Pam Fessler Pam Fessler is a correspondent on NPR's National Desk, where she covers poverty and philanthropy.
Pam Fessler at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., March 19, 2019. (photo by Allison Shelley)
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Pam Fessler

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Pam Fessler at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., March 19, 2019. (photo by Allison Shelley)
Allison Shelley/NPR

Pam Fessler

Correspondent, National Desk

Pam Fessler is a correspondent on NPR's National Desk, where she covers poverty, philanthropy, and voting issues.

In her reporting at NPR, Fessler does stories on homelessness, hunger, affordable housing, and income inequality. She reports on what non-profit groups, the government, and others are doing to reduce poverty and how those efforts are working. Her poverty reporting was recognized with a 2011 First Place National Headliner Award.

Fessler also covers elections and voting, including efforts to make voting more accessible, accurate, and secure. She has done countless stories on everything from the debate over state voter identification laws to Russian hacking attempts and long lines at the polls.

After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Fessler became NPR's first Homeland Security correspondent. For seven years, she reported on efforts to tighten security at ports, airports, and borders, and the debate over the impact on privacy and civil rights. She also reported on the government's response to Hurricane Katrina, The 9/11 Commission Report, Social Security, and the Census. Fessler was 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 NPR's chief election editor. She coordinated all network coverage of the presidential, congressional, and state elections in 1996 and 1998. In her more than 25 years at NPR, Fessler has also been deputy Washington Desk editor and Midwest National Desk editor.

Earlier in her career, she was a senior writer at Congressional Quarterly magazine. Fessler worked there 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, New Jersey.

Fessler has a master's of public administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University and a bachelor's degree from Douglass College in New Jersey.

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The debate over voting is a heated one, often tainted by misleading and exaggerated rhetoric. Simone Golob/Getty Images hide caption

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Exaggerating Voting Issues May Juice A Base — But It Also 'Undermines Our Democracy'

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Voters Have To Wade Through Fraud Rhetoric To Get To The Truth

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Hispanic and black children are over-represented in child poverty totals. NPR hide caption

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Report: Child Poverty Could Be Cut In Half Over 10 Years, At A Hefty Price

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Motor vehicle departments across the country have accidentally allowed a small number of noncitizens to register to vote. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

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Some Noncitizens Do Wind Up Registered To Vote, But Usually Not On Purpose

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Contract Employees Are Still Trying To Recover From Shutdown

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U.S. Election Assistance Commission staffer Brian Hancock talks about how election systems have become increasingly complicated in recent years, making them more vulnerable to attack. Pam Fessler/NPR hide caption

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Cybertraining Election Officials For This Year's Voting

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President Trump To Address March For Life Attendees

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Heiner Giese, a local landlord and attorney for the Apartment Association of Southeastern Wisconsin, stands in front of a city-owned abandoned building. Pam Fessler/NPR hide caption

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Why Affordable Housing Could Become Harder To Find

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Trump Dissolves Controversial Voter Fraud Commission

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Trump Dissolves Presidential Commission On Voter Fraud

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Simeon Peterson, known as "Mr. Pete," in 2009. Patients at Carville leprosarium often used bicycles to get from building to building, which were connected by covered passageways. Vickie Joseph/Courtesy National Hansen's Disease Museum hide caption

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Vickie Joseph/Courtesy National Hansen's Disease Museum

Christine Thompson lives in Milwaukee with her children ages 7 and 3. They have been served a "Notice to Vacate" by their landlord for not paying rent. In Wisconsin, and most other areas of the country, landlords may evict tenants during any time of the year, including during the winter. Coburn Dukehart for NPR hide caption

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As Temperatures Fall, No Halt To Evictions Across Most Of The Country

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