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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2:18pm

Wed February 19, 2014
The Two-Way

World's Largest Oyster Is Size Of A Man's Shoe

It's alive: At nearly 14 inches long, this oyster has been certified as the world's largest. It's also around the same size as a man's size 10-1/2 or 11 shoe here in the U.S.
Wadden Sea Centre

The world's largest oyster is nearly 14 inches long and resides in Denmark, according to the folks at Guinness World Records. And it's still alive and growing, according to Christine Ditlefsen, the biologist at the Wadden Sea Centre whose world record was recently certified.

The oyster was found in October in Wadden Sea National Park, a shallow area off of the North Sea on Denmark's southwestern coast. Its size and shape could be said to resemble a huge plaintain. But when they found it, the Wadden staff compared the oyster to a large and sturdy shoe.

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5:56pm

Fri February 14, 2014
The Edge

Maybe It's The Suit: U.S. Speedskaters Swap Gear In Sochi

Originally published on Fri February 14, 2014 7:34 pm

Shani Davis of the U.S. skates in the prototype of the official US Speedskating suit during a training session at the Adler Arena Skating Center in Sochi, Russia, Friday. As U.S. skates have fallen short of their goals at the Winter Olympics, some skaters have asked to switch to their old suits.
Matt Dunham AP

The American speedskating team has fallen short of its goals at the Sochi Winter Olympics, with favorites such as Shani Davis and Heather Richardson failing to win medals. Some athletes believe the new racing suits they were given for the Olympics may be slowing them down.

Update at 7 p.m. ET: Back To The Old Suits

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4:23pm

Wed February 12, 2014
The Two-Way

Comedian And Actor Sid Caesar Has Died At 91

Originally published on Wed February 12, 2014 4:59 pm

Sid Caesar and Imogene Coca in a scene from Your Show of Shows. Caesar, whose sketches lit up 1950s television, died Wednesday at 91.
AP

2:05pm

Wed February 12, 2014
The Two-Way

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin Found Guilty Of Corruption

Originally published on Fri February 14, 2014 7:35 am

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin enters court for his corruption trial in New Orleans last month. He was charged with accepting bribes, free trips and other gratuities from contractors in exchange for helping them secure millions of dollars in city work.
Gerald Herbert AP

A federal jury has found Ray Nagin guilty of bribery and fraud. The former New Orleans mayor, 57, was accused of taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks, in an indictment that included 21 counts. He was found guilty on 20 of those counts.

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5:30pm

Tue February 11, 2014
The Two-Way

House Votes To Extend Debt Limit To March 2015

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 5:48 pm

The House of Representatives has voted to extend the federal debt limit, after the Republican majority abandoned its hopes to tie other provisions to the measure. By a 221-201 vote, the House voted to extend the debt limit to March 15, 2015.

Update at 5:35 p.m. ET: Ryan Reportedly Voted 'No'

In the end, 28 Republicans joined with 193 Democrats to approve the move.

On Twitter, several congressional reporters quickly noted that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., was one of many Republicans who voted against the legislation.

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2:43pm

Tue February 11, 2014
The Edge

Erin Hamlin Sets A U.S. First With Medal In Luge

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 4:04 pm

America's Erin Hamlin broke a 50-year drought Tuesday, winning the first singles luge medal for the U.S. at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.
Julian Finney Getty Images

It took 50 years — and for Erin Hamlin, three Olympics — but an American has finally won a singles medal in the sport. Erin Hamlin took bronze behind two powerful Germans in the women's final Tuesday.

Natalie Geisenberger's winning margin of 1.139 seconds was the largest at the Olympics since 1964, the sport's first year at the games. She set a track record on her first run Monday and did the same again on Tuesday, in a run that saw her top 84.5 mph.

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1:47pm

Tue February 11, 2014
The Edge

Shaun White Falls Just Short Of Three-Peat Quest In Half-Pipe

Shaun White, right, congratulates gold medalist Iouri Podladtchikov of Switzerland after the Snowboard Men's Halfpipe Finals of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Tuesday.
Al Bello Getty Images

In an event that came down to a dramatic final run, American snowboarder Shaun White finished in fourth place in the men's halfpipe Tuesday, falling just short of the podium with a score of 90.25. White needed a score of better than 94.75 to take gold.

The margin was close – the top four men all finished with scores above 90. But Switzerland's Iouri Podladtchikov moved from third to first place on his second run, in the event in which only the best score is counted.

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5:16pm

Mon February 10, 2014

11:31am

Fri February 7, 2014
The Edge

Sochi Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony: As It Happened

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 8:17 pm

Ooops: The fifth Olympic ring fails to deploy in the early moments of the Opening Ceremony at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, Russia, Friday.
Yuri Kadobnov AFP/Getty Images

4:26pm

Thu February 6, 2014
The Two-Way

Who 'Won' The Creation Vs. Evolution Debate?

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 7:07 pm

Bill Nye (left) and Ken Ham debated whether creation is a viable model of origins in the modern scientific era during a lengthy debate Tuesday. The points they raised have fueled an online conversation that continues.
YouTube

Days after a wide-ranging debate on creationism and evolution between Bill Nye and Ken Ham, the event is driving an online conversation. Themes of belief and literalism, logic and faith — and, for some, relevance — are being aired and disputed. And some wonder what the debate accomplished.

The video of the more than two-hour debate, in which Nye and Ham presented their views on how the Earth and its surroundings were created, has been viewed more than 830,000 times on YouTube. At one point, the live event drew more than 500,000 viewers.

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10:12am

Thu February 6, 2014
The Edge

What Do You Want To Know About The Sochi Olympics?

For some, the chance to watch curling is a reason to be excited about the Sochi Winter Olympics. Here, Norway's Thomas Ulsrud delivers a stone during the 2012 World Men's Curling Championship.
Fabrice Coffrini AFP/Getty Images

4:28pm

Wed February 5, 2014
The Two-Way

U.S. HVAC Firm Reportedly Linked To Target's Data Security Breach

Hackers who broke into Target's computer network and stole customers' financial and personal data used credentials that were stolen from a heating and air conditioning subcontractor in Pennsylvania, according to digital security journalist Brian Krebs.

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3:25pm

Wed February 5, 2014
The Two-Way

MLS And Beckham Will Create A New Soccer Team In Miami

Former soccer star David Beckham holds a ball at a news conference where he announced he's exercising an option to buy a Major League Soccer expansion team in Miami.
Lynne Sladky AP

David Beckham's career in American soccer isn't over, despite his recent retirement from the field. Beckham confirmed Wednesday that he will create a Major League Soccer expansion team in Miami. Details about the team's stadium and start date are still being worked out.

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6:10pm

Tue February 4, 2014
The Two-Way

The View From Down There: FDA Approves Pill Cam For Colon Exams

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 9:43 am

Outfitted with two color cameras that run on batteries, the PillCam Colon capsule is being billed as a less invasive and less expensive option to a colonoscopy.
Given Imaging

4:06pm

Tue February 4, 2014
The Two-Way

Lawyer's Local-Market Super Bowl Spot Is An On-Fire Smash

Originally published on Tue February 4, 2014 6:09 pm

Georgia attorney Jamie Casino's TV ad featuring a sledgehammer, fire and a personal story of vindication has won fans online with its over-the-top production style.
YouTube

3:47pm

Tue February 4, 2014
The Two-Way

Congress Sends 5-Year Farm Bill To White House

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 8:09 am

With a vote of 68-32, the Senate approved a sweeping farm bill Tuesday that will set rules and practices for American agriculture for five years. The bill does away with controversial direct cash payments made to farmers under a subsidy system, replacing it with crop insurance.

The provisions in the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013 bear signs of compromise between Republicans and Democrats, on issues ranging from food aid programs to budget cuts.

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5:04pm

Thu January 30, 2014
The Two-Way

Utah School Draws Ire For Taking Kids' Lunches; Debt Cited

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 8:41 am

Uintah Elementary School in Salt Lake City, where up to 40 students were served lunch Tuesday — only to have it discarded. They were told they didn't have enough credit on their accounts.
Google

Two state senators are paying a visit to an elementary school in Salt Lake City on Thursday, after reports emerged that the school had served meals to dozens of students — only to throw them away after a cashier confirmed their accounts had an outstanding balance.

Anger and frustration followed the incident, which affected up to 40 students Tuesday at Uintah Elementary School, The Salt Lake Tribune reports.

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5:07pm

Wed January 29, 2014
The Two-Way

Edward Snowden Nominated For Nobel Peace Prize

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 10:46 am

Edward Snowden, seen here in a photo provided by The Guardian, was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by two Norwegian politicians.
AP

Saying Edward Snowden has "contributed to a more stable and peaceful world order" by exposing U.S. surveillance practices and forcing a new debate over security and privacy, two Norwegian politicians nominated the former intelligence contractor for the Nobel Peace Prize on Wednesday.

If he were to win the award, Snowden, who gave a trove of classified documents to media outlets last summer, would join the ranks of popular Nobel Peace laureates such as Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela and Mother Teresa.

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3:59pm

Wed January 29, 2014
The Two-Way

Weather Experts: It's 'Wrong' To Call Atlanta Storm Unexpected

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 5:03 pm

Traffic is snarled along the I-285 perimeter north of Atlanta's metro area Wednesday. Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has called Tuesday's snow storm "unexpected" — prompting a response from weather forecasters.
David Tulis AP

3:00pm

Tue January 28, 2014
The Two-Way

Illinois Train Conductor's Challenge: Keep The Beer From Freezing

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 8:18 pm

In an Illinois railyard, train cars carrying beers such as Corona and Pacifico are at risk of spoiling their cargo if freezing temperatures take hold.
Scott Olson Getty Images

In a railyard outside Chicago, the deep cold of winter can threaten a Midwest staple: beer. The large distribution hub regularly holds more than 1 million cases, according to Crain's Chicago Business. A Crain's reporter spent a night on the job with the man who must keep the beer safe.

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2:08pm

Tue January 28, 2014
The Two-Way

China Is Poised To Force 'Times' Reporter Out Of Country

In a move that's being seen as retaliation for negative stories about its leaders, China's government has told a New York Times reporter that he must leave the country when his visa expires Thursday. The government has not granted a request for a new visa that was made last summer.

The development comes despite objections from Vice President Joe Biden, who has urged senior officials in Beijing not to punish U.S. journalists with de facto expulsion.

From Beijing, NPR's Frank Langfitt reports for our Newscast unit:

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6:09pm

Mon January 27, 2014
The Edge

'Crazy' And 'Surreal': Figure Skater Jason Brown's Road To Sochi

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 1:17 pm

Jason Brown skates during this year's U.S. Figure Skating Championships at TD Garden in Boston. After his free skate was watched more than 3 million times on YouTube, he said, "I don't know how it happened. ... I'm so shocked, beyond shocked. It's so surreal to me."
Jared Wickerham Getty Images

5:32pm

Mon January 27, 2014
The Two-Way

U.S. Agencies, Tech Firms Agree To Rules On Surveillance Info

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 6:53 pm

Internet companies that receive U.S. government requests for information about their customers will be able to disclose more details about surveillance than has been allowed, according to a deal announced today by the Justice Department.

The shift will allow technology and communications companies "to publish the aggregate data ... relating to any orders issued pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA)" — and in more ways than had been previously allowed.

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3:47pm

Mon January 27, 2014
The Two-Way

Spoiler Alert? 'Madden NFL 25' Predicts Super Bowl Outcome

Who will win? Videogame maker EA Sports says its Madden NFL 25 predicts an overtime thriller in Sunday's Super Bowl, with Denver edging Seattle. Here, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, left, and Broncos coach John Fox are seen in a composite image.
Getty Images Getty Images

6:06pm

Fri January 24, 2014
The Two-Way

Judge Tells Hospital To Take Pregnant Woman Off Life Support

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 8:10 pm

Erick Munoz is escorted by attorneys as he walks to court in Fort Worth, Texas, on Friday. A judge ordered a hospital to take Munoz's wife, who is 22 weeks pregnant, off life support.
Tim Sharp AP

A North Texas judge has ordered a Fort Worth hospital to remove life support from a woman who is 22 weeks pregnant. Her family says Marlise Munoz, 33, is brain-dead. She has reportedly not been awake since November, when she was discovered unconscious in her home. Doctors say she had suffered a pulmonary embolism.

At that time, Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant. Since then, a debate has raged about whether she should be kept alive. Many of the questions center on the details of Munoz's condition, and on state laws about terminating the life of a pregnant woman.

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3:53pm

Fri January 24, 2014
The Two-Way

Which Are The Most, And Least, 'Bible-Minded' Cities In The U.S.?

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 8:26 pm

A new study ranks 100 American cities according to how "Bible-minded" they are. The top spot went to Chattanooga, Tenn. Several cities in the Northeast and West were ranked "least Bible-minded."
Joseph Kaczmarek AP

In an era of shifting populations and values, the notion of America's Bible Belt can be a slippery concept. But a new study gives us an idea of which cities can be considered to be part of that tradition — and which cities aren't.

Chattanooga, Tenn., was named America's most Bible-minded city, followed by Birmingham, Ala., and Roanoke/Lynchburg, Va.

And despite its name, Providence, R.I., was named the least Bible-minded city. It tied New Bedford, Mass., in that slot, followed by Albany, N.Y., and Boston.

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6:46pm

Thu January 23, 2014
The Edge

Welcome To The Edge: NPR's Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Blog

Originally published on Fri January 24, 2014 1:25 pm

Olympic Park in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi. NPR will bring you the most interesting things we see and learn from the 2014 Winter Olympics. The first events are on Feb. 6, one day before the opening ceremony.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Today marks the start of The Edge, a blog hosting NPR's coverage of the Sochi Winter Games. The Edge is about the journeys Olympic athletes take to get better. From skaters to skiers, no two journeys are alike. But they all end at the same place: in competition. And many of them are fascinating.

As we've prepared for the games that begin Feb. 6 — in just two weeks — NPR has been following many stories of athletes and equipment, of money and security.

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4:09pm

Wed January 22, 2014
The Two-Way

Wrestling Fans Mourn Mae Young, 90 — A Pioneer Of The Ring

Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 2:57 pm

A still image from a WWE video tribute to Mae Young shows the famed wrestler during the early years of her career. Young died last week in South Carolina.
WWE

5:09pm

Tue January 21, 2014
The Two-Way

One Killed, Suspect In Custody In Purdue University Shooting

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 9:08 pm

A police officer walks out of the Electrical Engineering Building on the campus of Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., Tuesday. One person was killed in a classroom by a gunman who surrendered to a police officer within minutes of the attack, officials said.
Michael Conroy AP

Police declared the campus of Purdue University safe Tuesday afternoon, hours after a shooting in a school building alarmed students and sparked a partial evacuation order. One person died in the violence; another has been taken into police custody.

Update at 8:55 p.m. ET: Police Identify Those Involved

At an evening news conference, authorities named student Cody Cousins, 23, as the suspect in today's shooting. And they said the victim who died today was another student, Andrew F. Boldt, 21.

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3:54pm

Tue January 21, 2014
The Two-Way

Cheese To The Rescue: Surprising Spray Melts Road Ice

In Wisconsin, a dairy that makes mozzarella and provolone cheeses is giving its leftover salt brine to counties that use it to help melt road ice. Here, wheels of cheese are stacked in a deli.
iStockphoto

This winter, a Wisconsin county is fighting icy roads with a homegrown product: liquid cheese brine. Tens of thousands of gallons of the stuff are used each year along with road salt, according to officials in Polk County.

The rural county (county seat: Balsam Lake) uses the cheese brine in "pre-wetting for snow and ice control," as Emil "Moe" Norby, technical support manager for the Polk County Highway Department, tells us. And he says the brine has a definite effect when it's mixed with regular road salt.

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