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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10:15am

Thu May 29, 2014
The Two-Way

Downed Ukraine Helicopter Had General On Board; 14 Die In Attack

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 3:16 pm

Black smoke rises from the spot where a Ukrainian army helicopter was shot down outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, on Thursday. Rebels shot the craft down amid heavy fighting around the eastern city.
Alexander Zemlianichenko AP

Militants in Ukraine shot down a military helicopter near the eastern city of Slovyansk Wednesday, killing 14 soldiers that included an Army general. The incident comes days after Ukraine stepped up its operations against pro-Russian rebels this week.

From Kiev, NPR's Peter Kenyon reports for our Newscast unit:

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9:40am

Thu May 29, 2014
The Two-Way

U.S. GDP Fell 1 Percent; First Drop In 3 Years

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 1:39 pm

Revising its early numbers for the first quarter of 2014, the Commerce Department says the U.S. economy shrank by 1 percent at an annualized rate. Last month, estimates of the quarter's gross domestic product had shown a small gain of 0.1 percent.

Government analysts blame the slump on "a significant decline in inventory investment," especially among car dealerships. They also say U.S. exports declined along with spending on housing and government programs.

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8:55am

Thu May 29, 2014
The Two-Way

'Oh My Jesus!': Shots Fired During NPR Interview In Chicago

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 2:41 pm

Police cordon off the area around a shooting in Chicago Wednesday. The violence broke out down the street from where NPR's David Schaper was conducting an interview about urban renewal efforts.
David Schaper NPR

An NPR interview in Chicago included an all-too-real example of the city's violence when a burst of gunfire erupted down the street from where NPR's David Schaper was conducting an interview Wednesday. He had been speaking to a neighborhood activist when a gunman opened fire nearby.

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7:31am

Thu May 29, 2014
The Two-Way

Judge Halts Ohio Executions, Citing Drug Controversy

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 1:33 pm

A federal judge has put Ohio's next two scheduled executions on hold, saying he needs more information about the state's proposed changes to its lethal injection process.

A scarcity of the drugs that were once commonly used to carry out U.S. executions has complicated the lethal injection process — and has prompted several death row inmates to challenge whether Ohio and other states are violating the Constitution's protections against cruel and unusual punishment.

From Ohio Public Radio, Karen Kasler reports for our Newscast unit:

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7:10am

Thu May 29, 2014
The Two-Way

Search For Flight MH370 Black Boxes Ends; 'Pings' In Dispute

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 2:02 pm

The Australian ship Ocean Shield, seen here earlier this month, has been ordered back to its dock, after a search for the black boxes of a missing Malaysian airliner ended without finding anything.
Paul Kane Getty Images

The underwater search for black boxes from a missing Malaysian Airlines jet has ended, as the robotic sub that searched nearly 330 square miles of the ocean hasn't found anything to back the idea that "pings" detected in that area came from emergency equipment.

Search and salvage teams will now assess where they should look next for the jet's remains, after Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Center said that "no signs of aircraft debris have been found" by the American Bluefin-21 robotic sub.

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4:16pm

Wed May 28, 2014
The Two-Way

Church Group Announces Boycott Of NPR Over 'Tell Me More' Cancellation

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 4:43 pm

The National Black Church Initiative is calling for its members not to give money to NPR in response to the cancellation of Tell Me More, the nationally syndicated show that the company plans to stop producing after July.

"This cancellation disheartens us deeply," NBCI President Rev. Anthony Evans said in a statement. "Tell Me More is a brilliantly formatted radio program that showcases a multitude of viewpoints."

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10:37am

Wed May 28, 2014
The Two-Way

Son Of Late Snake-Handling Pastor Is Bitten By Rattlesnake

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 12:45 pm

Boxes housing snakes sit on the floor of the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Jesus Name in Middlesboro, Ky.
NGT

Snake-handling is a tradition for the Coots family of Kentucky. But months after taking over for his father to lead a Pentecostal church, Cody Coots says he was bitten this week. His father, Jamie, died of a poisonous snakebite in February.

The family has been featured on a reality TV show, as the Two-Way reported:

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9:08am

Wed May 28, 2014
The Two-Way

In NBC Interview, Snowden Says He Was 'Trained As A Spy'

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 3:26 pm

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden spoke to NBC's Nightly News anchor Brian Williams in Moscow last week.
NBC Nightly News

Seeking to correct what he calls "misleading" statements about his work for U.S. government agencies, former NSA contractor Edward Snowden tells NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams he "was trained as a spy" and worked for several.

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7:58am

Wed May 28, 2014
The Two-Way

Google's New Car Lacks A Steering Wheel (And Brakes)

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 9:43 am

An image released by Google Tuesday shows an early version of its driverless vehicle. The company has built several prototypes of the self-driving car.
Google

Google gave us an update on its driverless car project Tuesday, posting video and images of people trying out its self-driving car. The tech company built three prototypes from scratch, creating compact cars that look like they're on an extreme no-options diet. For now, their top speed is 25 mph.

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7:25am

Wed May 28, 2014
The Two-Way

Ukraine Promises To Crush Insurgency; Chechnya Denies Sending Troops

Coal miners rally in Donetsk, Ukraine, Wednesday. The miners have gone on strike to demand Ukrainian troops and other forces leave the region, where fighting has left dozens dead this week.
Ivan Sekretarev AP

Chechnya's leader says the country hasn't sent fighters to join rebels in eastern Ukraine, denying a charge that gained substance after Chechens were reportedly found in the aftermath of recent fighting in Donetsk. Ukraine is continuing its offensive against the rebels.

Ukraine's President-elect Petro Poroshenko says he will crush the pro-Russian insurgency, promising to step up operations against armed men who have occupied buildings and set up barricades.

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11:44am

Tue May 27, 2014
The Two-Way

Florida's IQ Limit For Death Penalty Isn't Constitutional, Supreme Court Says

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 4:53 pm

Florida death row inmate Freddie Lee Hall challenged the state's use of an IQ cutoff to determine mental disability. The Supreme Court sided with him on Tuesday, saying Florida's law doesn't take standard errors of measurement into account.
Florida Department of Corrections/AP

A Florida law that sets an IQ test score of 70 as a minimum in determining who's eligible for the death penalty is unconstitutional, the Supreme Court says. In a reversal of a state court's decision, the justices say Florida's rule ignores norms in the psychiatric profession. The opinion also cites the Eighth Amendment, which bars cruel and unusual punishment.

"Florida set a hard-line rule that the death penalty could not be imposed on convicted felons whose IQ is 70 or below," NPR's Washington desk says in its summary of the case.

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9:27am

Tue May 27, 2014
The Two-Way

Soldiers Arrest Thai Politician As He Speaks Out Against Coup

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 7:12 pm

Former Thai Education Minister Chaturon Chaisang (center) was detained by soldiers after speaking at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Thailand in Bangkok on Tuesday.
Apichart Weerawong AP

A former minister of Thailand's ousted Cabinet was detained Tuesday at a news conference at which he criticized the coup that took control of the country last week. The arrest comes as another detained official — ousted Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra — was released.

From Bangkok, Michael Sullivan reports for our Newscast unit:

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7:52am

Tue May 27, 2014
The Two-Way

Ukraine Retakes Airport, After Airstrikes And Dozens Of Deaths

A pro-Russian fighter takes position behind a car as a truck full of rebel fighters heads toward a battle with Ukrainian forces near the airport in Donetsk Monday. The rebels say more than 30 of their number were killed in the violence.
Fabio Bucciarelli AFP/Getty Images

Pro-Russian rebels who had taken over an international airport in Donetsk have been pushed back, Ukraine's government says. Violent clashes erupted Monday and Tuesday; at least 35 people have died.

From Kiev, NPR's Peter Kenyon reports for our Newscast unit:

"The battle for Donetsk airport appears to symbolize the government's tougher stance on the pro-Russian insurgents in the east. Using fighter jets and helicopter gunships, the military says it has retaken control of the airport, though rebels dispute that claim.

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7:00am

Tue May 27, 2014
The Two-Way

Nigerian Officials Say They've Located Missing Girls

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 4:14 pm

Nigeria's chief of defense staff Air Marshal Alex S. Badeh speaks during a demonstration in Abuja calling for the rescue of girls kidnapped from their school in Chibok. Badeh says the government knows where the girls are — but that a rescue attempt would endanger their lives.
Gbenga Olamikan AP

More than 200 girls who were abducted by militants in Nigeria's northeast have been located — but Nigeria's military says it's too risky to try to free them by force. The news comes after reports that the government had been negotiating for at least some of the girls' release.

The U.S. and other nations have contributed manpower and resources to the search for the girls, whose mass kidnapping inspired an international campaign demanding their safe return. U.S. surveillance aircraft have taken part in the search, using sensors that can detect body heat in complex environments.

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2:03pm

Mon May 26, 2014
The Two-Way

Parents Of Elliot Rodger Heard Of Attack As They Tried To Stop Him

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 2:56 pm

A makeshift memorial sits in front of IV Deli Mart, where part of Friday night's mass shooting took place in the Isla Vista, Calif., community. The parents of Elliot Rodger, accused of killing six people, were reportedly rushing to try to stop their son when they heard about the violence.
Chris Carlson AP

Elliot Rodger's parents were rushing to stop him from hurting anyone Friday night when they heard news of a shooting and feared their son was involved. They had driven to Santa Barbara after seeing an alarming video in which he promised a deadly "revenge against humanity."

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