Abigail Leonard is a Tokyo-based journalist who covers Japanese politics and culture for print and broadcast news outlets in the U.S. and Europe. She is a regular contributor to NPR News and has also written for the Washington Post, TIME, Newsweek and Vox and produced video pieces for the New York Times. Before she moved to Japan, she wrote and produced long-form news documentary stories as a staff producer for PBS, ABC and Al Jazeera America and was also a lead writer for two news analysis programs: Countdown with Keith Olbermann and The War Room with Jennifer Granholm.
Stories she reported from Japan earned a 2018 National Headliner Award and a 2018 James Beard Foundation Media Award Nomination. She was a 2011 East-West Center Japan Fellow, a 2010 UN Foundation Journalism Fellow and served as First Vice President of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan, a 2000-member national press organization established in 1945. She also chairs the FCCJ's Scholarship Program.
Stories she worked on in the United States won an Association of Health Care Journalists Award, an Overseas Press Club Award and a national Emmy Award.
Before she became a journalist, she was a middle school teacher for the New Orleans Public School District through Teach for America. When she's not reporting, she enjoys biking around Tokyo with her kids.