Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the Newsdesk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, DC.

Chappell's work for NPR includes being the lead writer for online coverage of several Olympic Games, from London in 2012 and Rio in 2016 to Pyeongchang in 2018 – stints that also included posting numerous videos and photos to NPR's Instagram and other branded accounts. He has also previously been NPR.org's homepage editor.

Chappell established the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR's website; his assignments also include being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road. Chappell has coordinated special digital features for Morning Edition and Fresh Air, in addition to editing the rundown of All Things Considered. He also frequently contributes to other NPR blogs, such as The Salt.

At NPR, Chappell has trained both digital and radio staff to tell compelling stories, promoting more collaboration between departments and desks.

Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that performed one of NPR's largest website redesigns. One year later, NPR.org won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

Prior to joining NPR, Chappell was part of the Assignment Desk at CNN International, working with reporters in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. Chappell also edited and produced stories for CNN.com's features division, before moving on to edit video and produce stories for Sports Illustrated's website.

Early in his career, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants, and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

New Hampshire is now the 21st U.S. state to have abolished capital punishment, after its legislature voted to override a veto by Republican Gov. Chris Sununu. After a years-long effort to repeal the state's death penalty, the state's Senate voted 16-8 Thursday to finally make it official.

Calling capital punishment "archaic, costly, discriminatory and violent," Democratic state Sen. Melanie Levesque said the time has come to end it, according to New Hampshire Public Radio.

Updated at 5:15 p.m. ET

The captain of a river cruise ship that collided with a tourist sightseeing boat in the Danube River in Budapest, causing it to capsize and sink, has been taken into custody by Hungarian police.

The captain, a 64-year-old Ukrainian identified only as Yuriy C., is suspected of endangering water transport leading to a deadly mass accident, according to The Associated Press, citing a police website.

A British court is ordering Boris Johnson to face accusations that while holding public office, he lied in order to sway voter opinion on Brexit. The case was brought by a "private prosecutor" who says Johnson abused the public's trust while holding official posts.

MacKenzie Bezos, who received more than $35 billion in her divorce from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, has signed the Giving Pledge, making a commitment to give more than half her fortune to charity or philanthropic causes.

"We each come by the gifts we have to offer by an infinite series of influences and lucky breaks we can never fully understand," Bezos wrote in a letter announcing her pledge. "In addition to whatever assets life has nurtured in me, I have a disproportionate amount of money to share."

Confirmation of Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's reelection win has set off violence in Jakarta, where officials say at least six people died after protests morphed into riots in the capital. Widodo's challenger, retired military general Prabowo Subianto, is refusing to concede the race.

Widodo, who has called for unity in the wake of the hotly contested election, said he will not tolerate rioting.

The last time Belgium's Grimbergen Abbey brewed beer, the United States was only about 20 years old. But the abbey now plans to make beer again, and for inspiration, it will turn to the original recipes and brewing instructions in its archive of medieval texts.

After it was founded in 1128, the Norbertine abbey's clerics spent centuries making beer. But they were forced to stop when the abbey was destroyed in 1798. Now they want to get back into brewing — and to do it, they're hoping to use secrets they've gleaned from ancient books the abbey managed to preserve.

A Nepalese mountain climber has now climbed Mount Everest a record 24 times — and he's hoping to do it one more time before he retires. Kami Rita Sherpa, 49, has been climbing Everest since 1994.

"It's also the second time in a week that he's made the arduous trek," NPR's Sushmita Pathak reports from Mumbai. "The 49-year-old Sherpa guide had already broken his own record on May 15, when he scaled the summit for the 23rd time."

Updated Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. ET

Andrea, the first named storm of the 2019 Atlantic season, formed late Monday night, according to a special bulletin from the National Hurricane Center. With maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, the low-powered storm is less than 300 miles west-southwest of Bermuda.

Ukraine now has a new president, as Volodymyr Zelenskiy was sworn into office on Monday — and the famous comedian immediately said one of his first actions will be to dissolve parliament. Fulfilling a campaign promise, Zelenskiy announced a snap election to choose new lawmakers.

Updated at 3 p.m. ET

The Trump administration has reached a deal to lift tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada and Mexico, in a move that could put the three nations a step closer to ratifying the USMCA trade deal that would replace NAFTA.

The tariffs will be lifted within two days, according to a joint U.S.-Canada statement posted by Canada's foreign ministry.

Grumpy Cat — the blue-eyed cat with the withering stare and permafrown that suggested perpetual irritation — has died, her family announced early Friday. She was 7.

The scowling kitty died of complications from a urinary tract infection, her owners said.

"Some days are grumpier than others," Tabatha Bundesen wrote, announcing her cat's death.

Born in 2012, Grumpy Cat became a darling of memes, cat fanciers and anyone who needed to be reminded that somewhere out there, there was a cat who looked as grumpy as they felt.

The U.S. birthrate fell again in 2018, to 3,788,235 births — representing a 2% drop from 2017. It's the lowest number of births in 32 years, according to a new federal report. The numbers also sank the U.S. fertility rate to a record low.

Not since 1986 has the U.S. seen so few babies born. And it's an ongoing slump: 2018 was the fourth consecutive year of birth declines, according to the provisional birthrate report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Sochi Tuesday, holding talks that are aimed at improving relations between Washington and Moscow. But the discussions also allowed them to air their disagreements — and they took advantage of that, diverging on topics from Russia's attempts to destabilize other countries to how to resolve crises in Venezuela, Iran and other complicated issues.

The Trump administration is preparing a new list of $300 billion worth of Chinese imports that would be hit with tariffs of up to 25%, after China retaliated Monday in the trade war between the world's two largest economies.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that a major antitrust lawsuit against Apple over its App Store can move forward. The 5-to-4 ruling immediately plunged Apple's stock prices and opened the door to the possibility of enormous future damages against the company.

Justice Brett Kavanaugh, appointed by President Trump last year, wrote the decision for himself and the court's four liberal justices. In it, he stressed that the court majority was taking no position on the merits of the lawsuit but said that under long-standing precedent the suit could proceed to its next stages.

Sweden is resuming its investigation of Julian Assange on rape allegations and will issue a European warrant for his arrest, state prosecutor Eva-Marie Persson said Monday. Assange is currently in a British prison, where he's being punished for eluding a similar warrant in 2012.

Swedish prosecutors had idled their case while Assange was holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. But with the controversial WikiLeaks founder now in U.K. custody, Persson said, "conditions have changed in the case and I believe that there are again opportunities to push the matter forward."

An athletics tribunal has banned elite Mexican race walker María Guadalupe González from competing for four years. Officials allege that González, popularly known as Lupita, forged records to bolster her claim that she ate meat containing a metabolite of trenbolone, a powerful anabolic steroid.

Chelsea Manning has been freed from jail, more than a month after she was taken into custody for refusing to testify before a grand jury in a case involving WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.

Manning was released Thursday afternoon, after the grand jury's term expired — but the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Virginia already has subpoenaed her to appear before a new grand jury panel, according to a tweet from Manning's account.

Updated at 2:10 p.m. ET

Federal agents have arrested a former intelligence analyst and charged him with giving classified information to a reporter. The Justice Department says Daniel Everette Hale, 31, of Nashville, Tenn., used his top-secret computer to print out dozens of documents related to counterterrorism operations while working as a contractor for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, or NGA.

North Korea launched two projectiles Thursday that are believed to have been short-range missiles, according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff, in what would be the second test of such missiles in the past five days.

The apparent missiles were launched from northwestern North Korea, far from the border that divides the Korean Peninsula, and they landed in the Sea of Japan/East Sea, according to South Korea's Yonhap News Agency.

Updated at 8:06 p.m. ET

A day after the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado, local officials urged people not to view such attacks as part of life in Colorado.

"These are aberrant acts," 18th Judicial District Attorney George Brauchler said.

This week's attack happened not long after the 20th anniversary of the school shooting in nearby Columbine. The shooting injured eight people and left one student dead. Police say he has been identified by the Douglas County coroner as Kendrick Ray Castillo, 18.

The Pentagon has suspended efforts to recover the remains of thousands of service members who died in the Korean War over a lack of communication with North Korea. President Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un agreed on the effort during a summit in Singapore a year ago. But U.S. military officials say their North Korean peers went silent after a second summit, in Vietnam, failed in February.

Nearly four years after Sandra Bland was pulled over by a Texas state trooper, arrested and put in a jail cell where she was found dead days later, a cellphone video that Bland took of her traffic stop has surfaced.

Bland's family members now say they want her case reopened.

President Trump has granted a full pardon to former Army 1st Lt. Michael Behenna, who was convicted by a military court in 2009 for killing an Iraqi prisoner suspected of being part of al-Qaida. Behenna was initially sentenced to 25 years; he was released on parole in 2014.

Up to 1 million of the estimated 8 million plant and animal species on Earth are at risk of extinction — many of them within decades — according to scientists and researchers who produced a sweeping U.N. report on how humanity's burgeoning growth is putting the world's biodiversity at perilous risk.

The sultan of Brunei says his country will extend its moratorium on the death penalty to include newly enacted laws punishing homosexual acts and adultery with death by stoning, in an apparent response to weeks of criticism and a high-profile boycott.

Updated at 5:40 p.m. ET

President Trump effectively "unsigned" an international arms sales agreement Friday, moving to withdraw the U.S. from the United Nations' Arms Trade Treaty. The agreement sets global standards for regulating transfers of conventional arms, from rifles to tanks and airplanes.

The treaty, known as the ATT, has been in effect since late 2014. The U.S. signed on to the agreement in 2013 but has not ratified the treaty.

Updated at 1 p.m. ET

A highway crash killed at least four people and started a large fire on Interstate 70 along the western edge of Denver on Thursday, in a disaster that police say was triggered by a semitruck that slammed into a group of cars that were stopped in traffic.

Updated at 1:30 p.m. ET

Federal agents raided Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh's home, part of city hall and another location Thursday. Pugh is under investigation for alleged "self-dealing" in connection with hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments for a self-published children's book from private companies that were subject to her influence.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte wants Canada to come get tons of trash that was wrongly sent to his country — and he's threatening extreme steps if Canada doesn't clean up the situation. "We'll declare war against them," Duterte said Tuesday.

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