Joel Rose

Joel Rose is a National Desk reporter based at NPR's New York Bureau.

Since joining NPR in 2011, Rose has covered the political, economic, and cultural life of the nation's biggest city. He's reported on the rise of the Occupy Wall Street movement, the fall of the compact disc, and the fast-changing fortunes of New York's elected officials. He's also contributed to NPR's coverage of the Trayvon Martin shooting in Florida, and the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal in Pennsylvania.

When pressing news doesn't keep him busy, Rose likes to report on the collision of the Internet and the entertainment industries, and to profile obscure musicians who should be more famous.

Rose has held a long list of jobs in public radio. Before coming to NPR, he spent ten years in Philadelphia, six of them as a reporter at NPR Member Station WHYY. He's also worked as a producer at KQED in San Francisco and American Routes in New Orleans. His writing has appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, GOOD Magazine, and the Philadelphia Independent.

His radio reporting has won numerous awards, including a Golden Reel from the National Association of Community Broadcasters for his story about the unlikely comeback of soul singer Howard Tate.

Rose has a bachelor's degree in history and music from Brown University, where he got his start in radio as an overnight jazz DJ at the college station.

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The Salt
6:13 pm
Fri May 22, 2015

In New Jersey, A Beef Over Pork Roll Sparks Rival Festivals

What is pork roll? As one fan puts it, "It's like Spam meets bacon." This sandwich is one of many ways to eat the processed meat, a largely unsung specialty of New Jersey.
via Wikimedia

Originally published on Sat May 23, 2015 11:49 am

Try to order "pork roll" in most of the country and you'll probably get a blank stare. But in New Jersey, pork roll is a staple at diners, restaurants and food trucks from Cape May to the Meadowlands. And this unsung meat product is now the star of not one, but two competing festivals on Saturday in Trenton.

To the untrained eye, pork roll looks like Canadian bacon. But New Jersey residents know better.

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U.S.
5:59 pm
Mon May 4, 2015

With Baltimore Unrest, More Debate Over 'Broken Windows' Policing

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (center), City Police Commissioner William Bratton (second from right) and other NYPD officers address a news conference on Jan. 5. There is debate surrounding the citywide increase of low-level crime enforcement, otherwise known as the broken windows approach to policing.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Tue May 5, 2015 7:12 am

Police departments across the country are under pressure to rethink their most aggressive tactics — and it's not just flashpoints like Ferguson and Baltimore. The New York Police Department is on the defensive about its long-standing approach known as "broken windows" policing.

Simply put, broken windows is the idea that police should aggressively crack down on low-level offenses to stop bigger crimes from happening. It's been copied all over the country, but now critics in New York say broken windows needs fixing.

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U.S.
6:07 pm
Mon April 6, 2015

Burden Of Proof Hurt State In N.J.-Exxon Settlement, Some Say

Originally published on Tue April 7, 2015 10:07 am

State officials released the details of New Jersey's proposed $225 million settlement with ExxonMobil on Monday, giving us a closer look at one of the largest environmental settlements in the state's history.

Environmentalists complain the company is getting off easy after polluting wetlands for many decades. The settlement focuses on two of Exxon's former refineries, Bayonne and Linden, in northern New Jersey.

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U.S.
4:47 am
Sat April 4, 2015

Despite Laws And Lawsuits, Quota-Based Policing Lingers

Multiple lawsuits accuse the New York City Police Department of pressuring officers into fulfilling monthly quotes for tickets and arrests, resulting in warrantless stops. The NYPD denies the allegations.
Spencer Platt Getty

Originally published on Sat April 4, 2015 10:30 am

In New York City, police rarely talk on the record at all, especially about a touchy subject like quotas. But Officer Adhyl Polanco is an exception.

"The culture is, you're not working unless you are writing summonses or arresting people," says Polanco.

One of the dirty secrets in law enforcement that no one likes to talk about is quotas. Police departments routinely deny requiring officers to deliver a set number of tickets or arrests. But critics say that kind of numbers-based policing is real, and corrodes the community's relationship with the police.

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The Salt
6:32 pm
Thu April 2, 2015

How The Matzo Crumbles: Iconic Streit's Factory To Leave Manhattan

A rabbi (center) supervises the production of Passover matzos at the Streit's factory on New York's Lower East Side, circa 1960s. This Passover will be Streit's last one at the landmark location.
AP

Originally published on Fri April 3, 2015 12:42 pm

This Passover holiday marks the end of an era for an iconic matzo factory in New York City.

Streit's has been baking matzo — the unleavened bread that Jews eat during the eight days of Passover — in the same factory on the Lower East Side for 90 years. But the company announced it will move production to a new, modern factory after the holiday.

That's a blow to Streit's loyal customers, who insist it tastes better than other brands.

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All Tech Considered
6:02 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

What Net Neutrality Rules Could Mean For Your Wireless Carrier

T-Mobile CEO John Legere pitches a plan that allows unlimited music streaming without additional data charges. Some net neutrality proponents want the FCC to limit plans like these; the commission says it will review them on a case-by-case basis.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 9:37 am

After a decade of debate, the federal government is poised to change how it regulates Internet access, to make it more like telephone service and other public utilities.

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Movies
8:01 am
Sun February 22, 2015

In Oscar Nominations For Best Score, Some Hear Sour Notes

Michael Keaton is up for an Academy Award for his performance in Birdman. The movie's original score, despite receiving critical acclaim, was declared ineligible for Oscar consideration.
Courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures Fox Searchlight Pictures

Originally published on Mon February 23, 2015 6:46 pm

The movie Birdman is favored to pick up several major Academy Awards Sunday night, but it will not be taking home the Oscar for best original score. That's because it was declared ineligible for Oscar consideration.

Birdman has one of the year's more distinctive musical scores, propelled by the unaccompanied jazz drumming of Antonio Sanchez, a bandleader and longtime drummer for guitarist Pat Metheny.

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Code Switch
5:53 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

Instead Of Stop-And-Frisk, How About Stop-And-Shake?

Yonkers community activist Hector Santiago demonstrates the "stop-and-shake" with Lt. Pat McCormack of the Yonkers Police Department. The idea, Santiago says, is to get people to introduce themselves to cops on the street.
Courtesy of Hector Santiago

Originally published on Thu February 19, 2015 8:13 pm

James Comey's speech on race and policing last week was a big departure for a sitting FBI director. For one thing, Comey quoted a lyric from the Broadway musical Avenue Q: "Maybe it's a fact we all should face: Everyone makes judgments based on race."

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U.S.
5:17 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Failing Bridges Taking A Toll; Some States Move To Raise Gas Tax

The James C. Nance Memorial Bridge, which connects Purcell and Lexington, Okla., is closed for repair in March 2014. A handful of states have raised their gas taxes in part to fund transportation projects like bridge and road repairs.
Sue Ogrocki AP

Originally published on Tue February 10, 2015 8:53 pm

A dozen states are considering something that was rarely discussed a few years ago: raising gas taxes. Low prices at the pump have emboldened state officials to think about raising new revenue to repair crumbling roads and bridges.

It's a scene that's all too familiar in much of the country — construction workers performing emergency repairs on a bridge. In Franklin Township, N.J., one bridge closed abruptly last month when it was deemed unsafe.

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All Tech Considered
3:55 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Would FCC Plan Harm Telecom Investment? Even Industry Opinion Is Mixed

Randall Stephenson, chairman and CEO of AT&T, introduces President Obama before the latter's remarks Dec. 3 at the quarterly meeting of the Business Roundtable, a group Stephenson chairs. Stephenson has said that increasing regulation of the broadband industry — as proposed by the president — would have a substantial chilling effect on its investment in infrastructure.
Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 2:21 pm

This week figures to be a big one in the debate about how to regulate the Internet.

Yesterday the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission announced he'll try to overrule laws in two states that restrict community-owned broadband networks. Later this week, he's expected to propose exactly what President Obama asked for last year: reclassifying the Internet under regulations known in the parlance of telecom wonks as Title II.

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