Don Lemon anchors “CNN Tonight with Don Lemon” during weekday prime-time and serves as a correspondent across CNN/U.S. programming. Based in the network’s New York bureau, Lemon joined CNN in September 2006.
A news veteran of Chicago, Lemon reported from Chicago in the days leading up to the 2008 presidential election, including an interview with then-Rep. Rahm Emanuel on the day he accepted the position of Chief of Staff for President-elect Barack Obama. He also interviewed Anne Cooper, the 106-year old voter President-elect Obama highlighted in his election night acceptance speech after he had seen Lemon’s interview with Cooper on CNN.
Lemon has reported and anchored on-the-scene for CNN from many breaking news stories, including the Orlando shooting at Pulse Nightclub (2016), Charleston church shooting (2015), death of Freddie Gray while in police custody, the shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO (2014), the George Zimmerman trial (2013), the Boston marathon bombing (2013), the Philadelphia building collapse (2013),the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting (2012), the Colorado Theater Shooting (2012), the death of Whitney Houston, the Inaugural of the 44th President in Washington, D.C., the death of Michael Jackson (2009), Hurricane Gustav in Louisiana (2008) and the Minneapolis bridge collapse (2007).
Lemon has also anchored the network’s breaking news coverage of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the Arab Spring, the death of Osama Bin Laden and Joplin tornado. Lemon reported for CNN’s documentary Race and Rage: The Beating of Rodney King, which aired 20 years to the day of the beating. He is also known for holding politicians and public officials accountable in his “No Talking Points” segment.
Lemon joined CNN after serving as a co-anchor for the 5 p.m. newscast for NBC5 News in Chicago. He joined the station in August 2003 as an anchor and reporter after working in New York as a correspondent for NBC News, The Today Show and NBC Nightly News. In addition to his reporting in New York, Lemon worked as an anchor on Weekend Today and on MSNBC. While at NBC, Lemon covered the explosion of Space Shuttle Columbia, SARS in Canada and numerous other stories of national and global importance.
In addition to NBC5 and NBC News, Lemon has served as a weekend anchor and general assignment reporter for WCAU-TV, an NBC affiliate in Philadelphia, an anchor and investigative reporter for KTVI-TV in St. Louis and an anchor for WBRC-TV in Birmingham. He began his career at WNYW in New York City as a news assistant while still in college.
In 2009, Ebony named him as one of the Ebony Power 150: the most influential Blacks in America. He has won an Edward R. Murrow award for his coverage of the capture of the Washington, D.C. snipers. He won an Emmy for a special report on real estate in Chicagoland and various other awards for his reporting on the AIDS epidemic in Africa and Hurricane Katrina. In 2006, he won three more local Emmys for his reporting in Africa and a business feature about Craigslist, an online community.
Lemon serves as an adjunct professor at Brooklyn College, teaching and participating in curriculum designed around new media. He earned a degree in broadcast journalism from Brooklyn College and also attended Louisiana State University.