David Greene

David Greene is a correspondent for NPR News and lays claim to the network's coldest assignment: Moscow.

Greene jumped to NPR's foreign desk recently, after 5 years on the national desk. He took a brief break in between to study intensive Russian at Moscow State University. In January 2010, he returned to reporting. From Moscow, he'll be covering the entire region: Ukraine and the Baltics, east to Siberia.

Greene's voice became familiar to NPR listeners from his four years covering the White House. To report on former President George W. Bush's second term, Greene spent hours in NPR's spacious booth in the basement of the West Wing (it's about the size of your average broom closet). He also spent time trekking across five continents, reporting on White House visits to places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Rwanda, Uruguay – and, of course, Crawford, Texas.

During the days following Hurricane Katrina, Greene was aboard Air Force One when President Bush flew low over the Gulf Coast and caught his first glimpse of the storm's destruction. On the ground in New Orleans, Greene brought listeners a moving interview with the late Ethel Williams, a then-74-year-old flood victim who got an unexpected visit from the president.

Greene was an integral part of NPR's coverage of the historic 2008 election, covering Hillary Clinton's campaign from start to finish, and also focusing on how racial attitudes were playing into voters' decisions. The White House Correspondents Association took special note of Greene's report on a speech by then-candidate Barack Obama, addressing the nation's racial divide. Greene was given the association's 2008 Merriman Smith award for deadline coverage of the presidency.

After President Obama took office, Greene kept one eye trained on the White House and the other eye on the road. He spent three months driving across America – with a recorder, camera and lots of caffeine – to learn how the recession was touching Americans during President Obama's first 100 days in office. The series was called "100 Days: On the Road in Troubled Times."

Greene has also enjoyed guest hosting some of our news programs, including Morning Edition and Weekend Edition. He was in the host's chair when news broke that President Obama had nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Greene was in the same chair when comedienne Kathy Griffin yelled at him: "I don't even have the real host today?" she asked. "I got the new guy filling in? Oh, this is so typical."

Before joining NPR in 2005, Greene spent nearly seven years as a newspaper reporter for the Baltimore Sun. He covered the White House during the Bush administration's first term, and wrote about an array of other topics for the paper: Why Oklahomans love the sport of cockfighting, why two Amish men in Pennsylvania were caught trafficking methamphetamine and how one woman brought Christmas back to a small town in Maryland.

Before graduating magna cum laude from Harvard in 1998 with a degree in government, Greene worked as the senior editor on the Harvard Crimson. In 2004, he was named co-volunteer of the year for Coaching for College, a Washington, D.C., program offering tutoring to inner-city youth.

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2:36am

Mon October 27, 2014
Parallels

In Crimea, Many Signs Of Russia, Few Of Resistance

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 7:08 am

Russia established the Crimean port of Sevastopol in the 18th century. After the Soviet breakup in 1991, Russia and Ukraine shared the naval base. But Russia has now taken the entire base, including Ukrainian ships.
Max Avdeev for NPR

Morning Edition host David Greene and producer Lauren Migaki traveled to Crimea to see what's changed since Russia sent troops in this spring and shortly afterward annexed the territory despite widespread international criticism. Their stories will be on air and online this week.

We're traveling through flat farmland on a two-lane road in the far north of Crimea, when suddenly it's interrupted by a checkpoint. Actually, Russia now considers it the border, a physical reminder of the new divide between Russia and Ukraine — and the West.

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2:48am

Mon September 29, 2014
American Made: The New Manufacturing Landscape

Rochester Focuses On A New Picture Of American Manufacturing

Originally published on Mon September 29, 2014 5:17 am

Tom Worden works on a fixed-abrasive grinding table at Exelis Inc. in Rochester, N.Y. Exelis is an aerospace and defense company, and employs numerous former Kodak workers in its facility.
Mike Bradley for NPR

Rochester, N.Y., was once the imaging capital of the world, home to Kodak, Xerox and the eye care company, Bausch + Lomb.

Led by these companies, the manufacturing sector once employed 60 percent of Rochester's workforce. Now, that's less than 10 percent. And so, like many cities in this country, Rochester is trying to build something new from its manufacturing heritage.

If you want to understand the story of Rochester, says historian Carolyn Vacca, you need to come to High Falls, where from a bridge visitors see a waterfall and a panoramic view of downtown.

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12:04am

Tue August 5, 2014
Music Articles

Billy Joe Shaver Writes Country Songs — And Lives Them, Too

Originally published on Tue August 5, 2014 9:55 am

Billy Joe Shaver once told Waylon Jennings, "I just want you to at least listen to these songs. And if you don't, I'm gonna kick your ass right here in front of God and everybody."
Courtesy of the artist

5:57am

Wed June 25, 2014
A Changing Cuba

Cuba's Mariel Port: Once An Escape, Now A Window To The Future

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 8:20 am

A fisherman walks the streets of Mariel, on Cuba's northwest coast. In the distance, construction is underway on the Port of Mariel, where the government is creating a special free-trade zone.
David Gilkey NPR

When you arrive at the Jose Marti International Airport in Havana, you're greeted with a barrage of billboards with the popular Cuban government slogan promoting tourism: "Cuba, where the past and the present converge."

Perhaps nowhere on the island is that statement more true than in the city of Mariel, about 30 miles from Havana on the northwestern coast.

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3:07am

Tue June 24, 2014
Parallels

Cuba's Budding Entrepreneurs Travel A Rocky Road Toward Success

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 10:57 am

Cuban entrepreneur Barbara Fernandez Franco oversees two employees in the small living room of her home in Havana, the Cuban capital. Her boyfriend, Michel Perez Casanova (right), works in the tourism industry but also helps with her business.
David Gilkey NPR

When Americans think of business in Cuba, they think of government-owned enterprise. And the vast majority of Cubans do work for the state.

But in recent years, private business owners known as cuentapropistas have flourished on the island.

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