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
6:54 am
Wed December 4, 2013

Hezbollah Commander Dies In Attack Outside Beirut Home

Hassan al-Laqis, described as one of Hezbollah's founding members, was killed in an attack outside his home in Beirut. He's seen here in a photo released Wednesday by the Hezbollah Media Relation Office.
AP

Originally published on Sun December 8, 2013 8:18 am

A veteran Hezbollah commander with expertise in technology and intelligence was assassinated Wednesday in Beirut — a killing the militant group blamed on Israel.

Israeli officials denied involvement in the death of Hassan al-Laqis, who was reportedly shot in a parking lot outside his home.

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The Two-Way
11:45 am
Tue December 3, 2013

American Held In North Korea Reportedly Oversaw Guerrilla Group In War

Park Boo Seo (right), a former member of the Korean Kuwol partisan unit, speaks about Merrill Newman, an American tourist detained in North Korea. Newman supervised the group during the Korean War.
Ahn Young-joon AP

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 2:03 pm

Merrill Newman, the 85-year-old American war veteran and tourist who was arrested in North Korea in October, once supervised a guerrilla group of "perhaps the most hated and feared fighters" of the Korean War, some of his former comrades say. That's according to The Associated Press, which offers details about Newman's service as a possible explanation for his detention.

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The Two-Way
8:19 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Six-Year Jail Term For Dancer In Bolshoi Acid Attack

Pavel Dmitrichenko, a former leading dancer in Russia's Bolshoi ballet, stands inside the defendant's cage in a Moscow court Tuesday. He was sentenced to six years in prison for ordering an acid attack on the Bolshoi's artistic director, Sergei Filin.
Alexande Nemenov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 1:53 pm

A Moscow court on Tuesday sentenced the man who ordered an attack on Bolshoi Theater artistic director Sergei Filin to six years in a penal colony.

Former Bolshoi ballet soloist Pavel Dmitrichenko, 29, was one of several people convicted in the attack in which a masked assailant threw acid into Filin's face, nearly blinding him.

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The Two-Way
7:37 am
Tue December 3, 2013

U.S. Students Slide In Global Ranking On Math, Reading, Science

A graphic released with the 2012 PISA results shows the annualized change in performance in average math scores between 2003 and 2012. The chart includes only nations that have comparable data from both 2003 and 2012.
PISA

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 1:13 pm

American 15-year-olds continue to turn in flat results in a test that measures students' proficiency in reading, math and science worldwide, failing to crack the global top 20.

The Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, collects test results from 65 countries for its rankings, which come out every three years. The latest results, from 2012, show that U.S. students ranked below average in math among the world's most-developed countries. They were close to average in science and reading.

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The Two-Way
10:44 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Gay Marriages Take Place In Hawaii As New Law Takes Hold

Saralyn Morales (center left) and Isajah Morales walk down the aisle at the Sheraton Waikiki in Honolulu shortly after Hawaii's new gay marriage law took effect Monday.
Marco Garcia AP

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 11:36 am

Six same-sex couples got married in Hawaii shortly after midnight Monday morning, taking advantage of a new law in the first hours of the first day it took effect. The state's Legislature approved the Hawaii Marriage Equality Act in a recent special session.

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The Two-Way
9:04 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Delivery By Drone? Amazon Says A New Era Looms

In an image taken of a test flight, an Amazon Prime Air drone carries a package. The online retailer could begin 30-minute deliveries within four to five years, CEO Jeff Bezos told 60 Minutes Sunday.
Amazon

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:21 pm

Amazon is looking at drastically reducing its delivery times — to 30 minutes or less — as it plans a new service called Prime Air that it says could debut in a few years. In an interview on CBS' 60 Minutes, CEO Jeff Bezos said the giant online retailer plans to use semi-autonomous drones to carry purchases to customers.

That's got tech experts buzzing about whether the idea will fly.

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Mon December 2, 2013

NYC Commuter Train Was Well Above Speed Limit Before Crash

Search and rescue teams work at the scene of Sunday's passenger train crash in the Bronx. The train crash killed four people and injured dozens more.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 6:53 pm

Update at 6:50 p.m. ET. Speeding Into Curve; A Mile Or More To Safely Stop:

A commuter train headed into New York City was traveling at 82 mph Sunday morning when it entered a curve where the speed limit was supposed to be 30 mph and derailed, National Transportation Safety Board investigators have concluded. Four people on the train were killed and at least 60 others were injured.

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The Two-Way
5:35 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

U.S. And Japanese Officials Discuss China's Air Defense Claim

Concerns over China's air defense claims led Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to call Japan's defense minister Wednesday. Here, a man makes a call near a replica of a Chinese fighter jet displayed in Beijing Wednesday.
Ng Han Guan AP

Concerned by China's move to assert itself in an area claimed by Japan, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel spoke with his Japanese counterpart Wednesday. China's military says it monitored a flight Tuesday by U.S. bombers through an air defense zone recently outlined by China.

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The Two-Way
3:56 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Poultry Pardon: President Rewards America's Top Turkey

President Barack Obama, with daughters Sasha, second from left, and Malia, right, bestows a presidential pardon on Popcorn, the turkey, in a White House Thanksgiving tradition.
Carolyn Kaster AP

A turkey caught a break in Washington today. President Obama bestowed the traditional presidential pardon to a turkey named Popcorn, who now becomes the 2013 National Thanksgiving Turkey. It's the 66th anniversary of the tradition that keeps a lucky turkey or two off the dinner table.

In bestowing the official pardon, the president also observed the tradition of cracking a few jokes at the short outdoor ceremony at the White House, where he was joined by his daughters, Natasha and Malia.

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The Two-Way
2:51 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Small Businesses Get One-Year Delay In Health Insurance Process

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 7:29 pm

The Obama administration announced it is delaying until November 2014 a requirement that small businesses shop for health insurance via the troubled federal HealthCare.gov site, which has been blamed for many problems since its launch last month. The shift applies to businesses with fewer than 50 full-time workers.

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The Two-Way
12:51 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Workers Killed In Collapse At Brazilian World Cup Stadium

A metal structure atop the Corinthians Arena is seen after a collapse Wednesday in Sao Paulo. The stadium is slated to host the 2014 World Cup opener.
Nelson Antoine AP

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 7:27 pm

A large portion of a nearly completed soccer stadium has collapsed in Sao Paulo, Brazil, killing at least two people and injuring others. A crane that was installing a large metal structure apparently buckled at the Corinthians Arena, which is slated to host the opening game of the 2014 World Cup.

NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro filed this report for our Newscast unit:

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The Two-Way
11:28 am
Wed November 27, 2013

Judge Smooths Path For American-US Airways Merger

Cleared for takeoff: That's the message from the "new" American Airlines, after a bankruptcy judge ruled it could finalize its merger with US Airways Wednesday.
Brandon Wade AP

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 1:22 pm

A U.S. judge says American Airlines can exit bankruptcy and join forces with US Airways Group, all but ensuring that their merger can take place within weeks. Wednesday's bankruptcy court ruling was one of the final hurdles for a huge merger that's been in the works for more than a year.

The ruling by Judge Sean Lane comes months after he gave his preliminary approval to the plan. The two companies are now planning to finalize their merger on Dec. 9, when they would combine to create the world's largest airline.

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The Two-Way
6:18 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Dozens Of Haitian Migrants Reported Dead After Boat Capsizes

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 9:53 pm

Dozens of Haitians have died in a desperate attempt to reach the Bahamas, after their crowded 40-foot sloop capsized. Deployed from Florida, Coast Guard crews scrambled to work with Bahamian forces to rescue more than 100 survivors Tuesday. The Coast Guard says the craft ran aground in the Bahamas' Exuma Cays.

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The Two-Way
5:01 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Still A Teenager, Freed Cartel Killer Will Leave Mexico For U.S.

A 2010 file photo shows Edgar "El Ponchis" Jimenez Lugo in the city of Cuernavaca, Mexico. The teenage U.S. citizen who acknowledged being a drug-cartel killer has finished his three year juvenile-offender term for homicide, kidnapping and drug and weapons possession.
Antonio Sierra AP

Three years after the startling arrest of a 14-year-old boy for acting as a gang's assassin in Mexico, the boy, now 17, is reportedly heading to the United States, according to media and government reports. Edgar Jimenez, nicknamed El Ponchis — "The Cloak" — is a U.S. citizen who was born in San Diego.

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The Two-Way
3:41 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

After Internal Review On Benghazi Report, CBS Puts Logan On Leave

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 9:09 am

CBS has asked 60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan to take a leave of absence, along with her producer, after her recent story on the deadly 2012 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, was found to have multiple flaws. An internal report also found broader failings in how the news division handled the story. A summary of the report's findings was obtained by NPR on Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Art Thieves Sentenced To 6 Years For Dutch Museum Heist

Eugen Darie has admitted to being part of a Romanian gang that stole seven works by masters including Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse from a Rotterdam museum last October.
Vadim Ghirda AP

After admitting to one of the most surprising art thefts in recent history, two men have been sentenced to 6 years and 8 months in prison. They are part of a Romanian gang that stole seven works by masters including Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet and Paul Gauguin from a Rotterdam museum last autumn.

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The Two-Way
12:48 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Jury Orders Newegg To Pay $2.3 Million In 'Patent Troll' Case

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 5:47 pm

The online retailer Newegg has lost a patent case centering on Web encryption, after a Texas jury rejected its argument that a claim from the company TQP Development was invalid. The jury ordered Newegg to pay $2.3 million — less than half the damages TQP had sought.

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The Two-Way
2:48 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

Chicago Bulls' Rose Out For Season With Knee Injury

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose, right, is out for the season after injuring his right knee Friday against the Portland Trail Blazers. Rose missed all of last season with an injury to his left knee.
Don Ryan AP

Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls guard who missed all of last season after knee surgery, has injured his other knee and will miss the rest of the current NBA season. The Bulls say Rose had "successful surgery" Monday morning to repair a torn medial meniscus in his right knee.

Rose hurt his knee during the third quarter of Chicago's loss at Portland Friday. Here's how the Bulls' official blog describes the play:

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The Two-Way
11:57 am
Mon November 25, 2013

500,000 Lights: Family's Christmas Display Sets World Record

Decorating their house and yard with more than 31 miles' worth of lights, an Australian family has reclaimed a Guinness world record in Canberra, Australia.
Guinness World Records 2014 is out now

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 1:28 pm

The Christmas decorating season is in full bloom in Australia, where a family's use of more than half a million lights has set a new world record. The Richards family's yard in Forrest, a suburb of Canberra, features a canopy of lights fanning out beneath a large tree whose trunk is wrapped in glowing colors.

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The Two-Way
5:11 pm
Fri November 22, 2013

Rate Of Coastal Wetlands Loss Has Sped Up, U.S. Study Says

Saltwater wetlands that include marshes and shoals on Virginia's Atlantic coast. U.S. coastal wetlands losses were 25 percent greater from 2004-2009, according to a recent federal study.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 7:47 pm

The U.S. lost an average of 80,000 acres of coastal wetlands from 2004 to 2009, according to the latest data published by federal agencies. More than 70 percent of the estimated loss came in the Gulf of Mexico; nationwide, most of the loss was blamed on development that incurred on freshwater wetlands.

"The losses of these vital wetlands were 25 percent greater than during the previous six years," NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports for our Newscast unit. She also notes that the loss equals "about seven football fields every hour."

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The Two-Way
3:03 pm
Fri November 22, 2013

$1.1 Million Dune Buggy: Youabian Makes Splash At LA Car Show

The Youabian Puma has turned heads at the LA Auto Show, where attendees have been startled by its 20-foot length and unusual design.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 7:54 pm

Some cars are meant to be beautiful; some cars are meant to serve a purpose. The makers of the Youabian Puma say their car was created with one goal: "to stand out and be unique." And that's what they've done, as dozens of howling headlines attest.

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The Two-Way
11:42 am
Fri November 22, 2013

Pakistani Who Helped Hunt Bin Laden Is Charged With Murder

Pakistani doctor Shakil Afridi, in 2010, who has faced legal troubles since he took DNA samples that helped prove Osama bin Laden was in Abbottabad.
Qazi Rauf AP

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 1:42 pm

Pakistani doctor Shakil Afridi, who assisted U.S. intelligence agents trying to zero in on Osama bin Laden, has been charged with murder in a case stemming from a patient's death.

Afridi's lawyer, Samiullah Afridi, said he was informed about the charges Friday, and that a trial is scheduled for next month, Reuters reports.

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The Two-Way
6:15 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Prepare For Cabin Noise: FCC May End Ban On Phones During Flights

The new head of the Federal Communications Commission proposes allowing airline passengers to make phone calls during flights. Here, a passenger looks at her cellphone before a flight last month.
Matt Slocum AP

Originally published on Thu November 21, 2013 8:59 pm

The Federal Communications Commission is proposing a change to allow travelers to make phone calls as they fly on jetliners in the U.S. The agency's new chairman, Tom Wheeler, calls the current ban on the use of cellphones during flights "outdated and restrictive."

Here's a statement from Wheeler that was released Thursday:

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The Two-Way
5:42 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Dow Jones Index Closes Above 16,000 For First Time

For the first time in its history, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 16,000 points Thursday. The index of 30 stocks touched the mark earlier this week, when a trader was photographed at the New York Stock Exchange.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

The Dow Jones industrial average tacked on 109 points Thursday for a gain of less than 1 percent. But the small rise brought a big milestone, as the industrial index closed above 16,000 for the first time in its history. The index had touched the mark earlier this week but fell short by the day's end.

Today, the Dow closed at 16,009.99.

The historic moment for the benchmark index that tracks 30 leading U.S. companies came on a day that began with positive economic news.

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The Two-Way
4:41 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Number Of Homeless Declines Again, But Gains Aren't Universal

A homeless man sleeps under an American flag blanket on a park bench in New York City. New U.S. data reports a drop in the number of homeless people — but not in New York and other states.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

The number of homeless people in the U.S. shrank from 2012 to 2013, according to a large government study that found the number of veterans and others who are homeless declined for the third straight year. But homeless numbers rose in New York and other states, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The study also found that nearly 20 percent of homeless people were in either New York City (11 percent of the U.S. total) or Los Angeles (9 percent).

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