Karen is a longform narrative reporter, editor and podcast host. Most recently, she was a host of NPR's Planet Money and, before that, a reporter at This American Life and More Perfect. Karen's stories have appeared on Radiolab, Reply All, Rough Translation, On the Media, The Rumpus and others. She is also a live storytelling performer for shows like The Moth and Pop Up Magazine. Karen has taught audio documentary at the Columbia, NYU and CUNY Graduate Schools of Journalism. She also taught live storytelling as a story coach for The Moth and was featured in their book, How To Tell A Story. She edited the series Chameleon: Wild Boys.


Karen's stories blend in-depth reporting with narrative storytelling about everything from the death penalty to the world’s largest treehouse, gerrymandering, teenage angst, public housing, religion, pandemic testing and a showdown in a Utah strip mall parking lot. Her Rough Translation story that followed an ISIS hostage rescue mission for 4+ years won the Overseas Press Club award for the best international audio reporting of 2019.

Before becoming a journalist, Karen spent several years as a speechwriter, working in more than 20 countries. She managed communications for the CEO of Cisco, and later moved to India to work with Cisco's Chief Globalization Officer. After returning to the United States, she ran communications for Cisco's corporate social responsibility program and for the Skoll Foundation. Karen is a graduate of the Transom audio documentary program.

Karen Duffin