David Schaper

David Schaper is a NPR National Desk reporter based in Chicago.

In this role, he covers news in Chicago and around the Midwest. Additionally he reports on a broad range of important social, cultural, political, and business issues in the region.

The range of Schaper's reporting has included profiles of service members killed in Iraq, and members of a reserve unit returning home to Wisconsin. He produced reports on the important political issues in key Midwest battleground states, education issues related to "No Child Left Behind," the bankruptcy of United Airlines as well as other aviation and transportation issues, and the devastation left by tornadoes, storms, blizzards, and floods in the Midwest.

Prior to joining NPR, Schaper spent nine years working as an award-winning reporter and editor for Chicago Public Radio's WBEZ-FM. For three years he covered education issues, reporting in-depth on the problems, financial and otherwise, plaguing Chicago's public schools.

In 1996, Schaper was named assistant news editor, managing the station's daily news coverage and editing a staff of six. He continued general assignment reporting, covering breaking news, politics, transportation, housing, sports, and business.

When he left WBEZ, Schaper was the station's political reporter, editor, and a frequent fill-in news anchor and program host. Additionally, he served as a frequent guest panelist on public television's Chicago Tonight and Chicago Week in Review.

Since beginning his career at Wisconsin Public Radio's WLSU-FM, Schaper worked in Chicago as a writer and editor for WBBM-AM and as a reporter and anchor for WXRT-FM. He worked at commercial stations WMAY-AM in Springfield, IL; and WIZM-AM and FM in La Crosse, WI; and at public stations WSSU-FM (now WUIS) and WDCB-FM in in Illinois.

Schaper earned a Bachelor of Science at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and an Master of Arts from the University of Illinois-Springfield.

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Business
3:29 am
Mon September 30, 2013

Chicago's Privatized Parking Meters Sour Airport Lease Deal

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 7:47 am

Close to 19 million passengers come through Chicago's Midway Airport each year, and many will spend a lot of cash here — on food, drinks, books, gum, parking and rental cars — not to mention the landing fees and gate fees paid by airlines.

There are a lot of opportunities to make money in a bustling hub airport like this, and the city was hoping to cash in.

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Around the Nation
5:52 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Four Men Charged In Chicago Shooting That Injured 13

Chicago police have charged four men — including two suspected gunmen — in the shooting injuries of 13 people. Police said the two suspects opened fire in retaliation for an earlier shooting, in which one of them was slightly wounded.

Around the Nation
5:20 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Tensions Over Syria Run High In Two Chicago-Area Districts

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 5:20 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Defending national security is one of the core arguments President Obama is using in his bid to strike Syria. Congress is expected to vote on military action next week. NPR's David Schaper takes us now to two Chicago area districts where passions on Syria are running high.

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Around the Nation
5:29 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

Schools Canceled As Heat Wave Sweeps Through Midwest

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 8:49 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

A late summer heat wave has much of the Midwest broiling. Temperatures today soared into the 90s in Minnesota, the Dakotas, Iowa, Illinois, as well as other states. And the heat forced some schools that are more accustomed to closing for snow days, to call off classes because of the heat.

From sweltering Chicago, NPR's David Schaper reports.

DAVID SCHAPER, BYLINE: Riding up the elevator to the fourth floor of Chicago's Josephinum Academy with school president Michael Dougherty, you can just feel the air get hotter and thicker.

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Sports
6:05 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

Chicago Blackhawks Stun Boston Bruins In Hockey Final

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. Oh, what a day to be a hockey fan in Chicago. The city is celebrating its Stanley Cup champions after last night's thrilling come-from-behind victory over the Boston Bruins. The Blackhawks stunned the Bruins and all of Boston by tying the game with just a minute and 16 seconds left in the final period. Then, just 17 seconds later, the game-winning puck flew into the goal.

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Around the Nation
6:42 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Rogue Jumpers Parachute From Top Of Chicago's Trump Tower

Originally published on Fri June 21, 2013 11:19 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Finally, a big jump and a mystery in Chicago. Police are searching for three men who jumped off the top of the 92-story Trump Tower late last night with parachutes. They managed to land and escape before police arrived.

NPR's David Schaper has been gathering reaction in Chicago.

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Business
4:34 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Founder Of Men's Wearhouse Fired By Company's Board

Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 7:07 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's report on some changes in the American clothing world. George Zimmer, of Men's Wearhouse, might still like the way he looks, but we can guarantee he doesn't like this. The famous face - and gravelly voice - and founder of the company, is out. The company gave no reason for the abrupt firing. But Zimmer is speaking out, as NPR's David Schaper reports.

DAVID SCHAPER, BYLINE: His graying beard is instantly familiar. And he speaks with that signature deep, gravelly voice when delivering this famous tagline:

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Around the Nation
5:48 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Amid Violence, Chicagoan Fights For Right To Bear Arms

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

This past weekend in Chicago was a violent one, the bloodiest of the year so far. Nearly 50 people were shot. Nine of them died. The level of gun violence in some Chicago neighborhoods has put the city at the center of the national debate about gun control. Many Chicagoans favor strict gun laws. And then there's 79-year-old Otis McDonald. NPR's David Schaper introduces us to the man who fought the city's ban on handguns and won.

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Sports
5:33 pm
Wed June 12, 2013

Hockey's Hottest Teams Hit The Ice In Stanley Cup Final

An oversized Chicago Blackhawks hockey helmet sits on one of the lion sculptures outside the entrance to the Art Institute of Chicago in celebration of the team's upcoming appearance in the Stanley Cup Final in Chicago. The Blackhawks host the Boston Bruins in Game 1 on Wednesday.
Scott Eisen AP

Originally published on Wed June 12, 2013 7:03 pm

The National Hockey League's Stanley Cup championship gets underway in Chicago Wednesday night, with the Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins facing off in the first game of the best-of-seven series. It's a classic matchup between two of the NHL's original six teams.

Both teams are recent champs, which is helping passionate hockey fans and players put the bitter labor dispute that almost iced the season behind them.

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U.S.
5:47 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Will Ill. Legalize Gay Marriage Before Legislature Adjourns?

Activists rally in support of gay marriage on March 25 in Chicago. The Illinois Senate has approved legislation that will legalize same-sex marriage, but it has stalled in the state House.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 7:04 pm

The clock is ticking for those who hope Illinois will become the 13th state to legalize same-sex marriage.

The Illinois General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn its spring session Friday night, and the marriage equality bill still has not been called for a vote in the state House, where supporters are struggling to round up the 60 votes necessary to pass it.

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The Two-Way
6:05 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

After The Storm: Students Gather For One More School Day

Students and teachers from Eastlake Elementary and Plaza Towers Elementary schools gathered Thursday to say goodbye for the summer. This was a chance to reconnect after the devastating tornado brought an abrupt end to the school year at Plaza Towers in Moore, Okla.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

Originally published on Fri May 24, 2013 6:08 am

Under cloudy skies and through intermittent showers, 4-year-old Kamrin Ramirez holds in her little hands two cards, one addressed to Ms. Patterson, the other for Ms. Johnson, her two preschool teachers at Plaza Towers Elementary School in Moore, Okla.

"I write thank you so much," she says.

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Politics
5:14 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Obama Nominates Campaign Fundraiser For Commerce Secretary

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 5:27 pm

Influential Chicagoan Penny Pritkzer has been tapped by President Obama to lead the Commerce Department.

Around the Nation
4:47 pm
Fri April 26, 2013

'Poor Chicago' Critique Touches Raw Nerve In The Windy City

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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National Security
6:28 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Many Questions Remain About Boston Bombing Case

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 10:18 am

With the marathon bombing suspect captured and in the hospital, Boston is returning to a new kind of normal. Questions remain about how Dzhokhar Tsarnaev will be investigated. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick is asking everyone in his state to observe a moment of silence at 2:50 p.m. Monday.

Around the Nation
6:45 am
Sun April 21, 2013

Boston Slowly Returns To Sense Of Normalcy

Originally published on Sun April 21, 2013 4:56 pm

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

In Boston and surrounding communities, things are getting back to normal after a frightening week. NPR's David Schaper found the mood of the city reflected by the people at yesterday's Red Sox game at Boston's iconic Fenway Park.

DAVID SCHAPER, BYLINE: The police and security presence here at Fenway Park is certainly greater than it usually is, but these Bostonians don't seem to mind at all because nothing says things are getting back to normal more than Red Sox baseball and...

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The Two-Way
4:04 pm
Fri April 12, 2013

Goat's Head Sent To Cubs Owner Not From The 'Rahm-Father'

Storm clouds pass over Wrigley Field on July 1, 2011, in Chicago.
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 12, 2013 6:54 pm

While many in Chicago immediately thought of the famous "Billy Goat curse," when a severed goat's head was delivered to Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts at Wrigley Field this week, I immediately wondered if it was a message from the "Rahm-father," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

After all, Ricketts is in the midst of intense negotiations with Emanuel's administration over renovating the iconic 99-year old ballpark, as I reported last week.

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Sports
4:38 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

A Battle For Rooftop Views Near Chicago's Wrigley Field

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 6:04 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. The Chicago Cubs' home opener, on Monday, will mark the start of a 99th baseball season at historic Wrigley Field. The old ballpark has had some facelifts, but the most dramatic and controversial may be yet to come. The team's owners, and the city of Chicago, are close to a deal for a $300 million expansion. But as NPR's David Schaper reports, it may make some of the ballpark's neighbors very unhappy.

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Around the Nation
4:30 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

Midwest Starts Digging Out From Biggest Snowstorm In More Than Two Years

Originally published on Thu March 7, 2013 11:49 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

In the nation's capitol, that Snowquester, the storm we mentioned, has mostly been rain so far. But across the country a blanket of freshly fallen snow, some of it more than a foot deep, now extends from the Dakotas to the Eastern Seaboard. Thousands of flights have been cancelled and nearly 200,000 homes and businesses in the Mid-Atlantic region lost power. We have two reports, starting in Chicago with NPR's David Schaper.

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Around the Nation
4:45 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Chicago Commuters Brace For Delays During Bridge Repair

Construction on Chicago's Wells Street Bridge is taking place around the clock, as crews replace the south leaf section. The north leaf section will be replaced in the spring. The double-decked steel truss drawbridge was built in 1922.
David Schaper NPR

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 11:18 am

A major artery that feeds Chicago's downtown business district has been temporarily cut off as crews work around the clock this week to replace half of the 91-year-old Wells Street drawbridge.

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Around the Nation
6:13 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Ex-State Rep. Likely To Replace Jesse Jackson, Jr.

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 10:34 am

Former Illinois legislator Robin Kelly has captured the Democratic nomination in the race to replace disgraced former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. She is all but assured a win in April's general election because the Chicago-area district is overwhelmingly Democratic.

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