Rachel Martin Rachel Martin the host of Wild Card.
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Rachel Martin

Rachel Martin

Host, Wild Card

Rachel Martin is the co-creator and host of the podcast Wild Card, an interview game show about life's biggest questions. She invites notable guests to play a card game that lets them open up about the memories, insights, and beliefs that have shaped their lives.

Martin spent six years as a host of Morning Edition, and was the founding host of NPR's award-winning morning news podcast Up First. She previously hosted Weekend Edition Sunday.

She served as National Security Correspondent for NPR, where she covered both defense and intelligence issues, and also worked as a NPR foreign correspondent, where she covered the London terrorist attacks, issues surrounding immigration and shifting cultural identities in Europe.

Martin worked extensively in Afghanistan, covering the reconstruction effort after the U.S. invasion and the country's first democratic presidential election. She also reported from Iraq, where she covered U.S. military operations and the strategic alliance between Sunni sheiks and the U.S. military in Anbar province. She traveled to Saudi Arabia in 2015 to report on women's rights, and in 2022, she reported from Ukraine's border with Belarus in the leadup to the Russian war.

Martin was part of the team that launched NPR's experimental morning news show, The Bryant Park Project, a live two-hour daily multimedia program that she co-hosted with Alison Stewart and Mike Pesca.

Martin also previously served as NPR's religion correspondent. Her piece on Islam in America was awarded "Best Radio Feature" by the Religion News Writers Association in 2007. In 2011, her story on racial discrimination in Hollywood won a Salute to Excellence Award from the National Association of Black Journalists and her series on the effects of the opioid epidemic on children won a Gracie award in 2019.

She started her career at public radio station KQED in San Francisco as a producer and reporter.

She holds an undergraduate degree in political science and an honorary doctorate from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash., and a Master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University.

She lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband, two sons and dog named Lola F. Bear, Esq.

Story Archive

Sunday

Sunday

This is me with my parents at my grad school graduation in the Spring of 2004. Rachel Martin hide caption

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Rachel Martin

It's weird to be a grown-up orphan. It forced my siblings and me to reckon with faith

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Friday

Picking out a Christmas tree for this mom and son is a literal race against the clock

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Wednesday

Deciphering a mother's secret Christmas code

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Monday

N.J. family reads messages they wrote to themselves years ago as holiday tradition

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Sunday

Hrishikesh Hirway says the cause of his writer's block was a "whirlpool of self judgment." Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for VOX Media hide caption

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Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for VOX Media

He felt 'creatively dead.' Then he harnessed the power of boredom

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Sunday

Rick Rubin says he feels like there is some creative energy behind the universe. Frazer Harrison hide caption

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Frazer Harrison

Rick Rubin on taking communion with Johnny Cash and not rushing creativity

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Sunday

Sa'ed Atshan says his commitment to pacifism and Quakerism is a spiritual anchoring in his life. Swarthmore College hide caption

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Swarthmore College

This Palestinian American professor leans on his Quaker faith during conflict

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Sunday

Patrick Stewart says his time on 'Star Trek' felt like a ministry

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Sunday

Duncan Trussell says there is value in transcendent experiences. Emma McIntyre/Getty Images hide caption

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Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

How do you make peace with your shortcomings? This man has an answer

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Sunday

Jeff Tweedy says he thinks in "song shapes." Sammy Tweedy hide caption

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Sammy Tweedy

Wilco's Jeff Tweedy on religion, music — and the Dolly Parton song he dislikes

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Tuesday

Wilco's Jeff Tweedy honors the songs that have shaped his life in new memoir

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Sunday

Roland Griffiths' research showed how psychedelics can alleviate depression in people with terminal diseases. Andre Chung/The Washington Post via Getty Images hide caption

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Andre Chung/The Washington Post via Getty Images

This psychedelics researcher approached his death with calm and curiosity

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Sunday

Duncan Trussell and his mom, as imagined in the show The Midnight Gospel. Netflix hide caption

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Netflix

He chose to honor his mom's life with a psychedelic cartoon

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Sunday

Students from Hunter College chant and hold up signs during a pro-Palestinian demonstration at the entrance of their campus in New York earlier this month. Michael Nigro/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images hide caption

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Michael Nigro/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

His call for empathy has made this Jewish studies professor feel isolated

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Sunday

Patrick Stewart says his time on 'Star Trek' felt like a ministry

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Sunday

Evaporation ponds that are pinkish-red due to high salinity levels are visible on the north section of the Great Salt Lake in August 2021 near Corinne, Utah. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

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Her antidote for 'climate grief' and a shrinking Great Salt Lake? Don't look away

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Wednesday

Sir Patrick Stewart says playing Jean Luc Picard gave him an idea of how he might become a better person. Rich Fury/Getty Images hide caption

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Patrick Stewart says his time on 'Star Trek' felt like a ministry

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Tuesday

Patrick Stewart on his new memoir and playing Captain Picard

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Sunday

Rob Delaney says the words we use are less important than the meaning behind them. Leon Bennett/Getty Images hide caption

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Leon Bennett/Getty Images

This comedian says words often fail during tragedy. And that's OK

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Wednesday

Yeganeh and Jason Rezaian in 2016. Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The Rezaians were wrongfully imprisoned 9 years ago. For Yeganeh, the pain is fresh

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Sunday

Wednesday

This writer sees parenthood as the ultimate 'ego death'

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Sunday

Jia Tolentino talks about God and psychedelics and finding comfort in chaos. Elena Mudd hide caption

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Elena Mudd

She chased 'ego death' — first in religion, then in parenthood

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