Based at WBEZ’s studio on Chicago’s West Side, Chip focuses on policing, gun violence and underground business. His investigative and narrative work has earned dozens of local and national honors. In 2017, 2015 and 2013, the Chicago Headline Club (the nation’s largest Society of Professional Journalists chapter) gave him its annual award for “best reporter” in broadcast radio.
He has won two first-place National Headliner Awards, one for 2014 reporting that led to a felony indictment of Chicago’s most celebrated police commander, another for a short 2013 documentary about a Chicago heroin supply chain through Mexico and Texas. Other honors have come from Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Scripps Howard Foundation, the Sidney Hillman Foundation, the Radio Television Digital News Association (Edward R. Murrow awards), the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation/Better Government Association, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, the National Association of Black Journalists, the Illinois Associated Press and Public Narrative (Studs Terkel award).
He has also reported as part of award-winning WBEZ collaborations with the California-based Center for Investigative Reporting and the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Public Integrity.
Before Chip joined WBEZ in 2006, his base for three years was Bogotá, Colombia. He reported from conflict zones around that war-torn country and from numerous other Latin American nations. Topics ranged from national elections to guinea-pig meat exports to bus rapid transit. The stories reached U.S. audiences through PRI’s The World, NPR’s Morning Edition, the BBC, the Dallas Morning News, the Christian Science Monitor and the Committee to Protect Journalists.
From 1995 to 2003, Chip focused on immigration and U.S. roles in Latin America as editor of Connection to the Americas, winner of the 2003 Utne Independent Press Award for “general excellence” among newsletters nationwide. In 1995, the Milwaukee Press Club named one of Chip’s stories for the Madison newspaper Isthmus the year’s best investigative report in Wisconsin. The story examined a fatal shooting by narcotics officers in a rural mobile-home park. In 1992, he co-founded two daily news shows broadcast ever since on Madison’s community radio station, WORT.
Chip was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. He earned a B.A. in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He lives in Chicago’s Humboldt Park neighborhood with his partner and their daughter.
Smollett, formerly of the TV series Empire — has been found guilty of lying to police about an anti-gay, racist attack on himself in 2019. The 39-year-old actor faces up to three years in prison.
Jury selection begins Monday in the trial of former Empire actor Jussie Smollett, who is accused of lying to Chicago police about being the victim of a racist, anti-gay attack.
In Chicago, five more people had their felony drug cases exonerated in an ongoing effort tied to a former Chicago sergeant convicted of corruption. 83 people hope their cases will also be thrown out.
Just hours after he shot and killed Laquan McDonald, Jason Van Dyke met with other officers who were on the shooting scene and with detectives tasked with investigating the incident.
Cook County recently passed an ordinance that requires its jail to free inmates wanted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, unless the federal government agrees in advance to pay for extended confinement — something federal officials say they don't do. Other counties may soon follow suit.
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn was one of three governors to pull their states out of the federal Secure Communities program earlier this year. But this month, the Obama administration told state officials they would have to participate.