For immediate release
Dec. 6, 2004
David Umansky : 202.513.2302
Chad Campbell : 202.513.2304

Inskeep, Montagne Named Permanent Hosts of Morning Edition®

WASHINGTON, DC — NPR News announced today that Renee Montagne and Steve Inskeep are the permanent hosts of Morning Edition, the most popular morning news program on American radio.

Inskeep covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the 2000 Presidential campaign. He will host from Washington, DC. Montagne will be based at NPR's studios in Culver City, California, near Los Angeles. She has been NPR's South Africa reporter, and has also covered Afghanistan's reconstruction and elections.

The new hosts have been anchoring Morning Edition on an interim basis since May 2004. Their assignment is to make a highly respected program even better. Two hosts have more time to report important stories, to prepare for interviews, and to travel to see the news firsthand.

"Morning Edition listeners have responded enthusiastically to Renee and Steve. They've noticed the subtle changes. But they've also noticed that Morning Edition is still the great show it's always been," said Jay Kernis, NPR's senior vice president for programming. "We've retained the best aspects of the show — the thoughtful, in-depth reporting and 'driveway moments' that made it a huge success. Renee and Steve sound great on the air. They are exceptional at reporting, interviewing and hosting and they are already making mornings very special."

"Steve and Renee bring first-rate reporting experience and lots of enthusiasm to Morning Edition," said Ellen McDonnell, the show's executive producer. With hosts in different cities, she said, "There's more energy, a national perspective, and listeners like the immediacy and the sense of place that happens when they leave the studio to do their own on-the-scene reporting."

Montagne was born in California and raised in several places, including Arizona and Hawaii. She was a student at the University of California, Berkeley when she started her first public radio job, at a local community station. By the 1980s, she was a co-host of NPR's All Things Considered. After moving to Morning Edition, as correspondent and substitute host, Renee covered everything from the release of Nelson Mandela, to Paul McCartney's music and Toni Morrison's novels.

Inskeep was born in Indiana, and graduated from Morehead State University in Kentucky. After a brief career as a radio sportscaster, he worked for several radio stations and newspapers in New York and New Jersey. He was hired by NPR to cover the 1996 political campaigns. He has covered the Pentagon, US Senate, and two wars. He was also the weekend host of NPR's All Things Considered.

The host team and DC/Los Angeles format have proven successful, giving the show greater opportunities to book interviews and capitalize on Inskeep's and Montagne's extensive reporting experience. The new hosts join a staff that has been bolstered by a new senior producer — Robin Gradison, formerly of ABC's Nightline — and Bruce Auster, who was an investigations editor at US News and World Report. Together, they are working to maintain and improve the program 13 million Americans each week depend on for news.

About NPR
NPR is renowned for journalistic excellence and standard-setting news and entertainment programming. A privately supported, non-profit, membership organization, NPR serves a growing audience of more than 22 million Americans each week via more than 770 public radio stations. International partners in cable, satellite and short-wave services make NPR programming accessible anywhere in the world. With original online content and audio streaming, offers hourly newscasts, special features and seven years of archived audio and information.