Joel McCord

News Director

Joel McCord is a trumpet player who learned early in life that that’s no way to make a living.

He began his reporting career while still a music major at what then was West Chester State College in West Chester, Pa., filing reports for WCSC, the campus radio station. He transferred to the School of Communications and Theater at Temple University in Philadelphia, where he managed to earn a degree in journalism in 1973, despite having spent an inordinate amount of time playing pinochle in the student union.

He worked as a reporter and editor at The Maryland Gazette, America's oldest continuously publishing newspaper, and the Annapolis Capital, where he covered education and county government.  He also spent 23 years as a metro staff reporter and occasional editor at the Baltimore Sun, covering local governments, land use issues, transportation and environment before he became one of the old farts who Tribune Company, the paper’s owners, offered a semi-reasonable amount of money to leave.

McCord worked as a freelance writer and editor until joining WYPR as a reporter, where he has covered the Maryland General Assembly and two governors.  Joel also reprised his role as an environmental reporter, only this time, he used the sounds one hears on God's green earth to help tell the stories of commercial watermen, farmers, hunters and people who are laboring to save the planet.

He became WYPR’s news director in October 2012.

And he still plays the trumpet with your occasional big band or small jazz group, just not as often or as well as he would like.

Joel McCord / WYPR

L’Hermione, a replica of the ship that brought the Marquis de Lafayette and French aid to America in 1780 got a noisy greeting when it arrived in Baltimore Friday. Cannons fired, ship’s horns sounded and the F. McHenry Guard Fife and Drum Corps tootled away. 

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR


Six police officers have been charged in the death of Freddie Gray with counts ranging from manslaughter and assault to false imprisonment.  One officer was charged with second degree murder.

Associated Press

  State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced today that all six police officers involved in the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray will face criminal charges.

Joel McCord

  For the musicians of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, this may have been the ultimate, “Hey, kids, let’s put on a show” moment. They whipped together a free, lunch-time concert on the plaza in front of the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall Wednesday in barely 24 hours.

Joel McCord

Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president, died at 7:22 a.m. April 15th, 150 years ago. That much is certain. But trying to piece together the story of his murder and the escape of assassin John Wilkes Booth is something like that college stunt where someone runs into a classroom, fires a cap pistol and runs out and the professor asks what happened. 

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

It’s Friday, and that means it’s time for a look back at the week in Annapolis. This week, WYPR News Director Joel McCord talks with state house reporter Christopher Connelly about legal and budget machinations.

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

There are just more than two weeks until the end of the legislative session in Annapolis. News Director Joel McCord talked to WYPR’s Christopher Connelly about some of the big items in the state house this week. 

Christopher Connelly/WYPR

The legislative session in Annapolis is moving full speed toward Sine Die – that’s the last day the General Assembly can pass bills for the year. WYPR News Director Joel McCord caught up with Annapolis reporter Christopher Connelly for an update.

University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science via flickr

The Chesapeake Bay Program, that multi-state, multi-federal agency partnership working on bay restoration, released Monday the latest set of draft strategies to guide the next steps in restoring America’s largest estuary to the health it once enjoyed.

WYPR's Joel McCord talk to Goucher College's Mileah Kromer about the recently released Goucher Poll. Do voters approve of Governor Larry Hogan so far? What is the number one issue on Marylanders' minds? Do individuals see a connection between themselves, pollution, and The Chesapeake Bay?  Goucher's Sarah T. Hughes Politics Center polled Marylanders and published the results this week.