Bill Chappell | KERA News

Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a writer and producer who currently works on The Two Way, NPR's flagship news portal. In the past, he 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.

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.

The Girl Scouts of the USA unveiled 23 new badges related to science, technology, mathematics, and nature activities this week, responding to popular demand for activities related to interests such as the outdoors, mechanical engineering, and computer programming.

The new badges will have members designing robots and learning about mechanical engineering, " building and testing rollercoasters, race cars, and gliders," the organization said.

Hours after President Trump criticized Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski's vote on debating health care legislation, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke reportedly called Murkowski and fellow Alaskan Sen. Dan Sullivan to say their state could run into trouble with the Trump administration.

Updated at 11:30 a.m. ET

Jerusalem's mufti Mohammed Hussein has declared an end to recent protests, saying Muslims will again pray inside Al-Aqsa Mosque, rather than outside it, after Israeli police removed the last of the security equipment from the entrance to the holy site.

Clashes marred the return of thousands of worshippers to the site Friday afternoon.

Suspicious that a package shipped from Hong Kong might contain smuggled animals, U.S. agents who opened the package found three live king cobra snakes hidden in potato chip cans. The man who was to receive the package outside Los Angeles has been arrested on federal charges.

Rodrigo Franco, 34, could face 20 years in prison on a charge of illegally importing merchandise, federal prosecutors said Tuesday. U.S. officials accuse him of violating the Endangered Species Act and falsifying records.

Missouri already has some of the strictest abortion laws in the country. Now it's looking to place new requirements on the procedure, including having doctors meet with women seeking abortions before formal consent can be given and requiring the health department to hold unannounced annual inspections of abortion clinics.

France is asking European neighbors to help it fight fast-growing wildfires that have consumed thousands of acres of forest near the Mediterranean coast, forcing tourists to leave an area that is normally packed with visitors in the summer.

Several large fires have struck near the French Riviera this week, in resort areas near Saint-Tropez and also on the island of Corsica. Their rapid growth is being blamed on dry and windy conditions and plentiful fuel.

Two days after his 69th birthday, Snooty the manatee has died in what the South Florida Museum says was "simply a heartbreaking accident." The manatee drowned after being trapped by a hatch door, officials said Sunday.

Snooty was the oldest manatee in captivity — and he was believed to be the oldest on record, according to the South Florida Museum, which houses the Parker Manatee Aquarium in Bradenton, Fla.

"Aquarium staff is heartbroken," said Jeff Rodgers, the museum's provost and chief operating officer.

A 5-year-old girl whose sidewalk lemonade stand brought a $195 fine in east London has been invited to set up shop at several markets and festivals, as supporters reach out to her family. The ticket was forgiven; now the girl's father is urging more kids to open their own stands.

Chris Froome enjoyed a celebratory ride into Paris — complete with the traditional Champagne toast — in the Tour de France's 21st and final stage Sunday. The British rider won after avoiding crashes that took out some of cycling's big names, including his teammate Geraint Thomas.

It's the third straight Tour de France victory for Froome, and his fourth overall.

Congress will consider imposing new sanctions on Russia and Iran as well as North Korea, after Republicans and Democrats agreed to changes that will allow the legislation to move ahead. The bill also aims to prevent President Trump from relaxing sanctions without lawmakers' consent.

Poland is poised to dissolve a key separation of government powers, as President Andrzej Duda is expected to sign a bill that puts the nation's Supreme Court under the control of the ruling party, despite citizens' protests and pleas from allies in the EU and U.S.

Poland's Senate approved the measure early Saturday, capping days of debate and demonstrations. The lower house of Parliament gave its approval earlier this week.

Afghan officials say 16 members of the Afghan National Security Forces died in a U.S. airstrike Friday, during operations against Taliban fighters in southern Helmand province. The U.S. says it is investigating the circumstances that led to the mistake.

Afghan media report that 16 members of the security force died, citing local government officials. Although a U.S. statement acknowledging the strike did not specify the number of casualties, a Pentagon spokesman later put the figure at from 12-15 deaths.

Citing concern for the nearly 800,000 young immigrants who've been granted protections under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, California's Attorney General Xavier Becerra and 19 of his colleagues are asking President Trump to keep the program running.

The U.S. government will ban American citizens from traveling to North Korea, citing safety and security concerns. The State Department confirmed the new restriction on Friday, after Young Pioneer Tours, which organized Otto Warmbier's fateful visit to North Korea, announced the pending move.

Warmbier's trip to the pariah nation ended in detention, imprisonment and a catastrophic head injury that resulted in his death after being released and deported to the U.S. last month.

Protesters, worshippers and security forces are massing in Jerusalem's Old City, where security measures at a religious shrine are angering Muslims. Tensions are high at the site known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary.

There are reports of small skirmishes in Jerusalem, after Muslims gathered for Friday afternoon prayers outside Al-Aqsa mosque. Worshippers who refused to pass through the metal detectors chose instead to pray next to them.

From Jerusalem, NPR's Daniel Estrin reports:

A plan to build an ultrafast Hyperloop tube train has been given "verbal [government] approval" to connect large cities on the East Coast, tech entrepreneur Elon Musk says. He adds that the system would whisk passengers from New York to Washington, D.C., in 29 minutes.

A Baltimore man was held in jail for months after police found a stash of drugs — but the officer who found the drugs also seems to be the one who hid them in that spot, according to footage from his body camera. The public defender's office says the man is now free and it is questioning the officer's involvement in 53 active cases.

The officer has been suspended and two of his colleagues are on administrative duty, Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said, as the agency's internal affairs unit looks at the case.

"It's terrible; it's a bad situation." That is how the creator of that situation, YouTube star Jake Paul, describes what his neighbors in West Hollywood are going through because of his rowdy lifestyle and made-for-video antics.

British retailers will be forbidden from forcing customers to pay surcharges when they use a credit card, under new rules announced by the U.K.'s Treasury Ministry on Wednesday.

"Rip-off charges have no place in a modern Britain," said Economic Secretary to the Treasury Stephen Barclay.

British consumers sometimes face steep surcharges for using a credit card — as much as 20 percent for purchases such as airfare, the Treasury says. The new rule, which takes effect in January, will also apply to government agencies.

It wasn't old age, or disease: A "bluish foreign body" that was found in an English woman's eye turned out to be a mass of contact lenses, surprising medical staff who were preparing the woman, 65, for routine cataract surgery. They report pulling 27 lenses from the woman's eye.

"She was quite shocked," specialist trainee ophthalmologist Rupal Morjaria tells Britain's Optometry Today.

Actress Jodie Whittaker will portray the Doctor in the next season of the beloved BBC series Doctor Who, becoming the first woman to play the role. The BBC announced the move after Sunday's Wimbledon men's final.

"It's more than an honor to play the Doctor," Whittaker said in a news release. "It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can't wait."

With Roger Federer at the top of his game — and his opponent, Marin Cilic, hobbled by a foot injury — the Swiss superstar seized his record eighth Wimbledon singles title on Sunday, winning in straight sets yet again.

For Federer, 35, the win breaks a tie he had held with Pete Sampras and William Renshaw. It also adds to his record for most Grand Slam singles championships, giving him 19. Federer's first win in Wimbledon came in 2003 — and after Sunday's victory, he said he'd like to come back next year.

Two teenage boys, 15 and 16, are facing numerous charges of grievous bodily harm and robbery after a string of recent acid attacks in London. Police arrested the teenagers after five attacks left one victim with life-changing facial injuries. The growing trend of acid attacks also has the government considering ways to increase the penalties for the crime.

The 16-year-old faces 15 charges, including possession of an item to discharge a noxious substance and five counts of attempted gross bodily harm with intent, according to London's Metropolitan Police.

Days after dozens of Alfred Angelo Bridal stores closed with little or no warning, brides and their loved ones have been struggling to track down dresses they've paid for — and making contingency plans if they can't find them.

Alfred Angelo reportedly closed all of its 61 bridal stores at the end of business Thursday night as part of its plan to file for bankruptcy, infuriating customers and leaving employees in the lurch. The lawyer handling the case says she has received more than 7,000 emails about it.

Nearly three years after she became the first woman to win math's equivalent of a Nobel Prize, Maryam Mirzakhani has died of breast cancer at age 40. Her death was confirmed Saturday by Stanford University, where Mirzakhani had been a professor since 2008.

Mirzakhani is survived by her husband, Jan Vondrák, and a daughter, Anahita — who once referred to her mother's work as "painting" because of the doodles and drawings that marked her process of working on proofs and problems, according to an obituary released by Stanford.

Garbiñe Muguruza won her first Wimbledon title by overcoming Venus Williams in a women's final that was marked by long rallies and creative shotmaking in a gripping first set. Williams was unable to take advantage of early chances against Spain's Muguruza — who only grew more accurate and confident as the match progressed.

It's the second Grand Slam win for Muguruza, 23, who defeated Serena Williams in last year's French Open. Saturday's win comes two years after she lost on Wimbledon's Center Court to Serena Williams.

It's been more than 30 years since the Des Plaines River hit the flood stages that it reached Friday, setting records with flood stages from 12 to more than 16 feet in several cities in northeastern Illinois — far above the flood stage of 7 feet that's normal for most of the area.

The flooding north of Chicago has affected some 6,800 buildings and is "unprecedented," Illinois officials said Friday, as member station WBEZ reports.

After a noted emergency responder died in rescuing an endangered right whale, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says it's suspending efforts to free whales that are similarly trapped by fishing lines and gear.

There was much pomp and circumstance — and hand-holding, and even a dash of Daft Punk — in President Trump's visit to Paris, as French President Emmanuel Macron used any means possible to embrace and entertain the American leader during his two-day stay.

Trump's visit began Thursday with a trip to Napoleon's Tomb at Les Invalides, where he was given full military honors as he and Melania Trump met Macron and his wife, Brigitte. It continued with the two couples having dinner high inside the Eiffel Tower, and it ended Friday with a parade to mark Bastille Day.

It's been eight years since Venus Williams won a Wimbledon singles title, but she's now eyeing her sixth, after advancing to Saturday's final. Williams, 37, beat hard-serving Johanna Konta, the world's No. 7 player, on Thursday.

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