David Greene

David Greene is host of NPR's Morning Edition, with Steve Inskeep and Renee Montagne.

For two years prior to taking on his current role in 2012, Greene was an NPR foreign correspondent based in Moscow covering the region from Ukraine and the Baltics, east to Siberia. During that time he brought listeners stories as wide ranging as Chernobyl 25 years later and Beatles-singing Russian Babushkas. He spent a month in Libya reporting riveting stories in the most difficult of circumstances as NATO bombs fell on Tripoli. He was honored with the 2011 Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize from WBUR and Boston University for that coverage of the Arab Spring.

Greene's voice became familiar to NPR listeners from his four years covering the White House. To report on former President George W. Bush's second term, Greene spent hours in NPR's spacious booth in the basement of the West Wing (it's about the size of your average broom closet). He also spent time trekking across five continents, reporting on White House visits to places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Rwanda, Uruguay – and, of course, Crawford, Texas.

During the days following Hurricane Katrina, Greene was aboard Air Force One when President Bush flew low over the Gulf Coast and caught his first glimpse of the storm's destruction. On the ground in New Orleans, Greene brought listeners a moving interview with the late Ethel Williams, a then-74-year-old flood victim who got an unexpected visit from the president.

Greene was an integral part of NPR's coverage of the historic 2008 election, covering Hillary Clinton's campaign from start to finish, and also focusing on how racial attitudes were playing into voters' decisions. The White House Correspondents Association took special note of Greene's report on a speech by then-candidate Barack Obama, addressing the nation's racial divide. Greene was given the association's 2008 Merriman Smith award for deadline coverage of the presidency.

After President Obama took office, Greene kept one eye trained on the White House and the other eye on the road. He spent three months driving across America – with a recorder, camera and lots of caffeine – to learn how the recession was touching Americans during President Obama's first 100 days in office. The series was called "100 Days: On the Road in Troubled Times."

Before joining NPR in 2005, Greene spent nearly seven years as a newspaper reporter for the Baltimore Sun. He covered the White House during the Bush administration's first term, and wrote about an array of other topics for the paper: Why Oklahomans love the sport of cockfighting, why two Amish men in Pennsylvania were caught trafficking methamphetamine and how one woman brought Christmas back to a small town in Maryland.

Before graduating magna cum laude from Harvard in 1998 with a degree in government, Greene worked as the senior editor on the Harvard Crimson. In 2004, he was named co-volunteer of the year for Coaching for College, a Washington, D.C., program offering tutoring to inner-city youth.

All this week, Morning Edition is listening to people think out loud about same-sex marriage in North Dakota, one of 13 states that still ban same-sex marriage. Thursday's story looks at discussions about same-sex marriage among families — a subject some feel is often too taboo to tackle.

Melanie Hoffert grew up on a farm near the town of Wahpeton, N.D. She called her new memoir Prairie Silence because around here, people prefer not to talk about hard things in the open.

This week, Morning Edition discusses gay rights in North Dakota, one of 13 states that still bans same-sex marriage. Wednesday's story features two men with contrasting ideologies: a liberal radio host and a conservative business owner.

North Dakota is a state where radio reigns supreme. Its communities are far apart, and shopping trips, or just visiting a neighbor, can mean a long drive. Many people have the radio on, and often it's tuned into KFGO-AM, The Mighty 790, out of Fargo.

This week, Morning Edition is taking a look at the attitudes about gay rights in North Dakota, one of 13 states that still ban same-sex marriage.

Sixteen years ago, in the small town of Wahpeton, N.D., a United Methodist pastor refused to baptize a baby raised by lesbian parents. The pastor said because the child had lesbian parents, there was no way he could get a Christian upbringing. In response, the child's mothers, Valerie Nelson and Diane Gira, left the church.

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This week, Morning Edition is taking a look at the attitudes about gay rights in North Dakota, one of 13 states that still bans same-sex marriage.

Wahpeton, N.D., is about an hourlong drive from Fargo, through vast, empty farmland that's brown and yellow this time of year. It will look very different soon — farmers are already out on their tractors preparing for the planting season.

For once, here's a positive commuting story: Jeff Young's dog, Eclipse, often rides the bus with him in Seattle. But if the bus pulls up to the stop and Jeff isn't quite done with his cigarette yet, Eclipse will hop on it without him.

The drivers let her on, and she leaps over the other passengers to grab a window seat. Young gets on the next bus, and they meet up a few stops later.

So, where does the canine commuter disembark? (Heh.) A dog park, of course.

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Rochester, N.Y., was once the imaging capital of the world, home to Kodak, Xerox and the eye care company, Bausch + Lomb.

Led by these companies, the manufacturing sector once employed 60 percent of Rochester's workforce. Now, that's less than 10 percent. And so, like many cities in this country, Rochester is trying to build something new from its manufacturing heritage.

If you want to understand the story of Rochester, says historian Carolyn Vacca, you need to come to High Falls, where from a bridge visitors see a waterfall and a panoramic view of downtown.

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And so as Leila just told us, Egyptians appear ready to elect a military man - which in a way seems amazing considering the images we remember from three years ago. At that point, a military dictator, Hosni Mubarak, was removed from power. At that time, it was NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro in Cairo. She was witnessing all of the celebration.

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It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

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And I'm David Greene. Two large objects showed up satellite images bobbing in a remote part of the Indian Ocean.

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Good morning, I'm David Greene.

It is Twitter's 8th birthday. To celebrate, the site has put out a tool that lets you see any user's very first tweet. Some were naturals. Warren Buffett's first tweet, Warren is in the house, has been retweeted more than 40,000 times. Others might cringe at their first contribution. Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, tweeted about his dance lessons: No pain, no gain. Awkward but fun this dancing, I still can't do macarena. That's what he wrote.

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Good morning, I'm David Greene.

Michael Smith, of Norridgewock, Maine, has a really convincing tattoo of a handgun on his lower stomach. This week, he woke up to a crew cutting trees outside. He marched out to tell them to stop with his shirt off. A bit later he woke up again, to a SWAT team with rifles trained. The tree cutters had mistaken his tattoo for a real gun tucked in his belt.

Smith told the police, quote, "I got plans today. I don't want to get shot." He was not charged.

A Chinese property developer has reportedly paid close to $2 million for a golden-haired Tibetan mastiff puppy. The lion-looking dogs have become a status symbol for China's very rich.

Edd Joseph bought a game console online, but he never received it. So he took revenge by texting 37 full Shakespeare plays to the seller's phone. That's nearly 30,000 messages.

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NPR's business news starts with payouts in Bangladesh.

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NPR's business news begins with a split for Lands' End.

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GREENE: Lands' End, the outdoor clothing retailer, will spin off from Sears Holdings Corporation next month and operate as a standalone, publicly traded company.

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Good morning, I'm David Greene.

Recently Christopher Viatafa did something many of us have done: He Googled his own name. But what he found wasn't so normal. It was his own face, on Northern California's Most Wanted website. He allegedly pulled a gun at a party last summer and fired it into the ground. In what authorities are calling an act of good judgment after a very bad call, Viatafa turned himself in. He's been charged with assault with a deadly weapon. He's now listed as a captured fugitive.

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A few years ago, this song came out of nowhere, "Pumped Up Kicks" from Foster The People, an unsigned band from L.A. It became one of 2011's biggest hits.

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FOSTER THE PEOPLE: (Singing) All the other kids with the pumped up kicks, you better run, better run, outrun my gun. All the other...

GREENE: Song, as you can hear, has a summer party sound. The lyrics though tell a much darker story.

In Challis, the debate is over the reach of Washington and how state land is used. Morning Edition has traveled to Idaho for one of the mostly closely watched political races this year.

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In election years, we hear a lot of reporting from swing states: Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin. We do not usually hear as much from a place like Idaho, because it is so deeply one color: red. But this midterm election year, Idaho is home to one of the most closely watched races in this nation. A Republican is battling another Republican in a primary campaign that may point to where the party, as a whole, is heading.

In 2013, the battle lines were drawn within the Republican Party. This year, war may be breaking out across the country.

The Tea Party has already proven it has the energy, influence and cash to change elections and shape the landscape of Congress. Now, moderate and establishment-oriented Republicans are trying to match their intensity.

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Supporters of a minimum wage say it can be especially important at a time of relatively high unemployment, when workers have little bargaining power. This morning we'll get a fresh snapshot of unemployment in the U.S. when the government releases new jobs numbers. NPR's Yuki Noguchi came by to talk about what to expect. Yuki, good morning.

YUKI NOGUCHI, BYLINE: Good morning, David.

GREENE: So where does the job market seem to be going right now?

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OK. We've gotten through Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year's. But if you're an NFL fan, the next holiday up is Wild Card Weekend. There is football on Saturday and Sunday. Four wild card teams facing four teams that won their divisions. And there are some pretty interesting storylines to cover. Let's cover them with NPR's Mike Pesca. Hey, Mike.

MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Storyline number one - not all the teams playing are wild cards. It is called that but they get to play divisional leaders, don't they?

This year promises to bring plenty of political drama — and some high stakes races — with mid-term elections in full view. Billions of dollars will be spent in House, Senate and governors' contests. And some of the nation's most powerful politicians will scramble to hold onto their seats.

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It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Here's a way to look at the year 2013 for President Barack Obama: He began the year with two-thirds of Americas saying they approved of the job he was doing. He's ending the year with that number around 40 percent.

He began fresh off a hard-fought electoral victory, going into his second term with a pretty ambitious agenda. He's ending the year with many of his priorities stalled.

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