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
12:32 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

A Prom Like Any Other — But With A Few Exceptions

Two of the students who participated in the Multnomah Education Service District's Special Needs Prom this past weekend.
Lucy Ohlsen OPB

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 3:56 pm

An "Aloha Prom" was held in Oregon this past weekend, complete with leis and a huge punch bowl. Tailored for students with special needs, the dance was organized by the state's reigning teacher of the year.

Just a few years ago, the students didn't have a prom to go to.

Brett Bigham, who is the first special ed teacher to be named Oregon's teacher of the year, started the Special Needs Prom five years ago, Oregon Public Broadcasting reports.

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The Two-Way
10:16 am
Mon May 12, 2014

More Cyclists Can Now Call AAA For Help

Cyclists can now call AAA and other groups for help when they run into trouble during a ride. Here, cyclists ride near the White House in Washington, D.C., last autumn.
Mladen Antonov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 1:23 pm

It's not going to change its name anytime soon, but auto membership club AAA is increasingly in the business of fixing bikes and giving rides to cyclists who run into trouble. AAA clubs in Colorado and Southern New England announced the new service in time for this week's Bike to Work Day, following the lead of other regional auto clubs.

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Mon May 12, 2014

'I Was Baited,' Donald Sterling Tells CNN In (Mostly) Apologetic Interview

Shelly Sterling (top right), wife of embattled L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling, watches Friday's Game 3 of the Clippers playoff series. The NBA says that if Donald Sterling is forced out, his wife cannot keep the team, either.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

"I'm not a racist," Donald Sterling tells CNN in an interview about the scandal that brought a lifetime ban from the NBA. "I made a terrible, terrible mistake. And I'm here with you today to apologize and to ask for forgiveness for all the people that I've hurt."

Sterling also said he isn't likely to engage in a drawn-out legal battle with the NBA if the league attempts to force him out as the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.

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The Two-Way
5:56 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Separatists Vote To Split From Ukraine; Russia 'Respects' Decision

In the eastern Ukrainian city of Lugansk, the "chairman of the Central Election Commission" Alexander Malykhin shows a document with the results of a referendum outside the regional state administration building Monday. He said voters had chosen to leave Ukraine.
Dimitar Dilkoff AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 5:01 pm

A referendum on independence from Ukraine shows strong support for secession, according to separatist leaders in the districts where Sunday's vote was held. Kiev and Western governments say the vote is illegitimate.

Russia, which has been accused of orchestrating the unrest in eastern Ukraine, says it "respects the expression of will of the population of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions." But the Kremlin's statement also called for dialogue with Kiev, not violence.

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The Two-Way
5:13 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Boko Haram Says Video Shows Missing Nigerian Girls

A still image taken from a video that the extremist group Boko Haram says is of more than 100 girls who were abducted from a Nigerian school last month.
AFP/YouTube

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 6:08 pm

The group that took more than 200 girls from a Nigerian school last month released what it says is a video of the girls, along with demands that the government release militants from prison. The group's leader, Abubakar Shekau, says the video shows around 130 of the girls.

In the undated video released Monday, a crowd of girls is seen outdoors, arranged as if for a class photo. They are wearing the full-length hijab; some portions of the footage show them praying.

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The Two-Way
12:40 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

What Are The Most (And Least) Charitable U.S. States?

A map of the U.S. shows the states where residents were the most and least likely to say they had recently donated to charity.
Gallup

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 4:55 pm

There are only two U.S. states where at least 50 percent of residents say they've recently given either money or time to charity: Utah and Minnesota, according to a new Gallup poll. Nevada and Kentucky tied for the lowest rate of charitable giving.

The poll was conducted in the last six months of 2013, when at least 600 residents of each state were asked whether they had donated money to a charity or volunteered at an organization within the past month.

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The Two-Way
9:25 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Flood Of Noahs Hit U.S. Cribs In 2013, Taking Baby Name Honors

Noah was the most popular name for new baby boys in the U.S. last year, the Social Security Administration says. Noah's biblical namesake is also featured in a film starring Russell Crowe.
Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 2:07 pm

After 54 years of dominance, Jacob and Mark have been overcome by Noah as the most popular name for baby boys in the U.S. Among girls, Sophia was the top pick.

The Social Security Administration called the findings "an upset" Friday. The news seems sure to bring a deluge of quips working off Noah's biblical namesake.

"Noah sailed past Jacob to become the most popular baby name for boys in 2013," the AP tells us, adding that Jacob had occupied the top spot for 14 years.

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The Two-Way
8:39 am
Fri May 9, 2014

NPR Names Jarl Mohn As Its New CEO And President

Jarl Mohn, a veteran of radio and television, will be NPR's new CEO, the organization's board of directors announced Friday.
Jim Tuttle for NPR

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 4:31 pm

Media industry veteran Jarl Mohn will be NPR's new CEO, the organization's board of directors has announced.

Mohn, 62, currently sits on the board of directors at several media organizations, including Scripps Networks Interactive and Web analytics company ComScore. He is also on the boards of KPCC Southern California Public Radio and the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

Announcing the hire, Kit Jensen, who chairs NPR's board of directors, said Mohn has "an ability to find nuanced and new ideas." He is slated to start work at NPR on July 1.

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The Two-Way
6:39 am
Fri May 9, 2014

NFL Draft's First Round: Manziel Slides, No Running Backs Taken

Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel poses for photos after being selected by the Cleveland Browns as the 22nd pick in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft, Thursday.
Craig Ruttle AP

The first round of the NFL brought a few surprises Thursday, after No. 1 pick Jadeveon Clowney of South Carolina went to the Houston Texans, as many expected. For many, the story of the night was Heisman winner Johnny Manziel – and how the Cleveland Browns wound up with a new quarterback after skipping him with its first pick.

The Browns took a convoluted route to get Manziel: the team traded away its No. 4 pick, then made other trades that slightly shifted their other slots.

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The Two-Way
5:34 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Russia Shows Off Military In Red Square Victory Day Parade

Russian soldiers march in Moscow's Red Square during Friday's Victory Day parade, a show of military might amid tensions in Ukraine following Moscow's annexation of Crimea.
Kirill Kudryavtsev AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 8:08 am

It's a day for patriots in Russia, where the country is celebrating Victory Day to commemorate the World War II defeat of Nazi Germany. A parade of troops, tanks and missile launchers made its way through Red Square to mark the occasion.

"It is a holiday when an overwhelming force of patriotism triumphs, when all of us feel particularly acutely what it means to be loyal to the motherland and how important it is to defend its interests," President Vladimir Putin said.

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The Two-Way
11:56 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Calif. City Wants To Make It A Crime To Bully Those Younger Than 26

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 5:13 pm

A California town is moving closer to making it a misdemeanor crime to bully anyone from kindergarten age up to 25 years old. The Carson City Council voted unanimously in favor of the measure this week, and it will come up for final approval May 20.

"We are going to protect not only the kid that is bothered in school, but when you leave school and go home, we're going to protect you as a city," bill co-sponsor Councilman Mike Gipson says, according to local KABC 7 TV.

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The Two-Way
10:22 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Tsarnaev's Attorneys Say FBI Questions Violated His Rights

Results of the FBI's questioning of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in a hospital last April should not be allowed as evidence, Tsarnaev's attorneys say. They're asking a federal judge to suppress statements he made as he suffered from gunshot wounds.

The agents said they needed to be sure the threat to public safety was over, according to the filing, which says they went too far in an attempt to "extract as much incriminating information as possible, without regard for the protections of the Fifth Amendment."

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The Two-Way
8:23 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Former U.S. General In Africa: 'I Think We Can' Help Find Nigerian Girls

The effort to find hundreds of abducted Nigerian schoolgirls has gone international — and so has anger over the mass kidnapping, as evidenced by this protest Thursday in South Africa. Retired Gen. Carter Ham says there's still a chance for the U.S. to help.
Ben Curtis AP

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 4:05 pm

What can the U.S. — or anyone — do to return more than 200 abducted girls to their families in Nigeria? And what might happen if the U.S. engages with another violent group of extremists? Retired Gen. Carter Ham, who until last year led the U.S. African Command, says there's still a chance to help.

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The Two-Way
5:28 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Brutal Attack On Nigerian Village Kills More Than 125

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 8:26 am

At least 125 people were killed in an attack on a market in a Nigerian village near the Cameroon border. The violence is suspected to be the work of Islamist extremist group Boko Haram, which has also claimed responsibility for abducting more than 250 girls from a school last month.

CNN says that the attack targeted "an area that troops had been using as a base in the search" for the kidnapped girls.

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The Two-Way
4:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Ukraine's Separatists To Proceed With Vote, Despite Putin

Pro-Russian separatists say they'll hold a referendum Sunday on seceding from Ukraine, despite Russian President Vladimir Putin's comments that they should wait to hold the vote. Thursday, a gunman installs a banner reading "Do not forget, do not forgive!" in eastern Ukraine.
Darko Vojinovic AP

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 12:55 pm

A day after Russian President Vladimir Putin told separatists in Ukraine they should postpone a referendum on secession, leaders of the group say they'll hold the vote this Sunday as planned.

The decision was announced by a committee heading the so-called Donetsk People's Republic in eastern Ukraine. The group held a news conference Thursday to say they would go ahead with plans to hold the vote.

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The Two-Way
12:12 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Putin Tells Separatists In Ukraine To Postpone May 11 Referendum

Russia's President Vladimir Putin, right, addressed the media Wednesday along with the head of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Swiss President Didier Burkhalter.
ALEXEY DRUZHININ AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 3:42 pm

Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine should wait to hold a referendum on secession, Russia's President Vladimir Putin says.

The vote is currently planned for this Sunday. Putin's comments coincide with discussions he had today with the leader of the European group that has stationed military observers in Ukraine.

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The Two-Way
10:32 am
Wed May 7, 2014

DEA Raids Target Synthetic Drugs' Makers And Sellers

Makers and sellers of synthetic drugs were targeted in at least 25 states Wednesday, as federal agents made arrests and conducted searches. Authorities say profits from the synthetics could be aiding terrorist and criminal groups in the Middle East.

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The Two-Way
9:24 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Stanford University Says No To Coal Investments

Stanford University's trustees says the school will rid itself of any investments it has made in coal-producing companies. A 2013 file photo shows coal being loaded onto a truck at a mine near Decker, Montana.
Matthew Brown AP

Stanford's trustees say the school will no longer invest in companies that mine coal, joining about a dozen other colleges that have taken the step. The decision cited alternate energy sources that emit less greenhouse gases.

Stanford will liquidate any current holdings in coal-producing companies, the school says. Of the schools that have divested, it's by far the largest.

"Stanford wouldn't say how much it currently invests in coal companies," NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports. "Its total endowment was just shy of $19 billion last year."

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The Two-Way
8:07 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Reported $147 Million Home Price Would Set New U.S. Record

A satellite image depicts a beachfront estate that reportedly sold for $147 million in East Hampton, N.Y.
Google Maps

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 2:12 pm

The stock market has been on a winning streak — and that means these are busy times in exclusive U.S. housing markets. How else to explain three homes that each reportedly sold for more than $100 million in the past three months?

News that hedge fund founder Barry Rosenstein is buying an East Hampton, N.Y., property for $147 million prompted Bloomberg News to declare, "The U.S. trophy-home market is shattering price records this year."

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The Two-Way
6:03 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Report Details Hundreds Of Complaints Against U.S. Border Agents

A new report lists more than 800 complaints made against U.S. Border Patrol agents; most include physical abuse. Here, an agent patrols the U.S.-Mexico border fence at in San Diego, Calif., last year.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 8:36 am

Physical abuse and excessive force top the list of hundreds of complaints filed against U.S. Border Patrol agents, according to a new report. The accusations include charges that agents kicked a pregnant woman, stomped on a man and physically forced a minor to sign a document.

Those accusations are in a report on government data about the complaints that was obtained by the advocacy group the American Immigration Council via a Freedom of Information Act request.

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The Two-Way
5:02 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Thai Court Removes Prime Minister Yingluck From Office

Ousted Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra received roses from supporters in a Bangkok suburb on Wednesday.
Pornchai Kittiwongsakul AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 8:29 am

Saying Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra had violated Thailand's constitution, the country's Constitutional Court ordered the caretaker leader to step down from office, along with nine ministers. She had held the post since the summer of 2011.

The court's ruling Wednesday stems from accusations that Yingluck abused her powers in 2011 by transferring the national security chief, who had been appointed by the opposition. The court's nine judges went on national television to broadcast their decision.

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The Two-Way
11:02 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Portland, Ore., Police Criticized Over 2013 Arrest Of Girl, 9

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 1:45 pm

The 9-year-old girl was wearing a bathing suit, a towel and handcuffs when she was taken away by police, with her mother looking on in shock. Now the arrest last year, over a fight at a Portland, Ore., youth club, is sparking criticism of the police after the girl's mother decided to go public.

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The Two-Way
9:04 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Bayer Will Buy Merck Consumer Unit For $14.2 Billion

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 3:44 pm

German drug company Bayer has agreed to acquire the consumer care business of U.S.-based Merck & Co., in a deal that would bolster Bayer in the over-the-counter drug sector. The $14.2 billion purchase includes brands such as Claritin, Coppertone and Dr. Scholl's.

From Reuters:

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The Two-Way
7:44 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Kidnappers In Nigeria Wore Uniforms, Escaped Girl Says

Muslim women march as part of a call for Nigeria's government to increase efforts to rescue more than 200 girls who were kidnapped from their school last month.
Sunday Alamba AP

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 9:38 am

The gunmen who abducted 276 girls from a school in Nigeria last month wore uniforms and said they were soldiers who had come to help, according to a girl who escaped her captors. The girls were led outside — and it wasn't until the gunmen stole food and set fire to the school that the girls became certain they were in trouble.

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The Two-Way
5:49 am
Tue May 6, 2014

U-2 Spy Plane Disrupted Hundreds Of Flights, FAA Acknowledges

The Air Force's U-2 spy plane first took flight in August 1955. One of the planes confused air traffic control computers in California last week, creating havoc.
USAF Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 2:25 pm

A snarl of air traffic over California last week is being blamed on a Cold War-era spy plane whose flight plan did not compute for air traffic control computers. After the altitude of the U-2 plane was misinterpreted, efforts to route airliners around it created havoc.

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The Two-Way
5:09 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Ukraine Reports Dozens Killed In Slovyansk Fighting

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 4:46 pm

Ukraine says its military has killed 30 pro-Russian separatists as government forces try to retake Slovyansk and other cities near the border with Russia. At least four Ukrainian soldiers have died, and separatists shot down a helicopter in eastern Ukraine.

The helicopter's "crew escaped because they apparently crashed into a riverbed once it was shot down," NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson reports.

Ukraine's Interior Minister Arsen Avakov announced the death toll in Slovyansk on Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
2:34 pm
Sun May 4, 2014

Circus Performers Injured During Hair-Hanging Stunt

Rhode Island state troopers and Providence police stand in the lobby of the Dunkin' Donuts Center after an accident during the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus performance Sunday.
Stew Milne AP

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 6:04 am

Updated at 1:55 a.m. EDT Monday:

Inspectors have yet to determine what caused Sunday's horrifying accident during a Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus performance in Providence, R.I.

Rhode Island Hospital in Providence admitted 11 patients with varying injuries, spokeswoman Jill Reuter told The Associated Press. One was said to be in critical condition. Nine performers were injured when a support apparatus failed during an aerial stunt, while an unknown number of others suffered less serious injuries.

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The Two-Way
1:22 pm
Sun May 4, 2014

First Openly Gay Episcopal Bishop Announces Divorce

Bishop Gene Robinson, seen here in 2010, has announced that he and his long-time partner will be getting a divorce.
Neilson Barnard Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 4, 2014 2:52 pm

Bishop Gene Robinson says he and his husband, Mark Andrew, are getting a divorce. The first openly gay Episcopal bishop, Robinson retired last year, a decade after his election alienated many conservative Anglicans.

The pair had been together for 25 years. Robinson disclosed the divorce this weekend, in an email to the Diocese of New Hampshire and in a column for The Daily Beast in which he wrote:

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The Two-Way
10:39 am
Sun May 4, 2014

Sinn Fein's Adams Is Released; Was Questioned About Murder

Sinn Fein's Gerry Kelly speaks to the media outside Antrim's police station in Antrim, Northern Ireland, Sunday. Police released Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams after five days of questioning him about the 1972 murder of Jean McConville.
Peter Morrison AP

Originally published on Sun May 4, 2014 2:39 pm

Gerry Adams, the leader of the mostly Catholic party Sinn Fein, was released Sunday after five days of police questioning about a 1972 murder. Adams' arrest had rattled the delicate power-sharing arrangement in Northern Ireland. His release was confirmed by a police statement today.

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The Two-Way
9:42 am
Sun May 4, 2014

Slipping Through The City: Bristol Turns Street Into A Water Slide

A woman slides on the nearly 300-feet Bristol Park and Slide project, an interactive temporary installation by artist Luke Jerram in the center of Bristol in southwest England Sunday.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 4, 2014 2:30 pm

Summer hasn't officially begun, but that isn't stopping the city of Bristol, England, from closing off traffic so people can ride a nearly 300-foot-long water slide down the street.

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