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.

America's unemployment rate sank to 7.4 percent in July, a drop of two-tenths of a percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says in its monthly summary of the U.S. economic situation. But employers added 162,000 jobs last month, coming in below economists' expectations.

NSA leaker Edward Snowden, who spent more than a month at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport before being granted a one-year asylum Thursday, has picked out a place to live in Russia, his attorney there says.

Snowden is wanted on charges of espionage by the United States for leaking classified documents about secret U.S. surveillance programs. His departure from the Moscow airport ended, temporarily at least, weeks of uncertainty over his fate. He had applied to several other countries for asylum, as well.

Few details have emerged about the U.S. plan to shut down embassies that would normally be open this Sunday. A senior State Department official says that the U.S. facilities may be closed for more days, as well. The closures are being described as "precautionary steps" that are being taken "out of an abundance of caution."

A federal jury in New York City has found that Fabrice Tourre, the former Goldman Sachs trader who regulators say caused investors to lose $1 billion, is liable in the mortgage securities fraud case filed against him by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Regulators say Tourre, 34, a native of France who was nicknamed "Fab" in his office, packaged toxic subprime mortgages into a collateralized debt obligation that was sold to investors under the name Abacus in 2007.

It's not rare for new vehicle owners to be proud of their purchase. And some even travel to the factory to pick up their new ride and drive it home. That's what Mark Stewart did — but his new vehicle is an ELF hybrid bike, and his ride home will take hundreds of miles to complete.

New claims for unemployment benefits fell to 326,000 in the week that ended July 27 — the lowest level for initial jobless claims in more than five years, according to the Labor Department.

Employment data for the month of July is due to be released Friday. But for now, the weekly jobless claims numbers are being hailed as another sign that the U.S. economy is gaining strength.

Uruguay is poised to create a state-licensed marijuana industry, after the country's lower house of Congress passed a controversial bill late Wednesday detailing how the government would regulate marijuana — from its production and import to marketing and distribution. The move would be a first.

NPR's South America correspondent Lourdes Garcia-Navarro tells our Newscast unit that the landmark bill now goes to the Senate, where it is expected to sail through.

Lourdes reports:

The Standard & Poor's 500 index, the benchmark of America's largest corporations, surpassed 1,700 points for the first time in early trading Thursday. The rise is being tied to a drop in weekly jobless claims, as well as assurances from central banks in the U.S. and Europe that they would continue to bolster their economies.

This post was last updated at 2 p.m. ET

The White House says it is "extremely disappointed" in Russia's decision to grant a temporary one-year asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden.

Snowden left Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport on Thursday after spending more than a month holed up in its transit center. Anatoly Kucherena, a Russian lawyer who has been advising the former U.S. intelligence contractor, told Russian media that Snowden's whereabouts are being kept secret for security reasons.

The Obama administration's displeasure was clear:

It's been more than a year since Facebook's stock debuted at $38 in its initial public offering. But after a problematic start and an eventual slide below $20, the company saw its shares reach that initial price in early trading Wednesday, one week after it reported strong advertising revenue.

"Before Wednesday's opening bell, the shares rose as high as $38.05, before settling back down to $37.95," the AP reports. "On Tuesday, the shares closed up 6 percent after coming within pennies of the IPO price."

Baseball fans often declare their love of the game's rhythm, its quiet pauses and bursts of action. For such people, watching a game on TV can be a struggle, particularly if they're annoyed by the chatter of announcers. Fans in Detroit had another option last night: watching a TV broadcast that included only the natural sounds of the ballpark.

The U.S. economy grew by an annualized rate of 1.7 percent in the second quarter of 2013, according to gross domestic product data released Wednesday morning. The Commerce Department says the rise stems from business investments, particularly in buildings, and an upturn in exports and the civilian aircraft industry.

At 18 years old, American Gabrielle Turnquest has become the youngest person to pass Britain's Bar exams, qualifying her as a barrister. Turnquest is a native of Windermere, Fla. She studied for the exams at Britain's University of Law.

From London, NPR's Larry Miller reports for our Newscast unit:

"The average age to gain a barrister's qualification is 27. Turnquest says she's honored to be the youngest person to become a British barrister. Due to her parent's heritage, she is also called to the Bahamas bar.

Daniel Chong, the San Diego college student who spent more than four days in a Drug Enforcement Administration holding cell without food or water, has reached a $4.1 million settlement with the U.S. government. The DEA apologized to Chong last year and instituted a review of its practices.

The ordeal, in which Chong was forgotten in a cell after being taken in during a drug raid, caused Chong to become increasingly desperate. At one point, he said last year, he drank his own urine to survive.

As the sentencing hearing for former Army intelligence analyst Bradley Manning begins today, he faces the possibility of spending many decades in prison. Manning was found guilty Tuesday of 19 counts for giving thousands of classified U.S. documents to WikiLeaks.

Manning, 25, was acquitted of aiding the enemy, the most serious charge against him, which would have put him in jeopardy of a life sentence. He was found guilty of other serious charges, from theft to espionage, for his role in the largest leak of U.S. secrets in history.

Ireland now has its first law making abortion legal in the country under specific conditions, after President Michael D. Higgins signed the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill 2013 into law Tuesday.

The legislation provides women with access to abortion in cases where their lives are at risk, including medical emergencies and cases in which suicide could be a factor.

The driver of a Spanish train that derailed and killed 79 people was speaking on the phone and had taken the train to nearly twice the speed allowed on the stretch of track where the crash occurred, according to court investigators who reviewed the train's "black box" recorders.

After reaching speeds of 119 miles per hour, train conductor Francisco Jose Garzon Amo tried to slow the train down "seconds before the crash," according to an Associated Press report on the court's preliminary findings, which were released Tuesday.

The number of furlough days for civilian workers at the Department of Defense may be cut nearly in half, according to The Associated Press, a result of Pentagon officials finding hundreds of millions of dollars in savings within their current budgets.

Scores of prisoners were freed from a prison in northwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, after Taliban militants armed with explosives and automatic weapons reportedly stormed the facility. At least nine people, including five guards, died in gun battles and other violence at the prison, according to multiple news outlets.

After a long talk with ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, European Union Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton says Morsi, who has been detained for nearly a month, is in good health.

"We talked for two hours; we talked in-depth. He has access to information, in terms of TV, newspapers — so, we were able to talk about the situation," Ashton tells the BBC. "And we were able to talk about the need to move forward."

At least 10 people suspected of committing Nazi war crimes were never deported from the U.S. despite losing the American citizenship they gained when they immigrated, The Associated Press reports. A main cause of the delay is simple: Their European homelands don't want them back.

A series of fiery explosions ravaged a Blue Rhino propane gas plant in central Florida's Lake County late Monday night, forcing nearby residents to be evacuated. The detonations reportedly lasted for some 30 minutes and were heard as far as 10 miles away. A fire at the plant raged into the early morning hours.

Update at 11:10 a.m. ET: Work Continues; No Sign Of Sabotage

For more than an hour Sunday, the U.S. men's soccer team was stymied by Panama's efficient defense and their own tight play in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final. But less than one minute after substitute Brek Shea entered the game, he tapped the match's lone goal into the net and sealed the championship.

The 1-0 victory at Chicago's Soldier Field extended the Americans' winning streak to a record 11 games and opened the door to a possible U.S. appearance in the elite Confederations Cup in 2017. An announced crowd of nearly 58,000 attended the title match.

Amazon.com plans to hire more than 5,000 full-time workers for its warehouse and order-fulfillment centers, the retailing giant said Monday. Many of the jobs will be at Amazon outposts that are spread across more than 10 states.

"Median pay inside Amazon fulfillment centers is 30 percent higher than that of people who work in traditional retail stores," the company said in a news release announcing its plans.

Gay people should be integrated into society instead of ostracized, Pope Francis told journalists after his weeklong trip to Brazil. Answering a question about reports of homosexuals in the clergy, the pope answered, "If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?"

In what's being called an unusually broad and candid news conference, Francis took questions from reporters for more than an hour as he flew from Brazil to the Vatican; his plane landed Monday.

As it unveils its all-electric i3 compact sedan Monday, BMW also plans to offer buyers the option of booking a gas-powered SUV for a few weeks every year, according to reports. The move is part of BMW's efforts to ease customers' concerns about relying on an electric vehicle year-round, particularly for long family trips.

Investigators in southern Italy are examining the scene a day after a bus carrying nearly 50 people plummeted off a highway and into a ravine east of Naples. Italian news agencies say at least 38 people died Sunday night after the bus crashed through a guardrail and fell nearly 100 feet to the rough terrain below.

The crash injured at least 10 people, including people who were in cars the bus hit before it left the roadway. Several children are believed to be among the wounded.

More than a dozen car bombs exploded in Iraq early Monday, killing more than 50 people in Baghdad and other areas. At least 10 explosions were reported in the Iraqi capital during the morning rush hour.

Monday's bombings wounded more than 100 people, the BBC reports.

"Police and medical sources said the attacks, which appeared to be coordinated, were concentrated on towns and cities in Iraq's predominantly Shi'ite south," Reuters reports, "and districts of the capital where Shi'ites reside."

A third death has been reported in the crash-landing of Asiana Airline flight 214, as San Francisco General Hospital said Friday that one of its patients who was injured in the accident has died. Hospital officials described the victim as a girl; they offered no further details about her.

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