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.

Fashion designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are locked in a very public argument with musician Elton John over their recent remarks condemning in vitro fertilization and saying same-sex couples should not raise children.

After John called for a boycott of the designers' clothes, Gabbana defended his right to air an opinion and urged people to shun the singer, responding to John's Instagram post by commenting, "Fascist!!"

Officials in Vanuatu are still assessing damage from what President Baldwin Lonsdale says was "a monster" — Cyclone Pam, a strong storm that hit the small nation in the South Pacific with winds that damaged or destroyed 90 percent of the buildings in the capital, Lonsdale says.

"This is a very devastating cyclone in Vanuatu. I term it as a monster, a monster," he said. "It's a setback for the government and for the people of Vanuatu. After all the development that has taken place, all this development has been wiped out."

Making his first verified public appearance in more than a week, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the conspiracy rumors that were whipped up in his absence were silly. Putin appeared Monday with Kyrgyzstan's president in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Saying that he's trying to save the community of Ferguson, Mo., Mayor James Knowles says that he is frustrated and concerned by the tone of Attorney General Eric Holder's remarks about his city and its police department — both of which were harshly criticized in a recent Justice Department report.

Knowles also says that he sees no reason to step down, as some of his critics have demanded, stating that he still has residents' support.

In Wisconsin, what began as a heartwarming show of courtesy and affection is now making Desiree Andrews, 14, into an international celebrity.

Desiree is a cheerleader at Lincoln Middle School in Kenosha, Wis. She has Down syndrome — and as some hecklers learned last year, she has the full support of her school's basketball team and her community.

In an expansive interview coinciding with the second anniversary of his unexpected election, Pope Francis said his time as the head of the Roman Catholic Church will be brief.

Francis said he misses the relative anonymity he had as a bishop. As NPR's Sylvia Poggioli reports, "He also said he doesn't mind being pope, but would like to go out in Rome unrecognized, for a pizza."

The pope's comments came in an interview with the Mexican broadcaster Televisa.

From Rome, Sylvia reports:

Many are calling it the second battle over Waterloo — and this time, France won. A two-euro coin commemorating the bicentennial of Napoleon Bonaparte's defeat will not be widely released, after France objected to what it called a "negative symbol."

From Brussels, Teri Schultz reports for NPR:

An American health care worker who contracted Ebola while volunteering in Sierra Leone is now receiving care at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center in Maryland. The patient's condition is still being evaluated, the NIH says.

The patient is the second to be treated for Ebola at the Bethesda facility, which previously cared for — and eventually released — Nina Pham, a nurse who contracted Ebola in Dallas. The hospital has also monitored two patients who were seen as being at high risk of having the deadly disease. They were later released.

Julian Assange's lawyers say the WikiLeaks founder is happy with a plan to have Swedish prosecutors question him in London, after Sweden softened its insistence that he be extradited to answer sexual assault allegations.

Assange has been living in Ecuador's London embassy for nearly three years.

"He is willing to co-operate fully now in conducting this interrogation," Assange's lawyer, Per Samuelson, tells the BBC World Service. "This is a great victory for him."

From London, NPR's Ari Shapiro reports for our Newscast unit:

Updated at 6:56 p.m. ET

A 475-pound leatherback sea turtle that was rescued from a remote beach in South Carolina was returned to the ocean Thursday, after being found stranded ashore and nursed back to health. It took five people to carry the creature, officials say.

The turtle "immediately responded to treatments" of fluids, vitamins and antibiotics after it was rescued Saturday, says spokeswoman Kate Dittloff of the South Carolina Aquarium.

After finding only debris and human remains in the area where a Black Hawk helicopter crashed in Florida Tuesday night with 11 people aboard, officials at Eglin Air Force Base say the mission has transitioned from a search and rescue into a recovery effort.

"At this point, we are not hopeful for survivors," said Col. Monte Cannon, vice-commander of the 96th Test Wing. "Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the family members and the units where our soldiers and Marines call home."

Update at 1:30 p.m. ET: Two Soldiers Confirmed Dead

Two weeks after it voted to approve rules on net neutrality, the Federal Communications Commission has released the full text of the Open Internet Order. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler calls it "a shining example of American democracy at work."

Wheeler also listed what he calls "bright-line rules" in the order. From his summary:

  • Ban Paid Prioritization: "Fast lanes" will not divide the Internet into "haves" and "have nots."
  • Ban Blocking: Consumers must get what they pay for — unfettered access to any lawful content on the Internet.

After spending nearly six months on the International Space Station, an astronaut and two cosmonauts have landed safely back on Earth. While in orbit, they traveled almost 71 million miles, NASA says.

Cmdr. Barry Wilmore of NASA and flight engineers Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) touched down in Kazakhstan on Thursday morning, local time.

Pro-government forces in Iraq are making progress in the push to take back the city of Tikrit from the self-proclaimed Islamic State, or ISIS. Iraqi officials say the focus is now on the city's center, and that advances were still being slowed by bombs and booby traps.

Dozens of Greek and Roman coins are part of a collection of ancient coins that was donated to the University at Buffalo in 1935. But it was only recently that the school realized how special they are.

For years, the coins sat on a shelf in the school's library, mostly ignored — until a classics professor asked specialists to come to the archive and examine them.

"I must have been the first person to touch them in almost 40 years," says Philip Kiernan, an assistant professor who became curious about the collection after he heard a rumor about it in 2010.

Iraqi troops and militia fighters are reportedly inside the city of Tikrit, the city that has been held by the self-proclaimed Islamic State, or ISIS, since last June. Officials and witnesses say the Iraqis now control part of northern Tikrit.

French police say two armored trucks carrying jewels and other items worth some $9.5 million were seized by more than a dozen armed attackers Wednesday, in a midnight heist that took place on the A6 highway that runs between Paris and Lyon.

Authorities were hunting for the thieves Wednesday, focusing on an area around the crime that took place about 140 miles southeast of Paris.

The heist was timed to coincide with the trucks' stop at a toll booth, where gunmen overcame the shipment's drivers, who were reportedly unarmed. The drivers were left uninjured.

Two men who were in a video of Sigma Alpha Epsilon members singing a racist chant have apologized for their actions, with one of the now-former fraternity brothers saying he had learned "a devastating lesson."

Update at 6:13 p.m. ET

The search continues for an Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter that crashed late Tuesday night off the Florida coast. Seven Marines and four members of the Louisiana National Guard were on a routine nighttime training mission at Eglin Air Force Base.

Updated at 8:28 p.m. ET

One of the students seen in a video in which fraternity members at the University of Oklahoma chant a racist song has apologized for his actions, as have the parents of another student seen in the video.

Parker Rice, one of the students, apologized in a statement published by the Dallas Morning News. He called his actions "wrong and reckless."

The story of how Istanbul residents learned sign language to create a special day for a neighbor has turned a Samsung ad into an international viral hit. The ad was filmed by hidden cameras on the route traveled by Muharrem Yazgan, who is hearing-impaired, and his sister, Özlem, who was in on the project.

Updated at 3:21 p.m. ET

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who has been under fire for her use of a personal email address while in office, said Tuesday she "chose not to keep personal emails" from her tenure at the State Department, but that she turned over 55,000 printed pages of her official correspondence to the department.

At a news conference at the U.N., Clinton said the personal correspondence included emails about planning her daughter Chelsea's wedding, preparations for her mother's funeral and her yoga schedule.

Republican senators' letter to Iran about ongoing nuclear talks has prompted a lengthy response from Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who delivered an overview of international law as he critiqued the letter.

Five days after his face and arm were slashed in an attack in Seoul, U.S. Ambassador Mark Lippert has been released from the hospital. Doctors say the stitches from the cut to Lippert's face have been removed, but he has a deep cut on a finger that will still require attention.

From Seoul, NPR's Elise Hu reports:

"In a press conference before leaving the hospital, Lippert said that while there's more rehab left for his arm, he's eager to return to work.

Two helicopters collided during the filming of a French reality TV show Monday, killing 10 people, including two Olympic medalists and an accomplished sailor. News of the crash in Argentina has left France in mourning, Prime Minister Manuel Valls says.

In addition to the athletes and five other French citizens, two Argentine pilots died in the accident.

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