Melissa Kuypers/NPR
Kirk Siegler 2017
Melissa Kuypers/NPR

Kirk Siegler

Reporter, National Desk

A reporter on NPR's national desk since 2012, Kirk Siegler covers the urban-rural divide in America.

A beat exploring the intersection between urban and rural life, culture, and politics, Siegler has recently brought listeners and readers to a timber town in Idaho that lost its last sawmill just days before the 2016 election, as well as to small rural towns in Nebraska where police are fighting an influx in recreational marijuana coming from nearby Colorado cities.

Based at NPR West's studios in Culver City, CA, but frequently roaming the country, Siegler's reporting has also focused on the far-reaching economic impacts of the drought in the West while explaining the broader, national significance to many of the region's complex and bitter disputes around land use. His assignments have brought listeners to the heart of anti-government standoffs in Oregon and Nevada, including a rare interview with recalcitrant rancher Cliven Bundy in 2014.

Siegler also contributes extensively to the network's breaking news coverage. In 2015, he was awarded an International Reporting Project fellowship from Johns Hopkins University to report on health and development in Nepal. While en route to the country in April, the worst magnitude earthquake to hit the region in more than 80 years struck. Siegler was one of the first foreign journalists to arrive in Kathmandu and helped lead NPR's coverage of the immediate aftermath of the deadly quake. He also filed in-depth reports focusing on the humanitarian disaster and challenges of bringing relief to some of the Nepal's far-flung rural villages.

Prior to joining NPR, Siegler spent seven years reporting from Colorado, where he became a familiar voice to NPR listeners reporting on politics, water, and the state's ski industry from Denver for NPR Member Station KUNC. He got his start in political reporting covering the Montana Legislature for Montana Public Radio.

Apart from a brief stint working as a waiter in Sydney, Australia, Siegler has spent most of his adult life living in the West. He grew up near Missoula, Montana, and received a journalism degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

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Story Archive

In New York City, Russian Americans Support Trump Despite Recent Scandals

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An ancient petroglyph panel is pocked with bullet holes. Some say increased federal protection is needed to prevent further damage and vandalism to areas like this one, which is now included in Bears Ears National Monument. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

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Kirk Siegler/NPR

With National Monuments Under Review, Bears Ears Is Focus Of Fierce Debate

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U.S. May Day Marches Highlighted Immigrant Rights

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Demonstrators Unite Against Trump In May Day Protests

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Members of the "Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition" displayed a giant effigy of then-candidate Donald Trump on May Day in Los Angeles last year. Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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United Against Trump, May Day Protests Expected To Swell

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An Anasazi cliff dwelling, one of many ancient ruins in Recapture Canyon, Utah. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

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In Utah, How You Tread Through This Canyon Matters

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Three of the national monuments now under review by the Department of the Interior: (from left to right) Gold Butte in Nevada, the Pacific Remote Islands and Giant Sequoia in Northern California. Bureau of Land Management/Flickr; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Flickr; David McNew/Getty Images hide caption

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Bureau of Land Management/Flickr; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Flickr; David McNew/Getty Images

President Obama designated the Bears Ears National Monument in December. Here, the namesake "bears ears" are pictured from Cedar Mesa, in the southeast Utah high desert. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

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Trump To Sign Executive Order That Could Shrink National Monuments

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As California Lifts Drought Restrictions, Rural Areas Still Lack Running Water

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A screenshot of the Bureau of Land Management's home page displays a photo of a "large coal seam at the Peabody North Antelope Rochelle Mine in Wyoming." Bureau of Land Management/Screenshot by NPR hide caption

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Bureau of Land Management/Screenshot by NPR

Winter rains have eased the drought in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area northwest of Los Angeles. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

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With Drought Emergency Over, Californians Debate Lifting Water Restrictions

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Cairo has lost more than half of its population in recent decades. Today, there are just under 3,000 people left. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

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Tired Of Promises, A Struggling Small Town Wants Problems Solved

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In California, Record Rainfall Proves Taxing For Stressed Infrastructure

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