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.

[+] read more[-] less

Story Archive

President Trump speaks while flanked by Kansas Secretary of State, Kris Kobach (left) and Vice President Pence during the first meeting of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Mark Wilson/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Trump's Election Integrity Commission Holds First Meeting In Effort To Probe Voter Fraud

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/538148846/538148847" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who was eventually named vice chair of a commission on election integrity that has been beset with controversy, joins then-President-elect Donald Trump at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., in November 2016. Carolyn Kaster/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Carolyn Kaster/AP

Amid Skepticism And Scrutiny, Election Integrity Commission Holds First Meeting

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/537910132/538040089" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

An election official checks a voter's photo identification at a polling site in Austin, Texas. Eric Gay/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Eric Gay/AP

Advocates Worry Trump Administration Wants To Revamp Motor Voter Law

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/536006813/536024867" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

The Controversy Over The 'Motor Voter' Law

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/535920463/535920464" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

White House Commission Under Attack As It Calls For Individual Voters' Data

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/535823073/535823074" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, seen earlier this month, says he is among the state officials who isn't able to provide all the voter identification details the national commission he vice-chairs is seeking. John Hanna/AP hide caption

toggle caption
John Hanna/AP

A poll worker hands out a Las Vegas Strip-themed "I Voted" sticker after taking back her voter activation card on Nov. 8, 2016, in Nevada. A White House panel that is looking into voter fraud allegations wants names, addresses, birthdates, party affiliation and elections voted in since 2006 for every registered voter in the country. Ethan Miller/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

People vote on on November 8, 2016 in Los Angeles. Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

Making U.S. Elections More Secure Wouldn't Cost Much But No One Wants To Pay

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/534597226/534597227" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Capitol Hill Hearings Probe Russian Efforts To Hack U.S. Elections

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/533844075/533844089" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript