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
4:03 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Boeing And SpaceX Win $6.8 Billion In NASA Contracts

In an image provided by NASA, astronaut Randy Bresnik prepares to enter Boeing's CST-100 spacecraft for an evaluation at the company's Houston Product Support Center. NASA awarded Boeing with a $4.2 billion Tuesday.
AP

NASA has chosen Boeing And SpaceX to build the vehicles that will transport its astronauts to the International Space Station, putting the two American companies on a course to take over a job that NASA has recently relied upon Russia to perform: carrying out manned space flights.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden says vehicles from the two companies are expected to ready for service by 2017.

Announcing its decision Tuesday, the space agency included these details:

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The Two-Way
2:21 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Obama Gives New Details On America's Effort To Fight Ebola

President Obama spoke Tuesday about the U.S. plan to fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, speaking at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The White House plan reportedly includes deploying 3,000 U.S. military personnel and training health care providers in Liberia.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 3:51 pm

President Obama announced details of his plan Tuesday to help contain the Ebola outbreak that has caused more than 2,400 deaths in West Africa. The strategy reportedly includes sending up to 3,000 military personnel to the region.

Obama spoke at the Atlanta headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday afternoon.

Update at 4:18 p.m. ET: 'It Doesn't Have To Be This Way'

The president describes "a major increase in our response." Some details:

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The Two-Way
1:09 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Belgium Agrees To Euthanize Man Convicted Of Murder, Rape

Inmate Frank Van Den Bleeken, seen here in court last autumn, says he wants to die because he sees no progress in the mental problems that were linked to his crimes of murder and rape.
Herman Ricour AP

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 2:14 pm

In a country whose laws don't allow for the death penalty, the case of a Belgian man who sees himself as a threat to society — and wants to die — is putting new focus on Belgium's health care and justice system, as well as its laws allowing euthanasia.

After an appeals court in Brussels approved a deal allowing inmate Frank Van Den Bleeken to die from an assisted suicide, the country's justice minister cleared the way for his transfer to a hospital late Monday.

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The Two-Way
12:02 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Odile Leaves Wreckage In Mexico And Threatens Flooding In U.S.

Cars sit in a flooded street in San Jose del Cabo Monday, after hurricane Odile knocked down trees and power lines in Mexico's Baja California Peninsula.
Ronaldo Schemidt AFP/Getty Images

Hurricane Odile is now a tropical storm, but it's still bringing heavy rainfall and power outages to the Baja Peninsula and surrounding areas. And a second storm could threaten the western coast of Mexico of the U.S. later this week.

Odile is still carrying sustained winds of more than 50 mph — and projecting tropical-storm winds up to 150 miles from its center, according to the National Hurricane Center, which expects the storm to weaken into a tropical depression by early Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
9:18 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Marriott's New Envelope For Room Tips Stirs Debate

Marriott is putting envelopes like this one in thousands of rooms at its hotels, hoping to boost the number of guests who tip the housekeeping staff.
Marriott

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 1:07 pm

A new program to encourage guests to tip the housekeeping staff at Marriott hotels is meant to make it easier for people to show their gratitude to workers. But the plan, part of an initiative from Maria Shriver's group A Woman's Nation, is raising questions over how the company pays its staff — and whether guests should be expected to tip.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Minnesota Vikings Reinstate Peterson, Who Says He's Not A Child Abuser

Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, seen here at a practice in late May, has been reinstated after he was benched over alleged child abuse.
Andy Clayton-King AP

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 5:37 pm

Days after he was arrested and benched over charges that he abused his 4-year-old son by punishing him with a wooden switch, NFL star running back Adrian Peterson has been reinstated. The Minnesota Vikings announced the move Monday, as Peterson released a statement defending himself.

Peterson did not go into detail about his actions. Instead, he said, "I want everyone to understand how sorry I feel about the hurt I have brought to my child."

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The Two-Way
1:30 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Cameron And The Queen Speak Out On Scotland's Independence Vote

People gather in London's Trafalgar Square on Monday for a rally urging Scotland to stay with the U.K. Polls are showing that the "yes" and "no" camps are neck and neck.
Andrew Cowie EPA/Landov

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 1:36 pm

With voter opinion polls showing single-digit margins over the call for Scotland to break away from the U.K., two of England's most visible leaders — Prime Minister David Cameron and Queen Elizabeth II — are speaking about the issue. Today, Cameron told Scots not to vote out of frustration, saying, "If you don't like me, I won't be here forever."

Cameron spoke one day after a rally for Scottish independence, and a day after the queen briefly addressed an issue on which she has been publicly silent. Voters in Scotland will decide the issue on Thursday, Sept. 18.

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The Two-Way
11:03 am
Mon September 15, 2014

'Nude' Or Not, Women's Cycling Team Uniform Makes Waves

This photo of a women's pro cycling team from Colombia raised both eyebrows and the question of who designed the uniforms. One of the team's riders reportedly created the design.
UltimoKilometro

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 12:46 pm

If one goal of the uniforms for a women's cycling team from Colombia is to attract attention, they're a smashing success.

Some observers are calling the outfits — which in photos seem to feature a swatch of flesh-tone-colored fabric in their lower region — "rude," "wrong" and a "disaster." But others are defending the uniform and the cyclists who wear it, saying the criticism is entirely sensationalized.

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The Two-Way
6:50 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Pistorius Could Still Compete For South Africa In Olympics

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 12:55 pm

Despite a conviction for culpable homicide and the looming possibility of a prison sentence, Oscar Pistorius would be free to compete in the Olympics, according to the head of South Africa's Olympic committee.

From The Associated Press:

"South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee chief executive Tubby Reddy tells The Associated Press that the sports body has no regulations that prevent someone with a criminal record from representing the country."

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The Two-Way
2:54 pm
Sun September 14, 2014

U.S. Says Allies In Middle East And Elsewhere Want To Help Fight ISIS

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:11 pm

On a weekend that saw extremist group the Islamic State release a video showing the murder of a Western hostage, support for a coalition to fight the group is building. Several Arab states are reportedly willing to participate in strikes on the group, and Australia has offered to send hundreds of troops to help.

Secretary of State John Kerry has been visiting countries in the Middle East to build support for President Obama's plan to fight the group, ahead of a conference about the crisis that'll begin in Paris Monday.

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The Two-Way
2:31 pm
Sun September 14, 2014

Hannah Storm, A Pro, Fan And Mother, Gives NFL An Earful

ESPN's Hannah Storm aimed a sharply worded op-ed segment at the NFL Sunday, taking the league to task for its handling of the Ray Rice incident. She asked, "What exactly does the NFL stand for?"
YouTube

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 6:23 am

This has been called a long and tough week for the NFL. But ESPN's Hannah Storm asked some tough questions on Sunday's SportsCenter that show how hard the week has been for the league's fans — especially for parents who struggle to reconcile their love for the game with its off-field violence.

A lifelong football fan who's also the mother of three daughters, Storm didn't hold back on her emotions when discussing the NFL's response to what she calls the "horrific Ray Rice elevator video" – and how it also dominated conversations in her home.

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The Two-Way
12:47 pm
Sun September 14, 2014

Heineken Owners Reportedly Rebuff SABMiller's Purchase Offer

Visitors look at old boil tanks at the Heineken Experience in Amsterdam last month. As it celebrates 150 years of brewing, Heineken has also reportedly rejected a takeover offer from SABMiller.
Lex Van Lieshout EPA/LANDOV

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:08 pm

In a move seen as a way to fight off a potential takeover by Anheuser-Busch InBev, large brewer SABMiller has reportedly offered to buy Heineken. The family that controls the Dutch-based brewer rejected the idea, according to Bloomberg News.

Citing "people with knowledge of the matter," the business news agency says SABMiller made its offer in the past two weeks. The two companies would not comment on the story, but Bloomberg portrayed it as part of SABMiller's strategy to remain a competitor to AB InBev — instead of becoming one of its many acquisitions.

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The Two-Way
10:42 am
Sun September 14, 2014

Greg Norman Says He's Lucky Not To Have Cut His Hand Off

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:05 pm

Posting photos this weekend that show him recovering from a chainsaw accident, Australian golfer Greg Norman says he's a lucky man. Norman says he hurt his left hand while cutting branches off a tree at his home in Florida.

Norman, 59, a former world No. 1 player who went on to a successful business career that includes ventures in sport, apparel and wine, announced his injury via Instagram Saturday by posting a photo of himself in a hospital bed.

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The Two-Way
10:02 am
Sun September 14, 2014

Bob Marley's 'Legend' Album Finally Cracks Billboard Top 10

Bob Marley, seen here performing in Paris in 1980, died years before Legend was released. It has since sold millions of copies — and this week, it hit No. 5 on the Billboard chart.
Guidot Lou Dalle /Landov

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:04 pm

Billboard's album sales chart has a new entry in its No. 5 spot: Legend, the greatest hits record by Bob Marley and the Wailers. It's the highest spot ever for Marley. And while the 30-year-old album has sold millions of copies over the years, it only reached No. 54 when it was released.

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The Two-Way
8:27 am
Sun September 14, 2014

Shelling In Donetsk Rocks Cease-Fire In Ukraine

Pro-Russian militants take a break at a checkpoint close to where shelling continued Sunday between pro-Russian forces and the Ukrainian army in the village of Olenivka, some 30 kms south of Donetsk on the way to Mariupol, eastern Ukraine.
Philippe Desmazes AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:03 pm

The cease-fire in eastern Ukraine is being tested Sunday, with intense fighting reported near the airport in Donetsk Saturday and Sunday. An NPR team in that city was forced to flee the shelling.

Reporting from Donetsk, NPR's Eleanor Beardsley says she was with members of the international monitoring group the OSCE — Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe — when they nearly came under fire in Donetsk Sunday.

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The Two-Way
7:01 am
Sun September 14, 2014

ISIS 'Are Not Muslims, They Are Monsters,' Cameron Says

A frame grab from a video released by the Islamic State shows an IS militant holding a knife before purportedly executing British aid worker David Cawthorne Haines.
Islamic State Video EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:01 pm

Vowing justice for murdered aid worker David Haines, Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron says his killing by extremist group the Islamic State is "an act of pure evil." A video purporting to show Haines' beheading was released Saturday.

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The Two-Way
5:58 am
Sun September 14, 2014

North Korea Sentences American To Six Years Of Hard Labor

Matthew Miller leaves after his trial at North Korea's Supreme Court on Sunday. The court sentenced the U.S. citizen to six years of hard labor for entering the country illegally and trying to commit espionage.
Kim Kwang Hyon AP

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 6:00 pm

After being accused of working against North Korea's government, American citizen Matthew Miller was sentenced to six years of hard labor Sunday, after a trial at North Korea's Supreme Court in Pyongyang. Miller, of Bakersfield, Calif., had entered the country on a tourist visa in April.

From Seoul, Jason Strother reports for NPR:

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The Two-Way
2:36 pm
Sat September 13, 2014

San Diego School District's New 18-Ton Armored Vehicle Creates Stir

The school district has released two renderings of what the MRAP might look like after its tan military color is painted over. In one version, it's police blue; another depicts it as more of an ambulance, white with a red cross.
San Diego Unified School District

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 9:40 am

News that San Diego Unified School District has acquired an MRAP, or mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle, is adding a new facet to discussions about the practice of giving surplus military equipment to civilian agencies.

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The Two-Way
10:48 am
Sat September 13, 2014

A Talent That Bridged Genres: Jazz Pianist Joe Sample Dies

Pianist and composer Joe Sample, seen here at the 2010 Beirut Jazz Festival in Lebanon, has died at age 75.
NABIL MOUNZER EPA /Landov

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The Two-Way
9:23 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Phoenix Mercury Wins WNBA Title In A Sweep Of Chicago

The Phoenix Mercury's Diana Taurasi celebrates the team's championship win Friday with DeWanna Bonner (24) and Penny Taylor (13), after beating the Chicago Sky in Game 3 of the WNBA Finals.
KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI AP

Overcoming an injury to their star center, the Phoenix Mercury won its third WNBA title last night, beating the Chicago Sky in three games. An eye injury suffered in game two forced Phoenix center Brittney Griner to sit out.

"Phoenix got 24 points each from Candice Dupree and the sublime guard Diana Taurasi – the Finals MVP – to win," NPR's Tom Goldman reports. "The Mercury dominated this year, they won a record 29 regular-season games. They're fitting champions."

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The Two-Way
7:39 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Ukraine: Peace Disrupted By Barrage; Russia Sends New Aid Convoy

A convoy of Russian trucks crosses the Ukrainian border at the Donetsk-Izvarino custom control checkpoint as Ukrainian refugees look on, Saturday. Russia says the trucks are carrying aid; Ukrainian officials say they don't know what's inside.
SERGEI VENYAVSKY AFP/Getty Images

Rocket fire tested — but didn't break — a week-old cease-fire between Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists Friday night. The deal has brought the release of dozens of prisoners and cut the number of casualties from fighting, even as both sides have reportedly violated its rules in skirmishes.

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The Two-Way
6:35 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Northern Lights Put On Show, Thanks To Large Solar Flare

The "Aurora Forecast" from NOAA shows areas of the U.S. and Canada where the northern lights could have been visible Friday night.
NOAA

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 6:50 am

The sky danced with bands of green, yellow and other colors last night, as the aurora borealis, or northern lights, dazzled viewers in the upper Northern Hemisphere. The light show was sparked by a powerful solar flare that erupted from the sun Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
5:51 am
Sat September 13, 2014

2 Troopers Shot At Pennsylvania State Police Barracks

Originally published on Sat September 13, 2014 3:06 pm

Police are searching for a shooter who opened fire at a state police barracks in northeast Pennsylvania. The attack killed one trooper and left another wounded, police say. The troopers were shot at a barracks in Pike County.

This story is developing; we'll provide updates as they come in.

From the AP:

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The Two-Way
3:41 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

One Month Later: Michael Brown's Family Calls For Arrest

Michael Brown's parents Lesley McSpadden (left) and Michael Brown Sr. (right) flank attorney Anthony Gray as he speaks at a news conference held Tuesday, one month after Michael Brown was shot and killed in Ferguson, Mo.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 4:16 pm

The family of Michael Brown issued a new call for the police officer who shot and killed the 18-year-old to be arrested Tuesday. Supporters of the family held a news conference in Ferguson, Mo., where Officer Darren Wilson had a fatal confrontation with the unarmed Brown one month ago today.

From St. Louis Public Radio, Emanuele Berry reports:

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The Two-Way
10:58 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Janay Rice Says Assault Video Has Brought A 'Nightmare' To Life

The Baltimore Ravens released running back Ray Rice from the team Monday, after video emerged of him assaulting his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer. On Tuesday, Janay Rice said the media has exploited a moment that they both regret.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 11:54 am

The wife of Ray Rice, whose NFL career was derailed Monday by the release of surveillance footage showing him hitting his then-fiancee in an elevator, says the new attention is making the couple relive one of the most painful moments of their lives. Janay Rice says the media have used the episode to boost ratings.

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The Two-Way
10:01 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Apple Shows Off Larger iPhone 6; Unveils New Apple Watch

Apple CEO Tim Cook announces the Apple Watch Tuesday in Cupertino, Calif. Apple unveiled the long-awaited smart watch, which comes in two sizes and requires an iPhone.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 2:03 pm

After months of rumors and dozens of fan-created images of what an Apple watch might look like, today the tech giant will show us what it's been working on. Apple CEO Tim Cook unveiled a new smart watch at a splashy event in Cupertino, Calif., called the Apple Watch

We'll be updating this post with news from Apple today, including tweets from NPR's Laura Sydell, who's at the event at the Flint Center.

Update at 2:40 p.m. ET: Apple Watch Price: $349

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The Two-Way
4:30 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Floods Hit Phoenix In Area's Wettest Day Ever Recorded

Scottsdale, Ariz., also experienced flooding near 78th and Roosevelt streets. This area is designed as a runoff wash.
Nick Blumberg KJZZ

Originally published on Tue September 9, 2014 6:24 am

Roads both big and small have been overtaken with rainwater in the Phoenix area today, after strong storms hit early this morning. At least one death has been reported in the region, and a state of emergency has been declared.

Weather experts say that the more than 3 inches of rain already recorded in the Phoenix region Monday breaks a record that was set more than 70 years ago.

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The Two-Way
3:28 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Iraqi Parliament Approves New Government Led By Abadi

After months of uncertainty and political wrangling, Iraq has a new government, led by Shiite Haider al-Abadi. After hours in session Monday, the country's parliament gave its approval to Abadi and several cabinet ministers.

Abadi was nominated to lead Iraq last month, as support for Nouri al-Maliki unraveled in the face of factional strife and the advances of extremists the Islamic State. One month ago, as Maliki attempted to hold on to power, Abadi's nomination sparked demonstrations by Maliki's supporters. Today, Maliki was given a vice president post.

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The Two-Way
11:32 am
Mon September 8, 2014

NFL's Baltimore Ravens Cut Ray Rice After New Video Surfaces

Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice was suspended by the NFL for two games this season after an incident in which he assaulted his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Mon September 8, 2014 6:25 pm

A leaked video of the altercation between football star Ray Rice and his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer, that took place earlier this year has led the Baltimore Ravens to terminate Rice's contract.

The NFL says Rice has also been suspended indefinitely.

The newly released video shows the couple in an apparent argument before Palmer collapses after being hit in the face. It emerged early Monday, days before Rice's two-game suspension over the incident had been set to end.

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The Two-Way
9:17 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Chick-Fil-A Founder S. Truett Cathy Dies At 93

Chick-fil-A founder S. Truett Cathy, seen here with his classic car collection, died Monday at age 93.
Chick-fil-A

Originally published on Mon September 8, 2014 3:41 pm

Fifty years after he created the sandwich that launched America's top chicken restaurant chain, Georgia businessman Samuel Truett Cathy died early Monday. Cathy's Chick-fil-A has now grown to $5 billion in annual sales, and its stores still close on Sundays, reflecting its founder's religious beliefs.

Cathy's death was announced by Chick-fil-A, which said, "He died peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones."

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