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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Sports
5:59 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Notre Dame, 'Bama To Meet In BSC Championship Game

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 1:26 pm

Alabama is trying to win its third title in four years Monday night. Notre Dame is trying to cap an undefeated season with a championship win.

Economy
4:34 am
Thu December 27, 2012

5 Days Left To Avoid 'Fiscal Cliff" Extremes

Originally published on Thu December 27, 2012 5:06 am

President Obama returns to Washington Thursday as do members of the U.S. Senate. They're cutting holiday plans short in hopes of coming up with a deal to avoid the tax hikes and budget cuts set to take effect on Jan. 1.

Business
5:58 am
Wed December 12, 2012

Do Unions Still Have Clout In Michigan?

Originally published on Wed December 12, 2012 7:27 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The contentious fight over labor rights has been unfolding throughout the Midwest in the last couple of years. Michigan is only the latest example.

NPR's national political correspondent Don Gonyea joins us now to explore the broader impact of all this. Good morning, Don.

DON GONYEA, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So how is what has happened in Michigan different from what we've seen over the past couple of years in Wisconsin and Ohio, where Republican governors also took on labor unions?

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Economy
6:39 am
Tue December 4, 2012

White House Rejects GOP's Counter Offer

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:55 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Let's talk about that new offer now. The proposal from House Republicans includes a combination of revenue raising and spending cuts. What it doesn't include is any rise in tax rates.

To help us dig into this offer and what it means for the state of negotiations, we're joined by NPR congressional reporter Tamara Keith.

Good morning.

TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: House Republicans are billing this as a bold counter-offer. Why are they calling it bold?

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Middle East
5:12 am
Mon December 3, 2012

Egypt's Draft Constitution Divides Nation

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi, who took power last June, is facing a rebellion against his rule. It all started with a set of controversial decrees by the president that put him above the law until a constitution is in place. That move has polarized the country. Judges are on strike and critics say the president is pushing through an illegitimate constitution.

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Middle East
9:49 am
Wed November 21, 2012

In Cairo, Efforts To Reach Mideast Cease-Fire

Originally published on Sun November 25, 2012 9:55 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Let's turn now to the urgent diplomatic efforts underway. Secretary of State Clinton is now in Cairo, meeting with Egyptian leaders in efforts to reach a ceasefire. NPR's Leila Fadel joins us from Cairo to discuss the latest.

Good morning.

LEILA FADEL, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So what do you know about what's happening on the diplomatic front today there in Cairo?

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Middle East
6:34 am
Tue November 20, 2012

Push For Diplomatic Solution In Gaza Ramps Up

Originally published on Sun November 25, 2012 9:51 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Even as talk grows louder about a possible truce, intense air assaults went back and forth over the Israeli and Gaza border today. More Palestinians were killed overnight, pushing the death toll for days of fighting to over 100 for Palestinians and three Israelis.

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Middle East
5:51 am
Thu November 8, 2012

Syrian Opposition Groups Try To Reinvigorate Mission

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 10:46 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Opposition groups working to bring down the regime in Syria are meeting in Doha, Qatar in a furious bid to reorganize and reinvigorate themselves. The aim is to form a legitimate government in exile that would be recognized by the international community. This new effort to bring together the Syrian opposition is strongly backed by the U.S. NPR's Kelly McEvers is in Doha and joins us to talk about it.

And let's start by you telling us exactly who is there.

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Economy
5:50 am
Wed November 7, 2012

Obama Pledges To Complete Economic Recovery

Originally published on Wed November 7, 2012 10:31 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The economy has been a central issue in this presidential election, but it has been improving little by little. In the end, President Obama handily rolled to reelection, pledging, last night, to complete the country's recovery. For more, we turn to economic correspondent John Ydstie. Good morning.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Renee.

MONTAGNE: Now, the weak economy was what Republicans hoped would unseat the president and that did not happen. What are the reasons for that?

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Election 2012
7:46 am
Tue November 6, 2012

Sandy Likely To Affect New York Voter Turnout

Originally published on Tue November 6, 2012 12:18 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

The triumph in some parts of the country this morning is that people are able to vote at all. Just over a week after Hurricane Sandy slammed ashore, people are voting today in New Jersey.

And in New York City, NPR's Robert Smith is in the Borough of Queens, part of New York City. He's on the line. Robert, what have you seen today?

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Election 2012
5:57 am
Tue November 6, 2012

House Seats Up For Grabs, Third Of Senate Seats

Originally published on Tue November 6, 2012 12:18 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The race for president has been at the heart of this election season. Let's turn now to the intense and expensive battle going on for control of the House and the Senate.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The next Congress will be losing some famous names, like Barney Frank, Joe Lieberman and Ron Paul - all retiring. Today, one-third of the Senate and all 435 seats in the House are up for grabs.

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Election 2012
4:49 am
Mon November 5, 2012

Disputes Over Early voting Ignite In Florida

Originally published on Mon November 5, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The presidential election is still a day away and already disputes have broken out in Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED GROUP: (Chanting) Let us vote. Let us vote. Let us vote. Let us vote.

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NPR Story
4:52 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Umpire Calls Are A Problem In Baseball's Post Play

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 10:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In the baseball playoffs tonight, the Detroit Tigers have a chance to put the reeling New York Yankees on the brink of elimination. Meanwhile, the San Francisco Giants have slowed the St. Louis Cardinals who'd been playing with the kind of magic touch that carried them to last year's World Series title. Last night in San Francisco, the Giants beat St. Louis 7-1 to even their National League Championship Series at one game each. NPR's sports correspondent Tom Goldman joins us to talk more baseball.

Good morning.

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Business
4:51 am
Mon October 15, 2012

2 Americans Win Nobel Economics Prize

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 7:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Two Americans have been awarded this year's Nobel Prize for Economics for work that has to do with matching in business, medicine and marriage. The two, whose work turned out to be a good match, are Alvin Roth of Harvard and Lloyd Shapely of the University of California, Los Angeles. They will share the $1.2 million prize.

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NPR Story
4:47 am
Thu October 11, 2012

Nobel Prize For Literature Announced Thursday

Originally published on Thu October 11, 2012 7:22 am

Mo Yan was one of three writers favored to win. He is perhaps best known in the West as the author of Red Sorghum, which was made into a film. He is only the second Chinese writer to win the Nobel — the other is poet Gao Xingjian, who won in 2000.

Economy
6:00 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Campaigns Wait To See If Jobs Data Will Help Or Hurt

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 12:45 pm

For the first time since President Obama took office, the unemployment rate is back at 7.8 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday. It's been above 8 percent for nearly four years. The number of new jobs added was in line with expectations — 114,000.

Law
1:08 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Judge Postpones Pennsylvania's Voter ID Law

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

A judge in Pennsylvania has blocked a key part of that state's new voter ID law, a law that's caused controversy. Now, come Election Day, voters showing up at the polls can still be asked to show a government-issued photo ID, but they will not be prevented from voting if they don't have one. NPR's Pam Fessler has been covering the story and she joins us now. Good morning.

PAM FESSLER, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So, remind us what this Pennsylvania law is - you know, why it's been making national news.

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Sports
4:49 am
Wed September 19, 2012

As NFL Labor Dispute Drags On, Fill-in Refs Criticized

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 5:14 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And now to the NFL, where these days, it's tough to say where the harder hitting is happening right now; on the field, or off - where players, coaches and the media blasted this past weekend's performance by replacement officials. The regular officials were locked out by the league in June because of a labor dispute. Joining us is NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman. Good morning.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Renee.

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Afghanistan
6:51 am
Tue September 18, 2012

NATO Suspends Operations With Afghan Soldiers

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

At the heart of NATO's strategy to turn over security to Afghanistan, is the joint patrol: Afghan and international troops training and fighting shoulder-to-shoulder. Now faced with a rash of insider attacks - Afghans in uniform turning their guns on international troops - NATO is suspending most of those joint operations.

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Afghanistan
5:01 am
Mon September 17, 2012

Deadly Incidents Take A Toll In Afghanistan

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 9:52 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

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Africa
10:12 am
Wed September 12, 2012

Attack In Libya Threatens To Upset U.S. Ties

Originally published on Thu September 13, 2012 7:31 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Africa
8:16 am
Wed September 12, 2012

U.S. Condemns Killing Of Ambassador, Staff In Libya

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 9:28 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. We come to you this morning with grim news. The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans have been killed when protesters stormed the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. The protests were sparked yesterday by an American-made video circulating on the Web that ridicules Islam and the prophet Muhammad.

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NPR Story
5:18 am
Wed September 12, 2012

4 Years After Bankruptcy, How Is Lehman Faring?

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 9:28 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It was four years ago this week that the big Wall Street investment bank Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy. Its collapse sent shockwaves around the world and brought on the worst of the financial crisis. But the story didn't end there. Lehman Brothers is still in business - sort of.

Planet Money's Adam Davidson went to its offices in New York, and is here to tell us about it.

Good morning.

ADAM DAVIDSON, BYLINE: Good morning.

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Europe
5:18 am
Wed September 12, 2012

German Court Rules In Favor Of EU Bailout Fund

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 9:28 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's shaping up to be an important day for the European Union and the future of its currency. In the Netherlands, there is a parliamentary election that's expected to be a barometer of Dutch support for staying in the eurozone. Also this morning, a plan was unveiled to give the European Central Bank the power to supervise the big financial institutions in Europe. And, Germany's high court ruled that the European bailout fund is legal.

NPR's Jim Zarroli joins us now from Berlin to talk about this.

Good morning.

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Sports
5:18 am
Tue September 11, 2012

Andy Murray Wins His First Grand Slam

Originally published on Tue September 11, 2012 9:57 am

In a five-set match Monday, Andy Murray fended off Novak Djokovic to win the U.S. Open, his first Grand Slam title.

NPR Story
5:24 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Gaggle Of New Gadgets Wow Tech Lovers

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 10:17 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And in the tech world, dueling press conferences and competing corporate unveilings, this week and next, are putting the focus on new and improved gadgets.

NPR's Steve Henn joined us this morning from Silicon Valley to tell us about what's on the high tech horizon.

Good morning.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So there are a host of companies rolling out shiny new toys this week. What's catching your eye?

Read more
World
4:38 am
Thu August 16, 2012

Ecuador To Decide On Assange Asylum Request

Originally published on Tue August 21, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

In the latest twist to the WikiLeaks story, its founder Julian Assange has been granted political asylum by the South American nation of Ecuador. Ecuador's foreign minister made the announcement this morning, speaking through a translator.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

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Analysis
4:23 am
Mon August 13, 2012

Ryan Pick Was A Bold Choice For Romney Campaign

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 6:43 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

For more on this big weekend in politics, we turn to Cokie Roberts for some analysis. Good morning.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi, Renee.

MONTAGNE: So we just heard in Ari's piece the excitement Paul Ryan is generating among the Republican faithful. Is that partly why Mitt Romney chose him as his running mate, to generate some of the kind of enthusiasm that has been missing from his own campaign?

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Crime In The City
3:28 am
Mon August 13, 2012

Sleuthing Through The Shadows In Sunny Honolulu

For author Victoria Kneubuhl, the lost world of old Hawaii casts a long shadow. But through her writing, she says, readers can see that world again.
Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 4:23 am

Honolulu, on the lush, green island of Oahu, is paradise for surfers and sunbathers — but author Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl sets her mysteries in a darker, more sinister version of the tourist mecca.

"I think that juxtaposition between things that are horrible and terrible happening in a beautiful setting adds a lot of tension and depth to things," she tells NPR's Renee Montagne.

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Sports
8:03 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Olympic Preview: Decathlon Medals To Be Awarded

Originally published on Thu August 9, 2012 8:43 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

At the London Summer Olympics, it's one star-studded 200-meter race down and one to go - today. American Allyson Felix won the women's 200 last night and was part of a U.S. track and field medal-winning binge. The Americans took seven medals at Olympic Stadium, helping push the Americans past arch-medal rival China in the overall race.

Not that anyone's counting, right, Tom Goldman?

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