NPR news

NPR's chief executive, Jarl Mohn, announced Tuesday that he would step aside next June at the end of his five-year term to focus on a newly created position to lead the public radio network's fundraising drive ahead of its 50th anniversary in 2020.

Mohn announced that he and his wife, Pamela, would also contribute $10 million toward the effort.

"I've had a chance to work at some great companies. But this has been the most important and rewarding thing I've done in my career," Mohn said in a telephone interview. "It really has been remarkable."

NPR CEO Jarl Mohn has named Nancy Barnes, a veteran newspaper editor, as the network's permanent chief news executive, NPR announced Tuesday. Barnes fills a nearly yearlong vacancy that was triggered by the firing of Michael Oreskes, NPR's former news head, over allegations of sexual harassment.

The day I met Carl Kasell, in 1998, he just reached out and shook my hand and said my name. And then he said it again. I think he knew how exciting it is for all of us public radio nerds to hear your name, spoken by that voice, and he wanted to give me a gift.

I met Carl when he was in his early 60s, already an institution in the news business, at an age when he could think about retiring. But instead, he started a second career.

Every weekday for more than three decades, his baritone steadied our mornings. Even in moments of chaos and crisis, Carl Kasell brought unflappable authority to the news. But behind that hid a lively sense of humor, revealed to listeners late in his career, when he became the beloved judge and official scorekeeper for Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! NPR's news quiz show.

Kasell died Tuesday from complications from Alzheimer's disease in Potomac, Md. He was 84.

Photos by Mike Morgan and Sandy Honig

Starting soon Ailsa Chang will host All Things Considered along with Audie Cornish, Mary Louise Kelly and Ari Shapiro; and Noel King will join David Greene, Steve Inskeep and Rachel Martin as the fourth host of Morning Edition and the Up First podcast.

NPR Host Robert Siegel Signs Off

Jan 5, 2018

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says the median number of years that American workers have been working for their current employer is a little over four.

I say that to acknowledge how unusual it is that I have been working at National Public Radio for a little over 40 years — 41, to be precise.

For the past 30 years, I've been doing the same job: hosting All Things Considered. And doing it very happily.

No one is more surprised by my tenure than I am.

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

For 30 years, Robert Siegel has pretty much been the voice of All Things Considered. He steps down from the host chair on Jan. 5.

During his career, one of the recurrent themes of his reporting has been language — and how we speak.

Back in 1993, he reported on what he heard as something new in speech.

"I heard it mostly from young women, but it was spreading among men, too: the phenomenon of making statements that sound like questions, a rising intonation," he tells All Things Considered co-host Audie Cornish.

NPR Chief News Editor David Sweeney has left the company following allegations of sexual harassment filed against him by at least three female journalists.

"David Sweeney is no longer on staff," Chris Turpin, acting senior vice president of news, said in an email to staff.

"This is a difficult time for our newsroom and I'm committed to supporting all of you as we move forward. I know you appreciate that there are some questions I cannot answer in keeping with our practice to not comment on personnel issues, but I will do my best to address those I can," Turpin added.

As NPR's Board of Directors meet in Washington, D.C., this week, the network finds itself confronted by a series of dispiriting developments: a CEO on medical leave; a chief news executive forced out over sexual harassment allegations; the sudden resignation of a board chairman; fresh complaints over inappropriate behavior by colleagues; and a network roiled by tensions over the treatment of its female workers.

Pages