Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who currently works on The Two Way, NPR's flagship blog. In the past, he has coordinated digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, and edited the rundown of All Things Considered. He frequently contributes to other NPR blogs, such as All Tech Considered and The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to being the lead writer and editor on 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 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 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 during the Iraq war.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, and editing and producing 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, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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The Two-Way
1:31 pm
Fri May 8, 2015

Spanish Customs Officials Foil Attempt To Smuggle Boy In Suitcase

Spain's Civil Guard released this image of a boy, 8, who was the subject of a smuggling attempt.
Guardia Civil

Originally published on Fri May 8, 2015 3:42 pm

An 8-year-old boy from the Ivory Coast was found curled up in a suitcase Thursday, foiling an attempt to smuggle him into Spanish territory. His father and a woman who carried the case were later arrested.

From Agence France-Presse:

" 'When they put the suitcase through the scanner, the operator noticed something strange, which seemed to be a person inside the case,' he told AFP.

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The Two-Way
3:25 pm
Wed May 6, 2015

NFL Report: 'More Probable Than Not' That Patriots Workers Tampered With Footballs

Tom Brady of the New England Patriots was named MVP of the Patriots' Super Bowl win over the Seattle Seahawks. A new NFL report suggests he was aware of cheating by team personnel who tampered with game balls.
Jamie Squire Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 4:39 pm

Two members of the New England Patriots' staff probably violated the NFL's playing rules by tampering with game balls, according to a lengthy review of the scandal that's come to be known as "Deflategate."

The report names two Patriots workers who had access to footballs before a pivotal game; it also states, "it is more probable than not that Tom Brady was at least generally aware of the inappropriate activities."

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The Two-Way
12:26 pm
Wed May 6, 2015

Vatican Affirms Plan To Make Missionary Junipero Serra A Saint

Pope Francis will canonize Junipero Serra this fall. This weekend, the pope met with rector of the Pontifical North American College James F. Checchio (left), Cardinal Marc Ouellet (right) and Joseph Edward Kurtz, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Andrew Medichini AP

Pope Francis will canonize Spanish missionary Junipero Serra during his visit to the U.S. later this year, the Vatican says, affirming a plan that has drawn criticism over Serra's role in the California mission system of the 18th century.

After announcing his decision in January, Francis didn't wait for the traditional approval of a second miracle before moving ahead with canonizing Serra, whom the pope has praised for his zeal.

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The Two-Way
1:54 pm
Mon May 4, 2015

May The Fourth Be With You: 'Star Wars' Fans Celebrate A Faraway Galaxy

In Budapest, Hungary, a man takes a photo with people dressed as their favorite Star Wars stormtroopers.
Attila Volgyi Xinhua /Landov

Yoda, Chewbacca and a phalanx of stormtroopers are telling people all over the Internet "May the fourth be with you" today, as fans of the Star Wars franchise celebrate all things that emanate from a galaxy far, far away.

As you would expect from a quasi-holiday that's drawn from a pun, May 4 brings a flood of cute ideas to social media. It's also a good excuse to dress up as an Ewok. NASA is taking the whole enterprise to a new level, with a flurry of tweets that show how "science fiction is now science fact!"

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The Two-Way
11:27 am
Mon May 4, 2015

McDonald's CEO Promises 'Modern, Progressive Burger Company'

Under a new global structure, McDonald's is grouping markets in Germany where a new McDonald's Flagship Restaurant opened in March, with other high-performing countries such as Australia and Canada.
Hannelore Foerster Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 4, 2015 3:15 pm

Looking for new growth and promising better restaurant experiences for customers, McDonald's President and CEO Steve Easterbrook is changing how the chain manages global markets and plans to boost the number of franchised restaurants.

"The reality is, our recent performance has been poor," Easterbrook said in a video released Monday. "The numbers don't lie. Which is why, as we celebrate 60 years of McDonald's, I will not shy away from resetting this business."

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The Two-Way
2:49 pm
Fri May 1, 2015

Tesla CEO Elon Musk Unveils Home Battery; Is $3,000 Cheap Enough?

A photo released by Tesla shows its new Powerwall lithium-ion battery pack mounted on the wall (left) of a garage behind one of the company's electric cars.
Tesla Energy

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 12:33 pm

In an ambitious bid to move beyond the electric car market, Tesla has announced that it will start selling large batteries to let homeowners store electricity. The Powerwall home battery starts at $3,000.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk unveiled the new batteries Thursday night, in a move that had been both highly anticipated and the subject of much speculation. With a sleek surface and a depth of only about 7 inches, the Powerwall can be mounted on a garage wall or another surface, indoors or outside. It's roughly 4 feet high and 3 feet wide.

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The Two-Way
8:41 am
Fri May 1, 2015

Charges Against 6 Officers In Freddie Gray's Death Range From Murder To Assault

Marilyn Mosby, state's attorney for Baltimore City, announced criminal charges against all six officers in the death of Freddie Gray, who suffered a fatal injury while in police custody.
Alex Brandon AP

Originally published on Sun May 3, 2015 9:35 am

The death of Freddie Gray was a homicide, and six Baltimore police officers now face criminal charges that include second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, Baltimore chief prosecutor Marilyn J. Mosby says.

Mosby announced the charges Friday morning, citing her office's "thorough and independent" investigation and the medical examiner's report on Gray's death. She said warrants were issued Friday for the officers' arrest.

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The Two-Way
11:41 am
Thu April 30, 2015

Kill The Messenger: NASA Orbiter Crashes Into Mercury

This image of a "red spot" on Mercury, which is thought to be the result of a volcanic explosion, was sent to Earth by the Messenger probe in 2011.
NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 5:36 pm

After 4,104 orbits of Mercury and billions of miles of space travel, NASA's Messenger orbiter ended its mission with a quiet bang on Thursday. Messenger crashed into the planet it has been orbiting for four years.

NASA says the orbiter began the process of lithobraking at 3:26 p.m. ET — meaning that Messenger essentially scraped to a stop after hitting the planet's surface traveling at thousands of miles an hour. The Oxford English Dictionary reminds us that litho is the combining form for the Greek word for "stone."

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The Two-Way
8:05 am
Thu April 30, 2015

10 Men Sent To Prison Over Shooting Of Pakistani Girl Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai, who was 15 when she was shot, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last year.
Hakon Mosvold Larsen EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 8:25 pm

A Pakistani anti-terrorism court has sent 10 men to prison for 25-year terms for their roles in the near-fatal attack on activist Malala Yousafzai in 2012. The girl who has since come to be known only by her first name later won global renown for her work promoting education for girls.

From Islamabad, NPR's Philip Reeves reports:

"The 10 were convicted by an anti-terrorism court in a closed hearing in Swat in north-west Pakistan. That's where Malala Yousafzai, then aged 15, was shot and seriously wounded as she returned from school.

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The Two-Way
7:42 am
Thu April 30, 2015

Rescue Brings A Bit Of Good News To Nepal's Capital After Earthquake

Members of Nepal's Armed Police Force carry an officer as they cheer the successful rescue of a teenager who had been trapped by Saturday's earthquake in Kathmandu.
Navesh Chitrakar Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 10:52 am

There hasn't been much to cheer about in Nepal this week as it copes with a devastating earthquake — but cheers and applause broke out in Kathmandu Thursday after a teenager was pulled alive from a collapsed building.

For five days, the teenager was covered in the rubble of a seven-story building hit by Saturday's powerful quake. Rescue workers who got him out included an American disaster response team that arrived in Nepal this week.

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