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Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a writer and producer on the Newsdesk, in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, D.C.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to being the lead writer and editor for online coverage of several Olympic Games, from London 2012 to Pyeongchang 2018. 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 the past, Chappell has edited and coordinated digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, in addition to editing the rundown of All Things Considered. He frequently contributes to other NPR blogs, such as All Tech Considered and The Salt.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, NPR.org won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell has trained both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" — promoting more collaboration between legacy and digital departments.

Prior to joining NPR, Chappell was part of 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 on major events.

Chappell's work for CNN included editing digital video and producing web stories for SI.com. He also edited and produced stories for CNN.com's features division.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, Chappell attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

California regulators say Nestle may have to stop collecting a large portion of the water it bottles from the San Bernardino National Forest, because it lacks the legal permits for millions of gallons of water. Nestle sells the water under the Arrowhead label.

The State Water Board says that of the 62.6 million gallons of water that Nestle says it extracted from the San Bernardino spring each year on average from 1947 to 2015, the company may only have a right to some 8.5 million gallons. Those numbers come from a nearly two-year investigation.

The Virginia State Board of Elections has postponed a drawing that would have broken a tie in the state's recent election, after Democrats asked a court to review the awarding of a single vote that left the tally even rather than wresting the House of Delegates from Republicans' sole control.

"Drawing names is an action of last resort," elections board Chairman James Alcorn said. And with new court procedures underway, he said, other options are still available.

From shocking science news to human tragedies and political surprises, NPR's readers embraced a wide range of stories in 2017. Through hundreds of millions of pageviews, our audience followed along as the year presented news like we've never seen before.

Here are the most-viewed stories of NPR.org in 2017:

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Confirming iPhone owners' suspicions that Apple purposefully slows the operation of older phones, Apple says that it does just that — and that slowing down processors makes it easier for old batteries to perform after they've begun to lose capacity.

A fire in a large commercial building in central South Korea killed at least 29 people on Thursday, after flames raged through the structure that houses a sauna, a gym, and other recreational facilities. The blaze struck in Jecheon, in central South Korea.

"The fire engulfed an eight-story building and trapped dozens inside," NPR's Elise Hu reports from Seoul. "At least 15 of the dead were trapped in a second floor sauna, fire officials told reporters on the scene. This single fire represents 10 percent of all fire deaths in South Korea annually."

The city of Columbia, S.C., has banned the use of bump stocks, the attachment that dramatically accelerates the rate-of-fire of semi-automatic rifles. Columbia is believed to be the first, or one of the first, U.S. cities to enact such a ban.

Bump stocks allow semi-automatic rifles to fire bullets nearly as rapidly as automatic weapons. The ban is meant to prevent the device's use, not its sale — a discrepancy that Columbia officials say is due to a state law that bars cities from regulating firearms or firearm components.

Days after Barry and Honey Sherman were found strangled in their basement, police are investigating what they call their "suspicious" deaths. The case has sparked speculation and debate in Canada, where the billionaire couple were famous both for their ties to the pharmaceutical company Apotex and for their philanthropy.

Russian athletes who compete in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics must wear a simple logo that reads "Olympic Athlete from Russia" — and their uniforms can't include other words or references to their home country, an International Olympic Committee panel said Wednesday.

The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that Uber is a transport service, not merely a tech platform, citing the "indispensable" link the company creates between drivers and passengers. Siding with taxi drivers in Spain, the court said Uber should be regulated in the EU.

Finals week brought a rude surprise to students and staff at the McNally Smith College of Music in Minnesota, as the school announced it was closing abruptly — and that it wouldn't be able to meet its last payroll. Some students graduated Saturday; others are frantically looking for options.

The goal was to promote the city of Colorado Springs as "Olympic City U.S.A." But the method — erecting a big blue frame at the edge of a scenic overlook at Garden of the Gods Park — drew anger from residents. Just days after it was put up, the frame was taken down.

It has been more than nine months since a family in Canada realized that UPS lost a bank draft worth $846,000 (Canadian) that was sent to an inheritor. So far, the only money recovered is the $32 it cost to ship the document. The family's bank, TD Canada Trust, has delayed issuing a new bank draft.

Lorette Taylor, who lives in Ontario, was distributing the proceeds from her late father's estate when she tried to send an inheritance to her brother, Louis Paul Hebert, who lives near Cornwall, Ontario, some 270 miles from the office of the family's lawyer.

Russian President Vladimir Putin held his annual news conference on Thursday, an event that commonly runs for hours, offering a kaleidoscope-like glimpse of Putin's view of his country and the world. In this year's edition, the topics ranged from President Trump to Russia's ban at the 2018 Winter Olympics — and the state of the fishing industry in Murmansk.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas says his people no longer want the U.S. involved in brokering any Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, after President Trump decided to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital last week.

Abbas called Trump's actions a crime and said he'll appeal to the United Nations.

Pat DiNizio, a singer and songwriter who made popular rock songs as the leader of The Smithereens, died on Tuesday at age 62, his fellow band members say. No cause of death was provided.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in southern New York has filed federal terrorism charges against Akayed Ullah, the 27-year-old man who police say attempted to carry out a suicide bombing in a pedestrian tunnel near the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan on Monday.

Acting U.S. Attorney Joon Kim said Ullah "came to kill, to maim, and to destroy" as thousands of New Yorkers were using the transit system to get to work and go about their lives. Ullah acted "in support of a vicious cause," Kim said.

Russia's Olympic Committee is backing a plan for Russian athletes to compete under a neutral flag in the upcoming Winter Olympics, saying it will support their participation. Despite doping sanctions against the national team, the Russian group's head says 200 of the country's athletes could wind up going to PyeongChang.

Updated at 9:40 p.m. ET

San Francisco's Mayor Ed Lee, most recently known for embracing the "sanctuary city" label, has died at age 65. Lee was not known to be ill; he reportedly died at a San Francisco hospital in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Member station KQED cites a statement from the mayor's office, saying he died at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital:

Updated at 2:30 p.m. ET

New York City police say the suspect in Monday morning's explosion in a subway station tunnel near Times Square was wearing an improvised explosive device and that he suffered burns after it was detonated. Three other people sustained minor injuries.

"The Defense Department is starting the first agency-wide financial audit in its history," the Pentagon's news service says, announcing that it's undertaking an immense task that has been sought, promised and delayed for years.

Of the tally that is starting this week, chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana W. White said, "It demonstrates our commitment to fiscal responsibility and maximizing the value of every taxpayer dollar that is entrusted to us."

The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November, according to the monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate remained steady at 4.1 percent, unchanged from October.

"Employment growth has averaged 174,000 per month thus far this year, compared with an average monthly gain of 187,000 in 2016," the agency's acting Commissioner William J. Wiatrowski said of the report.

Russia hosted the last Winter Olympics, in 2014. But the country is banned from being represented at the 2018 Games that start in February, after the International Olympic Committee said it found a widespread culture of Russian cheating through performance-enhancing drugs.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is seeking a fourth term in office — which would keep him in the Kremlin through 2024, if he wins another six-year term as expected. Putin faces no serious threats in his re-election bid.

It has created a wave of awareness and brave confrontations over sexual harassment and assault, taking down powerful men in the process. And now the #MeToo movement has been named Time magazine's Person of the Year for 2017.

On its cover, Time called the people behind the movement "The Silence Breakers." Its story features women and men who have spoken out — including activist Tarana Burke, who started the hashtag 10 years ago.

The International Olympic Committee has suspended the Russian Olympic Committee "with immediate effect," essentially banning the country from the upcoming Winter Olympics over Russia's system of state-supported cheating by athletes using performance-enhancing drugs.

Russian athletes can compete in the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the IOC said Tuesday — but the athletes will have to pass strict scrutiny, and instead of wearing their nation's uniform, they will compete under the title "Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)."

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