The Biggest Personalities on TV: Then and Now

Over the years, many TV personalities have risen in public media. Unique talents have been on the scene, spearheading the constant evolution. Some had (and still have) an outstanding career. Many are just great at what they do and are considered “good TV personalities.”

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Could there be another special set of TV stars? Yes, a group of journalists, better described as outstanding and the most notorious TV figures of our time. Let’s explore who these special breeds of journalists are and their work profiles.

Janice Villagran – The Mexican-American Journalist

She is a widely known TV star and weather broadcaster. Her amazing career started like that of other TV personalities on this list. She kicked off her TV presenting career, serving as a presenter. In addition, when not presenting weather forecasts, she also works as a guest on many programs.

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Soon after starting her career in journalism, she became very famous. Janice’s viewers started calling her “beauty with brains.” She is a reporter and an on-air host at Estrella TV network and iTestigo TV. Janice is also part of an entertainment show, En Vivo USA.

Jake Tapper, A Journalist, Author, & Cartoonist

Jake Tapper is not only a TV star; he is also an author and a cartoonist. Jake kicked off his journey in journalism, providing services for a good number of politicians in the democratic party. He was a freelance writer for some time before he started a career in journalism.

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Jake was an advanced staff writer for the Washington City Paper from 1998 to 2000. The talk show, Take Five on CNN was hosted by him in 2001. Jake was employed at ABC News from 2003 to 2010. In 2012, the presenter stopped working for ABC and moved to CNN.

News Reporter And Anchor, Jennifer Lahmers

She is a well-known reporter and key presenter in America. Jennifer Lahmers got her first offer to fill the position of a reporter at WBBJ-TV located in Jackson, Tennessee. She joined the TV station after she graduated. Jennifer was the news anchor during the weekends during her time at the TV company.

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She started working for Fox CT in Hartford in 2007 as a correspondent. Jennifer was a presenter at Back9Network, a golf cable television station, from 2012 to 2014. She was a co-anchor of Good Day Wake Up on Fox 5 WNYW in New York City. In 2019, she started working for Extra as a reporter.

American News Anchor, Matt Lauer

Matt Lauer was a TV figure from America. He began his journey in journalism, working as a producer of the noon newscast for WOWK-TV in West Virginia. He started working for NBC in 1992. There, he was one of the anchors of the program, Today in New York on WNBC.

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WNBC was the organization’s New York flagship establishment. From 1992 to 2017, Matt Lauer continued to anchor programs for NBC. His appointment with NBC was nullified in November 2017. He was fired from his job with NBC and was terminated based on misconduct and a report of an unethical act.

Susan Li, A Successful TV Personality

She is a successful TV star who started her journey working for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. She worked there as a freelance reporter and a co-producer. Li moved to work for Bloomberg Television in 2006 as a host. From there, she gradually made a name as a presenter.

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Things took a new shape in 2014 when she joined CNBC Asia. Li worked as one of the anchors of Asia Squawk Box. She also became part of CNBC’s establishments like CNBC US and CNBC Europe. She started working as a reporter for Fox Business Network in 2018.

Chris Wallace, A Popular TV Personality

Chris Wallace is a popular television personality and news anchor in America. He kicked off his successful career in journalism, working as a country-wide correspondent for The Boston Globe. Chris Wallace worked for WBBM-TV, a Chicago station. At that time, CBS was the owner of WBBM-TV.

Photo by Yvonne Hemsey, Getty Images / Source: Fox News

Chris started a full-blown job for NBC and put his talent to work for 14 years. He worked at NBC News from 1975 to 1988. He moved on to work at ABC News from 1989 to 2003. At present, he works for Fox News as a news anchor. Fox News employed Chris in the year 2003.

Diletta Leotta, An Italian TV Star

She is from Catania, Sicily, Italy. This successful TV figure began her career by reporting Serie B games on Sky Sports. She worked alongside Gianluca Di Marzio and Luca Marchegiani on the sports programs. That was the beginning of her outstanding and inspiring career in journalism.

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After Diletta’s kick-off at Sky Sports Sports, she joined Radio 105 Network, where she worked as a host and presenter with Aida Yespica. They anchored a program, 105 Take Away. From the 2018-2019, Diletta began to anchor the Serie A broadcasts for DAZN.

Anderson Cooper, Who Started His Career Working for Channel One

He is a successful American TV figure who began his journey by presenting for Channel One. Anderson worked there from 1992 to 1994. After that, he joined ABC News as a reporter in 1995. He moved to co-anchor the show American Morning with Paula Zahn at CNN in 2001.

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Anderson Cooper’s career took a new shape when he began a personal news show known as Anderson Cooper 360° on CNN. He works as a reporter for 60 minutes on CBS. From time to time, he also works as a guest co-host on ABC Live.

Yanet Garcia – A Model, Actress, Social Media Influencer

Yanet Garcia is a model, meteorologist, actress, social media figure, and television personality from Mexico. She was a weather broadcaster on Televisa Monterrey, a TV network in Mexico. Before being employed to be a TV presenter, she pursued a career in modeling. She moved on to become an attractive TV personality.

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Yanet’s choice of outfits was outstanding. Given her charming mode of dressing when on duty, she was referred to as the presenter “who encourages people to want to see the weather forecast” by Playboy. At present, she resigned from her job and relocated to the United States.

Sean Hannity, A Conservative Political Commentator

Sean Hannity is a popular American conservative political analyst. He is known for his political talk shows. He anchors a program known as Hannity on Fox News. Alongside the Fox News show, Hannity hosts a personal radio talk program named, The Sean Hannity Show.

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He was a volunteer key presenter of a show at UC Santa Barbara. He moved on to work for WVNN in Athens, Alabama. Later, he worked for WGST in Atlanta. Until 2013, Hannity also served at WABC, NY. He started working for a radio network, WOR.

Bri Winkler – American Meteorologist

She is a TV personality, a meteorologist, and a weather broadcaster. Winkler began her career working as a weather expert and one of the hosts for KMAT-TV, a TV network affiliated with NBC. Bri Winkler proceeded to join ABC7, where she was featured for Eyewitness News as a morning weather presenter.

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Her career advanced, and she became a popular TV presenter. Bri appeared on local chat shows like Good Morning America. She has been an energy and climate expert for the City of Santa Barbara since October 2019. In addition, she advocates for the American Heart/American Stroke Association.

Brian Williams, A Journalist & TV Presenter

Brian Williams is a smart journalist and a TV star who began his broadcasting career at KOAM-TV in Pittsburg, Kansas, in 1981. In 1982, he worked for WTTG, which was an independent station at that time. Brain went further to pursue his career with WCAU in Philadelphia.

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In 1993, Brian took a step further to work for NBC News. He started working as the key presenter & managing editor of The News With Brian Williams, a show aired on CNBC and MSNBC. In 2015 Brian rejoined MSNBC, remaining there until the present.

Megyn Kelly, A Journalist & Attorney

Megyn Kelly is a legal practitioner and a successful news anchor. WJLA-TV, an ABC TV network, hired her in 2003 to fill the position of a correspondent in Washington, D.C. In 2004, she received an offer from Fox News. At Fox News, she anchored Kelly’s Court, a legal show.

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Megyn Kelly anchored America Live, a daytime show that lasts 2 hours. She continued her thriving career at NBC News in 2017. Kelly had three roles: Newsmagazine on Sunday night, being a prominent news correspondent, and a talk show in the daytime. She runs The Megyn Kelly Show, her podcast as of 2020.

Sam Champion, A Smart Weather Presenter

Sam Champion is a weather broadcaster from America. Sam’s 25 years of work on the ABC flagship station, WABC-TV, and the show Good Morning America made him very popular. Previously, Sam co-anchored two shows: 23.5 Degrees With Sam Champion on The Weather Channel and America’s Morning Headquarters on AMHQ.

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In 2014, Sam Champion stopped working at ABC and was made the managing editor of The Weather Channel. He rejoined ABC in 2019 as the key presenter of Weekday Morning and Noon Weather Broadcasts at WABC-TV. His commitment to journalism brought him to the limelight in the industry.

Abby Huntsman – The Huffington Post Presenter

She is a popular TV star who became HuffPost Live’s host and producer. The program is HuffPost’s streaming show. Her work is praised, and it earned her a lot of credit. Abigail Haight Huntsman was also a regular CNN guest. Her performance made her a popular TV personality.

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Huntsman was a political analyst in Washington, D.C. for ABC News and Good Morning America in New York City. She started to work at Fox News Channel in 2015 in the position of a general assignment reporter. Huntsman was one of the hosts of The View, an ABC talk show from 2018 to 2020.

Bob Woodward, An Investigative Journalist

In 1971, Bob Woodward, an investigative journalist in America, began a career in journalism, working as a reporter for The Washington Post. During his reporting days, he mainly broadcasted political scandals. A notable example was the 1972 Watergate scandal which he originally reported with Carl Bernstein.

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His investigative journalism was outstanding and widely appreciated. Gene Roberts, a journalist, referred to Woodward’s work as “maybe the single greatest reporting effort of all time.” The veteran journalist is now an associate editor for The Washington Post. Woodward has authored 19 books on the subject of politics.

Christiane Amanpour, British-Iranian Journalist

Christiane Amanpour, a British-Iranian television personality, was hired by CNN in 1983 to be on the Foreign Desk in Atlanta, Georgia. She was a junior desk assistant. After she covered the Iraq-Iran war, she became widely recognized. She left CNN in March 2010 to join ABC News.

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Amanpour became the key presenter of This Week at ABC News. Following a new agreement, she began to work at CNN in December 2011 and left her role at ABC. Moreover, Amanpour & Company, a show by Amanpour, took the place of Charlie Rose on PBS in May 2018.

Bret Baier, A Popular TV Host

Bret Baier is a brilliant TV personality who anchors Special Report with Bret Baier on the Fox News Channel. He also serves as Fox’s Chief Political Correspondent. Before, Baier served as a Pentagon Correspondent and Fox’s Chief White House Correspondent. These key positions and his performance have made him popular.

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He had a humble beginning, just like most successful journalists. Baier started his journey in the public media space at Rockford, Illinois, in a local station. He worked with WRAL-TV afterward. He also worked in Raleigh, North Carolina, at a CBS affiliate. Baier joined Fox in 1998 as the company’s Atlanta Bureau Chief.

Robin Roberts – An Outstanding Television Presenter

Robin Roberts is a popular television presenter who started her journey in 1983 as WDAM-TV’s sports key presenter and a broadcaster in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. A few years later, in 1986, Robin Roberts was the sports anchor and broadcaster for the WSMV-TV network in Nashville, Tennessee.

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Roberts was a sports host and broadcaster at WAGA-TV in Atlanta, Georgia, from 1988 to 1990. Robin Roberts got an offer from ESPN and worked for them until 2005. In 2005 while she was with ESPN, Roberts began to work with ABC News. She anchors Good Morning America at ABC.

Louis Theroux – Filmmaker, Journalist, Author & Broadcaster

Louis Theroux is a popular TV personality and writer who has made a name for himself in his career. He is also a documentary filmmaker and author. His first job in journalism was at Metro Silicon Valley. In 1992, Spy magazine hired Theroux.

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This British-American star has been known for his brilliant presentations. At Michael Moore’s TV Nation series, he served as a correspondent. After Theroux’s deal with TV Nation ended, he struck a deal with the BBC. He created Louis Theroux’s Weird Weekends based on a development deal.

Hu Shuli – Founder and Publisher of Caixin Media

Hu Shuli is Caixin Media’s founder and publisher. This popular TV star is a professor at Sun Yat-sen University’s School of Communication and Design. She began her journey at Worker’s Daily, where she served as a reporter and editor at different levels in the industry.

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After working with Worker’s Daily, Shuli was hired by the China Business Times as their international editor in 1992. She would become a chief reporter in the next three years. She began the Caijing magazine after she quit her job in 1998. In 2009, she pioneered Caixin Media after she left Caijing.

Scott Pelley – Author and Journalist

Scott Pelley is a famous TV star and author. His career in journalism kicked off when he worked as a broadcast journalist at Lubbock’s KSEL-TV in 1975. In 1978, Scott proceeded to work for KXAS-TV in Fort Worth. In 1982, he worked for WFAA-TV in Dallas.

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About seven years later, in 1989, CBS News hired Scott. From 2011 to 2017, he was the key presenter and managing editor in CBS Evening News. In 2019, he was made the correspondent for 60 Minutes, a CBS News show. He published his book, Truth Worth Telling, in 2019.

Katie Couric, An Online Journalist, Producer & Author

Katie Couric is a popular TV personality and the person who founded Katie Couric Media. Her media establishment is a multimedia news and production organization. Couric, like other prominent journalists, had a humble beginning. She began her career at ABC News occupying the position of an assistant.

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NBC hired Couric as a reporter. She moved on to serve as Yahoo’s Global News Anchor from 2013 to 2017. CNN also hired her as an assignment editor. Katie Couric’s major career moves are NBC News (1989 – 2006), CBS News (2006 – 2011), and ABC News (2011 – 2014).

Lester Holt, A Broadcast Journalist and News Anchor

Lester Holt set out to become a TV star when he began to work for WCBS-TV as a reporter in New York City. In the following year, Holt was KNXT’s reporter in Los Angeles. He rejoined WCBS-TV in 1983 to continue his work as a reporter and anchor during the weekend.

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From there, WBBM-TV hired Lester Holt in 1986, and he went to work with the TV network in Chicago. When he was done at WBBM-TV, he moved to work with CBS News. Holt worked for CBS for 19 years. Eventually, he was also offered a job at NBC News.

Yamiche Alcindor – An American Journalist

Her journey to becoming a respectable journalist started at a New York-based newspaper, Newsday, where she worked as a reporter. Alcindor got the position of multimedia reporter with USA Today in 2011. She became a guest journalist at NBC News and MSNBC in the same year, 2011.

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She would leave USA Today to become a national political reporter at The New York Times. In the past decade, Yamiche Alcindor’s career has grown tremendously. At present, the White House correspondent for the PBS Newshour is Alcindor. She still works as a guest at MSNBC and NBC News.

Shereen Bhan, An Indian Journalist & News Anchor

Shereen is a famous Indian TV personality who began her journey to becoming a successful journalist by serving as a news researcher. She worked at Infotainment Television, Karan Thapar’s production house. Later, she took a step further to join UTV’s News and Current Affairs division.

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Shereen Bhan continued to make efforts to advance her career in journalism. She presented for SAB TV and Star TV. Following so, Bhan started working for CNBC-TV18 in December 2000. Today, she is the managing editor at CNBC-TV18. In addition, Bhan is a Young Turks’ anchor and editor.

David Gregory, An American TV Journalist

He is a television star that started pursuing his career at KGUN-TV in Tucson, Arizona as a summer reporter. That was the beginning of what would later become a massive career in journalism. Gregory also worked for KCRA-TV. From 2003 – 2014, he was Weekend Today’s co-anchor.

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He has also presented on other news shows. For example, from 1998 to 2000, David Gregory was the anchor of News Chat, Crosstalk NBC, and Newsfront on MSNBC. He also moderated Meet the Press, NBC’s talk show, on Sunday morning. Since 2016, Gregory has been a CNN political analyst.

American Journalist, Fredricka Whitfield

Fredricka Whitfield is an American TV figure. She kicked off her career at WPLG-TV in Miami, where she served for some years. She also worked in Washington, D.C., at News Channel 8. After that, Whitfield was hired by KTVT-TV in Dallas. She also worked for WTNH in New Haven, Connecticut.

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Afterward, Fredricka Whitfield got an offer with WCIV in Charleston, South Carolina. After honing her skills for some time, she started working for NBC News as a correspondent. From 1995 to 2000, she was a correspondent for NBC Nightly News in Atlanta. Whitfield became a CNN Newsroom anchor in 2002.

American TV Broadcast Journalist, Diane Sawyer

At the beginning of her career, she worked for WLKY-TV in Louisville, Kentucky. There, she served as a weather forecaster. Diane Sawyer relocated to Washington, D.C., in search of government employment. She served as a staff assistant for Richard Nixon, the then U.S. President.

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She worked for CBS News as a general assistant reporter at the early stage of her career in 1978. Sawyer later moved on to work for ABC News in 1989 as a co-anchor of Primetime News magazine. At present, Sawyer works for ABC News – she produces documentaries and interview specials.

Tucker Carlson – Political Analyst, Author

Tucker Carlson delved into his career doing a fact-checking job for Policy Review. In the early days of his career, Carlson served as a reporter at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper located in Little Rock, Arkansas. Carlson is a conservative TV personality, political analyst, author, and more.

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He worked for some leading media houses in the United States. In 1995, Tucker Carlson worked for The Weekly Standard news magazine. From 2000 to 2005, he was employed by CNN. He moved to MSNBC in 2005 and left in 2008. He works for Fox News to date.

American Journalist & Author, Mika Brzezinski

She is a popular TV figure, liberal political analyst, author, and more. In 2007, Mika started working with MSNBC. At present, she co-anchors Morning Joe, MSNBC’s weekday morning program. Previously, she served as a CBS News correspondent. She is widely known for her work.

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In 1990, Mika Brzezinski started pursuing a career in journalism when she served as an assistant on This Morning, ABC World News. In the following year, in 1991, she joined WTIC-TV/WTIC-DT, a Tribune-owned Fox affiliate in Hartford, Connecticut. There, she was a general assignment reporter.

Joe Scarborough, Cable News Host

He is a successful TV presenter. Scarborough is a presenter at MSNBC; he co-hosts the show Morning Joe. There was also a time he anchored a program called Scarborough Country on the same TV network. In 1991, he kicked off his career working as a legal practitioner in Florida.

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Joe Scarborough is not just a seasoned journalist; he is also a politician. He played politics and was in the limelight in his political career in the late 90s. From 1995 to 2001, he served in the U.S. House of Representatives. Scarborough resigned from Congress in May 2001.

Rachel Maddow, A Liberal Political Analyst

She is a popular television figure, and when it comes to political inclination, she is a liberal political analyst. Rachel Maddow was a panelist on Tucker, an MSNBC program, in June 2005. She was also a guest on Paula Zahn Now, a show on CNN.

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Maddow worked at The Advocate newspaper, where she served as a correspondent. She started a podcast called “Bag Man” in October 2018. At present, she anchors MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show. Maddow also works for the network alongside Brian Williams as a special event co-host.

Lawrence O’Donnell – Actor & Political Commentator

Lawrence O’Donnell is a multi-talented TV personality. He is a TV presenter, political analyst, and actor. He anchors a weeknight’s show on MSNBC known as The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell. From 1977 to 1988, this intelligent journalist explored his writing talent and published three books.

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O’Donnell’s career is multi-faceted. He was active in politics. From 1989 to 1995, he served in the US Congress. He later worked alongside Joe Scarborough as a contributor on Morning Joe in 2009. Lawrence O’Donnell wrote and produced for The West Wing, a series by NBC.

Erin Burnett, American News Presenter

Erin Burnett is a smart television star. She hosts a show on CNN known as Erin Burnett OutFront. She kicked off her career doing financial analysis for Goldman Sachs. She got an offer to join (as a writer & booker) for CNN’s Moneyline with Goldman Sachs.

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She moved on to serve at CitiMedia. Burnett worked as the vice president of Citigroup’s digital media group. She co-hosted Squawk on the Street and anchored Street Signs when she worked for CNBC. She has also been seen on MSNBC and NBC programs on many occasions.

American Broadcast Journalist, Shepard Smith

Like others in his class, Shepard Smith is a popular American TV personality who made a name for himself through hard work. He kicked off his career in journalism, working for WJHG-TV in Panama City Beach, Florida. Smith is a worker at both CNBC and NBC. He is the chief general news anchor.

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He anchors the program The News With Shepard Smith, which was established in late 2020. He was a correspondent for A Current Affair. Smith worked for Fox News Channel for 23 years. He started working there in 1996. Shepard Smith is widely known for his career at Fox.

Maria Bartiromo, A Smart TV Personality

Maria Bartiromo is a television star, author, and more. She served as an executive producer and assignment editor at CNN Business from 1988 to 1993. She continued to advance in her career. She works for USA Today, where she writes a monthly column known as “One-On-One.”

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She started reporting live at CNBC after she joined the network in 1993. She was also the anchor and managing editor of On the Money with Maria Bartiromo, a business interview show on CNBC. Bartiromo stopped working for CNBC and joined Fox News – she works there to date.

George Stephanopoulos, A Former Democratic Advisor

George Stephanopoulos is a popular American TV personality and political analyst like some other journalists on this list. He worked for the Democratic party as an advisor. He would later resign from the party. At present, he is ABC News’ chief anchor and political correspondent.

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Stephanopoulos works alongside Robin Roberts and Michael Strahan as a co-anchor on Good Morning America. He is also the host of ABC’s current affairs news show on Sunday morning, This Week. Before building a career in journalism, he was the Democratic party’s advisor – he resigned in 1996 from the party.

A British Weather Broadcaster, Carol Kirkwood

She started her career in journalism when she worked for the BBC’s secretarial reserve in London. Carol Kirkwood worked for Windsor TV, a cable TV network that was later named Wire TV. She went back to BBC to work as a presenter on a freelance basis in 1993.

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She started working for the UK operation of The Weather Channel in 1996. She later became the main weather reporter of BBC Breakfast in 1998. Kirkwood was a participant in the 13th series of BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing, in which she took the 10th position.

Keith Olbermann, Sports & Political Analyst

He is an American TV presenter, sports commentator, author, and political analyst. He started working at ESPN in 1992. Olbermann worked for ESPN’s SportsCenter until 1997. He stopped working for ESPN unexpectedly. The way he left gave rise to misunderstandings that still exist between ESPN and Olbermann.

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He moved on to work for Fox in 1999. He became the major anchor for the weekly sports news program. He was the host of Countdown With Keith Olbermann on MSNBC from March 2003 to January 2012. Olbermann went back to ESPN’s SportsCenter show in January 2018.