Kai Ryssdal

Host and senior editor

SHORT BIO

I speak my native tongue into a microphone.

What was your first job?

Lifeguard. (Well, that and mowing lawns.)

What do you think is the hardest part of your job that no one knows?

Staying calm.

What advice do you wish someone had given you before you started this career?

Don't think — just talk.

In your next life, what would your career be?

Helicopter pilot.

Latest Stories (5,562)

Tough housing market is pushing this lumber business to diversify

Nov 7, 2022
Sawmill Timberdoodle Farm has been investing in new equipment and looking into providing services along with its products, its co-owner says.
"Our business is pretty linked to new housing starts at the moment. And that hasn't been as robust as it has in the last two years," says Katrina Amaral, co-owner of Timberdoodle Farm. Above, a retail lumber outlet in California.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Why this Buffalo manufacturer is "a little bit excited" about an economic slowdown

The tight job market means it's been years since Matt Gehman has hired new qualified employees at MMG Industrial and Metal Locking Service.
"We cannot hire people and bring them in and plug them in. It’s 100% on-the-job training at our expense," says Matt Gehman, above at his facility in Buffalo, New York.
Brandon Watson

On Buffalo’s east side, inflation intensifies the daily struggle to buy food

“I have to get less food,” one shopper said. “So I plan very carefully with my food stamps.”
Shoppers at a mobile farmers market in east Buffalo, New York, where many residents struggle with access to grocery stores.
Brandon Watson

What we found in Buffalo, NY: Courage, innovation and a larger story behind the data

Nov 2, 2022
“This was the first time I saw the data match to a human experience,” says Nela Richardson, ADP’s chief economist.
Nela Richardson, ADP chief economist, talks with "Marketplace" host Kai Ryssdal inside Taste of Soul, a restaurant in Buffalo, New York. “I think there's a detachment between the number, the data, and the people who those numbers represent,” Richardson says.
Brandon Watson

Rebooting a multibillion-dollar business after tens of thousands of layoffs

Nov 1, 2022
Jerry and Lou Jacobs, co-CEOs of global hospitality company Delaware North, say inflation is a bigger concern than labor right now.
Jerry, left, and Lou Jacobs are co-CEOs of Buffalo-based company Delaware North. Inflation requires the business to be agile and flexible, Lou Jacobs says.
Brandon Watson

An economic "hope story" in Buffalo, New York

Over the past few years, pay for low-wage workers in the city has risen more than 40%, according to one analysis.
In Buffalo, there is "the sense that low-wage workers are doing better than inflation," says Nela Richardson of ADP, walking down Elmwood Avenue with "Marketplace" host Kai Ryssdal.
Brandon Watson

Salem's complicated journey from witch trials to witch tourism

Oct 27, 2022
In the 1690s, women were hanged in Salem, Massachusetts on suspicion of witchcraft. Now, it's a witchy Mecca for tourists.
Hundreds of thousands of people descend on Salem during the Halloween season.
Sarah Leeson

Low water levels in the Mississippi River are disrupting the supply chain

Oct 24, 2022
Austin Golding says his family's barge business was able to plan ahead, but it's still costing the company money and productivity.
A tug pushes a barge down the Mississippi River through St. Paul, Minnesota.
Karen Bleier/AFP via Getty Images

E-bikes are soaring in popularity, but some still have reservations 

Oct 14, 2022
"I find myself looking at the other bikers going slowly and going ‘just get out of my way,’" says Ian Bogost, contributing writer at The Atlantic.

How female leadership can uplift companies — and why it's so undervalued

Oct 13, 2022
Female-led companies tend to outperform those led by men, yet women are a small minority among CEOs and startup founders.
Female-led companies tend to outperform those led by men, but women are underrepresented in upper management.
John Phillips/Getty Images for IPG