Renee Montagne

Renee Montagne is co-host of NPR's Morning Edition, the most widely heard radio news program in the U.S. She has hosted the newsmagazine since 2004, broadcasting from NPR West in Culver City, California, with co-host Steve Inskeep in NPR's Washington, D.C. headquarters.

Montagne is a familiar voice on NPR, having reported and hosted since the mid-1980s. She hosted All Things Considered with Robert Siegel for two years in the late 1980s, and previously worked for NPR's Science, National and Foreign desks.

Montagne traveled to Greenwich, England, in May 2007 to kick off the yearlong series, "Climate Connections," in which NPR partnered with National Geographic to chronicle how people are changing the Earth's climate and how the climate is impacting people. From the prime meridian, she laid out the journey that would take listeners to Africa, New Orleans and the Antarctic.

Since 9/11, Montagne has gone to Afghanistan nine times, travelling throughout the country to speak to Afghans about their lives. She's interviewed farmers and mullahs, poll workers and President Karzai, infamous warlords turned politicians and women fighting for their rights. She has produced several series, beginning in 2002 with 'Recreating Afghanistan" and most recently, in 2013, asking a new generation of Afghans — born into the long war set off by the Soviet invasion — how they see their country's future.

In the spring of 2005, Montagne took Morning Edition to Rome for the funeral of Pope John Paul ll. She co-anchored from Vatican City during a historic week when millions of pilgrims and virtually every world leader descended on the Vatican.

In 1990, Montagne traveled to South Africa to cover Nelson Mandela's release from prison, and continued to report from South Africa for three years. In 1994, she and a team of NPR reporters won a prestigious Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award for coverage of South Africa's historic presidential and parliamentary elections.

Through most of the 1980s, Montagne was based in New York, working as an independent producer and reporter for both NPR and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Prior to that, she worked as a reporter/editor for Pacific News Service in San Francisco. She began her career as news director of the city's community radio station, KPOO, while still at university.

In addition to the duPont Columbia Award, Montagne has been honored by the Overseas Press Club for her coverage of Afghanistan, and by the National Association of Black Journalists for a series on Black musicians going to war in the 20th century.

Montagne graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, as a Phi Beta Kappa. Her career includes serving as a fellow at the University of Southern California with the National Arts Journalism Program, and teaching broadcast writing at New York University's Graduate Department of Journalism.

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Afghanistan
5:05 am
Thu May 1, 2014

Istalif Potter Hopes Next Afghan President Will Serve The Country

Originally published on Thu May 1, 2014 9:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

Afghanistan is poised to enter a new era. For the first time in its long history, one elected president will hand over power to another. We do not know yet who that new president will be. There will likely be a runoff between the two top vote-getters next month.

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Parallels
3:31 am
Wed April 30, 2014

An Afghan Village Of Drug Addicts, From Ages 10 To 60

Ahmad, who wouldn't give his last name, smokes heroin. He lives in a makeshift village filled with drug addicts called Kamar Kulagh, on the outskirts of the western Afghan city of Herat.
David P. Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed April 30, 2014 1:50 pm

Herat is one of the most graceful cities in Afghanistan. Its traditions go back to the Persian empire, with its exquisite blue and green glass, and its thriving poetry scene.

Now Herat is struggling with a darker side: drug addiction at a higher rate than almost anywhere else in the country.

In a dusty ravine on the outskirts of the city, Ahmad, a scruffy 20-year-old, is striking a match to inhale heroin.

It's a simple act he repeats throughout his day — heating a dark slab of heroin paste smeared on a bit of foil so he can smoke it.

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Law
12:34 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Supreme Court Rules On Race-Based College Admissions

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The Supreme Court this morning, upheld a ban on using racial preferences in admissions to the public universities of Michigan. The ban was enacted by referendum as an amendment to the state constitution in 2006 and struck down by a lower court. Today, the justices voted 6-to-2 to say the federal courts could not do that and the ban had to stand.

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Afghanistan
5:33 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Afghanistan Is Another Dangerous Place For Journalists

Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 7:53 am

It was particularly difficult to report from Afghanistan during the recent presidential election because members of the Taliban were trying to disrupt the voting. They were also targeting Westerners.

Afghanistan
5:14 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Afghanistan Is One Step Closer To Karzai's Successor

Originally published on Mon April 7, 2014 8:17 am

On Saturday, voters turned out in large numbers despite threats of Taliban violence. It will take weeks to learn who will become Afghanistan's next president. Hamid Karzai can't run for a third term

Afghanistan
4:59 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Backroom Intrigue Persists In Afghan Presidential Election

Originally published on Fri April 4, 2014 8:22 am

Morning Edition co-host Renee Montagne is in Afghanistan following the leading candidates in Saturday's presidential election. The top-two contenders are: Zalmai Rassoul and Abdullah Abdullah.

Afghanistan
6:13 am
Thu April 3, 2014

To Broaden Appeal, Afghan Candidates Make Surprising Choices

Presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani waves to supporters during a campaign rally in Kabul on Tuesday. He is one of the three leading candidates in Saturday's presidential election.
Massoud Hossaini AP

Originally published on Thu April 3, 2014 3:55 pm

As Afghans prepare to choose a new president Saturday, it's hard not to notice a striking contradiction.

The three leading candidates are all urbane, Westernized men inclined to wear suits and ties in public. And yet, as they crisscross this impoverished, traditional country, they've all had to remake themselves to some degree, in their dress, their speech and even in the surprising choices they've made for vice presidential running mates, who range from notorious warlords to a woman.

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Afghanistan
5:09 am
Mon March 31, 2014

With No Karzai On Ballot, Afghans Study Presidential Candidates

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 7:55 am

Voters in Afghanistan will elect a new president this weekend. For the first time since America went to war there, President Hamid Karzai will not be on the ballot.

Around the Nation
6:37 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Man Finds More Than A Nest Egg At Flea Market

A scrap metal dealer bought a golden egg at a flea market for $14,000 and planned to melt it for a profit. But he discovered it was a Faberge egg — given by Alexander III to his empress in 1887.

World
6:02 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Will Sanctions Against Russia Work?

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 6:37 am

In Brussels on Thursday, EU leaders will discuss stronger sanctions against Russia. Juan Zarate, a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, talks about their options.

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