Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! is NPR's weekly hour-long quiz program. Each week on the radio you can test your knowledge against some of the best and brightest in the news and entertainment world while figuring out what's real news and what's made up. On the Web, you can play along too.
It takes more than a couple brain cells to make this show what it is... so let's give credit where credit's due.
Peter Sagal — Host
Prior to becoming host of Wait Wait in 1998, Peter had a varied career including stints as a playwright, screenwriter, stage director, actor, extra in a Michael Jackson video, travel writer, essayist, ghostwriter and staff writer for a motorcycle magazine. He has written two books — The Book of Vice: Naughty Things and How to Do Them (Harper Collins, 2007) and The Incomplete Book of Running (Simon & Schuster, 2018). He has contributed essays to Opera News, AARP the Magazine, Saveur, Finesse, and is the "Road Scholar" columnist for Runner's World. Peter has three daughters and lives in the Chicago area with his wife Mara, two dogs named DeeDee and Dutchie, and some goldfish whose names he hasn't bothered to learn.
Bill Kurtis – Judge and Scorekeeper
For many, Bill Kurtis was the face, the voice, and the hair of the news in Chicago. Along with his co-anchor, Walter Jacobson, Bill brought authority and integrity to CBS-affiliate WBBM. Since then, he's produced and hosted such shows as Investigative Reports, American Justice, and Cold Case Files; and was also the narrator of Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy. Essentially, if you hear Bill Kurtis saying your name, you've either committed a terrible crime, or you're Will Ferrell. Bill is also the founder of Tallgrass Beef Company, where, every night, he lulls his grass-fed cows to sleep by reading them a bed time story.
Carl Kasell — Scorekeeper Emeritus
Carl – an all-around genius and great guy – had a five-decade career in broadcasting. After 30 years as a signature voice of NPR's morning newscasts, Carl embraced an unexpected comedy role, as the Official Judge and Scorekeeper of Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, which premiered in January 1998. In 2014, he announced he would become Scorekeeper Emeritus and continued to record custom voice mail greetings for the show's lucky winners. (Listen to some of them here). Carl died in April 2018 at the age of 84. You can read Peter's appreciations of him here and here.
Doug Berman — Benevolent Overlord
Doug Berman is the Peabody Award-winning producer of NPR's Car Talk and Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! For the last 30 years, he's been on a one-man crusade to get NPR to lighten up. He was a news director at NPR member stations WFCR in Amherst, Mass., and WBUR in Boston before giving up his legitimate career for this stuff.
Mike Danforth — Executive Producer
Mike Danforth joined Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! in November of 2000, after a distinguished tenure at Prairie Home Companion in his home state of Minnesota. His first week was spent weeding through numerous hanging chad jokes to find the best ones. He also tutors the staff in Foley-like vocal sound effects. And does not look like Andy Dick. At all.
Ian Chillag — Senior Producer
Ian Chillag is best known as the sculptor of the "Lil' Peter" line of ceramic Peter Sagal miniatures. He has over 114 in his personal collection, from fan favorites "Scuba Peter" to the famous "Sagasus," a winged half-horse, half-Sagal. You can find Ian's miniatures on sale in the Wait Wait merchandise shop after the show.
Miles Doornbos — Producer
Miles is a former producer and director for WBEZ and a current baker of cookies and maker of messes. He hates writing bios about himself, so he'll let his Wikipedia page do the talking: The page "Miles Doornbos" does not exist.
Robert Neuhaus — Production Coordinator
After many years spent as an award-winning theatrical sound designer and audio theater producer, Robert Neuhaus went in search of even larger egos than the theater can contain and found them at Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! Robert has served as a recording engineer based in NPR's Chicago Bureau since 1988, but he still moonlights from time to time creating storms and battles for Chicago Shakespeare Theater.
Lorna White — Technical Director
Lorna White graduated from Illinois State University in 1984 and immediately began her career with NPR in Washington, D.C. In 1996 she became the NPR Chicago Bureau engineer and moved back to the Midwest. Wait Wait began production in 1998 and she is now the technical director and Keeper Of The Bleeps. Tom Hanks once sang a song about her.
Colin Miller — Master of Operations
Colin Miller does not make the butt jokes for Wait Wait — he just makes sure the butt jokes are able to happen. If the show were a band touring around the country to millions of screaming fans, he would be the bassist. He would also be the janitor, accountant, agent and chef. Some might call him a jack-of-all-trades, but the truth is he simply cannot make up his mind and has never really excelled at anything. Colin comes from a family and has now made one of his own.