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
11:07 am
Fri May 16, 2014

After Finding $40,000 In Thrift-Store Couch, Roommates Return Money

Lara Russo (from left), Cally Guasti and Reese Werkhoven found more than $40,000 stashed inside the couch they bought at a Salvation Army store.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 12:59 pm

Many of us have stories about old couches — particularly ones we had in college, or shortly after. But not many stories are like the one three roommates in New Paltz, N.Y., can now tell.

After the trio realized their beat-up couch was stuffed with more than $40,000, they decided to return the money to its rightful owner.

It all started when roommates Reese Werkhoven, Cally Guasti and Lara Russo realized that the lumps in their couch's pillows were actually envelopes stuffed with money. Just two months earlier, they'd bought the couch for $20 at a Salvation Army store.

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The Two-Way
9:30 am
Fri May 16, 2014

GM Will Pay $35 Million Fine Over Massive Safety Recall

The Chevrolet Cobalt is one of several GM models that were recalled for faulty ignition switches. The carmaker is paying a $35 million penalty.
David Zalubowski AP

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 11:11 am

The Department of Transportation is ordering General Motors to pay a record $35 million civil penalty for its handling of a recall of more than 2 million vehicles for ignition switch problems. The government says GM violated federal safety laws.

The fine is part of a "consent decree" that's being announced Friday. The agreement also calls for GM to change how it handles review of safety issues.

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Man Charged With Arson In Connection With Calif. Wildfire

Jack Whitlang stands in front of his aunt's home, which burned to the foundation in the Escondido Fire.
Gregory Bull AP

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 6:56 pm

This post was updated at 8:45 p.m. ET

A 57-year-old man was charged with arson in one of 10 wildfires that have swept through San Diego County this week, burning more than 30 square miles and causing millions of dollars in damage.

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The Two-Way
6:32 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Russian Rocket Fails After Launch, Breaking Up Over China

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 8:54 am

With an expensive communication satellite as its payload, a Russian Proton-M rocket broke apart during its third stage last night. The unmanned rocket failed at an altitude of 100 miles — video of the launch showed it flaring across the night sky.

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The Two-Way
5:28 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Landslide Win Puts Opposition Party In Charge In India

India's next prime minister, Narendra Modi, receives a blessing from his mother at her home in the western state of Gujarat on Friday, as election results showed a resounding win for Modi's opposition party.
Ajit Solanki AP

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 2:06 pm

In a historic result, opposition leader Narendra Modi and his Hindu nationalist party are celebrating a resounding win in India's elections Friday, after ousting the Congress party that has long dominated politics in the world's largest democracy.

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All Tech Considered
10:07 am
Thu May 15, 2014

Solar-Powered Bike Lock Aims To Be The Airbnb Of Bike-Sharing

The Skylock is solar-powered and can send messages to let a bike owner know if it's being tampered with.
Skylock

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 12:32 pm

In our "Weekly Innovation" blog series, we explore an interesting idea, design or product that you may not have heard of yet. Do you have an innovation to share? Submit it with this form.

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The Two-Way
9:38 am
Thu May 15, 2014

FCC Gives Initial OK To New Internet Traffic Rules

Demonstrators protest outside the Federal Communications Commission Thursday. The agency voted to open new proposed rules for public comment, including a discussion of whether "paid prioritization" should be banned.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 3:40 pm

New rules for how Internet traffic is governed were officially unveiled and approved for public comment following a 3-2 vote Thursday by members of the Federal Communications Commission.

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The Two-Way
9:00 am
Thu May 15, 2014

'She's A Hero!' Boy Says Of Cat Who Fought Off Attacking Dog

An image taken from a video posted by Roger Triantafilo shows a dog closing in on his son Jeremy earlier this week. The family's cat fought off the dog after it bit the 4-year-old boy.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 5:15 pm

A family's story of how their cat ran off a dog that had attacked their young son is making waves far beyond Bakersfield, Calif., as the incident was captured in a dramatic video. Surveillance cameras caught the dog viciously biting Jeremy Triantafilo and dragging him — before the family cat rushes to his rescue.

"She's a hero!" 4-year-old Jeremy said of the cat, Tara, in an interview with KERO 23 TV. He said, "I love Tara a whole lot."

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The Two-Way
6:32 am
Thu May 15, 2014

Turkish Mine Explosion: Angry Protests As Death Toll Rises

People dig graves Thursday for miners who died in an explosion in Soma, Turkey. Anger over what's being called the deadliest industrial accident in the country's history has set off protests nationwide.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 8:42 am

The death toll in the coal mine explosion in Turkey keeps rising, and anger over the incident has spread around the country. Thousands of people staged protests after a speech from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in which he suggested such accidents are unavoidable.

Officials say at least 282 mine workers have died in the incident in the city of Soma. That figure seems certain to rise, as about 100 people are still missing. The mine explosion is already being called the deadliest industrial disaster in Turkey's history.

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The Two-Way
5:09 am
Thu May 15, 2014

10,000 Gallons Of Oil Spill In LA Neighborhood

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 1:30 pm

Crude oil geysered high into the air in northeast Los Angeles early Thursday morning, creating a spill that fire officials say was knee-deep in some spots. The spill happened in an industrial section of Atwater Village, causing the evacuation of a nearby strip club.

Update at 8:10 a.m. ET: Oil Estimate Downgraded

After initially saying that "over 50,000" gallons of oil had spilled from a ruptured pipeline, Los Angeles Fire Department officials now say the correct figure is about 10,000 gallons.

Our original post continues:

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The Two-Way
10:07 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Kids Hurt After Bounce House Soars High In The Air

An eyewitness photo shows an inflatable playhouse being blown high in the air. Two boys were seriously injured when they fell out at 15 feet, and a girl who fell out at a lower height also was hurt. Proceeds from the licensing of this image are being donated to the kids' families.
Poststar.com

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 4:30 am

Two kindergartners were seriously hurt after the "bounce house" they were playing in was sent high into the air by a strong gust of wind Monday in upstate New York. Both children needed to be hospitalized after falling out of the inflatable playhouse.

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The Two-Way
9:01 am
Wed May 14, 2014

San Diego County Explains 'Offending Words' In Fire Message

Smoke rises from a canyon in San Diego where a wildfire raged on Tuesday. County officials say they're investigating how a rogue message appeared in their emergency app.
AP

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 6:42 pm

Fire officials in San Diego are hoping they've seen the worst of a wildfire that has burned 1,550 acres. They also say they'll get to the bottom of an odd message in an alert that stated, "fire in your pants."

The blaze caused evacuation calls to go out to residents, schools and businesses in an exclusive area of San Diego County. No injuries or structural damage has been reported so far.

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The Two-Way
6:09 am
Wed May 14, 2014

'I'm Happy,' Says Man Whose Case Changed Europe's Rules For Google

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 12:25 pm

The Spanish man whose court battle against Google resulted in a European court ruling in his favor – and for the "right to be forgotten" – says he is pleased with the case's outcome.

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The Two-Way
5:44 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Manning Could Move To Civilian Prison For Hormone Therapy

PVt. Chelsea Manning, formerly named Bradley, was convicted last year of sending classified documents to anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks. In this 2010 photo, Manning was dressed as a woman. The soldier has asked for hormone therapy and to be able to live as a woman.
U.S. Army handout Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 11:25 am

The Pentagon is working on a prison transfer for convicted WikiLeaks source Pvt. Chelsea Manning, who has requested hormone therapy. The plan would allow Manning to serve time in a civilian prison, where such therapy is available.

Manning's first name was Bradley when the soldier made headlines for sending a trove of classified documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

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The Two-Way
5:13 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Death Toll Nears 285 In Turkish Coal Mine Explosion

Rescue workers carry a man from the coal mine in Soma, western Turkey, site of a disaster that has killed 245 people.
Emrah Gurel AP

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 2:08 am

This post was updated at 4:00 a.m. ET Thursday:

The death toll in Turkey's worst mining disaster has risen to 282. Rescue teams recovered eight more bodies on Thursday. Hope is fading for the estimated 150 miners trapped below ground.

This post was updated at 7:10 p.m. ET.:

Crowds angered over a mine explosion in western Turkey that claimed at least 274 lives clashed with police on Wednesday near the site of the disaster in Soma.

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The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Artist H.R. Giger, Creator Of Surreal Biomechanics, Dies

Swiss artist H.R. Giger, seen here at his "Dreams and Visions" exhibition in 2011, died Monday after a fall in Zurich. Giger's work includes designs for the 1979 film Alien.
Robert Jaeger EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 5:26 pm

You might not know the name, but you probably know the work: H.R. Giger created some of the most powerfully creepy visuals in Hollywood's history, including animals and props that forced some viewers of 1979's sci-fi film Alien to watch the film through their fingers.

Hans Rudolf Giger was 74; he died in Zurich from injuries suffered in a fall, a representative of the H.R. Giger Museum in Gruyeres, Switzerland, tells the AP.

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The Two-Way
9:18 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Christopher Columbus Ship The Santa Maria May Have Been Found

A 2011 photo shows a replica of Christopher Columbus' flagship, the Santa Maria, off the Portuguese island of Madeira. The location of the Santa Maria has been a mystery; an explorer says he might have found it.
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 4:15 am

It's been missing for more than 500 years. But now there are reports that the Santa Maria, the largest ship among the trio that made Christopher Columbus' first expedition to North America, may be found. Undersea explorer Barry Clifford says he thinks he has found the ship in waters off of Haiti's coast.

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The Two-Way
6:51 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Google Must Delete Personal Data When Asked, European Court Says

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 8:06 am

People have the right to have data about them deleted from online databases, the European Court of Justice says, in a ruling issued against Google on Tuesday. The search company had fought a Spanish court's order to remove links to online newspaper articles in a case that began in 2011.

"A Spanish man brought this case, arguing that Google's search results infringed on his privacy," NPR's Ari Shapiro reports for our Newscast unit. "A search of his name brought up an auction notice of his repossessed home from 16 years ago."

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The Two-Way
5:30 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Former Israeli Leader Ehud Olmert Gets 6-Year Prison Term For Bribery

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert leaves Tel Aviv's district court Wednesday. Olmert was sentenced to six years in prison and a fine of 1 million shekels ($290,000) for his role in one of the country's worst-ever corruption scandals.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 11:42 am

In the first criminal conviction of a former Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert was sentenced to six years in prison Tuesday for taking bribes related to a real estate deal. The formal case against Olmert stretches back to 2008, when he resigned from office under a cloud.

Olmert, 68, says he'll appeal his punishment, which includes a fine of 1 million shekels ($290,000), reports Israel's Haaretz. He was found guilty of the crime in March.

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The Two-Way
5:11 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Nigerian Woman Spots Her Daughter In Boko Haram Video

Demonstrators call for the release of girls kidnapped from a school in Nigeria, during a demonstration in Lagos on Monday. A woman has said her daughter is in a video released by Boko Haram, the group that took the girls last month.
Pius Utomi Ekpei AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 11:04 am

The video released by extremist group Boko Haram on Monday, showing more than 100 girls abducted from their school in Nigeria last month, included a girl whose mother has identified her, says a representative of the parents of the kidnapped girls.

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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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