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Ted Koppel

Respected broadcast journalist Ted Koppel is a commentator who provides analysis and perspective on the topics and events that shape our world. His news experience and interests are wide-ranging, spanning topics from national security, values, privacy, health and the media to Iran, Iraq and the Mideast.

Koppel's half-century broadcasting career spans radio and television, and includes every major professional recognition. He is best-known for his role as anchor and managing editor of ABC News' Nightline, which has defined excellence in television news reporting, interviewing and analysis since its debut in 1980. As the nation's longest-running network daily news anchor, Koppel's interviews and reporting touched every major news story over the past 25 years. He left Nightline in November 2005. Most recently, Koppel was managing editor of the Discovery Channel, anchoring and producing long-form programming that examined major global events.

Koppel began his broadcasting career at WMCA Radio, New York. In 1963, he 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 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 three grandchildren.

  • Dave Itzkoff's new book, Mad as Hell, chronicles the making of the movie Network. NPR commentator Ted Koppel says Network was meant as a satire, but seems like "inspired prophecy" now.
  • Anjan Sundaram's new memoir Stringer chronicles his adventures as a budding journalist in one of the world's most chaotic spots: the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Reviewer and veteran journalist Ted Koppel says Stringer "is a book about a young journalist's coming of age, and a wonderful book it is, too."
  • The U.S. mission in Iraq is likely to change in the coming months. President Bush may placate the Democrats and gradually pull out troops or move them out of harms by stationing them at bases and having them train the Iraqis. But the new mission will take years.
  • A senior Army officer says that U.S. troops will be in Iraq for three to five years — at least. Can President Bush devise a plan for Iraq that is acceptable to Iraqi leaders but sustainable at home?
  • David Halberstam, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, died in a car crash Monday in California. He rose to prominence during the Vietnam War and went on to dissect many of the institutions of America in the second half of the 20th century.
  • U.S. military forces have long planned the operation under way in Somalia, training Ethiopian troops and gathering intelligence on the ground. They have awaited an opportunity to attack Islamist extremists there.
  • As they debate controls on nuclear development, the United States and Iran labor under stereotypes that shape the discussion. This report comes in advance of Ted Koppel's documentary on the Discovery Channel, Iran. The Most Dangerous Nation. The special airs this Sunday.
  • Don't expect a pullout of U.S. troops from Iraq in the near future. An increase in sectarian violence and U.S. dependence on Middle East stability -- largely because of oil-supply concerns -- argue against leaving Iraq.
  • The State Department rejected suggestions that U.S. policy in Somalia has been dealt a setback. And President Bush says that he and his advisers are going to strategize on the situation. Senior News Analyst Ted Koppel says that's all very reassuring; but it's hard to see how things could be any worse if they just left it alone.