Kirk Siegler As a correspondent on NPR's national desk, Kirk Siegler covers rural life, culture and politics from his base in Boise, Idaho.
Stories By

Kirk Siegler

Allison Shelley/NPR
Kirk Siegler at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., September 27, 2018. (photo by Allison Shelley)
Allison Shelley/NPR

Kirk Siegler

Correspondent, National Desk

As a correspondent on NPR's national desk, Kirk Siegler covers rural life, culture and politics from his base in Boise, Idaho.

His beat explores the intersection and divisions between rural and urban America, including longer term reporting assignments that have taken him frequently to a struggling timber town in Idaho that lost two sawmills right before the election of President Trump. In 2018, after the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history, Siegler spent months chronicling the diaspora of residents from Paradise, exploring the continuing questions over how – or whether – the town should rebuild in an era of worsening climate-driven wildfires.

Siegler's award winning reporting on the West's bitter land use controversies has taken listeners to the heart of anti-government standoffs in Oregon and Nevada, including a rare interview with recalcitrant rancher Cliven Bundy. He's also profiled numerous ranching and mining communities from Nebraska to New Mexico that have worked to reinvent themselves in a fast-changing global economy.

Siegler also contributes extensively to the network's breaking news coverage, from floods and hurricanes in Louisiana to deadly school shootings in Connecticut. In 2015, he was awarded an international reporting fellowship from Johns Hopkins University to report on health and development in Nepal. While en route to the country, the worst magnitude earthquake to hit the region in more than 80 years struck. The fellowship was cancelled, but Siegler was one of the first foreign journalists to arrive in Kathmandu and helped lead NPR's coverage of the immediate aftermath of the deadly quake. He also filed in-depth reports focusing on the humanitarian disaster and challenges of bringing relief to some of the Nepal's far-flung rural villages.

Before helping open the network's first ever bureau in Idaho at the studios of Boise State Public Radio in 2019, Siegler was based at the NPR West studios in Culver City, California. Prior to joining NPR in 2012, Siegler spent seven years reporting from Colorado, where he became a familiar voice to NPR listeners reporting on politics, water and the state's ski industry from Denver for NPR Member station KUNC. He got his start in political reporting covering the Montana Legislature for Montana Public Radio.

Apart from a brief stint working as a waiter in Sydney, Australia, Siegler has spent most of his adult life living in the West. He grew up in Missoula, Montana, and received a journalism degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Story Archive

Friday

Busses connecting skiers to resorts in Utah's famous Big and Little Cottonwood canyons have been severely cut back due to driver shortages. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Kirk Siegler/NPR

Utah's solution to ski traffic snarl? Build the world's longest gondola

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1151438576/1151957954" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Monday

Why lawmakers in Idaho want to ban public drag shows

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1147787250/1147787251" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Friday

Daranda Hinkey, a member of People of Red Mountain, in Humboldt County, Nev., on July 2, 2022. The planned Thacker Pass lithium mine in northern Nevada, the largest known lithium deposit in the United States, has drawn concerns and protests from environmental groups, Native American tribes and local ranchers. Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images

Tribes are suing to stop a proposed lithium mine in Nevada, saying the site is sacred

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1147547868/1147547869" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Monday

Encore: Researchers in Brazil credit scientific discoveries to the power of sound

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1145546370/1145546371" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Wednesday

Dr. Mary Williams opened Urgent and Primary Care of Clarksdale in 2018 to address historical gaps and disparities in health care in her Mississippi Delta hometown. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Kirk Siegler/NPR

Brought 'to the brink' by the pandemic, a Mississippi clinic is rebounding strong

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1143138448/1145323195" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Friday

Researchers in Brazil credit the power of sound for scientific discoveries

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1143330659/1144064908" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Cleared jungle north of the Amazonian city of Manaus. Close to a fifth of the Amazon has been cut down in the last five decades. Kirk Siegler/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Kirk Siegler/NPR

Saturday

Brittney Griner returns back home to the United States

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1142074773/1142074774" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Tuesday

Encore: Brazil's President-elect renews calls to crack down on Amazon deforestation

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1139765229/1139776599" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Thursday

Police give few details on the apparent murders of four University of Idaho students

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1137501861/1137501862" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Wednesday

Authorities investigate the deaths of 4 University of Idaho students

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1137076773/1137076774" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Tuesday

Brazil's president-elect renews calls to crack down on deforestation in the Amazon

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1136738643/1136738644" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Friday

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates gives an update about the ballot counting during a news conference at the Maricopa County Recorders Office in Phoenix, Thursday, Nov. 10, 2022. Ross D. Franklin/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Ross D. Franklin/AP

How Maricopa County defeated election disinformation — for now

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1135820961/1136342634" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Saturday

A 23-year megadrought is endangering the agricultural economy in the Southwest

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1127631167/1127631168" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript