Renee Montagne is host of NPR's Morning Edition, the most widely heard broadcast news program in the United States. Since 2004, she has been broadcasting from NPR West in Culver City, California, with cohost Steve Inskeep in Washington.
Montagne is a familiar voice on NPR. She hosted All Things Considered with Robert Siegel for two years. She has worked for NPR's Science, National and Foreign desks.
Over the years, Montagne has done thousands of interviews on a wide range of topics: Kurt Vonnegut on how he transformed surviving the WWII firebombing of Dresden into the novel Slaughterhouse Five; National Guardsmen on how they handle the holidays in Iraq; Paul McCartney on singing the old songs; a Hollywood historian on how the famous hillside sign came to be; Toni Morrison on the dreams and memories she turned into novels; and Bud Montagne, Renee's father, remembering the attack on Pearl Harbor.
In the spring of 2005, Montagne took Morning Edition to Rome for the funeral Pope John Paul ll. She co-anchored from Vatican City during a historic week when millions of pilgrims and virtually every world leader descended on the City.
Since September 11, Montagne traveled throughout Afghanistan, interviewing farmers and mullahs, women and poll workers, the President and an infamous warlord. She has produced three series: 2002's "Recreating Afghanistan"; "Afghanistan Votes" in 2004; and 2006's "The War: Five Years On."
In 1990, Montagne traveled to South Africa to cover Nelson Mandela's release from prison, and continued to report from South Africa for three years. In 1994, she and a team of NPR reporters won a prestigious Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award for coverage of South Africa's historic presidential and parliamentary elections.
Through most of the 1980s, Montagne was based in New York, working as an independent producer and reporter for both NPR and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Prior to that, she worked as a reporter/editor for Pacific News Service in San Francisco. She began her career as news director of the city's community radio station, KPOO, while still at university.
In addition to the duPont Columbia Award, Montagne has been honored by the Overseas Press Club for her coverage of Afghanistan, and by the National Association of Black Journalists for a series on Black musicians going to war.
Montagne, the daughter of a Marine Corps family, was born in California and raised in locales as diverse as Hawaii and Arizona. She earned a B.A. in English from the University of California, Berkeley, graduating Phi Beta Kappa. Her career includes serving as a fellow at the University of Southern California with the National Arts Journalism Program (currently based at Columbia University), and teaching broadcast writing at New York University's Graduate Department of Journalism.