The Diane Rehm Show : About

Airs weekdays at 10pm on AM 820

For more than 25 years, The Diane Rehm Show has offered listeners thoughtful and lively conversations on an array of topics with many of the most distinguished people of our times.

Each week, more than 2.2 million listeners across the country tune in to the program, which has grown from a small local morning call-in show on Washington's WAMU 88.5 to one of public broadcasting's most-listened-to programs. In 2007 and 2008, the show placed among the top ten most powerful public radio programs, based on its ability to draw listeners to public radio stations. It is the only live call-in talk show on the list.

Diane's guests include many of the nation's top newsmakers, journalists and authors. Recent guests include former president Bill Clinton, General Tommy Franks, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Julie Andrews, and Toni Morrison. Newsweek magazine calls the program one of the most interesting talk shows in the country. The National Journal says Diane is "the class act of the talk radio world."

Each hour includes dialogue with listeners who call to join Diane's virtual community and take part in a civil exchange of ideas.

The show theme song, "Toot Suite" is written by French pianist and composer Claude Bolling and features trumpeter Maurice André. Compact Discs and Transcriptions are available on

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  • Diane Rehm

    Diane Rehm is a native Washingtonian who began her radio career in 1973 as a volunteer producer for WAMU 88.5, the NPR member-station in Washington, D.C. She was hired as an assistant producer and later became the host and producer of two health-oriented programs. In 1979, she began hosting WAMU’s local morning talk show, Kaleidoscope, which was renamed The Diane Rehm Show in 1984.

Latest Stories from The Diane Rehm Show

Last updated: Sunday, September 21 2014 10:12 AM

Friday News Roundup - International

Friday, September 19 2014 04:28 PM

In record-breaking turnout, voters in Scotland rejected independence from the U.K. Congress approved President Barack Obama's plans to train and arm Syrian rebels to combat the militant group ISIS. Ukrainian President Poroshenko visited Washington to ask for more military aid to fight the pro-Russian insurgency. Australia launched raids to thwart alleged plans for domestic terror attacks. And the U.N. Security Council called on member nations to boost their response to Ebola, calling the epidemic a "threat to international peace and security." A panel of journalists joins guest host Elise Labott for analysis of the week's top international news stories.

Friday News Roundup - Domestic

Friday, September 19 2014 03:28 PM

Congress approves President Barack Obama’s funding request for Syrian rebels battling ISIS. The votes in both houses featured rare, bipartisan agreement ahead of midterm elections. Federal prosecutors indict a New York man on charges he tried to provide material support to the Islamic State. A new government report finds security flaws at the website that could jeopardize consumers’ personal data. The Kansas Supreme Court orders a Democrat off the ballot, which may affect control of the Senate in the fall elections. And a fourth player is suspended by the NFL over family violence. Guest host Elise Labott and guests discuss the week’s top domestic news stories.

The Growing Use of Food Additives and New Pressure for More Oversight

Thursday, September 18 2014 04:28 PM

Americans get more than half of their daily meals from processed foods, many of which contain food additives. More than 9,000 additives, ranging from chemical preservatives to green-tea extract, are currently in the food supply. But consumer advocates warn that companies certify the safety many of these substances without FDA oversight. Several research studies indicate some additives may be linked to health problems, including allergies and intestinal disorders. Guest host Tom Gjelten of NPR and a panel of guests discuss the oversight of food additives.

New Thinking About Treating Cancer

Thursday, September 18 2014 03:28 PM

It has been more than 40 years since President Richard Nixon signed the National Cancer Act. The law was designed to bolster efforts to find cures for cancer. While progress has certainly been made, nearly 600,000 Americans will die of cancer this year. Some recent advances in research have led a number of doctors to call for a rethinking of our entire approach to cancer. Maybe the goal should not be to destroy cancer cells but to change them. Or to figure out how to use the body's immune system to fight the disease. Or, in certain cases, not treat the cancer at all. We explore new ideas about combating cancer.

Will Boast: "Epilogue: A Memoir"

Wednesday, September 17 2014 04:28 PM

Some people experience more than their fair share of tragedy. Will Boast lost his mother to cancer when he was a freshman in college. Two years later his brother died in a car accident. When his father succumbed to complications from alcoholism, Boast was only 24 years old and the sole survivor of his immediate family. Days after the funeral, Boast found himself in his family’s Wisconsin home, sifting through his father’s papers. It was then he discovered a deeply held secret - he had two half-brothers living in England. “Epilogue: A Memoir” is a journey through intense pain, but also an exploration of the hope that comes with second chances you never thought you’d have.

Winners and Losers In The Casino Industry

Wednesday, September 17 2014 03:28 PM

More states than ever are turning to casino gambling to boost their coffers. Maryland’s new Horseshoe Casino generated nearly $6 million in its first week. And Massachusetts just approved a $1.6 billion gaming resort to be built on a plot of polluted land north of Boston. But casinos are far from a sure bet. States like Delaware and New Jersey that adopted gambling earlier than their neighbors are seeing their casinos close and revenue drain away. Guest host Steve Roberts and his guests discuss winners and losers in the casino industry and how its fortunes are affecting state coffers and local communities.

Todd Moss: "The Golden Hour"

Tuesday, September 16 2014 04:28 PM

In 2008, then-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice sent Todd Moss, the Chief U.S. diplomat for West Africa, to Mauritania in the middle of a coup. His mission: to talk down the military general who had overthrown the government. Six years later, that former State Department official has used his experiences as the basis for his first novel, a political thriller centering around a fictional coup in Mali. Set against a backdrop of dysfunction in Washington, his re-creation of foreign policymaking is also a love letter to Africa and a call for increased U.S. partnership with the continent. Author Todd Moss joins us to talk about U.S.-Africa relations, in-fighting in Washington and using fiction to give readers a glimpse behind the closed doors of the State Department.

The U.S. Steps Up Efforts To Contain The Ebola Epidemic In West Africa

Tuesday, September 16 2014 03:28 PM

The U.S. plans to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of its increased efforts to fight the spread of Ebola. President Barack Obama will be in Atlanta today for a briefing from the CDC on the crisis and will detail additional crisis management plans. Some 4,200 people are reported to have been infected with the disease and at least 2,200 deaths have been reported in five countries. Efforts to treat and contain the virus have to date fallen far short of what's needed to treat those who are sick and monitor the many more who have been exposed. And epidemiologists warn that without urgent action the projections for how the disease will spread are ominous. Please join us to discuss the Ebola crisis and the world's response.