Ira Glass is the host and creator of the public radio program This American Life. The show is heard each week by over 2.2 million listeners on more than 500 public radio stations, with another 2.5 million downloading each podcast.
He’s also one of the editors of the podcasts Serial and S-Town.
Glass began his career as an intern at National Public Radio’s network headquarters in Washington, DC in 1978, when he was 19 years old. Over the years, he worked on nearly every NPR network news program and held virtually every production job in NPR’s Washington headquarters. He has been a tape cutter, newscast writer, desk assistant, editor, reporter and producer. He has filled in as host of Talk of the Nation and Weekend All Things Considered.
He put This American Life on the air in 1995.
A television adaptation of This American Life ran on Showtime for two seasons and Glass has produced three feature films: Mike Birbiglia’s Don’t Think Twice and Sleepwalk with Me, and the Netflix movie Come Sunday.
Under Glass’s editorial direction, This American Life has won the highest honors for broadcasting and journalistic excellence, including six Peabody awards. In 1999, the American Journalism Review declared that This American Life was “in the vanguard of a journalistic revolution” and since then, a generation of podcasts and radio shows have sprung up — Radiolab, Invisibilia, StartUp, Reply All, Love + Radio, Heavyweight — building on the style of narrative journalism championed by Glass and his staff.
“What’s amazing is how new [This American Life] sounds. It has this beat all to itself…These stories float right into your brain and lodge there.”
“We’re blessed from time to time, with a spontaneous generation of humor and insight….[Ira Glass] finds—uncovers— drama and humor in the most pedestrian of places.”