Weekend Edition Sunday is NPR's Sunday morning news magazine, carried by 794 public radio stations nationwide. Every week, the show features interviews with newsmakers, artists, scientists, politicians, musicians, writers, theologians and historians. The program has covered news events from Nelson Mandela's 1990 release from a South African prison to the crisis in Ukraine.
Weekend Edition Sunday debuted on January 18, 1987, with host Susan Stamberg. Two years later, Liane Hansen took over the host chair, a position she held for 22 years. Recent hosts include Audie Cornish (2011–2012), Rachel Martin (2012–2016) and Lulu Garcia-Navarro (2017–2021.)
In 2022, Ayesha Rascoe was named the host of Weekend Edition Sunday, and she will transition to that role March 27. Rascoe is currently a White House correspondent for NPR. She is covering her third presidential administration. Her White House coverage has included a number of high profile foreign trips, including President Trump's 2019 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Hanoi, Vietnam, and President Obama's final NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland in 2016. As a part of the White House team, she's also a regular on the NPR Politics Podcast.
Prior to joining NPR, Rascoe covered the White House for Reuters, chronicling Obama's final year in office and the early days of the Trump administration. Rascoe began her reporting career at Reuters, covering energy and environmental policy news, such as the 2010 BP oil spill and the U.S. response to the Fukushima nuclear crisis in 2011. She also spent a year covering energy legal issues and court cases. She graduated from Howard University in 2007 with a B.A. in journalism.
"I am beyond honored to take on this role and work with the fabulous team behind Weekend Edition Sunday. Covering the White House for NPR has been the highlight of my career so far. At NPR, I've found my voice and worked with amazing colleagues. I've also been privileged to get to know the dedicated listeners who make up the heart of public radio," said Rascoe. "While I will miss the Washington Desk, I look forward to connecting to listeners every Sunday. And one day, I'm going to solve one of those puzzles!"
"Ayesha brings multi-faceted experience to the host chair, having covered some of the pivotal moments in recent history from her vantage point as NPR's White House correspondent," said Sarah Gilbert, NPR's Vice President for News Programming. "Ayesha's commitment to the intersection of news, and her wide-ranging appreciation for, and engagement with all things cultural made her the natural choice for this role."
With Rascoe in the host chair, every week listeners will continue to tune in to hear a unique blend of news, features and the regularly scheduled puzzle segment with Puzzlemaster Will Shortz, the crossword puzzle editor of The New York Times.