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Meet the Big Bend Team

Katie Davis (left) and Flawn Williams on assignment in Big Bend National Park



        BirdNote Goes to Big Bend

        The Roadrunner
        Banding Hummingbirds
        An Oasis for Birds
        The Vulture
        The World Is Wide
        Big Bend: Meet the Team


© Brad Lauster

Alex Chadwick is an independent journalist whose distinctive work makes him one of the most recognized reporters in public radio. At NPR, he was a co-creator of Morning Edition and a host of that program as well as All Things Considered. He was chief correspondent for the Radio Expeditions series from NPR and the National Geographic Society. Alex won the Investigative Reporting Award from the Society of Professional Journalists in 2001 and shared in a Dupont Award for general excellence to Radio Expeditions.

He has worked as a writer and feature reporter in network television (CBS, ABC, National Geographic), and for the online political magazine He wrote the 1996 three-hour CBS News television documentary In the Killing Fields of America.

His current project is a series of specials on the subject of energy and climate: BURN, An Energy Journal, carried on more than 300 stations around the country. And he works with renowned photographer Donna Ferrato on the I Am Unbeatable project to help women escape from domestic abuse.

Katie Davis has been producing and reporting stories for public radio for 35 years -- at NPR and as an independent. This assignment was a delightful change. She has interviewed newsmakers and shaped stories for news programs, and she's glad that there's still a space for sound-rich stories like these.

“I’ve always recorded birds in the background when I was reporting, but these stories bring the birds and those who know them center stage. And I have learned this: There’s nothing better than to stand stock still in the desert and wait for birdsong.


Flawn Williams has been capturing bird sounds for public radio audiences for many years: Canada Geese on Maryland's Eastern Shore, Magellanic Penguins in coastal Argentina, the search for the elusive (or extinct?) Ivory-billed Woodpecker in southeast Louisiana, domestic roosters in the Chihuahua state of Mexico, Sandhill Cranes in Nebraska's Platte River, antiphonal wrens in lowland Bolivia, Red-winged Blackbirds in a Wisconsin bog, and oropendolas in Amazonian Ecuador, all adding up to a satisfying New World migratory path.

He is delighted to reunite with Alex Chadwick for this BirdNote series from Big Bend, after many earlier forays together into the natural world. Flawn currently teaches music and documentary audio recording at Georgetown University, capturing everything from operas to oral histories to the great outdoors as an independent producer. He also runs a singers' summer camp, where his "Ad Hoc Harmonies" class is said by some to be "for the birds!"

Funding for the BirdNote series on Big Bend National Park comes from Deedie and Rusty Rose.