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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Education
2:44 am
Thu May 24, 2012

National Geography Bee: Test Your World Knowledge

The 10 finalists of the 2012 National Geographic Bee are competing for prizes including a $25,000 scholarship and a trip to the Galapagos Islands.
Rebecca Hale National Geographic

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 12:40 pm

The final round of the 2012 National Geographic Bee takes place Thursday, with students between the fourth and eighth grades testing their knowledge of countries, canals and lava lakes. Of the 54 contestants who came to the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C., for the bee, only 10 remain.

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All Tech Considered
7:24 pm
Tue May 22, 2012

Stolen Phone Beams Photos To Owner, Who Puts Them On Facebook

A month after Katy McCaffrey's iPhone was stolen, photographs began streaming from the phone to her "cloud" account. She used them to create a photo album on Facebook; she called it "Stolen iPhone Adventures."
Facebook

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 8:06 pm

There are many ways to find a lost or stolen cellphone. You can call the number and see who answers; you can use "Find My Phone" apps that track your phone's GPS. Or, if your camera phone automatically posts photos to your account in "the cloud," you can simply watch your photo feed and look for clues in the strange new images that start popping up. Just be prepared to see anything — like scenes from a cruise ship.

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The Salt
5:26 pm
Fri May 18, 2012

U.S. Craft Beer Brewers Thrive, Despite Small Share Of The Market

A row of taps highlights specialty and imported beers at Brouwerij Lane, in Brooklyn, New York. Craft brewers have found a way to thrive, even as the U.S. economy struggles.
Bill Chappell NPR

Originally published on Tue May 22, 2012 11:35 am

It's a good time to brew beer in America. According to beer expert Julia Herz, U.S. brewing isn't just on the upswing, it's on top. "We're now the No. 1 destination for beer, based on diversity and amount of beers," she says.

But if you want to see the strength of America's beer industry, you may want to look past beverage giants like Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors. According to the Brewers Association, nearly 2,000 American brewers operated during 2011 — the most since the 1880s.

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The Two-Way
3:16 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Bike To Work Day: Your Photos, And Riding Advice From Grant Petersen

Jennifer Drake and her daughter, Alex, pause before their morning ride. "My daughter and I bike to school (her work) 3 miles roundtrip daily," Drake writes.
@JennLDrake

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:18 pm

For many people, Bike to Work Day (which is today) is a reason to put air in their bike's tires and see if their chain is too rusty to get them to work on time. And as a growing list of photographs shows, many people who follow NPR online also ride to work.

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The Two-Way
5:17 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Get Ready For Bike To Work Day (And Share Your Photos)

Three men stand with their penny farthing bicycles. Follow their example for Bike to Work Day, and take a photo of yourself and your bike. Then, post the photo to Twitter or Instagram, with the hashtag #NPRbike.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 6:11 pm

Bike to Work Day is this Friday, May 18. And that prompts a question: Do you bike to work? If so, you should prove it — by taking a photo of yourself with your bike. Then share the picture, and we'll consider it for NPR's Bike to Work Day gallery.

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The Two-Way
1:18 pm
Fri May 11, 2012

'Mama Bird' Evelyn Johnson Dies At 102; Logged 7 Years Of Flight Time

Evelyn Johnson, who holds a world record as the most experienced female pilot, appeared on NPR in 2003. Johnson died Thursday at the age of 102.
Charles Mayer NPR

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 2:12 pm

Evelyn Bryan Johnson, a record-setting pilot who was born just six years after the Wright brothers made their historic flight, has died at the age of 102. Johnson, who began flying in 1944, holds the Guinness world record for the most hours logged by a female pilot — more than 57,000.

In addition to her accomplished flying record, Johnson also helped many other pilots earn their wings. After one student called her Mama Bird, the nickname stuck with Johnson, as she gave lessons and FAA flight exams to thousands of pilots.

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The Two-Way
2:49 pm
Thu May 10, 2012

Rare Calico Lobster Turns Heads, And Escapes Dinner Menu

The calico lobster known as Calvin is shown in this photo provided by Boston's New England Aquarium. The lobster is dark with bright orange and yellow spots.
Tony LaCasse New England Aquarium

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 4:29 pm

A calico lobster that had been living in obscurity off the coast of Maine has now been catapulted into a sort of celebrity, thanks to its rare coloring: a calico mix of orange and yellow spots. Researchers say it could be a 1 in 30 million specimen.

The invertebrate was caught off Winter Harbor, Maine; it was saved from the cooking pot at Jasper White's Summer Shack restaurant in Cambridge, Mass., after the staff noticed its striking coloration.

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The Two-Way
1:49 pm
Thu May 10, 2012

Russian Agency Says It Foiled Potential Attack On Sochi, 2014 Olympics Host City

A Russian anti-terrorism agency says that its secret service agents have thwarted a planned attack on Sochi, the city slated to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. Russia's FSB security service says it found 10 caches of weapons that it believes were meant to be used during either preparations for the Olympics or in an attack during the Games themselves.

From Moscosw, Jessica Golloher filed this report for NPR's Newscast:

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The Two-Way
12:24 pm
Thu May 10, 2012

And Now For The Weather, Let's Go To Prince Charles

Prince Charles presented the weather report on a BBC Scotland newscast, surprising many viewers.
BBC Scotland

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 12:39 pm

In Scotland, viewers of a nightly BBC news program got a surprise Thursday, when Prince Charles stood in front of a weather map to tell them about all the rain and cold they'd soon experience.

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The Two-Way
11:45 am
Thu May 10, 2012

Mars Rover Opportunity Emerges From Winter Doldrums, Gets Back On Move

A mosaic of images taken in January 2012 shows Opportunity's vista north (left) and northeast (right), in an outcrop known as "Greeley Haven," where the rover spent its fifth Martian winter. The image released by NASA is presented in "false color," to make differences in the landscape easier to see.
NASA

With the darkest days of the Martian winter now over, NASA took its Opportunity Mars Rover for a drive this week. The rover had been stationary while its solar panels lacked enough sunlight to power its batteries.

The rover's drive Tuesday was a short one: "about 12 feet northwest and downhill," according to NASA. The agency says Opportunity has driven 21.4 miles since it landed on Mars in January of 2004.

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All Tech Considered
3:23 am
Wed May 2, 2012

NBC Will Stream The London Olympics Live — But Only To TV Subscribers

Many track fans watched online four years ago, as sprinter Usain Bolt set a world record at the Beijing Olympics. This year, NBC will stream video of all 302 events online. And Bolt, seen here showing his appreciation for video in 2010, will try to repeat his feat.
Mark Dadswell Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 7:03 am

For decades, Olympics fans have loathed two words: "tape" and "delay." But this summer, things will be different: For the first time, NBC will stream live video of the London Games, online and via mobile.

If you think that decision is overdue, you're not alone. Sports Business Daily media reporter John Ourand says he is shocked it has taken this long for the network to put live video of all Olympic events online.

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The Two-Way
1:02 pm
Tue May 1, 2012

'Incredible' Race: America's Lopez Lomong Sets 2012 World Record [VIDEO]

In his first race at the 5000-meter distance, runner Lopez Lomong set a 2012 world record. But the American also ran into some unusual trouble late in the race. This file photo shows Lomong at the 2008 Olympics.
Clive Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 11, 2012 3:07 pm

The sports world is brimming with talk about Lopez Lomong, the American runner who set a 2012 world best in the men's 5,000-meter race in California Sunday. It was Lomong's first race at that distance (just over 3 miles), which he covered in 13 minutes and 11.63 seconds. But the race took a very unusual turn in its final laps.

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The Salt
10:53 am
Mon April 23, 2012

Don't Call It A Malbec: Europe Sours On British Winery's Plan

The European Union is forcing a British winery to give away wine made with Argentinian Malbec grapes. Here, a cluster of Malbec grapes hang from a vine.
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:17 am

A British winemaker has finally been given official approval to release a limited-edition wine made in collaboration with Malbec grape growers in Argentina, on one condition: It can't sell the wine, or label it a Malbec. Actually, it can't even call it wine at all.

The Chapel Down winery's only option for getting rid of its wine is to give it away as a sample, calling it a "fruit-derived alcoholic beverage from produce sourced outside the EU."

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The Two-Way
11:30 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Video Of Children Portraying Adult Criminals Is Withdrawn In Mexico

Children portray drug lords, corrupt police officers and human traffickers in "Niños Incómodos," which was viewed more than 1.8 million times in one week on YouTube.
YouTube

A video that caused a sensation in Mexico for using child actors to highlight the country's social and political challenges has been removed from both YouTube and the website of Nuestro Mexico Del Futuro (Our Mexico of the Future), the group that produced it.

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The Two-Way
11:56 am
Wed April 18, 2012

Drinking On The Job: Is 2012 The New 1966?

Actor Jon Hamm in a scene from AMC's Mad Men. The show is set in the 1960s — but today, many companies provide their employees with ready access to alcohol.
Ron Jaffe/AMC AP

The TV show Mad Men has won fans for breathing life — and a heavy whiff of bourbon — into the fictional advertising world of 1960s New York. But surely no American company has such a liver-pickling culture in this day and age, right?

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The Two-Way
5:27 pm
Tue April 17, 2012

Warren Buffett Has Prostate Cancer; Detected At Early Stage, He Says

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway announced that the billionaire investor has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Seth Wenig AP

Warren Buffett, 81, has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, his Berkshire Hathaway company announced Tuesday afternoon. The cancer is at Stage 1, according to MarketWatch. The billionaire investor's condition is not life-threatening, he says.

Buffett send a letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders to inform and reassure them. Here's the text of that letter:

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The Two-Way
3:18 am
Mon April 16, 2012

Americans Do Not Walk The Walk, And That's A Growing Problem

Americans walk less than the citizens of any other industrialized nation, says Tom Vanderbilt. In this file photo from last summer, pedestrians and a cyclist cross the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

"Americans now walk the least of any industrialized nation in the world," says writer Tom Vanderbilt. To find out why that is, Vanderbilt has been exploring how towns are built, how Americans view walking — and what might be done to get them moving around on their own two feet.

Talking with Morning Edition co-host Steve Inskeep about what is wrong with Americans' relationship with walking, Vanderbilt says, "The main thing is, we're just not doing enough of it."

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All Tech Considered
12:38 pm
Fri April 13, 2012

Instagram Seen Adding 10 Million Users In Past 10 Days

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 2:17 pm

Days after it was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion, reports have emerged that Instagram now has more than 40 million users in its photo-sharing community. The gain, which was derived from the service's API, represents a spike of 10 million Instagram users added in the past 10 days, according to Venture Beat.

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The Two-Way
7:18 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

In Interview, Zimmerman's Lawyer Says Trial Won't Happen In 2012

Defense attorney Mark O'Mara (left) stands with his client, George Zimmerman, at a hearing related to second-degree murder charges in the killing of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla.
Pool Getty Images

When he appeared in court on second-degree murder charges in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman was accompanied by his new defense attorney, Mark O'Mara. Hours after the hearing, O'Mara told NPR that he doubts the case will go to trial in 2012.

But in the meantime, O'Mara tells Tell Me More host Michel Martin, he'd like to get his client out of jail.

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The Two-Way
6:06 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

Zimmerman Arrested On Murder Charge In Trayvon Martin Case

State Attorney Angela Corey announces that George Zimmerman has been arrested and charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 11, 2012 9:13 pm

George Zimmerman, who says he killed unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin in self-defense, has been arrested and will face a charge of second-degree murder, says State Attorney Angela Corey, the special prosecutor investigating Martin's death.

Corey said that Zimmerman turned himself in to the authorities Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
4:46 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

Report Faults UC Davis Administrators, Police In Pepper Spray Incident

Nov. 18, 2011: Occupy protesters get sprayed at University of California Davis.
YouTube

As they sought to quell a November protest at the University of California-Davis, campus police officers' "decision to use pepper spray was not supported by objective evidence and not authorized by policy," according to a review of the incident released Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
3:14 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

No Parole For Charles Manson; Bid May Be His Last

A photo provided by the California Department of Corrections shows killer Charles Manson, 77, on April 4, 2012.
AP

Convicted murderer Charles Manson, sentenced to life in prison for his role in the grisly deaths of seven people in 1969, will not be released from prison, California's parole board decided Wednesday. The hearing, which Manson did not attend, may have been the 77-year-old's last chance at freedom. His next bid for a parole hearing isn't likely to be heard until 2027.

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The Two-Way
2:08 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

Panetta Reassures Afghans On U.S. Training Role, Possibly Beyond 2014

Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta, far right, escorts Afghanistan's Minister of National Defense Abdul Rahim Wardak (center) and Minister of Interior Gen. Bismillah Khan Mohammadi (left) in the Pentagon.
Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo OASD/PA

The bulk of the U.S. military force in Afghanistan is slated to leave the country by 2014. But the Pentagon is willing to keep some Americans there to train Afghan forces, according to a report by NPR's Tom Bowman.

Here's Tom's report for NPR's Newscast:

"Afghan Defense Minister Adbul Rahim Wardak says his country is looking for an enduring long-term relationship with the United States. And part of the relationship centers on training and equipping Afghan soldiers and police."

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The Two-Way
1:03 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

A DJ Kit You Can Take For A Spin — On Your Bike

A cyclist uses a fader to manipulate music, on Cogoo's Turntable Rider kit that blends DJ and BMX culture.
NPR

With sensors that translate the motions of a bike — turning the handlebars, spinning the wheels, etc. — into music, the Turntable Rider "is an epic bicycle accessory which converts a bicycle into a musical instrument," according to Cogoo, the company that created the device.

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The Two-Way
12:17 pm
Wed April 11, 2012

Fed Won't Raise Rates Soon, Reserve Bank President Says

The Federal Reserve's policymakers seem to be reluctant to consider any more efforts to inject a monetary stimulus into the U.S. economy — but that doesn't mean you should expect the central bank to raise interest rates any time soon.

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