Pam Fessler 2010 i
Doby Photography/NPR
Pam Fessler 2010
Doby Photography/NPR

Pam Fessler

Correspondent, National Desk

Pam Fessler is a correspondent on NPR's National Desk, where she covers poverty and philanthropy.

In her reporting, Fessler covers homelessness, hunger, and the impact of the recession on the nation's less fortunate. She reports on non-profit groups, how they're trying to address poverty and other social issues, and how they've been affected by the economic downturn. Her poverty reporting was recognized by a 2011 First Place Headliner Award in the human interest category.

Previously, Fessler reported primarily on homeland security, including security at U.S. ports, airlines, and borders. She has also reported on the government's response to Hurricane Katrina, the 9/11 Commission investigation, and such issues as Social Security and election reform. Fessler was also one of NPR's White House reporters during the Clinton and Bush administrations.

Before becoming a correspondent, Fessler was the acting senior editor on the Washington Desk and oversaw the network's coverage of the impeachment of President Clinton and the 1998 mid-term elections. She was NPR's chief election editor in 1996, and coordinated all network coverage of the presidential, congressional, and state elections. Prior to that role, Fessler was the deputy Washington editor and Midwest National Desk editor.

Before coming to NPR in 1993, she was a senior writer at Congressional Quarterly magazine. Fessler worked at CQ for 13 years as both a reporter and editor, covering tax, budget, and other news. She also worked as a budget specialist at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, and was a reporter at The Record newspaper in Hackensack, NJ.

Fessler has a Masters of Public Administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University and a bachelor's degree from Douglass College in New Jersey.

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Tony Simmons leads a group of Johns Hopkins University students on a "justice walk" in downtown Baltimore, during which they learn about public policy, providing services, and the connections between income inequality and health. Gabriella Demczuk for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Gabriella Demczuk for NPR

Ephraim Benton, a former resident of Tompkins Houses in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, is now an actor. Benton started a community-based organization called Beyond Influencing Da Hood, which puts on health fairs, film festivals and various free community events in his old housing project. This photo was taken in front of his old building in Tompkins Houses. Courtesy of Shino Yanagawa hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Shino Yanagawa

Ballots from June 2014 marked "too late" in Sacramento County, Calif. Kim Alexander/Courtesy California Voter Foundation hide caption

itoggle caption Kim Alexander/Courtesy California Voter Foundation

Adreanne Lewis signs up for a photo ID at a senior center in Arlington County, Va., with the help of Bill Sands, outreach coordinator for the county registrar. Pam Fessler/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Pam Fessler/NPR

Voters walk to an early voting site to cast their ballots on Aug. 11 in Miami. On Wednesday, a federal appeals court in Ohio upheld a decision extending early voting in that state. Meanwhile, as Election Day nears, courts are still considering cases about early voting in North Carolina, and voter ID requirements in Texas and Wisconsin. Joe Raedle/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Cara Russo of Gettysburg, Pa., here with 9-year-old Shayla, one of her two daughters, has found success in a program geared to help struggling families navigate past some of the day-to-day obstacles that keep many poor. Pam Fessler/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Pam Fessler/NPR