Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a writer and editor on the News Desk in the heart of NPR's newsroom in Washington, D.C.

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.

Prime Minister Mark Rutte's center-right party is celebrating a resounding win over populist Geert Wilders' Party for Freedom, in a result that's being welcomed by centrists and progressives in France and Germany, which will also hold national elections this year.

"I warmly congratulate @markrutte for his clear victory against extremism," French President Francois Hollande tweeted Thursday.

Polling places saw strong turnout for today's election in the Netherlands, with 55 percent of voters casting a ballot before 6 p.m. local time, according to local media. The crowd was manageable at a house in Marle, in the eastern Netherlands, that's hosted a voting booth for decades.

Dutch voters are choosing a new government Wednesday, in parliamentary elections that right-wing politician Geert Wilders — aka "the Dutch Donald Trump" — hopes will put his Freedom Party in power. The vote is seen as a test of the power of populist nationalism, which won key votes in Britain and the U.S.

U.S. automakers may not have to reach fuel efficiency standards that were set during President Obama's administration, as the Environmental Protection Agency says it's reopening a review of the rules.

President Trump is expected to make that announcement Wednesday in meetings with auto industry executives and workers in Michigan.

In Washington, a senior White House official said the president wants to "set standards that are technologically feasible, economically feasible and allow the auto industry to grow and create jobs."

Bodies are still being recovered from a clandestine grave in Mexico's Veracruz state that a local prosecutor says could turn out to be the largest in the country. Jorge Winckler Ortiz, the state attorney general of Veracruz, says that at one large site, 250 skulls have been found, with more excavation to be done.

Winckler says the bodies are those of people murdered by gangs, with the complicity of the government. He added that officials had also deceived families who asked for help in identifying whether their missing loved ones might be in the graves.

A Muslim woman who was fired over her wish to wear an Islamic headscarf at her job in Belgium did not suffer from direct discrimination, according to the highest court in the European Union. Because her employer had a general rule against religious or political displays, the court says, the woman wasn't treated differently than other workers.

Jason Greenblatt, who went from being President Trump's longtime lawyer to leading his effort to bring a lasting peace to Israel, met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank on Tuesday, one day after Greenblatt met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for talks that touched on Israeli settlement construction.

The State Department calls this an "orientation trip" that's meant to hear from the two sides about returning to peace negotiations.

From Jerusalem, NPR's Daniel Estrin reports for our Newscast unit:

Updated 6:30 p.m. ET

The Justice Department has asked for more time to respond to a congressional committee about any evidence that President Barack Obama ordered surveillance of then-candidate Donald Trump last year, as Trump has claimed.

Notorious terrorist Carlos the Jackal — real name: Ilich Ramirez Sanchez — is in a French court Monday, facing charges related to a deadly attack on a shopping center more than 40 years ago. He is already serving a long prison term for the murders of two French secret agents and a Lebanese informant and other crimes.

"Today's trial concerns the launching of a hand grenade in a Paris shopping mall in 1974 that killed two people and injured dozens," NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports. "Ramirez Sanchez denies involvement but if convicted could receive a third life term."

Violence in Syria took a horrible toll on the country's children last year, the United Nations' children's agency says, with the civil war blamed for killing at least 652 children — 255 of whom were either in or near a school.

In another unsettling trend, 851 children were recruited and used in the conflict in 2016 — double the figure who were recruited in 2015, UNICEF says. The agency says that children's deaths rose 20 percent and injuries rose by 25 percent.

A day after reports that a scandal involving Marines accused of sharing nude photos of female service members may also include other branches of the military, U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis responded with a message to those under his command:

"Lack of respect for the dignity and humanity of fellow members of the Department of Defense is unacceptable and counter to unit cohesion."

An interview about South Korea's political upheaval became one of the most popular things on the Internet on Friday, when the children of professor Robert E. Kelly became the inadvertent stars of his spot on the BBC.

His questioning of a woman in a sexual assault case — asking her, "Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?" — sparked outrage. Now Canadian Federal Court Justice Robin Camp has resigned, after a judicial review board said he should be removed.

Camp, 64, submitted his letter of resignation shortly after the Canadian Judicial Council issued its recommendation this week.

Ridership for U.S. bike-share programs was 10 times higher last year than it was in 2011, according to the National Association of City Transportation Officials. From 2011 to 2016, usage grew from 2.3 million trips yearly to 28 million — numbers that dwarf the 320,000 trips taken in 2010, the group says.

"Gender equality benefits all of us," Iceland's Prime Minister Bjarni Benediktsson said on International Women's Day, as his government works on a law to require companies to show they pay men and women the same salary for the same work.

Benediktsson discussed the plan in New York, where he attended an International Women's Day summit and other meetings this week.

President Trump has reportedly offered former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman the job of U.S. ambassador to Russia. Huntsman has been a U.S. ambassador twice before, in Singapore (1992-1993) and China (2009-2011).

Like all ambassadorships, the position requires Senate confirmation — but the diplomatic posting to Moscow was expected to face particular scrutiny in light of ongoing investigations into Russia's attempts to meddle in U.S. politics and reports of repeated contacts between Trump's campaign and Russian officials.

Witnesses to Wednesday's deadly crash involving a freight train and a bus say that the charter bus appeared to be trapped on the tracks just ahead of the crash that killed at least four people and injured dozens more in Biloxi, Miss. Transportation agencies say the crossing is a known problem.

"Since 1976 there have been 16 vehicle-train collisions at this grade crossing prior to Tuesday's accident," the National Transportation Safety Board says.

Edith Fuller, 5, has booked a trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee, after she out-spelled dozens of older competitors to win a regional bee in Tulsa, Okla. The home-schooled student will be the youngest competitor ever in the national spelling bee, which will hold its 90th contest in May.

With France's presidential election less than two months away, the race is coming down to two options, as political newcomer Emmanuel Macron, who is running as an independent, is neck and neck with far right candidate Marine Le Pen in polls released Wednesday.

Statues of Confederate leaders Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis are targeted for removal in New Orleans, after a federal appeals court approved the city's plan to change how it treats symbols of its history. Opponents of the move vow to keep fighting it in court.

Citing the threat posed by North Korean missiles, the U.S. military has sent the first elements of its Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system to South Korea. China has opposed the move, which has also drawn mixed reactions in South Korea.

The shipment landed Monday night, with a C-17 cargo aircraft unloading two large mobile launchers on the tarmac at Yongsan Garrison in Seoul. The plan to install a THAAD system on the Korean peninsula was laid out by the U.S. and South Korea last summer.

Bonuses paid to executives and administrators in the University of Missouri System "may violate the Missouri Constitution," the state auditor says in a new report that details hidden bonuses, "excessive" luxury vehicle allowances — and $100,000 in retention payments to a chancellor who resigned amid a furor, only to be rehired in a new post months later.

In a reversal, the Supreme Court will not decide Gavin Grimm's lawsuit over a school policy that requires students to use the bathroom corresponding to their biological sex. The court was scheduled to hear the case this month.

Hundreds of Marines are reportedly under investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, after a trove of photographs were shared online that show female service members and veterans in the nude. The images were spread via a closed Facebook group with thousands of members.

There's no pool, but there is a piano bar that exudes "an air of undeserved authority." That's part of the promise at The Walled Off Hotel, the artist Banksy's vision of a hotel along the wall Israel built in the occupied West Bank.

The project blends Banksy's trademark style — a trickster's eye for trompe l'oeil and a political cartoonist's ear for satire — into more traditional hotel amenities such as food, drinks and well-appointed rooms. The hotel will begin taking reservations on March 11.

The U.S. is producing less air pollution, but smog levels are still rising in the western U.S. because of pollutants released in Asian countries that then drift over the Pacific Ocean. Researchers say their findings show the importance of a global approach to preserving air quality.

"Scientists found Asian air pollution contributed as much as 65 percent of an increase in Western ozone in recent years," NPR's Rob Schmitz reports from Shanghai. "China and India, where many consumer products are manufactured, are the worst offenders."

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