Charlayne Hunter-Gault, a native of Due West, South Carolina, made civil rights history as the first African American woman to graduate from the University of Georgia in 1962, and has gone on to establish herself as one of television’s premier journalists. She joined The MacNeil/Lehrer Report in 1978 as a correspondent, and became The NewsHour’s national correspondent in 1983. In 1989, she was also a correspondent for MacNeil/Lehrer Productions’ five-part series, Learning in America. Previously Ms. Hunter-Gault served as a “Talk of the Town” reporter for The New Yorker.
After winning a Russell Sage Fellowship to Washington University, she was on the staff of Trans-Action magazine. In 1967, she joined the investigative news team at WRC-TV, Washington, D.C., and also anchored the local evening news. In 1968, Ms. Hunter-Gault joined The New York Times as a metropolitan reporter specializing in coverage of the urban African American community.
Her work was honored with many awards during her ten years at the paper, including the National Urban Coalition Award for Distinguished Urban Reporting. She has also been published in The New York Times Magazine, Saturday Review, The New York Times Book Review, The New Yorker, Essence, and Vogue. During her association with The NewsHour, Charlayne has won additional awards: two Emmys, and a Peabody for excellence in broadcast journalism for her work on Apartheid’s People, a NewsHour series on South Africa. She also received the 1986 Journalist of the Year Award from the National Association of Black Journalists; the 1990 Sidney Hillman Award; the Good Housekeeping Broadcast Personality of the Year Award; the American Women in Radio and Television Award; and two awards from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for excellence in local programming.
Ms. Hunter-Gault is author of In My Place, (1992), a memoir about her experiences at the University of Georgia. She is the recipient of more than two dozen honorary degrees.