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
11:06 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Spineless, And Now Homeless: National Zoo Closes Animal Exhibit

A curious cuttlefish stares back at the camera from inside The Smithsonian's National Zoo Invertebrate Exhibit. The exhibit, home to dozens of small aquatic and terrestrial species without backbones, closed on Sunday.
Meghan Murphy Smithsonian's National Zoo

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 12:17 pm

Invertebrates make up about 99 percent of all species. But they're no longer being featured at the National Zoo due to budget problems. The Invertebrate Exhibit was shut down Sunday, less than a week after the closure was publicly announced.

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The Two-Way
8:16 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Egyptian Court Sentences Journalists To Lengthy Prison Terms

Australian journalist Peter Greste (left) of Al-Jazeera news channel and his colleagues, Egyptian-Canadian Mohamed Fadel Fahmy (center) and Egyptian Baher Mohamed, listen to the verdict inside the defendants' cage during their trial for allegedly supporting the Muslim Brotherhood.
Khaled Desouki AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 4:18 pm

Three journalists who work for the Al-Jazeera news network have been sentenced to prison terms — two lasting seven years and a third lasting 10 — by an Egyptian court. The three were accused of aiding terrorists, a term that in this case applies to the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

From Egypt's Ahram Online:

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The Two-Way
7:10 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Kerry Meets With Iraqi Prime Minister In Baghdad Amid ISIS Crisis

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (right) sits with Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday. Kerry was in Baghdad to push for Iraqi unity and stability, as Sunni militants swept through western towns abandoned by security forces.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 11:48 am

As Sunni militants make gains against Iraq's Shiite-led central government, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry paid a previously unannounced visit to Baghdad to meet with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Monday.

Maliki has been criticized for not being more inclusive of Sunnis and Kurds in his government — a change the Obama administration is calling for as part of any plans for military support.

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The Two-Way
2:29 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

U.S. To Open Immigrant Family Detention Centers In Response To Influx

Young migrants seen apprehended by the Border Patrol near the Rio Grande in Hidalgo, TX, earlier this year. The next stop for many is either a detention center or deportation.
Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 4:40 pm

Citing a rise in the number of children and families attempting to immigrate into the Southwestern U.S. illegally, the Obama administration says it will use new detention facilities to house the families.

The administration says it will boost enforcement efforts and speed up removal proceedings. And it will try to dispel a notion among some migrants that current U.S. policies allow them to enter the country illegally.

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The Two-Way
2:16 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

There's No Run Like A Prison Run

Runners chat at a recent track event at the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem. The prison's program allows inmates (in blue shirts) to run alongside regular citizens (in orange).
Sam Gehrke OPB

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 2:37 pm

Themed outdoor running events have grown in popularity, with participants flocking to races that promise unusual settings and obstacles (including zombies). But for decades now, an Oregon track has hosted a rare event: races run by inmates of a maximum-security prison alongside regular citizens.

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The Two-Way
10:59 am
Fri June 20, 2014

U.N.: Number Of Displaced People Hits Mark Not Seen Since World War II

Afghan children gather at a special medical camp set up by UNHCR to mark World Refugee Day in Islamabad on Friday. The U.N. agency says there were 51.2 million displaced people at the end of 2013, 6 million more than the previous year.
Farooq Naeem AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 12:41 pm

At least 51.2 million people are now living under forced displacement, a U.N. agency says, announcing its tally of people who are seeking refuge or asylum, or who are internally displaced. It's the first time the number has topped 50 million since World War II.

The figures mean that worldwide, the number of displaced people is roughly equivalent to the entire population of nations such as Spain and South Korea. If all of them were put into one country, it would be the 26th largest in the world, the U.N. says.

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The Two-Way
9:12 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Back At You: Batting-Practice Ball Lands In Pitching Machine

A video posted by MLB.com shows Tampa Bay Rays hitter Matt Joyce reacting to a surprise pitch during batting practice. The machine spat a ball out that Joyce had just hit.
MLB

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 2:11 pm

Batting practice brought an odd moment for the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday, when outfielder Matt Joyce hit a ball that caromed off the batting cage — and right into the pitching machine. The ball was then quickly fired back at the surprised Joyce, who could only watch it sail past for a strike.

The moment was highlighted on the Fox Sports broadcast of the Rays' game, with slow-motion replays showing Joyce sending the ball into the loading slot. From there, it was on to ESPN and online highlight reels.

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The Two-Way
8:26 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Leading Shiite Cleric Says Iraq Needs A New Government

Iraqi Shiites perform the Friday prayer in the shrine city of Karbala in central Iraq. Iraq's top Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, called for the country's next government to be "effective" and avoid past mistakes, in an implicit criticism of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
Mohammed Sawaf AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 1:19 pm

As Iraq struggles to cope with rapid advances by the Sunni militant group ISIS, the religious leader of the nation's Shiites says it's time for an "effective" government to take over.

Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani's comments Friday add to criticisms of embattled Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

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The Two-Way
7:20 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Married Same-Sex Couples To Receive More Federal Benefits

The Obama administration is set to announce expanded federal benefits for same-sex spouses, no matter what state they live in. On Thursday, demonstrators supporting same-sex marriage marched in front of the Supreme Court.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 5:31 pm

This post was updated at 5:20 p.m. ET.

The Family Medical Leave Act's benefits will be extend to married same-sex couples in all of the U.S., under a White House announced today. The change comes as the Obama administration alters federal policies to fit the Supreme Court's repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act last June.

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The Two-Way
2:38 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Harley-Davidson's New Bike Hums, Instead Of Roaring

Harley-Davidson's new electric motorcycle can hit 60 mph from a standing start in 4 seconds. The company plans to unveil the LiveWire model Monday in New York.
M.L. Johnson AP

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 12:21 pm

Don't expect to hear the roar of a gas engine when you see the new motorcycle from Harley-Davidson. That's because it's powered by batteries. The Wisconsin-based company unveiled its new LiveWire bike today, saying it's "time to shape the next generation" of riders.

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The Two-Way
1:43 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Obama: U.S. Forces Won't Return To Combat In Iraq Crisis

President Obama speaks about Iraq in the Brady Briefing room of the White House Thursday. Obama said the U.S. will send up to 300 military advisers to Iraq — but that U.S. forces won't engage in combat with Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 2:56 pm

President Obama says the U.S. will send up to 300 military advisers to Iraq to help it cope with the Sunni extremist group ISIS, which has won several key battles in recent days.

Obama said Americans won't be taking up combat roles in the conflict — and he said the U.S. won't take actions "that support one sect inside of Iraq at the expense of another."

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The Two-Way
11:27 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Supreme Court Sides With Whistleblower In Retaliation Case

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 1:21 pm

In a case over retaliation against a public employee who was fired after testifying about corruption, the Supreme Court says the man gave testimony as a concerned citizen and should not have been punished. The decision was unanimous, overturning lower courts.

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The Two-Way
9:42 am
Thu June 19, 2014

House Republicans To Vote On Cantor's Replacement Today

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 12:43 pm

Republicans will vote by secret ballot today in the House of Representatives, as they choose a new majority leader and majority whip to lead them. Rep. Eric Cantor is stepping down from his No. 2 spot, after losing a primary contest earlier this month.

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The Two-Way
8:39 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Only 7 Percent Of Americans Are Big Fans Of Congress

Only 7 percent of Americans polled by Gallup said they have "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in Congress as an American institution.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 1:30 pm

The amount of confidence Americans have in Congress has hit a new low. Only 7 percent of the people polled by Gallup said they have "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in the legislature as an American institution.

The rock-bottom level of confidence in Congress "is not only the lowest on record," the polling company says, "but also the lowest Gallup has recorded for any institution in the 41-year trend. This is also the first time Gallup has ever measured confidence in a major U.S. institution in the single digits."

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The Two-Way
7:47 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Dodgers' Ace Kershaw Notches His First No-Hitter

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (left) celebrates his no-hitter with his teammates after striking out 15 Colorado Rockies batters.
Chris Carlson AP

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 11:41 am

The no-hitters just keep coming. That's the case for the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the team's pitchers have thrown two games without giving up a hit in less than a month. Clayton Kershaw used 15 strikeouts to complete the feat Wednesday, matching teammate Josh Beckett's May 25 effort.

Getting the no-hitter was "pretty cool," Kershaw said after throwing 107 pitches in the game.

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