• Entertainment

The Best Retired News Anchors

List RulesVote up the former news anchors, presenters, and commentators who were the best on-air.

For decades, people have turned on the news to receive up-to-date information about political processes and new trends. They grow accustomed to seeing the same faces night after night, and although these news anchors are no longer on the air, people still remember them fondly. You may remember sitting down with your parents at the end of the day and learning about current events with one of these familiar faces. Which of these retired news anchors hold a special place in your nostalgia?

Tom Brokaw has always been one of the most trusted faces in American news. He is the only person to have ever hosted all of NBC's evening news programs, which includes Meet the Press, NBC Nightly News, and The Today Show. He has also written several books about American history, putting his knowledge of current events on full display for everyone to see. But before Brokaw, there was Hugh Downs. He was a host for NBC News as well as several other programs over the years. 

These former news anchors may have retired long ago, but they live on within the annals of journalism. There is much that journalists of today can learn from them, so vote for the ones you wish were still on the air to provide information and insight. 

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  • 1
    Dec. at 92 (1916-2009)
    73
    21

    BirthplaceSt. Joseph, Missouri, USA

    Formerly of: CBS News

    Walter Leland Cronkite Jr. (November 4, 1916 – July 17, 2009) was an American broadcast journalist who served as anchorman for the CBS Evening News for 19 years (1962–1981). During the heyday of CBS  ...more

    #247 of 753 People We Wish Were Still Alive#931 of 1,355 The Greatest Minds of All Time#783 of 2,753 The Most Influential People of All Time

  • 2
    Dec. at 82 (1920-2003)
    53
    9

    BirthplaceWilmington, USA, North Carolina

    Formerly of: The Huntley-Brinkley Report NBC

    David McClure Brinkley (July 10, 1920 – June 11, 2003) was an American newscaster for NBC and ABC in a career lasting from 1943 to 1997. From 1956 through 1970, he co-anchored NBC's top-rated nightly  ...more
  • 3
    Dec. at 57 (1908-1965)
    45
    11

    BirthplaceGreensboro, North Carolina, USA

    Formerly of: CBS Reports

    Edward Roscoe Murrow (born Egbert Roscoe Murrow; April 25, 1908 – April 27, 1965) was an American broadcast journalist and war correspondent. He first gained prominence during World War II with a  ...more
  • 4
    Dec. at 93 (1918-2012)
    49
    18

    BirthplaceBrookline, Massachusetts, USA

    Formerly of: 60 Minutes CBS

    Myron Leon "Mike" Wallace (May 9, 1918 – April 7, 2012) was an American journalist, game show host, actor, and media personality. He interviewed a wide range of prominent newsmakers during his  ...more
  • 5
    Age: 81
    58
    29

    BirthplaceWebster, South Dakota, USA

    Formerly of: NBC News

    Thomas John Brokaw (; born February 6, 1940) is an American television journalist and author, best known for being the anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News for 22 years (1982–2004). He is  ...more

    #256 of 904 Celebrity Death Pool 2021#28 of 50 The Most Trustworthy Newscasters on TV Today#13 of 48 The Best Today Show Hosts

  • 6
    Dec. at 90 (1918-2009)
    49
    21

    BirthplaceUSA, Oklahoma, Tulsa

    Formerly of: News & Comment, ABC radio

    Paul Harvey Aurandt (September 4, 1918 – February 28, 2009), better known as Paul Harvey, was a conservative American radio broadcaster for the ABC Radio Networks. He broadcast News and Comment on  ...more

    #14 of 15 15 Celebrities Whose Parents Were Murdered#20 of 23 23 Celebrities Whose Family Members Were Murdered

  • 7
    Dec. at 68 (1923-1991)
    43
    16

    BirthplaceDakota City, Iowa, USA

    Formerly of: CBS News and ABC News

    Harry Truman Reasoner (April 17, 1923 – August 6, 1991) was an American journalist for ABC and CBS News, known for his inventive use of language as a television commentator, and as a founder of the  ...more
  • 8
    Dec. at 67 (1938-2005)
    43
    17

    BirthplaceToronto, Ontario, Canada

    Formerly of: ABC News

    Peter Charles Archibald Ewart Jennings (July 29, 1938 – August 7, 2005) was a Canadian-American journalist who served as the sole anchor of ABC World News Tonight from 1983 until his death from lung  ...more
  • 9

    Hugh Downs

    Age: 100
    45
    19

    BirthplaceAkron, Ohio, United States of America

    Formerly of: ABC News' 20/20, formerly at NBC News

    Hugh Malcolm Downs (born February 14, 1921) was a retired American broadcaster, television host, news anchor, TV producer, author, game show host, and music composer. He was perhaps best known for  ...more
  • 10
    Dec. at 68 (1927-1996)
    38
    13

    BirthplaceUSA, Chicago, Illinois

    Formerly of: NBC Nightly News

    John William Chancellor (July 14, 1927 – July 12, 1996) was an American journalist who spent most of his career with NBC News. He served as anchor of the NBC Nightly News from 1970 to 1982 and  ...more
  • 11
    Dec. at 62 (1911-1974)
    33
    9

    BirthplaceUSA, Montana, Cardwell

    Formerly of: The Huntley-Brinkley Report

    Chester Robert "Chet" Huntley (December 10, 1911 – March 20, 1974) was an American television newscaster, best known for co-anchoring NBC's evening news program, The Huntley-Brinkley Report, for 14  ...more
  • 12
    Dec. at 65 (1941-2006)
    39
    16

    BirthplaceUSA, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    Formerly of: CBS News

    Edward Rudolph "Ed" Bradley, Jr. (June 22, 1941 – November 9, 2006) was an American journalist, best known for 26 years of award-winning work on the CBS News television program 60 Minutes. During  ...more
  • 13
    Dec. at 58 (1950-2008)
    33
    17

    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York, USA

    Formerly of: NBC News

    Timothy John Russert (May 7, 1950 – June 13, 2008) was an American television journalist and lawyer who appeared for more than 16 years as the longest-serving moderator of NBC's Meet the Press. He  ...more
  • 14
    Tony Olson addedAge: 81
    28
    12

    BirthplaceLancashire, England, UK

    Edward James Martin Koppel (born February 8, 1940) is a British-born American broadcast journalist, best known as the anchor for Nightline, from the program's inception in 1980 until 2005. Before  ...more

    #9 of 9 The Most Shocking Guest Appearances On Sacha Baron Cohen's 'Who Is America?'#6 of 31 31 Celebrities Who Were in Pi Kappa Alpha

  • 15
    Dec. at 91 (1919-2010)
    31
    16

    BirthplaceNew York City, USA, New York

    Formerly of: NBC News

    Edwin Harold Newman (January 25, 1919 – August 13, 2010) was an American newscaster, journalist, and author. After beginning his career with the wire services and serving in the U.S. Navy during  ...more

    #114 of 614 Every Person Who Has Hosted 'Saturday Night Live'#82 of 153 The Best People Who Hosted SNL In The '80s

  • 16
    Dec. at 97 (1912-2010)
    30
    17

    BirthplaceMoose Jaw, Canada

    Formerly of: KGB-AM radio, San Diego

    Arthur Gordon Linkletter (born Arthur Gordon Kelly or Gordon Arthur Kelley (sources differ), July 17, 1912 – May 26, 2010) was a Canadian-born American radio and television personality. He was the  ...more
  • 17
    Age: 90
    43
    35

    BirthplaceWharton, Texas, USA

    Formerly of: CBS News

    Dan Irvin Rather Jr. (; born October 31, 1931) is an American journalist. Rather began his career in Texas and was on the scene of the Kennedy assassination in Dallas in 1963. His reporting elevated  ...more

    #91 of 237 Cancer Moon Celebrities#14 of 30 Celebrities Who Live in Texas#12 of 22 Celebrities Who Live in Austin

  • 18
    Dec. at 59 (1923-1983)
    25
    15

    BirthplaceEast Chicago, Indiana, United States of America

    Formerly of: ABC News

    Frank James Reynolds (November 29, 1923 – July 20, 1983) was an American television journalist for CBS and ABC News.Reynolds was a New York-based anchor of the ABC Evening News from 1968 to 1970 and  ...more
  • 19
    Dec. at 87 (1914-2002)
    25
    16

    BirthplaceFerriday, Louisiana, USA

    Formerly of: ABC News, formerly at CBS News

    Howard Kingsbury Smith (May 12, 1914 – February 15, 2002) was an American journalist, radio reporter, television anchorman, political commentator, and film actor. He was one of the original members  ...more
  • 20
    32
    25

    BirthplaceIndianapolis, Indiana, United States of America

    Formerly of: NBC News

    Margaret Jane Pauley (born October 31, 1950), known as Jane Pauley, is an American television journalist and author, active in news reporting since 1972. She is the anchor of CBS Sunday Morning.  ...more

    #28 of 156 The Best Talk Show Hosts Of Daytime, Late Night, and All Time#1 of 58 The Best Female Talk Show Hosts on TV#6 of 64 The Best Morning Show Hosts & Anchors

  • 21
    Dec. at 52 (1921-1974)
    22
    12

    BirthplaceMonroe, Louisiana, USA

    Formerly of: NBC News

    Frank McGee (September 12, 1921 – April 17, 1974) was an American television journalist, best known for his work with NBC from the late 1950s into the early 1970s.  ...more
  • 22
    Dec. at 73 (1917-1990)
    20
    18

    BirthplaceAda, Oklahoma, USA

    Formerly of: CBS News

    Douglas Edwards (July 14, 1917 – October 13, 1990) was an American network news television anchor. He anchored CBS's first network nightly television news broadcast from 1947–1962, which was later to  ...more
  • 23
    Age: 79
    16
    14

    BirthplaceArdmore, Pennsylvania, USA

    Formerly of: WRC-TV

    James Howard "Jim" Vance III (January 10, 1942 – July 22, 2017) was an American television news presenter in Washington, D.C.  ...more
  • 24
    Dec. at 36 (1947-1983)
    22
    23

    BirthplaceKennett Square, Pennsylvania, United States of America

    Formerly of: NBC News and Frontline

    Jessica Beth Savitch (February 1, 1947 – October 23, 1983) was an American television news presenter and correspondent, best known for being the weekend anchor of NBC Nightly News and daily presenter  ...more
  • 25
    Dec. at 74 (1897-1972)
    16
    17

    BirthplaceNew York, New York, USA

    Formerly of: The Jergens Journal, NBC radio

    Walter Winchell (April 7, 1897 – February 20, 1972) was a syndicated American newspaper gossip columnist and radio news commentator. Originally a vaudeville performer, Winchell began his newspaper  ...more