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.

One day after he was arrested on fraud charges, controversial drug executive Martin Shkreli has resigned his post as the leader of Turing Pharmaceuticals. Shkreli is currently free on bail.

Turing announced the change Friday, naming Ron Tilles, its current board chairman, as the interim chief executive officer.

"We wish to thank Martin for helping us build Turing Pharmaceuticals into the dynamic research focused company it is today, and wish him the best in his future endeavors," Tilles said in a statement about the move.

President Obama has signed a $1.1 trillion funding bill that will keep the federal government running until Sept. 30, 2016. Earlier on Friday, the Senate gave final congressional approval to the bill, which includes nearly $700 billion in tax breaks.

The Senate adopted the Omnibus Appropriations Act by a vote of 65-33; the House did so by a 316-113 tally.

NPR's Ailsa Chang reports:

In a finding that suggests "considerable water activity" on Mars, NASA says its Curiosity rover has found very high concentrations of silica on the red planet. The agency says it also found "a mineral named tridymite, rare on Earth and never seen before on Mars."

Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who devoted herself to helping the poor, will be canonized as a saint, after Pope Francis issued a decree attributing a second miracle to the founder of the Missionaries of Charity. Mother Teresa won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.

More than a year after his arrest on terrorism-related charges, Mufid A. Elfgeeh of Rochester, N.Y., has pleaded guilty to trying to provide material support and resources to ISIS. Elfgeeh admitted to raising money and recruiting for the extremist group.

U.S. officials say that Elfgeeh used social media to send and receive information about terrorist groups in Syria and other countries, and that he plotted to help two recruits travel from the U.S. to Syria.

It ranges from the serious — even the wonky — to the (arguably) absurd. The list of the Two-Way's most popular stories for 2015 covers that ground, and also includes our coverage of the shocking and tragic attacks in Paris.

The Web traffic to these stories ranges from 624,000 page views to more than 2.2 million. And we can't mention those numbers without thanking our readers who have followed the news with us this year.

What stories on the Two-Way did readers respond to the most this year? That's a question we wanted to answer in looking at end-of-year statistics for 2015.

These aren't the stories that were shared the most in 2015 in terms of sheer volume — a lineup that largely mirrors the list of our most-viewed stories for the year.

Russian President Vladimir Putin says Russia and the United States can work together on a plan for Syria and defeating ISIS, saying the group "is posing a threat to everyone. So the sooner we do this, the sooner we settle the conflict, the better."

Speaking in a large auditorium at his annual year-end news conference, Putin added that the solution in Syria is a political one — and that in principle, Russia agrees with the American plan for the region. He also said Russia wants to improve relations with the U.S.

Martin Shkreli, the drug executive who was widely criticized for sharply raising the price of a drug used by HIV patients, was arrested Thursday by federal agents on charges that he misused funds at the company he founded.

One day after jurors in the trial of Baltimore Police Officer William Porter announced they were deadlocked, the judge in the case has declared a mistrial. The jury couldn't reach a verdict on involuntary manslaughter and three other charges Porter faced over the death of Freddie Gray last April.

Fuel economy is at record highs and carmakers have surpassed strict greenhouse gas emissions standards for the third straight year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, which released a pair of annual reports about the U.S. fleet of cars and trucks Wednesday.

Overall, fuel economy for vehicles in the U.S. did not budge from last year's record high of 24.3 miles per gallon, the EPA says. The figure includes a new high of 20.4 mpg for trucks, vans and SUVs from model year 2014.

Finalizing the settlement of a class-action lawsuit that alleged overuse of solitary confinement, New York will change the way it handles such confinement in its prison system. The changes center on improving prisoners' socialization and rehabilitation.

The 79-page agreement ends a lawsuit filed by New York's ACLU chapter, which accused one of the largest prison systems in the country of using inhumane and torturous methods in dealing with prisoners.

On the second day of deliberations in the trial of a Baltimore police officer who's accused of involuntary manslaughter and other charges in the death of Freddie Gray, the jury sent a note to the judge saying they're deadlocked.

Judge Barry G. Williams instructed the jurors to keep working toward a verdict after receiving that note Tuesday afternoon, reports NPR's Jennifer Ludden. The panel began its deliberations in the trial of Officer William Porter on Monday afternoon. They have adjourned their second session and will return to the jury room Wednesday morning.

Fans of the Memphis Grizzlies can exult, after ranking first in a new national study. And there's a good chance they'll spell "exult" correctly: The team's fans were found to make the fewest grammatical mistakes in a review of comments about three of America's major sports.

NBA fans made the fewest mistakes, with NFL fans making the most. And while MLB fans were in the middle, a poor showing by the Philadelphia Phillies' followers was blamed for the city's fall from fifth to 24th place in the rankings of 42 cities with major sports teams.

French politician Marine Le Pen, the head of the far-right National Front party, has been cleared of charges that she incited hatred when she compared Muslim street prayers to the Nazi occupation of her country during World War II.

If found guilty, Le Pen could have faced a penalty of a year in prison and a steep fine.

From France 24:

One week after Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced women in the U.S. military can serve in any combat role, a federal appeals court is considering a lawsuit from a men's group that says a male-only draft is unconstitutional.

It's a historic day in Saudi Arabia, where officials are touting municipal elections in which women are not only voting for the first time, but also standing for office. But if they want to cast a vote, they'll have to catch a ride: the kingdom still forbids women from driving.

The elections are for nearly 300 local councils. The official Saudi news agency says polling stations are reporting a large turnout, and a smooth voting process.

From Jeddah, NPR's Deborah Amos reports:

In what supporters are calling a historic achievement, 196 nations attending the COP21 climate meetings outside Paris voted to adopt an agreement Saturday that covers both developed and developing countries. Their respective governments will now need to adopt the deal.

A New York state appeals court is temporarily allowing daily fantasy sports sites FanDuel and DraftKings to continue operating in the state, blocking a lower court's ruling to bar the websites that was handed down earlier in the day.

The order allows the companies to continue business while the issue is fully considered, at least through next month, the Associated Press reports.

Months after he was fired from the Oklahoma City police force, Daniel Holtzclaw was found guilty of four counts of first-degree rape and numerous other sexual offenses against eight victims.

The 12-member jury in the case — eight men and four women — had deliberated since Monday. They found the former officer guilty of half of the 36 counts he faced.

The two largest chemical companies in America will become one entity named DowDuPont, as Dow Chemical and DuPont say they're joining in a "merger of equals." The new company will have a market capitalization of around $130 billion.

After the merger, the resulting behemoth would be split into what Dow Chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris calls "three powerful new companies," with a combined revenue of around $83 billion.

Citing a potential fire hazard, major U.S. airlines are banning hoverboards from their cabins and cargo holds. Announcing its ban, Delta acknowledged the toy's "presence on many gift lists this holiday season" but said safety comes first.

The bans come as the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says it's looking into at least 10 reports of the self-balancing electric scooters bursting in flames — an occurrence that's allegedly been captured on video, in some cases.

After images emerged on social media of cadets wearing white pillowcase hoods, The Citadel says it has suspended those involved in the incident. Citadel President Lt. Gen. John Rosa says it seems the cadets "were singing Christmas carols as part of a 'Ghosts of Christmas Past' skit."

The Capitol Hill office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations was evacuated by police Thursday, after a suspicious "foreign substance" was received in the mail. Early tests showed the substance isn't dangerous; the FBI is now investigating.

CAIR says its personnel came in contact with an envelope that contained a powdery, white substance and a message referring to a "painful death."

After a transit train took off without an operator during Thursday's morning commute near Boston, Gov. Charlie Baker says the train was "tampered with." The question now, Baker says, is whether this was "negligence versus something else."

Furthering a thaw in relations that began 50 years ago, the Vatican has released a new document about Catholics' historic ties with Jews, whom Pope Benedict once called the church's "fathers in faith." Among the panel's conclusions: Jews don't need to be converted to find salvation.

"While affirming salvation through an explicit or even implicit faith in Christ," the Vatican document reads, "the Church does not question the continued love of God for the chosen people of Israel."

The mysterious bright spots glowed from Ceres' dark surface like alien headlights, capturing many Earthlings' imaginations. But researchers say they're the result of mineral salts, citing data captured by NASA's Dawn mission to study the dwarf planet.

Ending a run of more than 30 years on the air, talk show host Diane Rehm plans to retire, according to WAMU, the NPR member station where the show is produced in Washington, D.C.

Rehm's exit from the show will not take place immediately; she is expected to remain as its host through the 2016 presidential election. A date for her exit has not been established.

Leading Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's call for "a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States" has drawn criticism both at home and abroad.

Trump says the ban would remain in effect "until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on."

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