Suspects In 'Charlie' Attack

The two main suspects in the terrorist attack on Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris are said to have robbed this service station in the north of France. The Picardy region has been put on high alert as the authorities look for brothers Said and Chérif Kouachi.
Maxppp /Landov

Originally published on Fri January 9, 2015 7:55 am

Updated 5:45 a.m. ET Friday:

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The Two-Way
4:22 pm
Thu January 8, 2015

Boston 2024? City Is Chosen To Bid For Summer Olympics

The U.S. Olympic Committee has chosen Boston to bid on hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics. Committee Chairman Larry Probst is seen speaking last February.
Joe Scarnici Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 8, 2015 6:55 pm

Boston won a tight contest to become the next American city to bid for hosting an Olympics, beating out Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., for the right to vie for the 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.

"This selection is in recognition of our city's talent, diversity and global leadership," Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said. "Our goal is to host Olympic and Paralympic Games that are innovative, walkable and hospitable to all. Boston hopes to welcome the world's greatest athletes to one of the world's great cities."

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The Two-Way
10:24 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

2 Suspected Gunmen In 'Charlie Hebdo' Attack Remain At Large

A police bulletin sought the public's help in finding two suspects in the deadly attack on a satirical magazine's Paris offices Wednesday. Pictured are brothers Cherif (left) and Said Kouachi.
La prefecture de Police

Originally published on Thu January 8, 2015 12:07 pm

French police have taken an 18-year-old suspect identified as Mourad Hamyd into custody after he surrendered to authorities, according to multiple French news outlets. Hamyd had been sought in relation to a murderous attack on a satirical magazine's Paris office Wednesday, but it's not certain whether he was involved.

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The Two-Way
4:50 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Sorry, No Space Heaters: Hawaii Copes With Record Cold

Originally published on Wed January 7, 2015 6:58 pm

Blankets, layers of heavy clothes and thermal socks are some of the ways Hawaii residents are trying to stay warm in a cold snap that has brought record lows. As temperatures hit the 50s, some stores sold out of space heaters.

The cold has been brought on by winds from the north and dry air. And we're not talking about snow and ice on the peaks of Hawaii's volcanic mountains. The cooler air is hitting people where they live, accompanied by strong winds.

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The Two-Way
3:16 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Former Korean Air Executive Faces Prison Over 'Nut Rage'

Cho Hyun-ah, center, a former vice president of Korean Air, faces charges of impeding the inquiry into a possible breach of aviation safety laws. She was arrested last Tuesday.
Ahn Young-joon AP

A week after she was arrested over a tantrum on a tarmac in New York, former Korean Air executive Cho Hyun-ah faces charges of breaking aviation safety laws and then interfering with the inquiry into the incident.

Cho was indicted on those charges today, placing her under the threat of possibly spending years in prison. She was arrested on Dec. 30 along with two others — an airline executive and an official at the Transport Ministry — who are accused of working to undermine the investigation.

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The Two-Way
9:12 pm
Tue January 6, 2015

Two Small Earthquakes Shake Dallas; Jokes Ensue

People felt two small but noticeable earthquakes in the Dallas area Tuesday, with reports of shaking buildings and flickering lights. Some residents said they felt nothing; some worried about fracking; others joked about it all.

The first quake was measured at 3.5 magnitude, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, and the second was measured at 3.6. Both of them were centered about 3.5 miles east-northeast of Irving, just outside of Dallas.

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The Two-Way
5:07 pm
Tue January 6, 2015

A Panda's First Snow Day: Pile On The Cuteness

Bao Bao enjoyed her first snow day at the National Zoo, sliding down a hill and playing with her mother.
Devin Murphy Smithsonian's National Zoo

Originally published on Tue January 6, 2015 5:26 pm

Because life isn't all political drama and misdeeds, we bring you a video of the young panda Bao Bao frolicking in the snow at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C.

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The Two-Way
4:02 pm
Tue January 6, 2015

Johnson, Smoltz, Martinez And Biggio Voted To Baseball's Hall

Craig Biggio (from left), Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson and John Smoltz, the four members of the 2015 class of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
AP

Originally published on Tue January 6, 2015 4:42 pm

Three dominating pitchers and one resilient fan favorite are heading to Cooperstown, as Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Craig Biggio were named to Baseball's Hall of Fame Tuesday.

The strong class marks the first time in 60 years that baseball writers have chosen four players from the same ballot — and the first time three pitchers were elected in the same year. Biggio narrowly missed being inducted last year, falling just short of the required 75 percent of ballots.

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The Two-Way
2:27 pm
Tue January 6, 2015

In Reversal, Belgium Denies Inmate's Request To Die

Frank Van Den Bleeken, seen here at a court hearing last fall, will be sent to a psychiatric center instead of being allowed to die from euthanasia. He had been scheduled to die on Sunday.
VIRGINIE LEFOUR AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 6, 2015 2:52 pm

Days before he was scheduled to die, inmate Frank Van Den Bleeken has been told he won't be allowed to die from an assisted suicide, despite his request. Last fall, a court approved a deal that would have allowed him to end his life.

The planned euthanasia was called off this week, after the doctor who was to oversee the procedure backed out. Belgian justice officials said Tuesday that they will work out a better solution for Van Den Bleeken.

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The Two-Way
9:56 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

LA, DC, SF, Boston? U.S. Pick For Olympic Host May Come Thursday

Originally published on Wed January 7, 2015 11:09 am

Officials in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston and Washington have been awaiting a decision from the U.S. Olympic Committee on which of the four will be the American entry to host the 2024 Summer Olympics. Their wait may come to an end this week.

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The Two-Way
7:45 pm
Mon January 5, 2015

Student Tuition Now Outweighs State Funding At Public Colleges

During the fiscal years 2003-2012, "median tuition rose 55 percent across all public colleges," while state funding decreased by 12 percent, the General Accountability Office reports.
Imeh Akpanudosen Getty Images

Driven by higher tuition fees and tighter state funds, America's public colleges now get more money from their students than from all state sources. That's according to a report by the Government Accountability Office, which says tuition revenue reached 25 percent of the colleges' total in 2012.

The numbers are stark, with the GAO saying that from fiscal years 2003-2012, "state funding decreased by 12 percent overall while median tuition rose 55 percent across all public colleges."

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