CBS News’ Byron Pitts to Join ’60 Minutes’ as Contributing Correspondent

January 13, 2009

WASHINGTON, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) congratulates CBS News correspondent Byron Pitts on today’s announcement that he will be joining the Sunday news magazine “60 Minutes” as a contributing correspondent. A longtime and committed member of NABJ, Pitts will become the program’s only African-American contributor, following the footsteps of the late Ed Bradley. Pitts also has been promoted by CBS News as its chief national correspondent.

Byron Pitts brings the kind of humanity to his reporting that inspires and challenges the viewer to not only watch but get involved in the world around them; this will bring a new and improved layer to the already thought-provoking content of 60 Minutes,” said Barbara Ciara, NABJ President and UNITY: Journalists of Color Vice President. “At a time when diversity in content and people is more important than ever, 60 Minutes has made a wise choice – one that enhances the program and provides an example of excellence in journalism.”

Pitts, a regular contributor to CBS News since 1998, will join such journalism stalwarts as Lesley Stahl, Steve Kroft and Mike Wallace – delivering investigative reports, interviews and feature segments.

Before being named national correspondent in 2006, Pitts served as a regional correspondent at CBS News bureaus in Miami and Atlanta before moving to New York City in 2001. The Emmy Award-winning Pitts received the NABJ Journalist of the Year Award in 2002 for his coverage of the 9/11 attacks.

Created in 1968 by Don Hewitt, “60 Minutes” is one of television’s most watched newscasts. Its feature stories and long-form programming regularly receive accolades from the National Association of Black Journalists and its national “Salute to Excellence” media awards – the only national award devoted exclusively to coverage of the African-American experience. Pitts received a 2008 “Salute to Excellence Award” in Long-Form Network Television News for his examination of the rising crime in Philadelphia.

“His voice is needed now more than ever,” said NABJ Vice President-Broadcast Kathy Times, “as America embraces change and the news industry loses some of its most talented African-American voices.”

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization of journalists of color in the nation, with more than 4,100 members, providing educational, career development and support to black journalists worldwide.

SOURCE National Association of Black Journalists

Source: newswire

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