Amy Walters is a producer for NPR based at NPR West in Los Angeles.
After graduating from Earlham College with a Bachelor's degree in English, Walters interned at NPR in the Middle East. After returning to the states she joined the staff of Morning Edition in 2000. Soon Walters was recruited to All Things Considered and spent two years on the show. On September 11, 2001, Walters stood on top of NPR's Washington, DC, headquarters watching the smoke float by from the attack on the Pentagon. Walters contributed to NPR's award-winning coverage of that day. The following year she interviewed and produced several minute long segments of survivors remembering the loved ones they lost that day.
As NPR expanded west, Walters followed. A native of Southern California, Walters returned to the golden state as a field producer at NPR's new production facility near Los Angeles. She produced NPR's coverage of the Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's election, award-winning coverage of California's prison system, and the death of pop legend Michael Jackson
Breaking news takes up much of her time but she has also been recognized for her investigative work. With NPR's crime and punishment correspondent Laura Sullivan, Walters was honored with the DART Award for Excellence in coverage of trauma, the RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting, and the Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Award for their NPR series, "The Sexual Abuse of Native American Women."
The next year Walters and Sullivan received both The Peabody Award and the Robert F. Kennedy Award for Journalism for their series uncovering the truth about the 1972 murder in Angola, Louisiana.
She still travels around the country and the world for NPR. She spent time in Baghdad and produced much of NPR's post-Katrina coverage in New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. Recently, Walters has spent her time uncovering the life and culture of Los Angeles' notorious Skid Row neighborhood, exploring the culture and economics of the marijuana industry in Humboldt County and reporting from Fort Hood, Texas after the shooting massacre there.
Laura Sullivan is a NPR News investigative correspondent whose work has cast a light on some of the country's most disadvantaged people.
Sullivan is one of NPR's most decorated journalists, with three Peabody Awards and two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Batons. She joined NPR in 2004 as a correspondent on the National Desk. For six years she covered crime and punishment issues, with reports airing regularly on Morning Edition, All Things Considered and other NPR programs before joining NPR's investigations unit.
Her unflinching series "Native Foster Care," which aired in three parts on All Things Considered in October 2011, examined how lack of knowledge about Native culture and traditions and federal financial funding all influence the decision to remove so many Native-American children from homes in South Dakota. Through more than 150 interviews with state and federal officials, tribal representatives and families from eight South Dakota tribes, plus a review of thousands of records, Sullivan and NPR producers pieced together a narrative of inequality in the foster care system across the state. In addition to her third Peabody, the series also won Sullivan her second Robert F. Kennedy Award.
"Bonding for Profit" – a three-part investigative series that aired on Morning Edition and All Things Considered in 2010 – earned Sullivan her second duPont and Peabody, as well as awards from the Scripps Howard Foundation, Harvard University's Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, and the American Bar Association. Working with editor Steve Drummond, Sullivan's stories in this series revealed deep and costly flaws in one of the most common – and commonly misunderstood – elements of the US criminal justice system.
Also in 2011, Sullivan was honored for the second time by Investigative Reporters and Editors for her two part series examining the origins of Arizona's controversial immigration law SB 1070.
For the three-part series, "36 Years of Solitary: Murder, Death and Justice on Angola," she was honored with a 2008 George Foster Peabody Award, a 2008 Investigative Reporters and Editors Award, and her first Robert F. Kennedy Award.
In 2007, Sullivan exposed the epidemic of rape on Native American reservations, which are committed largely by non-Native men, and examined how tribal and federal authorities have failed to investigate those crimes. In addition to a duPont, this two-part series earned Sullivan a DART Award for outstanding reporting, an Edward R. Murrow and her second Gracie Award from the Alliance for Women in Media.
Her first Gracie was for a three-part series examining of the state of solitary confinement in this country. She was also awarded the 2007 Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize for this series.
Before coming to NPR, Sullivan was a Washington correspondent for The Baltimore Sun, where she covered the Justice Department, the FBI and terrorism.
As a student at Northwestern University in 1996, Sullivan worked with two fellow students on a project that ultimately freed four men, including two death-row inmates, who had been wrongfully convicted of an 18-year-old murder on the south side of Chicago. The case led to a review of Illinois' death row and a moratorium on capital punishment in the state, and received several awards.
Outside of her career as a reporter, Sullivan once spent a summer gutting fish in Alaska, and another summer cutting trails outside Yosemite National Park. She says these experiences gave her "a sense of adventure" that comes through in her reporting. Sullivan, who was born and raised in San Francisco, loves traveling the country to report radio stories that "come to life in a way that was never possible in print."