WBUR Staff

Sacha Pfeiffer

Former Staff
Host, All Things Considered, WBUR

Sacha Pfeiffer is a senior reporter and host of WBUR’s All Things Considered, as well as a fill-in host on NPR’s nationally syndicated Here & Now. She was previously host of Radio Boston, the station’s weekday show highlighting interesting people, places and issues in Boston and beyond.

Pfeiffer joined WBUR in 2008 after more than a decade as a reporter for the Boston Globe, where she was on the Spotlight investigative team that won the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for its stories on sex abuse in the Catholic church. At WBUR, she initially covered health, science, medicine and the environment, and she has received numerous honors from the Associated Press and the Radio and Television News Directors Association, as well as a national Edward R. Murrow Award for broadcast reporting.

Pfeiffer got her start in journalism at the Dedham Times, a weekly newspaper south of Boston. She then moved to the Globe and, during her years on the Spotlight Team, produced series on financial abuses by private foundations, George W. Bush’s military service, shoddy home construction, and the Catholic church’s cover-up of clergy sex abuse. The latter series also won a George Polk Award for National Reporting, Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting, and Selden Ring Award for Investigative Reporting, among other honors. At the Globe, she also covered legal affairs, the state court system and the nonprofit sector.

From 2004-2005, Pfeiffer was a John S. Knight journalism fellow at Stanford University, where she studied at Stanford Law School. She is a co-author of Betrayal: The Crisis in the Catholic Church and has been an adjunct faculty member at Boston University’s College of Communication. She has an undergraduate degree in English and history, magna cum laude, and a master’s degree in education, both from Boston University. She is also an English-as-a-second-language teacher.

Recent stories

Usman Riaz: From Self-Taught Musician To Senior TED Fellow

November 28, 2014
Usman Riaz (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

When Usman Riaz was a young music student, he wanted to expand his repertoire beyond what he could learn from his teachers. So he turned to the web.

The Rebellious Roots Of The Birth Control Pill

November 28, 2014
A package of estrogen/progestin birth control pills. (AP/Bedsider.org)

Oral contraceptives were born in Massachusetts out of the ardent efforts of four people: a researcher ousted from Harvard in the 1930s, a Catholic gynecologist in Boston, an MIT-trained millionaire and feminist Margaret Sanger.

Week In Review: Protesters In Boston, Baker’s Cabinet, Colleges Drop Cosby

November 28, 2014
Demonstrators in Boston march in support of slain Ferguson teen, Michael Brown. (Alex Kingsbury / WBUR)

WBUR’s Sacha Pfeiffer speaks with Radio Boston’s week-in-review panel.

Lois Lowry's 'The Giver' Makes It To The Big Screen Two Decades After Publication

November 27, 2014
Author Lois Lowry. (Matt Mckee/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

The children’s author talks about the movie adaptation of her 1993 Newbery Medal-winning novel.

Paul Speidel Looks Back On 20 Years Of Blues With ‘Gratitude’

November 25, 2014
Paul Speidell. (Courtesy)

For 20 years, Newton guitarist Pail Speidel has mixed blues with rock, jazz and funk. Now the Chicago native is celebrating two decades of music with a new album called “Gratitude.”

2 Award-Winning Boston Chefs Answer Your Thanksgiving Cooking Questions

November 25, 2014
What questions do you have about cooking the Thanksgiving meal? (Satya Murthy/Flickr)

We’ve got a few questions about Thanksgiving: brine, roast or deep fry? Stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, or all three? Homemade cranberry sauce or store-bought?

Grand Jury Decision Sparks Unrest In Ferguson, Nationwide Demonstrations

November 25, 2014
Protesters run for shelter as smoke fills the streets after the announcement of the grand jury decision not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed black 18-year-old, Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (AP)

We get an update on the situation in Ferguson after a grand jury decided not to indict the police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown.

Guitarist Joe Perry On His ‘Life In And Out Of Aerosmith’

November 19, 2014
Aerosmith lead guitarist Joe Perry (Courtesy Joe Perry)

Joe Perry talks with Radio Boston’s Sacha Pfeiffer about his new memoir, which chronicles the Allston-born band’s four decades together.

Littlefield On Sports: Adrian Peterson Suspended, Revolution Head To Playoffs

November 19, 2014
New England Revolution's Lee Nguyen (24) takes a shot on goal during the second half of a MLS soccer game against the Portland Timbers, Saturday, March 24, 2012 in Foxborough, Mass.  (AP Photo/Mary Schwalm)

We talk sports with Only A Game’s Bill Littlefield.

The Promise And Problems Of ‘Yes Means Yes’ In Campus Sex Assaults

November 19, 2014
New students at San Diego State University watch a video on sexual consent during an orientation meeting in August 2014. (Gregory Bull/AP)

Some Harvard students are pushing for a “yes means yes” sexual consent policy on campus, also known as affirmative consent. They argue that “no means no” isn’t sufficient.

Drive Safe, Score Well: App Is A Driving ‘Report Card’

October 09, 2014
Cambridge Mobile Telematics founder Hari Balakrishnan uses his firms' safe driving app. (Sacha Pfeiffer/WBUR)

BOSTON — With its app, a Cambridge startup is trying to make roads safer by making safer drivers.

Rep. Lynch Expresses Doubts About Funding Syrian Rebels, But Stands By Yes Vote

October 09, 2014

BOSTON — Massachusetts U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch recently traveled to Iraq and Turkey and says he still doesn’t have a good sense of whether the rebels are “reliable partners.”

Somerville, Chelsea Leaders Debate Merits Of Everett Casino

October 08, 2014
Artist’s rendering of the proposed Wynn Harbor Park in Everett (Wynn Resorts Holdings)

BOSTON — The cities of Somerville and Chelsea sit across the Mystic River from the planned Wynn Resorts casino in Everett, and although their leaders call each other friends, they’re on opposing sides of the casino issue.

Ebola Causing ‘Collapse Of The Health Care System’ In West Africa, Boston Doctor Says

September 26, 2014

BOSTON — Boston-based Partners In Health is helping try to fight the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

‘It’s A Devastating Day': Suffolk Downs COO Weighs In On Casino Decision

September 16, 2014

BOSTON — Now that Wynn Resorts has won the Boston-area casino license, Suffolk Downs race track is likely to close.

Tisei: Moulton’s 6th District Victory Doesn’t Change Plan Of Attack

September 10, 2014

BOSTON — The race for Massachusetts’ 6th Congressional District has become one to watch.

From Growls To Canine Gait, A.R.T. Actor Embraces His Animal Role

August 22, 2014
Thayne Jasperson plays the family dog Porthos in the new musical "Finding Neverland" at the American Repertory Theater. (Courtesy of the A.R.T.)

BOSTON — Actor Thayne Jasperson is bounding out of his comfort zone and transforming on stage from man to man’s best friend. He says playing the family dog in the ART’s current production, Finding Neverland, “is the coolest thing ever.”

With Flurry Of Trades, Red Sox ‘Got Rid Of A Lot Of Working Parts'

July 31, 2014
Jon Lester pitches during the first inning of a Red Sox game against the Royals earlier this month. (Michael Dwyer/AP)

BOSTON — Nine months after winning the World Series, the Red Sox unloaded five key members of that championship team Thursday, including Jon Lester. Boston Herald sports writer Steve Buckley puts the flurry of high-profile trades into context.

To Protect Birds, U.S. Seeks Kiteboarding Ban At Monomoy

July 01, 2014
The federal agency that oversees the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge says kiteboarding and piping plovers are a bad mix, so it’s proposed a ban on the sport there. And that’s caused howls of protest from kiteboarders who believe they can enjoy their sport without posing any threat to birds. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

CHATHAM, Mass. — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says that the kites and their shadows scare piping plovers and other shorebirds that nest at the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge in Chatham. But the kiteboarders believe there’s no proof that their sport has any negative impact on the birds.

Protesters Welcome Buffer Zone Ruling, While State Leaders Seek Action

June 26, 2014

BOSTON — The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously struck down the Massachusetts law creating abortion clinic buffer zones.

Anti-Casino Ballot Question Will Dominate Mass. Governor’s Race, Analyst Says

June 24, 2014

BOSTON — The casino repeal referendum in Massachusetts is “about as exciting a kind of an issue … that we will see in some time in this state,” one political analyst says.

Shocked By His Own Voice: Male Soprano Soars In World’s Smallest Vocal Category

May 14, 2014
Male soprano Robert Crowe (Courtesy)

BOSTON — Robert Crowe is one of the very few male sopranos singing professionally worldwide.

Group Song Inspired By Marathon Bombings Grows To Nearly 100 Voices

April 15, 2014

A group song inspired by the Boston Marathon bombings now contains about 90 voices, including two choirs.

From ‘Scandal’ To Chekhov: Actress Kate Burton On Her Later-In-Life Professional Success

March 19, 2014
Kate Burton in the role of Irina Arkadina in the Huntington Theatre Company’s production of Anton Chekhov’s "The Seagull." (T. Charles Erickson)

BOSTON — WBUR’s Sacha Pfeiffer speaks with actress Kate Burton — from the hit TV shows “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scandal” — about her role in the Huntington Theatre’s current production.

What Spurs Jazz Icon Herbie Hancock’s Constant Musical Reinvention? ‘Boredom!’

February 06, 2014
Herbie Hancock at his first of six Harvard University lectures on "The Ethics of Jazz." (Tia Chapman/Harvard University)

BOSTON — Legendary jazz pianist Herbie Hancock talks about his role as Harvard University’s 2014 Norton Professor of Poetry, and muses on life.

Making It Up As They Go: Boston's Unscripted Musical Project

December 19, 2013
Members of Boston’s Unscripted Musical Project perform a recent show. (Courtesy)

There’s a new theatrical event in Boston: a Broadway-style comical musical spun from scratch on the spot using a story idea supplied by the audience.

‘I Am A Human Being, Just Like You': Stories By Boston’s Homeless Come To The Stage

November 21, 2013
Nolan Bagley

BOSTON — An unusual theater event is happening in the Boston area this weekend: “Stories Without Roofs,” a collection of writings by homeless people performed by professional actors, singers and dancers.

Lure Of Jagger: Marsh Chapel Choir Embraces Rock ‘N’ Roll

June 12, 2013

BOSTON — BU’s Marsh Chapel Choir temporarily ditches its traditional church music to sing with the Rolling Stones.

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