There will be lots of familiar faces from the world of news on NBC’s new Rock Center with Brian Williams. In addition to Williams, NBC had already booked former Today Show co-host Meredith Viera and the former co-host of CBS’ The Early Show, Harry Smith. Now, they’ve hired Ted Koppel, the anchor of ABC’s Nightline for more than 25 years.
The new program is set to debut on Halloween night at 10pm.
Here’s the press release about Koppel joining the team:
TED KOPPEL NAMED SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, “ROCK CENTER WITH BRIAN WILLIAMS”
New Broadcast Premieres Monday, October 31 at 10pm
October 13, 2011 – New York, NY – NBC News today announced that Ted Koppel, the legendary and highly respected broadcast journalist, has joined “Rock Center with Brian Williams” as a special correspondent. Koppel will bring his award-winning reporting to the new broadcast, led by Brian Williams, and premiering on Monday, October 31 at 10pm. The announcement was made today by Steve Capus, President of NBC News.
“We’re truly honored to have Ted join ‘Rock Center with Brian Williams’ as a special correspondent,” said Capus. “A pioneer of broadcast journalism, Ted has touched every major news event spanning nearly 5 decades, and not only does he bring a tremendous amount of experience to the broadcast, he is a tireless advocate for quality journalism, and is one of our profession’s premiere storytellers.”
“My goal has been to make ‘Rock Center’ the Cooperstown of our craft,” said Brian Williams. “Ted is a consensus Hall of Famer, joining the best team of men and women on the air today. While his place in the history of television journalism is already established, his work here is just beginning. This is the next chapter, and it’s an enormous honor to work with this giant and former competitor.”
Koppel, whose broadcasting career spans half a century, has been honored with every major professional recognition. He contributes to NPR’s “Talk of the Nation” and is best known for his role as anchor and managing editor of ABC News’ “Nightline” where his interviews and reporting touched every major news story over 25 years, making him the longest-serving news anchor in network history. He left “Nightline” in November 2005 and was named managing editor of the Discovery Channel, anchoring and producing long-form programming that examined major global events.
He began his broadcasting career as an NBC News Page and then took a job at WMCA Radio, New York. In 1963, Koppel joined ABC Radio News as a correspondent for its daily Flair Reports program, where one of his first assignments was to cover the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He moved to television in 1966 when reporting on the Vietnam War. During his 42 years at ABC News, Koppel also worked as anchor of “The ABC Saturday Night News,” chief diplomatic correspondent, Vietnam War correspondent and Hong Kong bureau chief. He has also had a major reporting role in every presidential campaign since 1964.
Koppel has won every major broadcasting industry honor, including the Edward R. Murrow Lifetime Achievement Award, 41 Emmy Awards, eight George Foster Peabody Awards, ten duPont-Columbia Awards, ten Overseas Press Club Awards, two George Polk Awards and two Sigma Delta Chi Awards, the highest honor bestowed for public service by the Society of Professional Journalists. Among his other tributes are the first Gold Baton in the history of the duPont-Columbia Awards for “Nightline’s” weeklong series originating from South Africa, the Gabriel Personal Achievement Award from the National Catholic Association of Broadcasters and Communicators and selection as a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the Republic of France. He has received more than 20 honorary degrees from universities in the United States.
A native of Lancashire, England, Koppel moved to the United States with his parents when he was 13 years old and became a U.S. citizen in 1963. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Syracuse University and a master’s degree in mass communications research and political science from Stanford University.
He is married to Grace Anne Dorney of New York City. They live in Maryland, and have four children and seven grandchildren.
Broadcast live from the historic Studio 3B in Rockefeller Center, the weekly, hour-long newsmagazine will be built around the week’s most provocative events, compelling coverage, and newsmaker interviews. In this new venue, Williams and NBC’s trusted global news division will take viewers deeper into the world’s most talked-about stories — and raise the curtain on stories begging to be told.
In addition to the weekly primetime broadcast, there will be constantly evolving digital editions of “Rock Center with Brian Williams” available online at RockCenterNBC.com and via the show’s iPad app.
What do you think? What do you think of the team that the network is assembling? Will you tune in to see this show?