Jim Lehrer

News Anchor


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his nearly three-hour Archive interview, journalist/anchor Jim Lehrer talks about his early years as a newspaper reporter and his transition to broadcast journalist. He describes being present at President Kennedy's assassination in 1963 - Lehrer asked the secret service if the protective bubble would be on the President's car and ponders how that may have affected the day's events. He talks about becoming a news anchor for PBS in its formative years, and the challenges that came along with it. Lehrer recalls covering the Watergate hearings, where he was first partnered with Robert MacNeil - the man who would act as his co-anchor for several years thereafter. Lehrer speaks of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, aka PBS NewsHour, the groundbreaking and award-winning newscast he first hosted with Robert MacNeil, and later solo. He concludes by discussing how the industry has changed and offers advice to aspiring journalists. Don Carleton conducted the interview on May 21, 2001 in Arlington, Virginia. 

"It is not a journalist's job to change the world. A journalist's job is to see what's happening in the world and report that to others, who will then change it." 

Highlights
Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51
Jim Lehrer on covering the Vietnam war
01:15
Jim Lehrer on his favorite memories of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
06:01
Jim Lehrer on what makes a good interview
05:25
Jim Lehrer on advice to aspiring broadcast journalists
04:27
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on his experience growing up during World War II; on radio programs he enjoyed growing up
On going to work for "The Dallas Morning News"; on meeting his wife; on reporting for "The Times Dallas Herald" 

Chapter 2

On covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy; on the JFK Memorial in Dallas
On joining the public television station KERA in Dallas and making the transition from print to television journalism

Chapter 3

On why he moved over to television; on producing the news for KERA; on PBS's VD Blues program
On going to PBS; on drafting a new code of Standards and Practices for PBS news; on teaming up with Robert MacNeil to cover Watergate

Chapter 4

On meeting Robert MacNeil; on interviewing; on covering Vietnam
On the formation of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour;  on expanding the show to an hour; on his and Robert MacNeil's strengths

Chapter 5

On NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour on the program competing with the networks; on what makes a good interview
On advice to aspiring broadcast journalists; on changes in broadcast journalism since he began; on Robert MacNeil leaving NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
Shows

NewsHour with Jim Lehrer aka PBS NewsHour

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Jim Lehrer on the formation of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer aka PBS NewsHour
06:41
Jim Lehrer on his and Robert MacNeil's strengths and his audience
06:41
Jim Lehrer on his favorite memories of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
06:01
Jim Lehrer on NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour  competing with the networks
00:53
Jim Lehrer on the underwriting of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
03:35
Jim Lehrer on Robert MacNeil leaving NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
01:09
Topics

Advice

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Jim Lehrer on advice to aspiring broadcast journalists
04:27

Censorship / Standards & Practices

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Jim Lehrer on drafting a new code of Standards and Practices for PBS news
02:49

Historic Events and Social Change

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Jim Lehrer on his experience growing up during World War II
01:38
Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51
Jim Lehrer on the JFK Memorial in Dallas
03:11
Jim Lehrer on joining up with Robert MacNeil and covering the Watergate hearings
04:23
Jim Lehrer on covering the Vietnam war
01:15

JFK Assassination and Funeral

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Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51
Jim Lehrer on the JFK Memorial in Dallas
03:11

John F. Kennedy

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Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51
Jim Lehrer on the JFK Memorial in Dallas
03:11

Richard M. Nixon

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Jim Lehrer on joining up with Robert MacNeil and covering the Watergate hearings
04:23

Television Industry

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Jim Lehrer on drafting a new code of Standards and Practices for PBS news
02:49
Jim Lehrer on advice to aspiring broadcast journalists
04:27

Television and the Presidency

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Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51
Jim Lehrer on the JFK Memorial in Dallas
03:11
Jim Lehrer on joining up with Robert MacNeil and covering the Watergate hearings
04:23

Vietnam War

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Jim Lehrer on covering the Vietnam war
01:15

War

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Jim Lehrer on his experience growing up during World War II
01:38

World War II

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Jim Lehrer on his experience growing up during World War II
01:38
Professions

Anchor

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Jim Lehrer on interviewing
05:32
Jim Lehrer on what makes a good interview
05:25
Jim Lehrer on advice to aspiring broadcast journalists
04:27

Journalists & News Producers

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Jim Lehrer on interviewing
05:32
Jim Lehrer on what makes a good interview
05:25
Jim Lehrer on advice to aspiring broadcast journalists
04:27
People

Fred Friendly

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Jim Lehrer on joining the public television station KERA in Dallas and making the transition from print to television journalism
09:46

John F. Kennedy

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Jim Lehrer on covering the assassination of John F. Kennedy
15:51

Robert MacNeil

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Jim Lehrer on joining up with Robert MacNeil and covering the Watergate hearings
04:23
Jim Lehrer on his and Robert MacNeil's strengths and his audience
04:33
Jim Lehrer on his favorite memories of NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
06:01
Jim Lehrer on Robert MacNeil leaving NewsHour with Jim Lehrer  aka PBS NewsHour
01:09

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