David Greene

David Greene is a correspondent for NPR News and lays claim to the network's coldest assignment: Moscow.

Greene jumped to NPR's foreign desk recently, after 5 years on the national desk. He took a brief break in between to study intensive Russian at Moscow State University. In January 2010, he returned to reporting. From Moscow, he'll be covering the entire region: Ukraine and the Baltics, east to Siberia.

Greene's voice became familiar to NPR listeners from his four years covering the White House. To report on former President George W. Bush's second term, Greene spent hours in NPR's spacious booth in the basement of the West Wing (it's about the size of your average broom closet). He also spent time trekking across five continents, reporting on White House visits to places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Rwanda, Uruguay – and, of course, Crawford, Texas.

During the days following Hurricane Katrina, Greene was aboard Air Force One when President Bush flew low over the Gulf Coast and caught his first glimpse of the storm's destruction. On the ground in New Orleans, Greene brought listeners a moving interview with the late Ethel Williams, a then-74-year-old flood victim who got an unexpected visit from the president.

Greene was an integral part of NPR's coverage of the historic 2008 election, covering Hillary Clinton's campaign from start to finish, and also focusing on how racial attitudes were playing into voters' decisions. The White House Correspondents Association took special note of Greene's report on a speech by then-candidate Barack Obama, addressing the nation's racial divide. Greene was given the association's 2008 Merriman Smith award for deadline coverage of the presidency.

After President Obama took office, Greene kept one eye trained on the White House and the other eye on the road. He spent three months driving across America – with a recorder, camera and lots of caffeine – to learn how the recession was touching Americans during President Obama's first 100 days in office. The series was called "100 Days: On the Road in Troubled Times."

Greene has also enjoyed guest hosting some of our news programs, including Morning Edition and Weekend Edition. He was in the host's chair when news broke that President Obama had nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Greene was in the same chair when comedienne Kathy Griffin yelled at him: "I don't even have the real host today?" she asked. "I got the new guy filling in? Oh, this is so typical."

Before joining NPR in 2005, Greene spent nearly seven years as a newspaper reporter for the Baltimore Sun. He covered the White House during the Bush administration's first term, and wrote about an array of other topics for the paper: Why Oklahomans love the sport of cockfighting, why two Amish men in Pennsylvania were caught trafficking methamphetamine and how one woman brought Christmas back to a small town in Maryland.

Before graduating magna cum laude from Harvard in 1998 with a degree in government, Greene worked as the senior editor on the Harvard Crimson. In 2004, he was named co-volunteer of the year for Coaching for College, a Washington, D.C., program offering tutoring to inner-city youth.

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6:27am

Fri June 1, 2012
Law

Fla. Judge Blocks Parts Of Voter Registration Law

Originally published on Fri June 1, 2012 2:25 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Let's turn now to Florida, where a federal judge has blocked portions of a new election law that was causing a lot of debate. That law had put tough restrictions on groups conducting voter registration drives. Because of the restrictions, the League of Women Voters and Rock the Vote stopped registering votes(ph) in the state. Those groups challenged the new law in court. And yesterday, Judge Robert Hinkle sided with the groups. He called the rules onerous and unconstitutional.

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3:01am

Tue May 29, 2012
Family Matters: The Money Squeeze

Family Matters: Pitching In To Take Care Of Grandma

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 9:18 am

Chris Martin, 14, greets his great-grandmother AnnaBelle Bowers, 87, who lives part time with the Martin family in Harrisburg, Pa.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

On a recent evening, the Martin family of Harrisburg, Pa., had too many places it needed to be.

AnnaBelle Bowers, the 87-year-old matriarch of the family who is also known as "Snootzie," was at home — watching television and getting ready for bed.

Someone needed to care for her. That fell to Chris Martin, her 14-year-old great-grandson.

His willingness to stay at home meant his sister, Lauren, could play in a softball game.

It also meant her parents, David and LaDonna Martin, could watch.

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9:51am

Tue May 15, 2012
Europe

'News Of The World' Editor Charged With Conspiracy

Former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks faces allegations of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice in the latest development in Britain's phone hacking scandal.

4:22am

Wed May 9, 2012
National Security

CIA Informant Foil Underwear Bomb Plot

Originally published on Thu May 10, 2012 3:59 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. There are new developments this morning in the story of the al-Qaida plot to bomb an airplane heading to the United States. It turns out that the man who was thought to be the bomber was actually a double agent - that, according to U.S. officials.

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6:26am

Tue May 8, 2012
National Security

Al-Qaida Airline Plot Wasn't A Public Threat

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 7:41 am

The White House and FBI have confirmed al-Qaida attempted to target a plane bound for the United States. All indications are the plan was conceived by al-Qaida's arm in Yemen. But officials say the plot was foiled before it was any threat to the public.

9:57am

Fri May 4, 2012

6:28am

Fri May 4, 2012
Asia

China: Chen May Apply To Study Abroad

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 9:57 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In Beijing, American officials are working feverishly to end a diplomatic crisis over a Chinese dissident. It erupted just as the U.S. Secretaries of State and Treasury arrived this week for high level talks with the Chinese on economic and security issues. On Wednesday, diplomats on both sides thought they had found an agreement that would enable human rights activist Chen Guangcheng to go free. But that fell apart.

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10:31am

Thu May 3, 2012
World

A Look At Bin Laden's Letters To Confidants

Some of the documents found during the raid on Osama bin Laden's hideaway in Pakistan were released Thursday. West Point's Combating Terrorism Center has been reviewing those documents.

7:19am

Wed May 2, 2012
Asia

Chinese Dissident Leaves U.S. Embassy In Beijing

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

We are following developing news, this morning, in China. The Chinese dissident who sought protection with American diplomats in Beijing is now free and apparently heading to a new life.

INSKEEP: Chen Guangcheng is a human rights lawyer, a blind man who became involved in issues like forced abortion in China. Last week, he escaped house arrest by Chinese security forces.

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10:16am

Tue April 3, 2012
Media

James Murdoch Steps Down From BSkyB

Originally published on Wed April 4, 2012 2:01 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In Britain, scandal has plagued the Murdoch family and its News Corp. media conglomerate. And today, another blow. Under pressure, Rupert Murdoch's son, James Murdoch, is stepping down as chairman of British Sky Broadcasting, also known as BSkyB. This occurs against the backdrop, of course, of the phone hacking and police bribery scandal that has focused heavily on two Murdoch tabloid newspapers. NPR's media correspondent David Folkenflik has been covering all of this and he joins us now to sort this out. Good morning, David.

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4:00am

Fri March 30, 2012
Business

Intrigue For Monday's Show: Mystery Powders

Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 7:25 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And today's last word in business is, can you eat that?

You've heard of mystery meats, right? Well, how about mystery powders - courtesy of the ever-innovative food industry?

NPR science correspondent Allison Aubrey asked me to come up and have a sneak peek at what she's cooking up for Monday's MORNING EDITION.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: Allison Aubrey, you always get me into trouble somehow. Why am I up here at your desk?

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: Anything standing out here?

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4:00am

Tue March 27, 2012
Sports

Do Big Salaries For Coaches Guarantee Team Wins?

NCAA coaches are routinely paid six figure salaries as colleges hunt for the best talent to get their teams to a championship. New research, however, debunks the idea that paying more for coaches improves the odds of winning.

10:40am

Mon March 26, 2012
Judging The Health Care Law

Protesters, Spectators Gather Outside Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court begin hearing oral arguments on the health care law Monday. Outside the court, protesters and counter-protesters gathered with signs and chants. Also, people hoping to get in to witness the proceedings started lining up Friday morning.

4:00am

Thu March 22, 2012
Sports

NFL Shake-Ups: 'Bounty' Suspension, Tebow Trade

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

March Madness is supposed to be all about basketball. But it was the NFL that produced a dizzying day of news yesterday. The NFL came down like a ton of bricks on the New Orleans Saints. The league suspended head coach Sean Payton for the entire 2012 season. That was punishment for the team's bounty system, which paid players for injuring opponents.

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4:07am

Wed March 21, 2012
Food

Italian 'Nonnas' Bring Taste Of Home To Staten Island

Originally published on Wed March 21, 2012 10:23 am

Several of the "nonnas," or grandmothers, who cook at the Enoteca Maria Italian restaurant in Staten Island, N.Y.
Glen DiCrocco

America is dotted with countless restaurants large and small. Many of those are well-loved for their distinct character — and for what they can teach diners about cooking, and about life.

One such establishment is Enoteca Maria, an Italian restaurant on New York's Staten Island.

After losing his mom and sister, owner Joe Scaravella missed sitting down with family for home-cooked meals. So he created something of an oxymoron: a place to go out for a home-cooked meal.

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4:00am

Wed February 29, 2012
Research News

Do NASCAR Races Contribute To Motorists' Wrecks?

Originally published on Wed February 29, 2012 11:02 am

New research indicates that five days after major NASCAR races, there is a measurable increase in traffic accidents caused by aggressive driving.

6:27am

Mon February 27, 2012
Analysis

Michigan, Arizona Prepare For Tuesday's Primaries

The Republican presidential candidates face two important primaries Tuesday with high stakes for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. Polls for contests in Arizona and Michigan showed the once-designated front-runner falling behind former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum until recently when Romney has pulled even or slightly ahead.

8:01am

Sat February 4, 2012
Simon Says

Standing In Defense Of Diet Coke

Originally published on Sat February 4, 2012 1:05 pm

Diet Coke. David Greene likes it.
iStockphoto.com

I would like to rise up today in defense of Diet Coke. All diet sodas, in fact. But Diet Coke happens to be my favorite.

I like the stuff.

Cracking open a can of it, or pouring some over ice, helps me survive a long work day.

This love of Diet Coke is one reason my re-entry into the United States has been a little rocky. When I moved back recently after a reporting assignment in Russia, nobody warned me that war had been declared on Diet Coke.

The artillery was fired by Men's Health magazine.

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4:00am

Tue January 24, 2012
Election 2012

Romney Campaign Finally Releases His Tax Returns

Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 10:00 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

All right, so Romney has gone on the attack in Florida, and he'll also be answering a lot of questions today about those taxes that he is releasing. As we heard from Mara, it turns out over the last few years, the effective tax rate Romney has paid is just under 15 percent.

Now, Newt Gingrich has been pressing Romney to publicly disclose the documents. And the former House speaker released his own tax returns, to dramatic effect, during a debate last Thursday.

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12:01am

Fri January 13, 2012
World

In Russia's Far East, A Frayed Link To Moscow

Originally published on Fri January 13, 2012 11:50 am

Compared to many of the dynamic economies in Asia, development is Russia's Far East is limited. Here, men wait for a ferry to take them to Russky Island just off Vladivostok, on Russia's Pacific Coast. In the background, a bridge to the island is being built.
David Gilkey NPR

After a train journey of nearly 6,000 miles from Moscow, the Russian Pacific port of Vladivostok can feel like a different country. The people and the language are still Russian, but the strong Asian influence is undeniable. And many residents say the bond to the rest of Russia has been growing weaker, while the ties to Asia have been growing stronger since the Soviet breakup two decades ago. NPR's David Greene has this report as he wraps up his journey on the Trans-Siberian railway.

The last of three stories

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12:01am

Thu January 12, 2012
World

In Russia, Modern 'Revolution' Comes At Its Own Pace

Originally published on Thu January 12, 2012 10:08 am

The Russian village of Sagra has been in the headlines since last summer, when residents — including 56-year-old Viktor Gorodilov (shown here) — successfully fought off an armed criminal gang that they say threatened their community. For many Russians, Sagra has become a symbol of how they say the government has let them down.
David Gilkey NPR

Russia had one of the world's most famous revolutions nearly a century ago, in 1917. Yet for centuries, the country has seemed to prefer strong leaders who promised stability rather than revolutionary change. On a trip across Russia today on the Trans-Siberian railroad, NPR's David Greene found many Russians who expressed disappointment with their current government. But most said they wanted changes to be gradual, and were not looking for a major upheaval.

Second of three parts

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12:01am

Wed January 11, 2012
World

Russia, A Nation Shaped By Tragedy And Hardship

Ella Stroganova opens the door at the city museum in Yaroslavl, Russia, where she serves as curator. "Progress makes person absolutely weak," Stroganova said. "He loses his strength because he doesn't need to think how to survive."
David Gilkey NPR

Seven time zones and thousands of miles separate Russia's capital, Moscow, from the port city of Vladivostok on the Pacific Ocean. NPR journalists traveled the full length of the Trans-Siberian railroad and report on how Russia's history has shaped its people, and where, 20 years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russians want their country to go.

First of three parts

Two decades after the collapse of communist rule, just where is Russia headed? Scholars, diplomats and poets are spending careers contemplating the question.

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7:36am

Tue January 10, 2012
Middle East

Syria's Assad Defies Pressure To Step Down

Syrian President Bashar Assad vowed to stay in power during a speech Tuesday, defying international pressure for him to step aside. He vowed to respond to threats against him with an "iron hand."

4:00am

Tue January 10, 2012
Sports

Alabama Shuts Down LSU In BCS Championship Game

Originally published on Tue January 10, 2012 7:38 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

When it comes to football there are two types of compelling games. One, the most people like, when teams battle back and forth to a dramatic finish. The other, when one team totally dominates to such an extent that all you can do is watch in awe.

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4:00am

Mon January 9, 2012
Sports

Denver, Giants Move On In NFL Playoffs

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This morning, a lot of NFL football fans are still talking about the first weekend of the playoffs. And what a weekend it was. It looks like Tebow time is back in business. After several weeks of downright awful performances, Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow delivered what his fans are calling the latest miracle in his young NFL career. Tebow's 80-yard pass play with wide receiver Demaryius Thomas on the first play of overtime clinched a stunning playoff win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, 29 to 23, last night.

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6:00am

Sat December 10, 2011
The Picture Show

Russia By Rail: Siberia's Serious Cold

Originally published on Sat December 10, 2011 6:12 am

A woman is bundled up by the tracks of the Trans-Siberian railway.
David Gilkey NPR

It's tempting, when beginning a visit to the far reaches of Siberia, to dismiss cold as some Russian cliché. Like vodka. And fur hats.

Sure, there'll be vodka — but not at every meal. Maybe I'll buy a fur hat as a souvenir — but I won't actually wear it.

Cold is no cliché. Siberia is cold.

I know cold. I like cold. I grew up in Pittsburgh, skiing, sledding and sitting through Pittsburgh Steeler football games in January, where beers and sodas freeze in plastic cups at your seats.

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8:00am

Sat November 26, 2011
Commentary

One Last Hitchhike In A Moscow Taxi

Originally published on Sat November 26, 2011 5:17 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Before you hear this next story, let's offer a caution. Hitchhiking is not generally safe. But just happens to be a way of life in Moscow. That may be about to change.

NPR's David Greene sent this postcard from the Russian capital.

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3:24pm

Thu November 24, 2011
Europe

Tough Times Spark Russian Resurgence In Latvia

In September, the pro-Russia Harmony Center party won parliamentary elections in Latvia. But the governing coalition has left the party on the sidelines. Supporters of the Harmony Center party protest in front of the Parliament building during its opening session in Riga on Oct. 17. The banner reads: "No to ethnic discrimination."
Raitis Purins AFP/Getty Images

Of all the economic downturns of the past few years, the tiny European nation of Latvia may have suffered as much as any place. Incomes fell and families suffered as the government implemented harsh austerity measures.

Now, the citizens of this former Soviet republic seem more open to what was once unthinkable: backing a social democratic party that's pro-Russian.

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6:45am

Fri October 14, 2011
Photography

Debts Resolved, Annie Leibovitz Opens New Exhibit

Annie Leibovitz has shot some of the world's most famous portraits — from John Lennon to President Obama. And yet she risked losing ownership of her works to pay off a loan. That was 2009. Leibovitz says she's learned her lesson and is on better financial footing. She's opened a new exhibit in Russia.

4:00am

Mon October 3, 2011
NPR Story

Politics In The News

NPR's Cokie Roberts talks to David Greene about the latest political news.

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