Ailsa Chang is an award-winning journalist who covers criminal justice, terrorism and the courts for WNYC. She found her way into public radio after practicing law for five years, and can definitely say that walking the streets of New York City with a microphone is a lot more fun than being holed up in the office writing letters to opposing counsel.
Since joining WNYC in 2009, Chang has earned national recognition for her investigative reporting. In 2012, she was honored with the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton, one of the highest awards in broadcast journalism, for her two-part investigative series on allegations of illegal searches and unlawful marijuana arrests by the New York City Police Department. The reports also earned an honor from Investigative Reporters and Editors.
Chang has investigated how Detroit's broken public defender system leaves the poor with lawyers who are often too underpaid and overworked to provide adequate defense. For that story, Chang won the 2010 Daniel Schorr Journalism Award, a National Headliner Award and an honor from Investigative Reporters and Editors.
In 2011, the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters Association named Chang as the winner of the Art Athens Award for General Excellence in Individual Reporting for radio. She has also appeared as a guest on PBS NewsHour and other television programs for her legal reporting.
Chang received her bachelor's degree in public policy from Stanford University, her law degree from Stanford Law School, a Masters degree in journalism from Columbia University and a Masters degree in media law from Oxford University where she was a U.S. Fulbright Scholar.
She was also a law clerk to Judge John T. Noonan, Jr. on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Before her arrival at WNYC, Chang was a Kroc Fellow for National Public Radio in Washington, D.C. and a reporter for KQED public radio in San Francisco. She grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Ailsa Chang appears in the following:
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Sen. Bernie Sanders kicked off his campaign in Burlington. He lags behind Hillary Clinton in the polls, but his supporters say this is the guy who comes from behind and surprises you.
Thursday, May 21, 2015
The Senate is trying to wrap up its business before leaving Washington, D.C., for a week-long recess. That includes considering a bill to give President Obama expanded authority on trade.
Thursday, May 21, 2015
Rand Paul voiced his opposition to the Patriot Act, which authorizes bulk collection of Americans' phone records by the government. Paul says collecting the records is an assault on civil liberties.
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to extend the provision of the Patriot Act that authorizes the NSA's bulk collection of phone records before it expires. Others want the program reined in.
Thursday, May 14, 2015
To study the draft Trans-Pacific Partnership text, senators have to go to the basement of the Capitol and enter a secured, soundproof room and surrender their cellphones.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
On Tuesday, Senate Democrats kept trade legislation from moving forward, dealing a blow to President Obama's agenda. Republicans and the White House now grapple with what comes next.
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
The U.S. Senate blocked a measure that would give President Obama fast-track trade authority to complete a massive Pacific trade deal. Most of Obama's opponents on trade come from his own party.
Friday, May 08, 2015
Don't look at me! In Minnesota, lawmakers are banned from making eye contact during debate. The idea is it leads to more civility. But does it? And what can animal science teach us about it?
Saturday, May 02, 2015
On the committee level in the Senate, Republicans and Democrats have been able to get deals done. The problem will be what happens after bills leave the committees and head to the Senate floor.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Bernie Sanders, the liberal senator from Vermont, will try to be more than a fringe presidential candidate. He's aiming to elevate the issue of income inequality on the national stage.
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Senate negotiators reached a deal Tuesday on an anti-human trafficking bill, which is expected to pave the way for the Senate to finally vote on Loretta Lynch's nomination for attorney general.
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
After an unexpected promotion, Cardin has become the senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee just as it is crafting a role for Congress to weigh in on the Iran nuclear deal.
Thursday, April 02, 2015
The Justice Department indictment alleges that Sen. Robert Menendez abused his office to benefit a Florida eye doctor who was his friend and donor. Menendez has always maintained his innocence.
Friday, March 27, 2015
As they do every time the Senate takes up a budget resolution, senators spend hours voting on proposals they want to add to the document, which isn't technically a budget but a vision statement.
Friday, March 20, 2015
The president's proposed budget sets the stage for Republicans to use a tool they've lacked until now: reconciliation. But they're not likely to win the game.
Thursday, March 19, 2015
The confirmation vote for U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch to succeed Eric Holder as U.S. Attorney General is tied up in a partisan battle in the Senate. NPR's Ailsa Chang explains.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
The Senate remains deadlocked on what appeared to be a bipartisan bill which creates a fund for victims of human trafficking. Democrats object to language that would ban using the fund for abortions.
Monday, March 16, 2015
A bill cracking down on human trafficking was supposed to be an easy one to pass, but that was before Democrats discovered the bill also contained language restricting abortion rights.
Friday, March 13, 2015
How a freshman senator from Arkansas and military veteran, not seen as a likely future politician, was able to grab the spotlight with a letter to Iran — and got 46 other Republicans to sign on.
Friday, March 13, 2015
Freshman Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton, who has been in office barely two months, penned an open letter to Iranian leaders this week that 47 Republican senators signed.