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.

Citing salmonella concerns, the Food and Drug Administration has issued a mandatory recall for kratom products made by a Las Vegas company — and the federal agency says it's the first time it has ever taken such an action after a company ignored a federal request for a voluntary recall.

Updated at 5:26 p.m. ET

China's leaders followed President Trump in taking another step toward a new trade war, announcing a plan to put steep tariffs on $50 billion of U.S. imports. China's proposed 25 percent tariffs would target a wide range of American products, from soybeans and whiskey to airplanes and cars.

"China currently buys about $14 billion worth of American soybeans each year — almost a third of the entire U.S. crop," NPR's Dan Charles reports for our Newscast unit. "Prices for U.S. soybeans tumbled by 3 to 5 percent" on the news, Dan adds.

Updated at 8:20 p.m. ET

The man police had identified as their top suspect in a string of deadly bombings in the Austin, Texas, area made a cellphone recording describing seven bombs he said he had constructed. Investigators discovered the message after the suspect killed himself early Wednesday by triggering an explosion in his car as officers approached the vehicle to make an arrest, police said Wednesday.

Officials identified him as 23-year-old Mark Anthony Conditt, from Pflugerville, Texas, outside Austin.

Updated at 11:15 p.m. ET

Another explosion in Austin, Texas, injured one person Tuesday night, but police confirmed that the explosion was unrelated to the previous package bombs that have killed two people and injured several others this month.

The explosion occurred after a "military-type memento" was dropped off at a Goodwill store on Austin's south side, Assistant Police Chief Ely Reyes said. He further described it as a 40mm artillery simulator.

Reyes said the simulator "initiated" at about 7 p.m. after being handled by a Goodwill employee.

ProPublica is retracting parts of its story that linked Gina Haspel, President Trump's choice to lead the CIA, with the waterboarding of Abu Zubaydah, a suspected al-Qaida leader who was held at a secret "black site" prison in Thailand in 2002. The investigative newsroom cited new clarifications from CIA insiders as the reason for its correction. It also issued an apology.

From ProPublica:

"We at ProPublica hold government officials responsible for their missteps, and we must be equally accountable.

After one year in his job, national security adviser H.R. McMaster is expected to depart his White House position soon, U.S. officials tell NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman. Despite a denial from the Trump administration, the only thing that is reportedly holding up McMaster's departure is a transition plan.

McMaster's exit has been the subject of rumors, in a similar way that outgoing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had been viewed as not long for life under President Trump. Officials say McMaster, 55, could leave within weeks, possibly within a month or so.

Updated at 9:50 a.m. ET

Russia says it will retaliate against Britain's recently announced sanctions, saying that President Vladimir Putin will soon decide the best way to respond to the U.K.'s expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats. It's the latest escalation in the clash between the two nations over the use of a military-grade nerve agent against a former Russian spy who is now a British citizen.

James Schwab has resigned from his job as a Department of Homeland Security spokesman, saying he didn't agree with Trump administration officials' use of "misleading facts" to attack Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf after the mayor issued a warning about an immigration sweep in late February.

The Winter Olympics closes the door on the Pyeongchang 2018 Games, with a big party and a last farewell from the 2,920 athletes who competed on ice and snow in South Korea. The number of athletes set a new record; so did the number of nations — 92 – represented.

Pyeongchang organizers promised that the Olympic Stadium, which seats 35,000, will be "filled with the roar of compliments and the applause of friendship."

The opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics kicked off on Friday — at 8 p.m. in South Korea and at 6 a.m. ET in the U.S. — with 2,900 athletes from 92 countries gathering to compete for 102 medals in Pyeongchang.

The U.S. Olympic team was led into Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium by flag-bearer Erin Hamlin.

The Winter Games run from Feb. 9-25. The Paralympics will use many of the same facilities, with 670 athletes competing from March 9-18.

Our recap of the big event:

The ceremony begins

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