Before becoming the host of Marketplace, Kai Ryssdal was a reporter and substitute host for The California Report, a news and information program distributed to public radio stations throughout California by KQED-FM. He covered business and the economy, state politics, criminal justice, capital punishment and agriculture for the program. His work there won first place awards from the Radio and Television News Directors Association and the national Public Radio News Directors Association. After graduating from Emory University in Atlanta, Kai spent eight years in the United States Navy, first flying from the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt, and then as a Pentagon staff officer. Before his career in public radio, he was a member of the United States Foreign Service and served in Ottawa, Canada, and Beijing, China.