Russell Lewis

Russell Lewis is the Southern Bureau Chief for NPR News, a post he has held since 2006. Lewis focuses on the issues and news central to the Southeast — from Florida to Virginia to Texas, including West Virginia, Kentucky and Oklahoma. In addition to developing and expanding NPR's coverage of the region, Lewis assigns and edits stories from station-based reporters and freelancers alike, working closely with local correspondents and public radio stations. He also spent a year in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, coordinating NPR's coverage of the rebuilding effort. He's currently based in Birmingham, Alabama.

Lewis began his public radio career in 1992 at NPR member station WUFT in Gainesville, Florida, where he was an executive news producer. He spent time at WSVH in Savannah, Georgia. Lewis also worked for Kansas Public Radio and reported on the state legislature. He spent six years on the West Coast, working at one of public radio's flagship stations: KPBS in San Diego where he was senior editor and a reporter. He most recently was assistant news director and talk-show host at WGCU in Fort Myers, Florida. He was a frequent contributor to NPR, specializing in military and business issues.

In his spare time, Lewis loves to cook, read, and ride his bicycle.

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The Two-Way
7:03 am
Tue June 30, 2015

U.S. Topples Top-Ranked Germany 2-0 To Reach World Cup Final

Carli Lloyd of the United States celebrates after scoring on a penalty kick Tuesday night in the Americans' 2-0 win against Germany in the Women's World Cup semifinal in Montreal. Replays suggested no penalty kick should have been awarded to the U.S., (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 30, 2015 9:28 pm

Updated, 9 p.m. ET:

In a battle between a fantastic attack and a fantastic defense, the latter prevailed, as two penalty kicks — one made, one whiffed — and a late insurance goal gave the U.S. a 2-0 win over Germany and a berth in the Women's World Cup final.

After American forward Alex Morgan tumbled over a German defender — a foul that appeared to occur outside of the box — forward Carli Lloyd got a penalty shot past Germany's Nadine Angerer, whom the U.S. had kept busy all night.

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The Two-Way
7:03 am
Fri June 26, 2015

U.S. Women Take Out China, Advance To World Cup Semifinals

Goalie Hope Solo of the United States celebrates with midfielder Carli Lloyd on Friday after defeating China 1-0 in the Women's World Cup quarterfinals in Ottawa, Canada.
Jana Chytilova Freestyle Photo/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 26, 2015 9:26 pm

Update, 9:30 p.m. ET:

The United States pulled out a victory against China on Friday night in the Women's World Cup, winning only 1-0 despite dominating the match.

Midfielder Carli Lloyd's header in the 51st minute made the difference, but the U.S. kept pressure on China all night long and had 17 shots to China's 7.

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The Two-Way
11:34 am
Mon June 22, 2015

U.S. Beats Colombia 2-0, But Will Be Shorthanded Vs. China

Lauren Holiday of the United States is given a yellow card Monday in the first half against Colombia in a Women's World Cup match in Edmonton, Canada. She also received one in an earlier match against Australia, so Holiday will be suspended for the Americans' next match.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 22, 2015 9:42 pm

Update, 10:05 p.m. ET:

The Americans won and advanced to the quarterfinals at the Women's World Cup, but lost midfielders Megan Rapinoe and Lauren Holiday for its next match, as each received her second yellow card of the tournament.

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The Two-Way
4:12 pm
Tue June 16, 2015

U.S. Women Beat Nigeria 1-0, Win Group And Advance To Elimination Rounds

Abby Wambach of the U.S. (from right) celebrates with teammates Lauren Holiday and Tobin Heath after scoring against Nigeria at the end of the first half Tuesday during the FIFA Women's World Cup in Vancouver, Canada.
Ben Nelms EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu June 18, 2015 11:07 am

Updated at 12:15 p.m. ET On June 17:

U.S. veteran Abby Wambach, making her second start of the World Cup, scored her first goal of the tournament and the 183rd of her storied international career to push the Americans past Nigeria on Tuesday in Vancouver, Canada.

The 1-0 victory allowed the U.S. to win Group D and advance into the elimination rounds, where they'll face another group's third-place team on Monday, followed by a possible matchup against Cameroon or China later next week.

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Goats and Soda
3:30 pm
Tue June 16, 2015

Nigerian Soccer Fans Really Know How To Have A Ball

Nigerian fans stand and deliver cheers at a match against Australia, played during the Women's World Cup in Winnipeg, Canada.
Russell Lewis NPR

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 7:06 pm

If you watch the United States play Nigeria at the Women's World Cup tonight — kickoff is at 8 p.m. — you'll keep your eyes on the field. After all, it's an important match. A win or a tie, and the U.S. is guaranteed to advance to the knockout round. Even with a loss, the U.S. could still move on. Nigeria is the best team from Africa.

But maybe you should look at the stands instead.

Nigerian fans are an attraction in their own right. Decked out in bright green T-shirts and waving flags, they stand, cheer, party, play trumpets and drums, dance and sing.

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The Two-Way
12:03 pm
Fri June 12, 2015

U.S. And Sweden Struggle To 0-0 Tie In Women's World Cup

U.S. forward Sydney Leroux controls the ball during a Group D match with Australia on Monday during the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada. The U.S. won, 3-1.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 12, 2015 9:35 pm

Update, 10:10 p.m. ET:

The U.S. and Sweden fought to a 0-0 tie in Winnipeg on Friday night — a disappointing result against the Americans' trash-talking former coach, but enough to keep them in control of their group at the Women's World Cup.

The U.S. struggled to maintain control in the Swedish half for much of the game, and had a hard time connecting on their longer passes forward. Two header attempts off corners around the 72nd minute were tipped over the crossbar and went wide right, and a frenzy in the final minute of extra time came up empty.

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The Two-Way
9:37 am
Mon June 8, 2015

U.S. Women Beat Australia 3-1 In Teams' Opening Match Of World Cup

Christen Press of the United States celebrates Monday after scoring a second-half goal against Australia during the FIFA Women's World Cup in Winnipeg, Canada.
Kevin C. Cox Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 8, 2015 8:52 pm

Update, 9:45 p.m. ET:

Forward Christen Press scored in the 61st minute and Megan Rapinoe scored her second goal of the match in the 78th minute for the Americans, who beat Australia 3-1. Combined with the 1-1 tie between Sweden and Nigeria earlier on Monday, the U.S. has a strong lead in its World Cup group.

Rapinoe also was issued a yellow card in the second half, as was U.S. midfielder Lauren Holiday. Goalie Hope Solo had five saves.

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Sports
3:24 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Proposal Would End Football At University Of Alabama-Birmingham

Originally published on Mon December 1, 2014 5:28 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Space
3:30 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Rocket Explosion Comes At A Tough Time For NASA

Originally published on Wed October 29, 2014 5:16 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
6:27 am
Mon October 27, 2014

U.S. Women's National Soccer Team Cements Its Dominance

The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team left its CONCACAF tournament competition in the dust. The team didn't give up a single goal all tournament. Abby Wambach, shown controlling the ball in the second half of the U.S. 6-0 win over Costa Rica in the finals, scored seven of the U.S. team's 21 goals.
Mitchell Leff Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 12:56 pm

The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team showed why it's the top-ranked squad in the world. It won the CONCACAF tournament Sunday with a near-perfect 6-0 final game against Costa Rica.

The U.S. has had an easy run during this World Cup qualifying tournament for the North American, Central American and Caribbean Region. The United States had already qualified for next year's World Cup with a victory in the semifinals against Haiti. Sunday's win over Costa Rica further cemented the U.S. dominance.

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The Two-Way
6:59 am
Tue July 8, 2014

The One American On The Field At Today's World Cup Semifinal

Referee Mark Geiger will be the U.S. presence at the World Cup semifinal on Tuesday.
Clive Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 8:35 am

The United States will have a presence at today's semifinal World Cup match between Brazil and Germany. It won't be the U.S. National Team on the field, but American referee Mark Geiger. FIFA selected Geiger to be on the officiating crew of the high-stakes match. It's the first time a U.S. referee has been used this late in a World Cup.

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The Salt
12:08 pm
Sat July 5, 2014

Want To Eat Brazilian Food At The World Cup? Please Step Outside

Acaraje are a regional food in Brazil made from fried balls of mashed-up beans, onions and salt. The balls are sliced in half, slathered with a spicy pepper sauce and cashew paste, and then topped with shrimp.
Russell Lewis NPR

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 9:53 am

The stadiums of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil are all different, constructed to reflect the region. Natal's arena has a wavy beach-dune style, while the stadium in Manaus looks like a woven basket.

Inside those stadiums, however, you'd never know you're in Brazil. Budweiser is an official beer seller, and Coke has the soda market cornered. Other menu items include hot dogs, cheeseburgers and turkey sandwiches. It's almost impossible to find any Brazilian fare on the menu.

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Latin America
3:15 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

A World Cup Surprise: Arias In The Heart Of The Amazon

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 8:30 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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The Two-Way
6:27 am
Sun June 22, 2014

U.S. Vs. Portugal: 'Now Is The Moment' To Show American Mettle

United States' goalkeeper Tim Howard works out during a training session. "We're going to do our best to bottle him up," Howard said of Portugal's forward Cristiano Ronaldo.
Julio Cortez AP

Originally published on Sun June 22, 2014 9:17 am

The World Cup round of 16 in Brazil is taking shape.

Already in: Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica and the Netherlands. The big question: Will the United States join that distinguished list today?

The U.S. soccer team has a tough matchup against Portugal. Win, and the Americans are in. Lose or tie, and the road gets a lot tougher with next Thursday's game against Germany.

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Sports
3:32 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

In Brazil, Predictions Of Doom And Gloom Give Way To Minor Annoyances

Brazil's World Cup preparation endured some heavy criticism leading up to the games. Stadiums were still under construction, Internet connections were sketchy and transportation faced major challenges. A week into the tournament, NPR's Russell Lewis has traveled to three airports and three cities so far. He talks to Melissa Block about what has worked and what remains a challenge.

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