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Luke N. Vargas

lukevargas2040 at – @thecourier

Luke is an audio storyteller, reporter, anchor, producer and editor with 10 years of experience broadcasting from the United Nations and more than 30 countries. 



Host / Producer, The Wall Street Journal, London U.K. 2021-

  • Host and producer of the morning edition of the Wall Street Journal's daily news podcast, "WSJ What's News"


Senior Audio Producer, theSkimm, New York, N.Y. 2020-2021

  • Showrunner of theSkimm's weekly news podcast, "Skimm This"

Audio Producer, theSkimm, New York, N.Y. 2019-2020

  • Served as head news writer for theSkimm’s daily news podcast, “Skimm This,” earning selection by Apple Podcasts as essential COVID-19 listening

  • Managed “SkimmThis” production regularly, pitching and assigning stories to a five-person team, editing scripts and overseeing podcast recording, mixing and distribution

  • Planned, assigned, and edited weekly “Skimm Notes” long-form audio segments on topics from over-tourism to the 2020 Census

  • Arranged, conducted and cut radio interviews with 50+ newsmakers, resulting in 75 percent female interviewees, including many in underrepresented fields

  • Collaborated with internal social media and video teams to promote audio products

Chief Foreign Correspondent, Talk Media News, New York, N.Y. 2012-2019


Previously: U.N. Bureau Chief, U.N. Correspondent, Washington Reporter/Intern

  • Wrote, anchored and edited 1,150+ daily “World in 2:00” radio broadcasts, filling a void in short-form foreign policy coverage/analysis

  • Conceptualized, booked, anchored and edited weekly “Wake with Luke Vargas” radio broadcast, a program exploring how overseas events affect the U.S.

  • Identified and broke foreign policy and diplomatic news, educating thousands of readers and listeners daily while reporting from five continents

  • Conducted live ‘talk backs’ with affiliate radio stations, driving deeper coverage of foreign policy on dozens of local stations

​Freelance global radio contributor and photographer 2012-2019

  • Appear on international TV and radio programs, including the BBC World Service, Fox

    News, South African Broadcasting Corporation, CBS and more

  • Shoot news photographs, including purchases by The New Yorker, CNN, Vox, Al-Jazeera,

    the Norwegian Nobel Committee and more (often published under Luke William Pasley)

    Youth Political Correspondent, WHBQ Fox 13, Memphis, Tenn. 2011-2012 • Pitched and produced 15 on-air ‘talk back’ segments throughout the 2012 Republican

    presidential primary
    • Shot and edited video and photo b-roll to accompany live segments from La., Miss., N.Y.,

    S.C. and Tenn.



  • Latvia, Estonia and Finland – NATO enhanced forward battlegroups, Russian cyber warfare

threats, Trump-Putin summit (7/2018)

  • Singapore – Trump-Kim summit (6/2018)

  • Tokyo and Seoul, South Korea – American diplomatic initiatives in Asia, North Korea maximum pressure campaign (11/2017)

  • Monterrey, Mexico and Mexico City – Immigration, international trade, law enforcement cooperation (2/2017)

  • Brasilia, Recife and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Brazilian political turmoil, Zika virus, olympics (6/2016)

  • Manila, Philippines and Hanoi, Vietnam – South China Sea diplomacy, Vietnamese Communist Party congress (1/2016)

  • Various locations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia and Slovenia –

Refugee crisis (11/2015)

  • Moscow – Russian shows of force and geopolitical posturing (5/2015)

  • Kiev and Crimea, Ukraine – Euromaidan revolution and Russian occupation (2/2014, 3/2015)

  • Ramallah, West Bank and Jerusalem – Israeli elections and Palestinian politics (3/2015)

  • Tunis, Tunisia – First democratic presidential elections, growth of global terrorism (11/2014)

  • Medellin, Colombia – Development and urban planning, impact of FARC conflict (4/2014)

  • Amman, Irbid and Zaatari Refugee Camp, Jordan – Syrian conflict and refugee crisis, natural resource competition (10/2013)

  • Also: Tiquipaya, Bolivia (10/2015); London and Edinburgh (5/2015); The Hague, The Netherlands (11/2014); Paris (11/2014); Panama (4/2014); Warsaw, Poland (11/2013)


Audio, photo and video editing: Adobe Audition, Pro Tools, Adobe Premiere, Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, Amadeus Pro, Audio Hijack, SoundCloud, LibSyn, iTunes Podcast Connect, Podbean, Canon 5D, Zoom, Tascam
Graphic design: Adobe Illustrator, Wacom Intuos Pro
Languages: English, native speaker; Spanish, working proficiency; AP Style


New York University Gallatin School of Individualized Study (2010-2013)

Bachelor of Arts in Rhetoric, self-designed program in political discourse and creative writing Minor in Russian and European Studies
Winner, Academy of American Poets Judith Lobel Arkin Prize

Johns Hopkins University, School of Arts and Sciences (2009-2010)

Writing Seminars


United Nations Correspondents Association

3rd Vice President (2019), Executive Board Member (2018)

National Association of Hispanic Journalists

Member ​

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