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
12:53 pm
Wed January 4, 2012

U.S. Carmakers, VW, Report Big Gains In Auto Sales For 2011

A Jeep Wrangler is seen at a dealership in Chicago. Powered by a newly designed fleet of vehicles, the brand saw a sharp rise in sales in 2011.
Scott Olson Getty Images

America's big three automakers all experienced double-digit sales growth in 2011, helping the U.S. market continue its rebound from a dismal 2009. With annual reports out today, Chrysler says its sales were up 26 percent, while General Motors and Ford Motor Co. reporting gains of 13 and 11 percent, respectively.

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The Two-Way
11:47 am
Wed January 4, 2012

Boeing Says It Will Close Wichita Plant That Employs 2,160 Workers

Boeing plans to close its Wichita plant, where in 2005 members of the Machinists Union voted to go on strike, seen in this file photo.
Larry W. Smith Getty Images

Boeing Co. says it will shut down its Wichita facility, which specializes in maintaining and modifying the company's planes for military or government use. The plant is slated to close by the end of 2013.

The closure could devastate a portion of the local economy, according to The Wichita Eagle:

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The Two-Way
11:15 am
Wed January 4, 2012

Bishop Resigns After He Acknowledges Fathering Two Children

San Gabriel Region Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala leads a mass in this file photo from 2005. Zavala resigned from the ministry in December, after revealing that he fathered two children.
David McNew Getty Images

A Catholic bishop in California has resigned his post after revealing in December that he has two children.

"The Vatican announced the bishop's resignation Jan. 4 in a one-line statement that cited church law on resignation for illness or other serious reasons," reports the Catholic News Service from Vatican City.

Pope Benedict reportedly accepted the resignation of Gabino Zavala, an auxiliary bishop for the San Gabriel Pastoral Region, in December.

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The Two-Way
9:56 am
Wed January 4, 2012

Man Uses iPad, Not Passport, To Gain Entry To U.S.

A Canadian man has been making headlines because he used an image of his passport saved on his iPad — instead of the official document itself — to cross the U.S.-Canadian border two times.

Martin Reisch, 33, says he forgot his passport when he left for a car trip across the border in Quebec. But he had an iPad with him, and it contained a scan of his passport. So Reisch gave the device to the U.S. border officer, along with his drivers' license, and the explanation that he was merely driving to Vermont, to drop off some Christmas presents.

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The Two-Way
9:00 am
Wed January 4, 2012

Chinese Year Of The Dragon Postage Stamp Deemed 'Too Ferocious'

What A Difference A Year Makes: China's Year of the Dragon stamp, left, is decidedly more fearsome than last year's model, of a rabbit.
Webo/China Post

To welcome the Year of the Dragon, China's postal service plans to release commemorative postage stamps featuring the fabled beast. But many customers are finding the image to be a little over the top.

Here are some reactions cited by China's Xinhua news agency:

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The Two-Way
6:18 pm
Fri December 30, 2011

College Football Bowl Preview: Compelling Matchups, Dead Ahead

Quarterback Darron Thomas of the Oregon Ducks (right) threw for 30 touchdowns with only 6 interceptions this season. The Ducks beat UCLA in the Pac-12 Championship to earn a spot in the Rose Bowl, where they'll face Wisconsin.
Steve Dykes Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 2, 2012 11:56 am

College football is set to enter its final week, and that means the biggest bowl games are coming up. This weekend will see teams such as Auburn, Oklahoma and Georgia Tech in action. And the first week of 2012 will feature marquee matchups like Oregon vs. Wisconsin, and Oklahoma State against Stanford.

Update at 1 p.m. ET: We'll have a separate preview of the BCS title game between Alabama and LSU later this week. Our original post continues:

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It Was A Good Year For...
12:01 pm
Fri December 30, 2011

Answering The Question 'What Was It A Good Year For?'

A word cloud featuring readers' submissions to the question, "What was 2011 a good year for?"
NPR

Originally published on Thu January 5, 2012 5:56 pm

For many people, 2011 wasn't a great year. When the economy wasn't sluggish, it was turbulent. And all manner of disasters seemed to rotate through the headlines. But in some states, and some neighborhoods, people got along just fine. Look closely at the worlds of business and sports, music and politics, and you'll find a few people and places that had it pretty good in 2011.

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The Two-Way
11:40 am
Wed December 14, 2011

Voyager 1 Speeds Toward The Brink Of Interstellar Space

An artist's conception shows Voyager 1 encountering a stagnation region. To the left is interstellar space.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Tue December 27, 2011 12:09 pm

(Note: This post was first published on Dec. 14. It was reposted Monday — the 26th — because that's when it was broadcast on Morning Edition.)

The Voyager 1 spacecraft is 11 billion miles from the sun. And every minute, it gets 636 miles closer to its destination: the frontier of interstellar space.

The craft is currently in what NASA calls, not undramatically, "the boundary between the solar wind from the Sun and the interstellar wind from death-explosions of other stars," an area that astrophysicists also call, less dramatically, a stagnation layer.

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All Tech Considered
11:32 am
Wed December 14, 2011

Voyager Probes Aim For Interstellar Space, Four Decades Of Travel

Artist's concept of NASA's Voyager spacecraft. For 35 years, the probes have been beaming images and information back to Earth via a 23-watt transmitter.
NASA/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Wed December 14, 2011 11:57 am

NASA is on the brink of putting a man-made craft into interstellar space for the first time, as Voyager 1 speeds toward the outer edge of our solar system. The Voyager program's chief scientist, Dr. Ed Stone, spoke with NPR's Steve Inskeep about that feat, and what it means for NASA.

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The Two-Way
6:32 pm
Thu December 8, 2011

A Survivor's Duty After Pearl Harbor: Telling The Story

Pearl Harbor survivor Frank Curre gave his eyewitness account of the attack in an interview with StoryCorps in Waco, Texas.
StoryCorps

It turns out that Frank Curre, who survived Pearl Harbor and then died on Dec. 7, 2011, 70 years after the attack, may have hit the attack's anniversary exactly. We heard from his family late Wednesday that Curre died around noon, in Waco, Texas. That means it was around 8 o'clock in the morning in Pearl Harbor — the hour the aerial attack began.

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The Two-Way
4:05 pm
Wed November 23, 2011

NFL's Thanksgiving Day Lineup: Grudge Matches, Not 'Turkeys'

With five of Thursday's six teams owning winning records, the NFL's 2011 Thanksgiving Day games are creating some anticipation. In Atlanta, a fan got into the holiday spirit last week, wearing a turkey/referee hat.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 24, 2011 10:01 am

With six weeks left in the NFL's regular season, the league's traditional Thanksgiving Day Classic games have football fans excited. Almost all of the teams involved are having strong seasons. And if the day's three games have a common theme, it could be "grudge match."

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A Thanksgiving How-To
11:05 pm
Tue November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Secrets: Cook's Tips From Chris Kimball

Chris Kimball uses "secret" ingredients to make his Thanksgiving dishes special, including herb roasted turkey, green beans, corn-flake stuffing and multigrain rolls. And for dessert, he made a spiced pumpkin cheesecake.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Fri August 3, 2012 3:40 pm

A cook's secrets are meant to stay in the kitchen. An off-recipe substitution, a unique addition, an improvised technique — they often come from inspiration, or just a sense of craft, that can make a home chef both proud and protective. Luckily for us, Chris Kimball of America's Test Kitchen is happy to share the secrets he's picked up in more than 30 years of cooking.

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The Two-Way
5:55 pm
Thu November 17, 2011

Federal Prosecutors Will Look Into Fatal Shootings By Miami Police

Federal prosecutors say they're investigating a series of shootings in Miami, where the city's police officers shot and killed seven black suspects over the course of eight months. The shootings, which occurred between July 2010 and February 2011, were discussed on NPR's Tell Me More in March, when then-police chief Miguel Esposito said his department had the full support of the city's black community.

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All Tech Considered
5:36 am
Wed November 16, 2011

Steve Jobs Dishes On The Tech Business In 'Lost Interview' From 1995

"We got the number of the Vatican and called the pope," Steve Jobs says of the first project he worked on with Steve Wozniak. Later, the two founded Apple Computer.

Originally published on Wed November 16, 2011 8:51 am

When he died on Oct. 5, Steve Jobs was eulogized as the tech visionary who put elegantly designed gadgets into the lives of people who often hadn't realized the devices were essential — until Jobs, and Apple, created them. This week, Jobs' admirers will have another chance to hear him speak, thanks to the film Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview.

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The Two-Way
4:24 pm
Thu November 10, 2011

Facebook Will Reportedly Shift Privacy Policy To 'Opt In' — Not 'Opt Out'

Facebook is on the verge of adopting new "opt in" privacy settings, according to reports. Here, company founder Mark Zuckerberg speaks during a visit to Cambridge, Mass., Monday.
Darren McCollester Getty Images

Facebook moving toward changing its policy about privacy settings, abandoning an "opt-out" approach for one in which its members would have to "opt in" to allow strangers to see personal information stored on their profile pages, according to reports.

The shift is seen as a response to the Federal Trade Commission's accusation that the social media network deceived its members when it changed its policies in 2009.

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The Two-Way
3:29 pm
Thu November 10, 2011

U.S. Puts Oil Pipeline Plan In Limbo Until After 2012 Vote

Originally published on Thu November 10, 2011 6:15 pm

A final decision on building a new oil pipeline to connect Alberta, Canada, to U.S. refineries near the Gulf of Mexico will not be made until after the 2012 presidential election, the State Department said Thursday.

TransCanada's proposal to build the Keystone XL pipeline had come under pressure from environmentalists, as well as government officials in Nebraska. It would cost an estimated $7 billion to build.

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The Two-Way
2:58 pm
Thu November 10, 2011

As Paterno Exits, Rumors Name Urban Meyer As Penn State Successor

With Penn State coach Joe Paterno ousted, rumors are speculating that former Florida coach Urban Meyer will be his replacement. In January, the two shook hands before the Outback Bowl.
Al Messerschmidt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 10, 2011 6:12 pm

Could former Florida football coach Urban Meyer be the next head coach at Penn State?

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Sports
4:06 pm
Tue November 8, 2011

Penn State Abuse Scandal: A Guide And Timeline

Former Penn State football assistant coach Jerry Sandusky (right) walks to the county courthouse on June 5, the first day of his trial on child sex abuse charges.
Patrick Smith Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 23, 2012 11:14 am

Former Penn State defensive coordinator Gerald "Jerry" Sandusky was found guilty of sexual abuse, convicted of 45 out of 48 counts on Friday, June 22. He was accused of sexually abusing 10 boys over a 15-year period in a scandal that has rocked the university's community. Several alleged victims have testified in the trial, which began on June 11.

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The Two-Way
6:14 am
Thu November 3, 2011

Along With Humans, Who Else Is In The 7 Billion Club?

Animal Kings: Ants, like these workers carrying eggs to a plant's leaf after rain flooded their nest, have a combined biomass estimated in the billions of tons.
Gurinder Osan AP

The revelation this week that the Earth now holds 7 billion people, according to the U.N.'s population division, prompted a question: Who else is in the 7 Billion Club? To find out which other animals had reached that plateau, we asked wildlife experts — and they patiently explained why our innocent question was nearly impossible to answer.

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Monkey See
4:30 am
Tue November 1, 2011

Mindy Kaling On Diets, High School And Other American Pastimes

Mindy Kaling is an Emmy Award-nominated writer and an actress on NBC's The Office.

Autumn deWilde

Much of Mindy Kaling's humor is rooted in something that might seem unfeasible: using logic to explore American culture. But it works — and works well — because Kaling uses a type of circular logic that's all her own. Just consider this recent Tweet: "Can everyone buy my book please? I wanna quit the business and homeschool my kids real weird."

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All Tech Considered
4:19 am
Fri October 28, 2011

Mobile Payment Apps Put Wallets In Phones, Not Pockets

A screengrab shows the Google Wallet app being used to pay for items at a CVS store.

Google

Originally published on Fri October 28, 2011 7:48 am

The use of smartphones as e-wallets has caught on elsewhere; now it's spreading in America.

The new Google Wallet app lets shoppers who own Android smartphones pay at the counter with a mere wave at the cash register and without a pocketful of change in return.

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The Salt
4:37 pm
Wed October 26, 2011

Customer Outrage Forces Necco To Put Artificial Ingredients Back Into Wafers

When the people who make Necco Wafers changed their recipe to use natural flavors and colors in 2009, they thought they were doing their customers a favor. But then those customers told the New England Confectionery Company — loudly, and repeatedly — that they preferred artificially enhanced candy.

"Our normal mail volume probably went up twenty-fold" after the change, says Necco Vice President of Research and Quality Jeff Green says. "Some positive, and some negative. But a lot of negative."

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Fri October 21, 2011

Undestroyed Earth Defies Oakland Ministry (Again)

The Oakland minister who predicted the end of the world would take place on Friday, Oct. 21, was confronted by the continuation of the world instead. It marks the second time this year that the ministry led by Harold Camping, 90, has settled on a doomsday date, only to have it tick by in quotidian fashion.

But to be fair, Camping has said that "the end is going to come very, very quietly," as Mark reported last week.

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The Two-Way
1:05 pm
Fri October 21, 2011

Clinton Says U.S. Met With Haqqanis; Pushes Pakistan On Security

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks in Islamabad Friday, as Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar looks on. Clinton urged Pakistan to act swiftly to dislodge the militant Haqqani network.

Kevin Lamarque AFP/Getty Images

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in Pakistan to urge the country's leadership to eliminate safe havens for terrorists, says that U.S. officials met with the Haqqani network this summer. She did not say who the participants were, or what was discussed.

As the BBC reports:

Reports about such a meeting circulated over the summer but the US refused to confirm them at the time.

Mrs Clinton said the US had reached out to the Taliban and to the Haqqani network to test their sincerity and willingness to engage in a peace process.

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The Two-Way
11:58 am
Fri October 21, 2011

September Jobs Report: Little Changes For States

Originally published on Fri October 21, 2011 12:45 pm

Unemployment rates across America didn't change much in September, says the Labor Department. But among the mostly small shifts that occurred, 25 states reported decreases in their unemployment rate. Of the remaining states, 14 saw a higher jobless rate, and 11 remained the same.

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