Gabriella Demczuk/NPR
Ailsa Chang, 2013
Gabriella Demczuk/NPR

Ailsa Chang

Congressional Correspondent, Washington Desk

Ailsa Chang is an award-winning journalist who covers Congress for NPR. She landed in public radio after spending six years as a lawyer.

Since joining NPR in 2012, Chang has covered battles over immigration, the healthcare law, gun control and White House appointments. She crisscrossed the country in the months before the Republican takeover of the Senate, bringing stories about Washington from the Deep South, Southwest and New England.

Chang started out as a radio reporter in 2009, and has since earned a string of national awards for her work. In 2012, she was honored with the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton for her investigation on the New York City Police Department's "stop-and-frisk" policy and allegations of unlawful marijuana arrests by officers. The series also earned honors from Investigative Reporters and Editors and the Society of Professional Journalists.

She was also the recipient of the Daniel Schorr Journalism Award, a National Headliner Award, and an honor from Investigative Reporters and Editors for her investigation on how Detroit's broken public defender system leaves lawyers with insufficient resources to effectively represent their clients.

In 2011, the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters Association named Chang as the winner of the Art Athens Award for General Excellence in Individual Reporting for radio.

The former lawyer served as a law clerk to Judge John T. Noonan, Jr. on the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in San Francisco.

Chang graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University where she received her bachelor's degree.

She earned her law degree with distinction from Stanford Law School, where she won the Irving Hellman, Jr. Special Award for the best piece written by a student in the Stanford Law Review in 2001.

Chang was also a Fulbright Scholar at Oxford University, where she received a master's degree in media law. And she has a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Prior to coming to NPR, Chang was an investigative reporter at NPR member station WNYC from 2009 to 2012 in New York City, focusing on criminal justice and legal affairs. She was a Kroc fellow at NPR from 2008 to 2009, as well as a reporter and producer for NPR member station KQED in San Francisco.

Chang grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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Jared Kushner And The Anti-Nepotism Statute That Might Keep Him From The White House

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Democrats Struggle To Agree On Path Forward After Trump Victory

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GOP House Leaders Retain Positions In The New Congress

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Republicans Retain Control Of The House And Senate

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White House spokesman Josh Earnest at the White House briefing Tuesday, where he said he would "neither defend nor criticize what Director [James] Comey has decided to communicate to the public" regarding the investigation of Hillary Clinton's private email server. Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Hispanic Voters Key In Deciding Nevada's Tight Senate Race

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Michelle Obama Blasts Donald Trump Over Sexual Assault Allegations

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Senate candidate Evan Byah talks with seniors at a living community in Indianapolis. Voters who support both Donald Trump and Bayh in red Indiana have to, at some level, hold two conflicting ideas simultaneously €-- a desire for change and an appreciation for a politician's past record. Michael Conroy/AP hide caption

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In Indiana's Senate Race, Political Royalty Tries To Put On A Fresh Face

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Congress Wraps Up One Month's Work In One Day To Keep Government Running

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In A First For Obama, Senate Overturns Presidential Veto On Sept. 11 Bill

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Sens. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, speak with Kaitlyn (left) and Terry Strada — whose husband, Thomas, died in the Sept. 11 attacks — after a May 17 news conference concerning the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act in Washington. Drew Angerer/Getty Images hide caption

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Congress Overrides Obama's Veto On Sept. 11 Lawsuit Bill

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Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), center, joins Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), right, and Senate Minority Whip Richard Durbin (D-IL), left, for a news conference following the weekly Senate Democratic policy luncheon at the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 7, in Washington, D.C. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption

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Congress Has One Week Left To Keep The Government Running Past September

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