Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.

As the NPR Ethics Handbook states, the Standards & Practices editor is "charged with cultivating an ethical culture throughout our news operation. This means he or she coordinates regular training and discussion on how we apply our principles and monitors our decision-making practices to ensure we're living up to our standards."

Before becoming Standards & Practices editor, Memmott was one of the hosts of NPR's "The Two-Way" news blog, which he helped to launch when he came to NPR in 2009. It focuses on breaking news, analysis, and the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Prior to joining NPR, Memmott worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor at USA Today. He focused on a range of coverage from politics, foreign affairs, economics, and the media. He reported from places across the United States and the world, including half a dozen trips to Afghanistan in 2002-2003.

During his time at USA Today, Memmott, helped launch and lead three USAToday.com news blogs: "On Deadline," "The Oval" and "On Politics," the site's 2008 presidential campaign blog.

For Penn State's Joe Paterno, the winningest football coach in Division I history, his career ends with this statement Wednesday night from the school's board of trustees:

"The board determined that it is in the best interest of the University for Joe Paterno to no longer serve as head football coach, effective immediately."

Bil Keane, whose "Family Circus" comics have been appearing in newspapers since 1960, died Tuesday in Arizona at the age of 89.

The fact that former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky's 2001 biography was called Touched: The Jerry Sandusky Story, is generating some pretty pointed commentary on Amazon.com this week.

This video is generating stories about whether an Oakland police officer used excessive force on Nov. 3 when he fired a rubber bullet in the direction of 30-year-old Scott Campbell, who was videotaping the scene at the time.

Don't be alarmed at 2 p.m. ET today when broadcasters across the U.S., including NPR stations, take part in the first-ever nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System.

After all, as NPR's Brian Naylor reports for our Newscast Desk, "remember, this is only a test."

Saying "I wish I had done more" about accusations that one of his former assistants had been sexually abusing young boys for more than a decade, Penn State football coach Joe Paterno just confirmed that he will retire at the end of this season.

The 84-year-old Paterno, who holds the record for most wins by a Division I coach, released this statement moments ago:

"I am absolutely devastated by the developments in this case. I grieve for the children and their families, and I pray for their comfort and relief.

A few of the developments since our last post about the sexual harassment allegations against Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain — who calls them "false, anonymous, incorrect accusations":

Catching up on some of the latest developments in the scandal at Penn State University — where former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky has been charged with sexually abusing young boys, two university officials have been charged with lying to a grand jury and not alerting police, and there have been calls for legendary coach Joe Paterno to step down because of concern that he didn't do enough to alert authorities to what was allegedly happening:

As news outlets try to decipher what Tuesday's election results tell us about what voters are thinking, they're reaching various conclusions.

"I can categorically say I have never acted inappropriately with anyone, period," Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain just told ABC News' Jonathan Karl on a live ABC/Yahoo webcast.

Responding to the latest accusation by a woman — Sharon Bialek of Chicago — who says he sexually harassed her in the late 1990s, Cain said the charge is "baseless, bogus and false" and that Bialek is lying.

"An appeals court judge appointed by President Ronald Reagan just wrote an opinion affirming the constitutionality of the federal law overhauling health care," our colleague Scott Hensley writes over at the Shots blog.

Karen Kraushaar, a 55-year-old federal employee and registered Republican, has been identified as one of the two women who in the late 1990s settled claims of sexual harassment against 2012 GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain, our colleague Liz Halloran reports on the It's All Politics blog and the NPR Newscast.

Update at 2:26 p.m. ET. In a meeting with Italy's president, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi offered to resign after Parliament approved a budget filled with new austerity measures.

The Guardian reports that President Giorgio Napolitano broke the news in a statement that read in part:

This probably isn't going to satisfy many of those who think of The X-Files as a documentary series, but the Obama administration has now put the White House on record as saying the government doesn't have any evidence of life "out there."

And the Obama team doesn't believe anything's being hidden from us.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy was overheard last week telling President Obama that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is "a liar," according to reports from Reuters, The Associated Press and other news outlets.

Sarkozy also said of Netanyahu that "I can't stand him," the stories say.

The allegations that former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky sexually abused young boys and that university officials, including legendary coach Joe Paterno, had been warned years ago about what was supposedly happening and never informed police have raised an obvious question:

Is it time for the 84-year-old Paterno to step down and for a complete "house cleaning" of the school's football program?

A "sledgehammer left hook" that put Muhammad Ali on the canvas in 1971 pretty much tells the story of Joe Frazier's career, NPR's Tom Goldman says.

"It was as crushing and symbolic" as any of Frazier's punches over his long career, Tom said on Morning Edition. "It put his bitter rival, Muhammad Ali, on his 'float like a butterfly, sting like a bee' keister at Madison Square Garden in what came to be known as the "Fight of the Century."

After watching a woman accuse him Monday of groping her and other inappropriate sexual behavior, "I says 'well, I know what we got to do,' because there's not a ounce of truth in all of these accusations," Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said early today on ABC TV's Jimmy Kimmel Live!. Cain said he'll be holding a news conference this afternoon in Phoenix to address the allegations.

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