We must admit that what was once an honorable profession, has lost some of its charms, especially with credible news outlets competing with social media influencers on who’s the first to publish a headline, even if it’s not factual. But let us not lose hope, there are still respectable reporters out there who loyal to the art of journalism. These hard-working people study for years on, to learn everything about journalism and then spend countless hours perfecting the craft of reporting.
In our second part to Salaries of TV Reporters That May Surprise You, we’ve listed some of the biggest names in the industry, along with the salaries they accompany them. Some may surprise, others will not, but one thing’s for sure- they’ll all make you at least a tad bit envious. But hey, with all the work they put into providing us with information we can rely on, they deserve it!
Hallie Jackson – $200k
Hallie Jackson is famous for being the Chief White House correspondent for NBC News, and she is the anchor for their cable division. She is a fill-in anchor for MSNBC and NBC’s Today. She began her journalism career at WBOC-TV in the town of Salisbury, Maryland. She was offered the position at NBC News in 2014.
Hallie Jackson began her journey into politics when she graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in Political Science. In 2014, she covered the presidential campaign for Ted Cruz for NBC. In 2016, she became an anchor for MSNBC, which is part of NBC’s daytime coverage program.
Craig Melvin – $3M
For the majority of his career, Craig Melvin has been a host and an anchor for MSNBC and NBC News. In 2018, he started his position as an anchor for NBC’s Today. Later in 2018, he became a co-host for 'Today Third Hour', which became a permanent position going into 2019. Melvin anchored both the democratic and republican national conventions on MSNBC in 2012.
For his hard work and outstanding abilities as an anchor for NBC News, he received an Emmy in 2006 as “Best Anchor.” To this day, Craig Melvin is a Dateline Extra anchor, an anchor for Today, and an MSNBC live anchor.
Gayle King – $5.5M
Gayle King is the chief anchor for CBS News, and she is the co-host of CBS’s morning show called “CBS This Morning.” For a very brief period of time, King co-hosted an NBC daytime talk show with Robin Wagner called “Cover to Cover.”
Gayle King is also an esteemed writer. She is an editor for 'O', the Oprah Winfrey magazine. She met Oprah Winfrey at one of her first broadcasting positions as a production assistant at WJZ-TV in Baltimore. She had a show called 'The Gayle King Show', that aired on the Oprah Winfrey Network, but it ended in 2011 due to her landing a job for CBS News.
Jose Diaz-Balart – $1M
Jose Diaz-Balart is a Cuban-American journalist and television reporter. He is currently an anchor for a Spanish-language news program called 'Noticias Telemundo'. Additionally, he is an anchor for the public affairs Sunday program called 'Enfoque con Jose Diaz-Balart'. He is also a part of NBC Nightly News on Saturday nights.
Diaz-Balart has won several Emmys for his outstanding broadcasting abilities, and he was even named one of the top 100 more influential people in the United States from Hispanic Business Magazine. In 2014, he began hosting the 10 AM news hour on MSNBC.
Dana Bash – $1M
Dana Bash is well known for being a very successful American journalist, anchor, and political correspondent for CNN. She graduated from George Washington University with a degree in political communications. Right after she graduated, she landed a job at CNN as a producer of their weekend programs, including 'Late Edition' and 'Inside Politics'.
Later in her career, she was able to program coverage of the United States Senate. Awarded by Elle Magazine, Dana Bash was part of the "Women in Washington Power List" event in 2014. In 2008, Bash actually married fellow CNN correspondent John King.
Major Garrett – $1M
Major Garrett is an American television journalist best known for being the chief Washington correspondent for CBS News. He is also the host of “The Takeout” podcast with CBS News, and he is a correspondent for “National Journal.” He covered both the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections. He covered the democratic nominees and eventually went on to cover Barack Obama himself.
Major Garrett is also widely known for his journalistic writings. Before joining CBS, he was the senior editor and congressional correspondent for U.S. News & World Report, and a congressional reporter for 'The Washington Times'. Also, he is a reporter for popular magazines such as the 'Houston Post' and 'The Weekly Standard'.
Bret Baier – $7M
Bret Baier is the chief political anchor for Fox News, and he hosts “Special Report with Bret Baier". Baier graduated from DePauw University with degrees in Political Science and English. He began his career in television reporting in Rockford, Illinois at a local station. Then, he moved to CBS. He sent in an audition tape to Fox News, and he soon became part of their Atlanta bureau.
In 2007, he was titled Fox News’ White House correspondent, where he covered the administration of George W. Bush. A decade later in 2017, he received the Sol Taishoff Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism by the National Press Foundation.
Lisa Ling – $8.5M
Lisa Ling is a journalist, television reporter, and author. She is well known for her show 'This Is Life with Lisa Ling' on CNN, which premiered in 2014. She is the former host of 'Our America with Lisa Ling', which aired on the Oprah Winfrey Network. She has also reported for ABC’s 'The View', Channel One News, and National Geographic Explorer.
Ling began her career as a co-host for “Scratch,” a teen magazine show. Also, when she joined Channel One News, she was only 18 years old, which makes her one of the youngest television news reporters in history.
Diane Sawyer – $22M
Diane Sawyer is mostly known for being the anchor of ABC World News and a co-anchor for 'Good Morning America'. In 1978, she was hired by CBS News as a general reporter. She became CBS’s political correspondent in 1980. In 1984, she became the first female reporter to appear on '60 Minutes'.
Earlier in her career before becoming a reporter, she was closely associated with former President Richard Nixon. She was part of the staff at the White House during his presidency, and she even helped Nixon write his book “RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon,” a biography of Nixon’s life.
Neil Cavuto – $10M
Neil Cavuto works for Fox News as a journalist, commentator, and news anchor. He hosts three programs on Fox: “Your World with Neil Cavuto,” “Cavuto Live,” and “Cavuto: Coast to Coast.” He also has a nightly wrap-up of business news that airs on Fox. Before working for Fox, he had a position at CNBC, where he was an anchor and reporter.
In 1980, Neil Cavuto graduated from St. Bonaventure University with a bachelor's degree in mass communication. In the journalism industry, he has received many awards and much recognition, including being named the best interviewer in business news by the Wall Street Journal. He is the author of two bestselling business books called “More Than Money” and “Your Money or Your Life.”
Willie Geist – $2.5M
Willie Geist is famously known for co-hosting MSNBC's 'Morning Joe' and anchoring 'Sunday Today with Willie Geist'. He frequently substitutes and fills in for both the weekday and Saturday editions of 'Today'. He serves as a correspondent for both NBC News and NBC Sports.
What many people don’t know about Willie Geist is that he is also an author. He has written books that have been on the New York Times’ Bestseller List, such as “Good Talk, Dad” and “American Freak Show: The Completely Fabricated Stories of Our New National Treasures” which are both comedy books. He also wrote a self-help book called “Loaded! Become a Millionaire Overnight and Lose 20 Pounds in 2 Weeks or Your Money Back!”
Richard Quest – $1M
Richard Quest is an English television reporter and journalist at CNN. He started out his career on BBC when he moved to New York City to be BBC’s North American correspondent. On BBC, he had a regular segment called 'World Business Report', where he would talk about business entities like the stock market.
In 2001, Quest joined CNN when 'Business International' launched. He stuck with CNN doing different programs and events. In 2015, he was announced as the host of ABC’s game show '500 Questions'. He also wrote a book about the missing Malaysian air flight called “The Vanishing of Flight MH370: The True Story of the Hunt for the Missing Malaysian Plane.”
Adam Schefter – $1.2M
Adam Schefter is a television sports analyst. He received journalism degrees from the University of Michigan and Northwestern University. He wrote for several newspapers and sports articles before accepting a reporting career with NFL Network. In 2009, he began his current career at ESPN.
Schefter has received many honors for his efforts, including being named The Cynopsis Sports Media Personality of the Year because of his connection with sports fans. Also, in 2015, he won an honorable mention for Sports Illustrated Now's 2015 Media Person of the Year. In 2017, Schefter has become an NBA Insider for ESPN, along with already being a successful NFL Insider.
Gretchen Carlson – $1M
In 2005, Gretchen Carlson began her career with Fox News. She was on the morning show called “Fox & Friends” which she co-hosted with Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade. She departed from this program in 2013, launching her new program called “The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson.” When her contract with Fox ended, she filed a lawsuit against Fox News Chairman, Roger Ailes, for sexual assault. This caused many other women from the network to come out against Ailes as well.
Before embarking on her career in television broadcasting, she graduated with honors from Stanford University. In 2017, Gretchen Carlson was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine.
Chuck Todd – $1M
Chuck Todd is a television journalist currently moderating NBC’s 'Meet the Press'. He hosts MTP Daily on MSNBC, and he is also the Political Director for NBC News. Before having these positions, he hosted 'The Daily Rundown' on MSNBC. He is the on-air political analyst for 'NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt', which is currently the most-watched network newscast in the United States.
Chuck Todd has always been into politics. In fact, before becoming a reporter, he frequented political campaigns. He co-hosted the webcast series called 'Hotline TV', and he worked part-time at National Journal's 'The Hotline'. Chuck Todd has also written best-selling political books like “The Stranger: Barack Obama in the White House”, which was published in 2014.
Jake Tapper – $1M
Jake is the Chief Washington Correspondent for CNN. He hosts the weekday television news show called 'The Lead with Jake Tapper', which won three National Headliner Awards for its reporting in 2013. He also hosts CNN’s political news show, called 'State of the Union with Jake Tapper'. But, Jake Tapper is not only a reporter. He also has experience being an author and a cartoonist.
Jake Tapper has won many awards for his work as a television reporter. In 2017, he won the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Also in 2017, Tapper received the John F. Hogan Distinguished Service Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association.
Kate Snow – $200k
Kate Snow is best known for being an American television journalist for NBC News. But, many people don't know that she is actually the Senior National Correspondent for all NBC platforms, including MSNBC, Dateline, NBC Nightly News, and TODAY. She is responsible for anchoring the Sunday editions of NBC Nightly News, and she substitutes for other weekday episodes as well.
Before dedicating her broadcast career to NBC, she was a co-anchor for 'Good Morning America' on the weekends. She had this position from 2004 to 2010. She also had her own program on NBC, called “MSNBC Live with Kate Snow.”
Ricki Lake – $2.6M
Ricki Lake started out her career in acting, when she landed the role of Tracy Turnblad in the movie 'Hairspray'. She had many other acting positions when she was younger, but she became a talk show host in the early 90s.
'The Ricki Lake Show' debuted in 1993, and she was introduced as the youngest talk show host on television, with her only being 24 years old at the time. She has received an Emmy for being an outstanding talk show host. She ended her contract with the show in 2004 in order to spend more time with her family. After her show, she did smaller projects, like being a game show host for CBS’s 'Gameshow Marathon', which was unfortunately short-lived.
Don Lemon – $125k
Don Lemon is an American television journalist most commonly known for being a news anchor for CNN. On this channel, he hosts the program called “CNN Tonight.” During his early days of news anchoring, he had positions anchoring for small local stations in Alabama and Pennsylvania. Other gigs that led to his position at CNN included being a correspondent for “Today” and “NBC Nightly News.” Lemon has been awarded 3 regional Emmys and the Edward R. Murrow Award.
Besides broadcasting, Don Lemon wrote a memoir in 2011 called “Transparent.” In the memoir, he openly came out as gay, making him one of the few gay black men in the television reporting industry.
Matt Lauer – $28m
Matt Lauer is one of the most recognized names in the broadcasting business. He started his TV career as a producer of the noon newscast for WOWK-TV in West Virginia and later, as an on-air reporter for the 6 pm and 11 pm newscasts. He then hosted several weekly information and talk programs around the country. In the course of time, Lauer’s hosting experiences and on-camera presence took him to NBC’s national news organization while still working for WNBC. He filled in on The Today Show for Margaret Larson when needed, which gave him the opportunity to join The Today Show in 1994 as its news anchor and eventually as a co-host from 1997 to 2017.
Lauer was also a contributor for Dateline NBC and was a host for the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. He also co-hosted the opening ceremonies of many Olympic Games. Lauer has interviewed several big names in entertainment, politics, and sports. He was well-liked by viewers; however, in 2017, his contract was terminated by NBC due to sexual misconduct allegations.
Kathie Lee Gifford – $2m
Kathie Lee Gifford first gained a name as a singer on the 1970s game show Name That Tune with Tom Kennedy. She later became a correspondent for Good Morning America and a spokesperson for Carnival cruises. In 1985, she co-hosted The Morning Show on WABC-TV with Regis Philbin. It went national in 1988 and was then known as Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee. The 15-year run of the show took her fame to another level. Both Philbin and Gifford have been nominated for Outstanding Talk Show Host during the Daytime Emmy Awards for eight consecutive years in a row.
In July 2000, Gifford left the show, and in 2008, she joined NBC’s morning show, Today, as a co-host of the fourth hour. After having 11 Daytime Emmy nominations, she finally won her first Daytime Emmy as part of the Today team in 2010.
Meredith Vieira – $11m
Meredith Louise Vieira’s journalistic career began all the way back to 1975 when she was a news announcer for a radio station in Massachusetts. She then worked as a local reporter and anchor at WJAR-TV in Providence, which paved the way for her to become an investigative reporter until 1982. But she became a household name when she worked as a correspondent for 60 Minutes on CBS. She was also a co-anchor on the CBS Morning News.
Vieira moved to ABC, and in 1997, she served as a moderator and co-host of the daytime talk show The View until 2006. She was also the first host of the American version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? In which she won two Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Game Show Host. Today, she is a special correspondent for NBC News and a contributor to the NBC Nightly News, Dateline NBC, and Today.
Elizabeth Vargas – $750k
Elizabeth Vargas joined NBC News in 1993 as a correspondent for Dateline NBC and substitute anchor for Today. In 1996, she was hired as the newsreader for ABC’s Good Morning America. Eventually, she became the anchor of Sunday’s World News Tonight and co-anchor of 20/20. Peter Jennings’ death in 2005 made her a permanent co-anchor of World News Tonight along with Charles Gibson or Diane Sawyer.
Vargas is the first national evening news anchor of Puerto Rican and Irish-American descent and the third female anchor of a network evening newscast in the United States. She is currently the lead investigative reporter/documentary anchor on A&E’s Cults & Extreme Belief.
Bill O’Reilly – $20m
The fallen journalist used to have a solid career with a few local Emmy Awards under his belt. Bill O’Reilly has worked in different TV stations including CBS News and ABC News. When Fox News Channel started in 1996, he worked with them and was the host of his own show, The O’Reilly Factor. It was the highest-rated cable news show for 16 years, and O’Reilly has even been dubbed as Fox News’ biggest star in their 20-year history. However, Fox News terminated his employment in April 2017 after finding out his scandals.
O’Reilly is the author of numerous books and is now hosting his own podcast called No Spin News, which he created after being fired from Fox.
Heidi Watney – $150k
In high school, Heidi Watney participated in diving, gymnastics, hurdles, and cheerleading, so it’s safe to say that she is a sportswoman and that is what inspired her to choose her career path. She worked for NESN, a Boston-based network, where she was an on-field reporter and host of numerous Red Sox specials including The Ultimate Red Sox Show. But prior to this, she was a weekend sports anchor for KMPH-TV and a sports talk radio host for ESPN Radio 1430 KFIG.
In 2011, she worked as a sideline reporter for Time Warner Cable SportsNet and then she joined MLB Network to host the network’s show Quick Pitch.
Natalie Morales – $1m
Before pursuing her career as a journalist, Natalie Morales worked at Chase Bank. She graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree with dual majors in journalism and Latin American studies from Rutgers University. She started as a morning anchor at News 12 – The Bronx where she also worked as a camera operator, producer, and editor. Later, she was hired as an anchor and correspondent for MSNBC from 2002 to 2006.
GETTY IMAGESIn 2016, Morales replaced Billy Bush on Access Hollywood and Access Hollywood Live. She also became the West Coast anchor of Today and a correspondent for Dateline all at the same time. Morales has been named as one of the “50 Most Influential Latinas.”
Erin Andrews – $1M
Erin Andrews began her career at Fox Sports Florida as a freelance reporter in 2000 and as a Tampa Bay Lightning reporter for the Sunshine Network in 2001 until 2002. From 2002 until 2004, she worked as a studio host and reporter at Turner South network where she covered the Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, and Atlanta Thrashers. It was during her stint at Turner South that she got noticed and was hired as a reporter for ESPN.
After eight years with ESPN, she joined Fox Sports and hosted Fox College Football and contributed on Fox NFL Sunday. She was also the field reporter for most of the major sporting events such as the NFL Playoffs, the World Series, and Daytona 500. Aside from being a sideline reporter for Fox NFL, she also hosts the reality TV series, Dancing with the Stars for ABC.
Sean Hannity – $29m
Sean Hannity began his career in 1989 as a radio talk show host at a volunteer college station in UC Santa Barbara while working a general contractor at the same time. He then became a part of WVNN in Alabama and later at WGST in Atlanta. His break came in 1996 when he was hired by Fox and hosted Hannity & Colmes with Alan Colmes. After Colmes departure in 2008, the show was changed to Hannity. He also hosts his nationally syndicated radio show The Sean Hannity Show.
Hannity has won several awards and received honors including an honorary degree from Liberty University. He is also the author of three best-selling books. He has espoused conspiracy theories such as Barack Obama’s birthplace and the murder of Seth Rich. Hannity has become one of the most-watched and most-listened-to hosts because of his close access to President Donald Trump.
Ellen DeGeneres – $87.5M
Ellen DeGeneres is most famous for her talk show 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show', that has been on the air since 2003. She has won 30 Emmys and 20 People’s Choice Awards, which is more than any other person in history. She has not only won many awards, but she has also hosted award shows like the Academy Awards, the Grammys, and the Primetime Emmys.
She also is famous for being an actor, comedian, and writer. She has famously played the role of Dory in 'Finding Nemo', and she also had her own sitcom in the 1990s called 'Ellen'. In 1997, she came out as being gay on Oprah Winfrey’s show, and she regularly stands up for issues in the LGBT community.
Terry Moran – $250k
Terence Patrick “Terry” Moran’s broadcasting experience began in 1990 when he worked as a correspondent and anchor for Court TV. Among his notable coverage were the murder trials of Lyle and Erik Menendez and O.J. Simpson as well as the Bosnian war crime trials at The Hague. In 1997, he moved to ABC News and hard work made him win a Peabody Award for his report on the ABC documentary Out of Control: AIDS in Black America.
Moran was hired as a correspondent for the U.S. Supreme Court and later as the Chief White House Correspondent. He was also the co-anchor of Nightline. By 2013, he worked as ABC News Chief Foreign Correspondent based in London.
Gio Benitez – $750k
Gio Benitez was already in the news industry when he worked as an assistant at CBS4, WFOR Television when he was 17. He started his tenure with ABC in 2013 and has appeared as a correspondent on several news programs including World News Tonight, Good Morning America, 20/20, and Nightline. He also hosts the Fusion channel’s version of Nightline. Benitez may be new in the broadcasting industry, but he has already been nominated for 8 Emmy awards and won two of them.
Born to Cuban parents, Benitez is fluent in both English and Spanish. He earned his degree in Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and Sociology from Florida International University in 2008.
George Stephanopoulos – $10m
This illustrious anchor did not start out as a journalist, and as a young man, his father wanted George Stephanopoulos to be a lawyer or a priest. He earned a degree in Political Science and graduated summa cum laude from Columbia University in New York. During this time, he was a sports broadcaster for the university’s radio station. He also received a Masters of Arts in Theology at Balliol College at the University of Oxford in England.
After working for a few politicians, Stephanopoulos became known as the Communications Direction for Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign. He later became the White House Communications Director and then the senior advisor for policy and strategy. He resigned after Clinton was re-elected in 1996 and begun his career in journalism. He is now the chief anchor and the chief political correspondent for ABC News as well as the co-anchor of Good Morning America. He is also the host of ABC’s Sunday morning This Week.
Katie Couric – $15 Million
Katie Couric went through several reporting positions before becoming the renowned anchor that she is today. Her first job was at the ABC News Bureau and later at CNN where she worked as an assignment editor. In her early years as a reporter, she already earned an Associated Press and an Emmy. In 1989, she was hired by NBC News as Deputy Pentagon Correspondent as well as an anchor substitute. She initially joined Today as a national political correspondent and substitute co-host for Deborah Norville, but Norville did not return, and Couric became permanent co-anchor for 15 years.
Couric has worked for all big three television networks—NBC News (1989-2006), CBS News (2006-2011), and ABC News (2011-2014). She also hosted her own daytime talk show, Katie. Throughout her career, Couric has won several television reporting awards including the Peabody Award, and in 2004, she was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame.
Robin Roberts – $14 Million
Robin Roberts graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University as a cum laude with a degree in communication. Right after her graduation in 1983, she worked at a small station as a sports anchor and reporter, first in Mississippi and later in Tennessee. She also worked as a radio host for a radio station in Atlanta. While working her way to bigger markets, she got hired by ESPN in 1990 as a sportscaster and remained with them for 15 years.
In 1995, she moved to ABC News and was hired as a featured reporter for Good Morning America where she still currently works. Roberts was presented with the Mel Greenberg Media Award in 2001 and a 2012 Peabody Award for her coverage on her treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome.
Josh Elliott – $4m
Josh Elliott’s first major onscreen television work was with ESPN in 2004 as a panelist for Around the Horn and Jim Rome Is Burning. He was also a guest co-host on Cold Pizza on ESPN2. He quickly went up the ranks and became a co-anchor on ESPNNews and reporter for SportsCenter. In 2011, he joined ABC’s Good Morning America and was a substitute anchor on the weekend edition of ABC World News. He then moved to NBC for about a year where he was mainly relegated to NBC Sports programming.
Elliott was hired by CBS in 2016 to be the lead anchor for its digital news service CBSN. However, in an on-air announcement in 2017, he said that he would be leaving his position because he would be placed in a larger role. Network executives were surprised about the announcement and the supposed plans and got him fired. After the incident, Elliott was seen on National Geographic Channel as a co-host of Yellowstone Live with wildlife expert Chris Packham.
Tamron Hall – $1m
Tamron Hall gained attention after she joined MSNBC and NBC News in 2007 and scored an exclusive interview with Barack Obama right before he announced his candidacy for president. Hall obtained further prominence when she became a substitute anchor for Keith Olbermann on Countdown with Keith Olbermann. Since then, she hosted and co-hosted multiple shows including The Big Picture, MSNBC Live with Tamron Hall, Today’s Take, and the third hour of Today.
She now hosts Deadline: Crime on Investigation Discovery channel and the channel’s special Guns on Campus: Tamron Hall Investigates. Hall is also a strong advocate against domestic abuse because of her sister’s murder, which resulted from domestic violence.
Chuck Todd – $750K
Chuck Todd is the host of NBC’s MTP Daily and the 12th and current moderator of Meet the Press. He is also the on-air political analyst for Today and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt. He used to be the host of The Daily Rundown on MSNBC and the Chief White House correspondent for NBC.
But prior to his career as a political analyst, Todd immersed himself into practical political experiences on initiative campaigns. In college, he tried to get a feel for politics as he worked on the presidential campaign of Senator Tom Harkin in 1992. He then worked at National Journal’s The Hotline and eventually found himself being NBC News’ Political Director, a position he still holds. Todd provided on-air political analysis on shows like Hardball with Chris Matthews, Meet the Press, The Rachel Maddow Show, and Morning Joe.
Chris Cuomo – $2.5m
Chris Cuomo currently works at CNN and is hosting his own regular weeknight show called Cuomo Prime Time. He is also the co-anchor of CNN’s morning show. He was previously the ABC News chief law and justice correspondent as well as co-anchor for ABC’s 20/20.
Cuomo earned an undergraduate degree at Yale University and obtained his Juris Doctor (J.D.) in Fordham University. His foray into journalism started by appearing on networks such as MSNBC, CNBC, and CNN to discuss social and political issues. He soon became a correspondent for Fox News and Fox Files, covering different stories on controversial social issues. He was also a political policy analyst for Fox News.
Thomas Roberts – $1.5m
Like most journalists, Thomas Roberts had his first job reporting for a small cable station in Maryland before moving to California and working as a field producer and writer for KNSD, an NBC affiliate. He moved again to Nebraska and became a general-assignment reporter with an ABC-affiliate station. His big break came when he joined CNN in 2001 and was the weekday anchor on CNN Headline News. In 1992, Roberts got an Emmy Award nomination for his investigation into a local puppy mill that got shut down as a result of his report.
He went to Los Angeles and worked for some time for Entertainment Tonight and The Insider before realizing that entertainment news was not for him. Roberts then served as a news anchor for MSNBC Live and Weekend Today. He also anchored Live with Thomas Roberts and Out There with Thomas Roberts, a weekly news and discussion centered on LGBT issues. He is set to anchor on WGCL-46 soon, which is a CBS affiliate in Atlanta.
David Muir – $7m
David Muir first joined ABC News in 2003 as an anchor for World News Now. He was also the main substitute anchor for World News with Diane Sawyer, which he eventually succeeded on September 2014. He was also a co-anchor of the ABC News magazine 20/20. He now hosts his own program World News Tonight with David Muir.
Muir has received multiple Edward R. Murrow and Emmy awards for his national and international journalism. According to the Tyndall Report, he is considered as one of the most visible journalists in America in 2012 and 2013. His World News, Tonight with David Muir, is currently the most-watched newscast in the United States.
Al Roker – $8m
Al Roker is currently the weather anchor on NBC’s Today, and sometimes, he sits as the co-anchor on NBC Nightly News. But he was first a professional meteorologist with a degree in B.A. in Communications at the State University of New York at Oswego in 1976. In fact, he has an inactive American Meteorological Society Television Seal #238.
Roker had his break in 1983 when he regularly substituted on NBC News at Sunrise, and then he filled in for different anchors on the Today Show from 1990 to 1995. It was only after the retirement of Willard Scott that he began doing Today’s weekday weather full time. On December 14, 2018, Roker was honored for his 40 years of work at NBC.
Christiane Amanpour – $2m
Christiane Amanpour is British-Iranian and spent her childhood in Tehran until she was 11 when she was sent to a boarding school in England. She moved to the United States to study journalism. Her first job in 1983 was in CNN as a desk assistant. Because of her international background, she was a natural at reporting foreign affairs. Her first major coverage was the Iran-Iraq War, and in 1990, her reports of the Persian Gulf War gave her prominence and took CNN to a higher degree of news coverage.
Amanpour has hosted other series such as Amanpour, This Week, and Good Morning America. She is now the Chief International Anchor for CNN as well as the host of Amanpour & Company on PBS and the Global Affairs Anchor of ABC News.
Scott Pelley – $5m
Scott Pelley is a prominent figure in journalism and has worked as a correspondent and anchor for CBS News for almost three decades. His first work as a broadcast journalist was at KSEL-TV (now KAMC) in 1975 before moving on to KXAS-TV and WFAA-TV. His 1985 report on Guatemalan refugees captured the interest of CBS News executives, in which he moved to four years later.
Pelley was the Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News from 1997 to1999. He was often the first to break news while covering the investigation of President Clinton. In 1999, he joined 60 Minutes, and until now, he is still a correspondent for the program. In 2011 to 2017, he served as an anchor and managing editor of the CBS Evening News where they earned the highest audience ratings after more than ten years.
Sam Ryan – $300k
After graduating from the New York Institute of Technology, Sam Ryan worked her way up and got herself an extensive experience by working for several news broadcasters such as ESPN, ABC, and CBS Sports. Her first few experiences were with WBAB Babylon New York, WFAN New York, and WVIT Hartford.
She joined ESPN in 2003 and CBS Sports and WCBS-TV in 2006, and eventually in MLB Network as a studio host and reporter. She appeared regularly at their productions including Quick Pitch and The Rundown. In 1999, Ryan received a local Emmy Award for “Outstanding Series Feature-soft” and another local AP award in 2000.
Barbara Walters – $12m
One of the most celebrated broadcast journalists of her time, Barbara Walters paved the way for women to have more power and a bigger voice in broadcasting. She hosted several TV shows, including The View, Today, ABC Evening News, and 20/20. Walters started as a writer and segment producer of interest stories involving women on the NBC News morning program The Today Show with Hugh Downs and later with Frank McGee. When McGee passed away, Walters became the co-host of the program—a first for a woman on an American news program.
She was also the first woman to co-anchor on the evening news when she worked with Harry Reasoner on ABC Evening News. Walters also created and was a co-host of The View, from which she eventually retired but remained as its executive producer. Walters has been named by TV Guide as one of the “50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.” In late 2022 she sadly passed away.
Chris Matthews – $5m
Chris Matthews started with print journalism and worked in the industry for 15 years. He was the Washington, D.C. bureau chief for the San Francisco Examiner and was a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle. He then became known for his hour-long talk show, Hardball with Chris Matthews, on MSNBC. Matthews also hosted The Chris Matthews Show for some time. He has written eight best-selling books including Elusive Hero and Hardball: How Politics is Played, Told by One Who Knows the Game.
Throughout his career, Matthews has been bestowed awards including The Pennsylvania Society’s Gold Medal for Distinguished Achievement in 2005, the David Brinkley Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism, and the 2016 Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Award. He also holds 34 honorary degrees from different universities and colleges.
Nancy O’Dell – $3m
Nancy O’Dell started as a reporter and anchor at WPDE-TV in her hometown in South Carolina and later became a morning news anchor and crime reporter at WCBD-TV. One of her reports was on the leniency of the police on DUI cases, which led to an investigation and resulted in authorities implementing a strict directive on such cases. O’Dell was honored with the Best Report of the Year Award by the Associated Press.
She worked her way up the ranks and became an entertainment reporter for A Current Affair until it ended. In 1996, she joined Access Hollywood, and by 2011, she was a co-anchor of Entertainment Tonight.
Elisabeth Hasselbeck – $1m
Elisabeth Hasselbeck was a Bachelor of Fine Arts graduate and worked for Puma as part of the design team. She was thrust into television and rose to prominence when she joined Survivor: The Australian Outback in 2001 where she placed fourth. She then got herself in another reality show— Style Network’s The Look for Less from 2002 to 2003—but this time, she hosted it. In the same year she left Style Network, she was hired as the fourth co-host on The View.
Together with her co-hosts, she was awarded the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Talk Show Host. After ten years, Hasselbeck left and became a co-host of Fox & Friends. She retired in December 2015 to spend more time with her family.
Mika Brzezinski – $2m
Mika Brzezinski’s first job in the field of journalism was at ABC’s World News This Morning as an assistant. She then went to a Fox-affiliate station and worked as a general assignments reporter. She moved to CBS-affiliate WFSB-TV/WFSB-DT in 1992 and climbed her way to become its weekday morning anchor. She found her big break when she joined CBS and landed a role as a correspondent and anchor for the Up to the Minute news program. Brzezinski took a short break from CBS News and worked for MSNBC. She co-anchored HomePage with Ashleigh Banfield and Gina Gaston and was dubbed as the “Powerpuff Girls of Journalism.”
Brzezinski went back to CBS in September 2001 and became their principal “Ground Zero” reporter for the September 11 attacks, in which she gained national fame. She also contributed to CBS Sunday Morning and 60 Minutes. Currently, she co-hosts Morning Joe with Joe Scarborough, whom she married in 2018.
Paula Faris – $600k
Prior to immersing herself in the broadcasting industry, she had several communications-related jobs including an operations position at Mills/James Productions and a job in radio sales. Eventually, she found the opportunity at WKEF/WRGT and worked as a production assistant and later, as an occasional reporter and anchor. In 2002, she became a weekend, and later weekday, sports anchor at WCPO-TV.
Faris’ break came in 2012 as she joined ABC News and worked on World News Now and America This Morning. She was then promoted to being a New York-based correspondent for all ABC News programs. In 2014, she was a weekend co-anchor of Good Morning America and the year after, she was a co-host of The View for seasons 19 until 21. Faris still reports for Good Morning America and other ABC platforms, but now she is also hosting her faith-based podcast called Journeys of Faith.
Wolf Blitzer – $5m
Wolf Blitzer has been a CNN reporter since 1990, but prior to that, he has had an extensive journalism career, which goes back to the early 1970s. He began his career with Reuters in Tel Aviv, Israel. He was then hired to be the Washington correspondent for Jerusalem Post and was known for his coverage of the Egyptian-Israeli Peace treaty and the arrest and trial of Jonathan Pollard.
When he moved to CNN in 1990, he was hired as a military affairs reporter. Two years after, he was CNN’s White House correspondent. Currently, Blitzer hosts The Situation Room and is the network’s lead political anchor.
Michelle Beadle – $600k
Michelle Beadle has such a comprehensive resume that it’s no wonder she fetches the kind of salary she has. Beadle started as an intern for the San Antonio Spurs and later served as a reporter. She hosted Fox Sports Net’s Big Game Hunters and then moved to TNN where she covered the Professional Bull Riders’ (PBR) Bud Light Cup tour. Her next stint took was with the Travel Channel where she hosted the show Get Packing.
She had several other hosting jobs on different networks including the YES Network and College Sports Television. Beadle also hosted entertainment-themed and reality-based shows as well as being a Red Carpet reporter for the Golden Globes, SAG Awards, Grammy Awards, and the Tony Awards. She appeared on different shows too including The Early Show, The Today Show, Extra, Access Hollywood, and Entertainment Tonight. Beadle joined ESPN in 2009, left for a year to work at NBC, and returned in 2014. She has since hosted regularly on ESPN.
Dan Rather – $6m
Dan Rather spent four decades of his career with CBS Evening News. He has covered some of the most important historical events of his time such as the civil rights movement and the Vietnam War. In fact, he was on the scene of the Kennedy assassination in 1963, and his report of the assassination promoted him in CBS News. Rather, along with Tim Brokaw and Peter Jennings, are named the “Big Three” news anchors because of their long years with their network’s nightly news program.
Rather worked as a foreign correspondent in London and Vietnam and later, a White House correspondent covering the Nixon presidency including the Watergate scandal. He also contributed to 60 Minutes. He retired from CBS in 2005, but he did not stop working. He hosted Dan Rather Reports, Dan Rather Presents, and The Big Interview with Dan Rather on AXS TV. In 2018, he started hosting an online newscast, The News with Dan Rather on YouTube.
Amy Robach – $300 Thousand
Amy Robach first worked at Fox’s WTTG in Washington, D.C. before moving to MSNBC in 2003. She spent four years in MSNBC where she anchored two hours in the morning and filled in on Morning Joe as well as Countdown with Keith Olbermann. In 2007, she was a co-anchor of Weekend Today, but in May 2012, she left and transferred to ABC News.
Her first job at ABC was on Good Morning America as a correspondent but was later promoted as the show’s news anchor in 2014. On April 23, 2018, Robach left GMA to be the new anchor of 20/20 alongside David Muir, although she continues to work on GMA to cover major news and as a breaking-news anchor.
Joe Buck – $5m
Joe Buck was born to be a sportscaster because, after all, he is the son of sportscaster Jack Buck. He even started his broadcasting career while he was still an undergraduate at Indiana University Bloomington.
Before starting his career at Fox, Buck called play-by-play for a minor league baseball team and was a reporter for the Triple-A All-Star Game at ESPN. In 1994, he was hired by Fox Sports, and at 25, he was the youngest man ever to announce a regular slate of National Football League games on TV. Buck worked his way up and has already called 20 World Series and 19 All-Star Games by 2018, which is the most of any play-by-play announcer on TV. He has also won numerous Sports Emmy Awards and is currently hosting Undeniable with Joe Buck on Audience Network.
Martha Raddatz – $2.5m
Even though Martha Raddatz dropped out of college, she had a good start to her broadcasting career. She first worked at a local station in Utah and later, became a chief correspondent at WCVB-TV, an ABC News Boston affiliate. In 1993, she covered the Pentagon for National Public Radio. She came to ABC News in 1999 and was the State Department correspondent, and in May 2003, she became the senior national security correspondent. She reported extensively from Iraq and in June 2006, Raddatz and ABC News were the first in the world to break the news of terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi’s death and his location.
Raddatz is now ABC’s Chief Global Affairs Correspondent and reports for World News Tonight with David Muir and Nightline. She is also the main fill-in anchor for This Week with George Stephanopoulos.
Samantha Steele Ponder – $5m
Everyone knows her beautiful face, so it’s no wonder she earns such a massive-- salary. Samantha Steele Ponder is an ESPN sportscaster and is known for her work on College GameDay, where she replaced Erin Andrews in 2012. She is one of the most beloved reporters on ESPN and currently hosts Sunday NFL Countdown.
Ponder attended King’s College in Queens, New York, but she eventually graduated from Liberty University. It was in King’s College where she met Ben Keeperman, a college football researcher and manager with ABC Sports Radio. Her connection with Keeperman led to an internship at ABC, which then gave her the researcher-assistant job with ABC’s college football studio show. Once she transferred to Liberty University, she got a job as a sideline reporter—an offer from Liberty’s Sr. Sports Producer Bruce Carey. As a sports reporter, she met her husband NFL player Christian Ponder.
Michael Strahan – $17m
Before becoming a media personality, Michael Strahan was a professional football player/defensive who played with the New York Giants of the National Football League (NFL) for 15 years. He helped the Giants win over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLVII in his final season in 2007. Once he retired from the NFL, he worked as a sports analyst, but he also tried different types of reporting.
Aside from being a football analyst on Fox NFL Sunday, he also co-hosted ABC’s Strahan and Sara and was previously on the talk show Live! With Kelly and Michael with Kelly Ripa. The show gave him two Daytime Emmy Awards. In 2014, he worked on Good Morning America and by 2016, he left Live! to join GMA full time.
Maria Bartiromo – $6m
Terence Patrick “Terry” Moran’s broadcasting experience began in 1990 when he worked as a correspondent and anchor for Court TV. Among his notable coverage were the murder trials of Lyle and Erik Menendez and O.J. Simpson as well as the Bosnian war crime trials at The Hague. In 1997, he moved to ABC News and hard work made him win a Peabody Award for his report on the ABC documentary Out of Control: AIDS in Black America.
In 2013, Bartiromo moved to Fox Business Network and Fox News. She hosts Mornings with Maria, Wall Street Week with Maria Bartiromo, and Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo. She also writes a monthly column called “One-On-One” for USA Today.
Kelly Ripa – $16 Million
Kelly Ripa first appeared on television not as a journalist or anchor but as a dancer and actress. She appeared on Dancin’ On Air in 1986. Her next television exposure was on the famed ABC daytime soap opera All My Children where she was cast as Hayley Vaughn. She took on the role from 1990 until 2002, but she always wanted to be a newscaster. So when Regis Philbin held on-air auditions to find for Kathie Lee Gifford’s replacement, Ripa took the chance, and the rest is history.
She landed the co-hosting spot and became the official replacement in 2001. The show was then called Live! with Regis and Kelly. When Regis left, Michael Strahan replaced him, but he moved to Good Morning America, and Ryan Seacrest took over. Ripa also has appeared in several films including Marvin’s Room. In 2014, she was named by Hollywood Reporter as one of the Most Powerful People in Media.
Ann Curry – $5 Million
Ann Curry has been a reporter for more than 30 years, but just like most journalists, she started as an intern. She worked at then NBC-affiliate KTVL in Oregon and made her way up to become the station’s first female news reporter. She worked at another NBC-affiliate station before moving to Los Angeles as a reporter for KCBS-TV where she received two Emmy Awards. In 2012, she finally rose to become the national and international correspondent–anchor for NBC News. She was also a co-anchor of Today from 2011 to 2012 after being the news anchor since 1997. From 2005 to 2011, Curry also anchored Dateline NBC.
Curry has reported from war-stricken countries such as Darfur, Syria, Congo, Lebanon, Iraq, and Israel and her reporting often focused on human suffering in natural disasters and war zones. In 2015, Curry founded her own multi-platform media startup while continuing to do major news interviews on network television.
Jim Rome – $30m
Jim Rome is a sports radio talk show host who started his career as an intern at KTMS station in Santa Barbara. He later became a traffic-update reporter. He then moved to XTRA Sports as a part-timer, but since he was so good, he was given his own radio show called The Jim Rome Show or The Jungle. For a couple of years, he also hosted sports television shows such as The FX Sports Show on FX, Talk2 on ESPN2, and The Last Word on Fox Sports Net.
In 2003, he was hired to host Rome is Burning on ESPN, which aired until 2011 when he joined the CBS network. He hosted Rome as well as a monthly TV sport and entertainment talk show on Showtime called Jim Rome on Showtime. Rome has been named as one of the most influential talk radio personalities according to Talkers Magazine.
Lester Holt – $4.5m
Lester Holt worked for CBS for 19 years as a reporter, international correspondent, and anchor. He joined MSNBC in 2000 and became a substitute anchor for NBC Nightly News and Today. But after Brian Williams’ demotion, Holt became the permanent anchor on the program. This made him the first African-American solo anchor for a network nightly newscast.
Holt is currently the host of NBC’s Dateline. He was also the moderator for the first Presidential debate in 2016, and he was lauded for his excellence and credibility as he fact-checked false statements by both candidates. President Donald Trump told him that his moderation was “very fair.”
Brooke Baldwin – $1.5m
Everyone has small beginnings and so it is with Brooke Baldwin. She began her career at a small station called WVIR-TV in Virginia but soon became the morning anchor at WOWK-TV. Later, she worked as a lead reporter for a station in Washington, D.C.
Baldwin joined CNN’s The Rick List in 2008, in which she later took Rick’s place when he was fired. She is currently hosting CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin, which runs from 2 to 4 pm ET. Baldwin won a Silver World Medal for Best Investigative Report for her documentary entitled To Catch a Killer. She has also covered a lot of important events including President Obama’s second inauguration in 2013.
Leslie Stahl – $1.8m
Lesley Stahl has been connected with CBS since 1972 and is the correspondent for 60 Minutes since 1991. She began her TV broadcasting career at Boston’s Channel 5, WHDH-TV, as an on-air reporter and producer. Two years after joining CBS, she became a correspondent, and her name gained more attention after she covered Watergate. She then became the White House correspondent during the presidencies of Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush.
Stahl hosted Face the Nation between September 1983 and May 1991. She also anchored 48 Hours Investigates from 2002 to 2004. She is an author of two books, Reporting Live and Becoming Grandma: The Joys and Science of the New Grandparenting.
Tom Brokaw – $8m
During the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s, Tom Brokaw was one of the “Big Three” news anchors in the U.S along with Dan Rather at CBS News and Peter Jennings at ABC News. They all hosted flagship nightly news programs for over 20 years—22 for Brokaw. He was the anchor and managing editor of the NBC Nightly News since 1982 until his retirement in 2004.
Brokaw is the only person to host all three major NBC new programs: NBC Nightly News, Meet the Press, and The Today Show. He now works on documentaries and is also a Special Correspondent for NBC News. He has also written a number of books about American history and society in the 20th century.
Charissa Thompson – $500k
Charissa Thompson always wanted to be a broadcaster, and she wasted no time learning the ropes. She has worked on different networks including ESPN, GSN, Versus, and The Big Ten Network. She co-hosted Sports Nation with Marcellus Willey and was the host of Fox Sports Live on the new Fox Sports 1 on August 2013. Thompson also hosted Ultimate Beastmaster and was part of Top Rank’s broadcasting team for the pay-per-view event of Manny Pacquiao vs. Jessie Vargas.
In 2014 until 2017, she joined Tracy Edmonds and Mario Lopez as a co-host on the entertainment news show Extra. She then went back to Fox Sports and is now the host of Fox Sports NFL Kickoff Show.
Cari Champion – $1m
Cari Champion has made a name through tennis, not by playing the sport, but through reporting about tennis. She earned a degree in English with a minor in Mass Communications at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). While there, she wrote for the Daily Bruin. She then moved to West Virginia for her first job as a reporter. Eventually, she moved to Florida to cover human-interest stories.
While working in Florida, she discovered that she had a passion for tennis, especially after she covered Serena and Venus Williams. Champion was then hired to be an anchor and reporter for the Tennis Channel in 2009, and later on, she became an anchor for ESPN’s Sports Center.
Ginger Zee – $125k
Ginger Zee obtained a degree in Meteorology with a major in Mathematics and Spanish at Valparaiso University. She wanted to be a meteorologist on The Today Show by the age of 30, and that dream actually came to life. But Zee had to work through various media outlets before fulfilling that goal. Zee initially guested as a meteorologist on the weekend edition of The Today Show.
In 2011, she joined Good Morning America Weekend and has appeared on other ABC programs such as ABC World News Tonight and Nightline. By December 2, 2013, Zee became ABC News’ Chief Meteorologist and weather editor.
Sam Champion – $2m
Sam Champion had his start in the broadcasting business as a meteorologist at WPSD-TV in Kentucky and later, at WJKS in Florida. He then became a weather forecaster at WABC-TV’s Eyewitness News in 1988. He made his way up and joined Good Morning America in 2004 with a salary at $1.5 million a year. Champion also appeared on Live with Kelly and Ryan as well as CNN’s Larry King Live. On April 2008, he hosted Sea Rescue, which was an educational and informational program that centers on the rescue and rehabilitation of animals.
Champion left GMA in 2013 and worked as a host and managing editor of The Weather Channel. He anchored America’s Morning Headquarters and 23.5 Degrees With Sam Champion. In 2016, Champion left The Weather Channel since his contract was not renewed. He has returned to ABC as a fill-in weather forecaster.
Sage Steele – $400k
Sage Steele was born into sports. Her father was Gary Steele, the first African-American to play varsity football at West Point. She has two brothers who are also involved in the sports industry. It’s no wonder that she studied Bachelor of Science in Sports Communication at Indiana University Bloomington.
Steele is the co-host of SportsCenter on ESPN. She also hosts SportsCenter on the Road, which took her to different sporting events such as The Masters and the Super Bowl. The 46-year-old previously hosted NBA Countdown on ESPN and ABC as well as the NBA Finals in 2012 and 2013 on SportsCenter’s daytime coverage.
Jon Stewart – $25m
Jon Stewart started as a stand-up comedian, but through the years, he has become a prominent figure in entertainment and media. He is not only a comedian, but he is also a television host, producer, writer, director, actor, singer, and political commentator.
He first had his own talk show, The Jon Stewart Show and later, You Wrote It, You Watch It, which both aired on MTV. But it was The Daily Show, a satirical news program, where he became a household name. The show was on Comedy Central that ran from 1999 to 2015. He was also a co-executive producer and writer of the show, which won 22 Primetime Emmy Awards.
Martha MacCallum – $8m
Martha MacCallum started her broadcasting career at Wall Street Journal Television from 1991 to 1996. She was the anchor and business news correspondent for The Wall Street Journal Report, Business USA, and World Market Outlook. Then she got into a sports and business station as an anchor and reporter. MacCallum moved to NBC/CNBC and appeared on Today, The News with Brian Williams, and other NBC affiliate news programs. Working her way up, she was then designated to co-anchor CNBC’s Morning Call with Martha MacCallum and Ted David.
In 2004, MacCallum became a part of the Fox News Channel where she covered the presidential elections in 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016. She also co-anchored the coverage of the visit of Pope Francis to the United States. MacCallum hosted The Live Desk from 2006 to 2010 and America’s Newsroom in 2010 until 2017.
Savannah Guthrie – $1 Million
Savannah Guthrie’s start in broadcasting was at KMIZ, an ABC affiliate, where she worked for two years and then she took a job with NBC affiliate KVOA. Five years after, she moved to WRC-TV wherein she covered major stories such as the 2001 anthrax attacks and September 11, 2001, attack on The Pentagon. She later resumed her higher education and received her Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center.
In 2007, she became a correspondent for NBC News and a few months later, she was the White House correspondent. Guthrie also anchored NBC News and was the substitute anchor on NBC Nightly News. She also substituted Ann Curry and Meredith Vieira on Today and eventually became the co-host of the 9 am hour as well as the Chief Legal Editor.
Billy Bush – $3m
Billy Bush, a member of the Bush family, is known for being a correspondent for the daily entertainment newsmagazine, Access Hollywood. He started in December 2001 and left in 2016. Bush began his TV work on a short-lived NBC show called Let’s Make a Deal and later, he became a correspondent for WNBC-TV’s Today in New York morning show. After which, Access Hollywood came, and in three years, he became a primary anchor. When he left Access Hollywood, he became a co-host in the third hour of Today.
But in 2016, he got involved in a controversy when a recording of him and presidential candidate Donald Trump having an indecent conversation was discovered. This led to him being fired from Today.
Nancy Grace – $3m
Nancy Grace was a former prosecutor in a local district attorney’s office in Atlanta, Georgia but after prosecutorial misconduct, she was given an offer to do a legal commentary show alongside Johnnie Cochran. When he left the show, Grace hosted Trial Heat from 1996 to 2004 and later, Closing Arguments from 2004 to 2007. In 2005, she hosted the legal analysis show Nancy Grace on HLN. She has appeared on other news shows including The View, Extra, and Good Morning America.
Grace is known for her outspoken style that has received both praise and criticism from viewers. Her interviewing style mixed vocal questions and multimedia stats displays. She has also written the book Objection!: How High-Priced Defense Attorneys, Celebrity Defendants, and a 24/7 Media Have Hijacked Our Criminal Justice System.
Hoda Kotb – $2 Million
Hoda Kotb, who is of Egyptian descent, began her career in 1986 as a news assistant for CBS News in Cairo, Egypt. But it wasn’t long before she became an anchor and general assignment reporter to WQAD-TV and ABC Moline, Illinois. In 1998, she moved to NBC and was the national correspondent for the NBC News and contributing anchor and correspondent for Dateline NBC. Eventually, Today got her to be the 4th-hour co-host with Kathie Lee Gifford, where she received a Daytime Emmy Award in 2010.
Kotb earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism in 1986 at Virginia Tech. In 2008, she was the keynote speaker for the 2008 Virginia Tech graduation and was elected to the Virginia Tech Alumni Association Board of Directors in 2010.
Shepard Smith – $10m
Shepard Smith has a quite a long career in journalism, signing his first TV contract in 1986 in Florida. He even joined Fox News Channel when it first started in 1996. He used to host Fox News’ The Fox Report with Shepard Smith and Studio B, which were eventually replaced by Shepard Smith Reporting in October 2013. It aired in the 3 p.m. ET time slot, finishing ahead of his competitors.
Smith’s hard work has paid off in which he was tied for second, along with Peter Jennings and Dan Rather, in the 2003 TV Guide poll as the most trusted news anchor on both cable news and network. Currently, he is also Fox News’ chief news anchor and managing editor of the breaking news division.
Molly Qerim – $100k
Molly Qerim had a start on her career by covering college football, the NCAA Tournament, National Signing Day, and the U.S. Open. She was also a studio anchor and hosted SEC Tonight, SEC Tailgate Show, Full Court Press, and MaxPreps Lemming Report. Qerim hosted NFL Network’s weekday morning show NFL AM and NFL Fantasy Live. She has also covered the UFC with ESPN, FS1, and Versus (now NBCSN) and even co-hosted the annual World MMA Awards.
By 2008, Qerim served as the interactive host for College Football Live on ESPN and ESPN2. In mid-July 2015, she was the interim host of ESPN2’s First Take and eventually replaced Cari Champion after the latter was promoted to the network’s flagship show. Qerim became the permanent host of First Take on September 2015.
Andrea Mitchell – $750k
Andrea Mitchell is the definition of loyalty since she has been with NBC since 1978. Prior to NBC, she had her first taste of broadcasting as a news director of student radio station WXPN while studying at the University of Pennsylvania. After graduation, she became a reporter at KYW radio and then as the station’s City Hall correspondent. In 1976, she moved to CBS-affiliate WTOP (now WUSA), and in 1978, she was NBC’s general correspondent. She later became NBC News’ energy correspondent.
Mitchell covered the White House from 1981 and soon became Chief Congressional correspondent. She currently hosts Andrea Mitchell Reports, which she has done since 2008. She is also a frequent guest on Hardball with Chris Matthews and The Rachel Maddow Show.
Lindsay Czarniak – $1m
Lindsay Czarniak’s first plunge into the broadcasting business was in WUSA in Washington, D.C. as an intern and later, she was hired as a CNN production assistant. She worked for WAWS in Florida when she first became a news reporter. In 2005, she joined WRC-TV and became a co-host of The George Michael Sports Machine. She also had her first major assignment as a reporter when she covered the 2006 Winter Olympics for NBC Sports. When George Michael stepped down as NBC4’s sports anchor, Czarniak and Dan Hellie were named as co-sports anchors.
Czarniak left NBC 4 and moved to ESPN in 2011. She made her debut on SportsCenter and covered the pre-season football games. Eventually, she became the 6 pm co-host of SportsCenter. She also replaced Brent Musburger as the host of the network’s coverage of the Indianapolis 500, making her the first woman to host the telecast. Her contract with ESPN ended in August 2017, but she recently signed with Fox Sports as a studio host for their NASCAR coverage.
Kate Bolduan – $200k
Kate Bolduan graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and began her career as a general assignment reporter for WTVD-TV in North Carolina and later as a production assistant for NBC News and MSNBC. She also worked at Dateline NBC, NBC Nightly News, and House & Garden magazine. But she started her work with CNN as a national correspondent for CNN Newsource in 2007.
Bolduan also worked with Chris Cuomo in New Day and Michaela Pereira and The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer. She currently anchors At This Hour with Kate Bolduan and State of America with Kate Bolduan on CNN International.
Jimmy Fallon – $16m
Jimmy Fallon is known for being part of Saturday Night Live and as the host of his own late-night talk show The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and prior to that, the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
Fallon joined NBC’s Saturday Night Live (SNL) in 1998 where he was a co-host of the show’s Weekend Update segment. He became a household name in his six years in SNL. He left to focus on a career in film, in which he appeared in a number of movies such as Taxi, Fever Pitch, Factory Girl, Whip It, and Get Hard. But he soon returned to television to host Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on NBC and later, became the sixth permanent host of The Tonight Show in 2014.
Robin Meade – $750k
Robin Meade is quite the savant with all the things she has dabbled with. She majored in radio/television production, programming and performance at Malone University and Ashland University. Her broadcasting career started after she became Miss Ohio and was a semi-finalist in the Miss America pageant. She worked through several broadcasting stations before joining HLN, formerly known as CNN Headline News. She is currently the lead news anchor for Morning Express with Robin Meade. She was also the moderator on the Oprah Winfrey Network show Ask Oprah’s All Stars in 2011.
Meade has received a regional Emmy Award and adding to her achievements is her New York Times bestseller Morning Sunshine!: How to Radiate Confidence and Feel It Too. She also released two country music albums.
Brian Williams – $10m
Brian Williams spent a decade of his career as an anchor on NBC Nightly News. In 1993, he joined the national Weekend Nightly News and was the chief White House correspondent. A few years later, he was the managing editor and anchor of The News with Brian Williams on MSNBC and CNBC. He then replaced Tom Brokaw on NBC Nightly News in 2004. Right after joining the program, NBC News was awarded a Peabody Award, the George Polk Award, and the DuPont- Columbia University award for the Hurricane Katrina coverage.
In 2015, he was suspended for six months and demoted from the Nightly News because he apparently “misrepresented” events when he was covering the Iraq War in 2003. Williams moved to MSNBC and is now the chief anchor as well as the host of their nightly program The 11th Hour with Brian Williams.
Rachel Maddow – $7m
Gradually becoming one of the most trusted reporters on TV today, Rachel Maddow worked her way to earn that trust. She is the first openly lesbian anchor to host a primetime news program in the United States. Maddow graduated with a degree in public policy at Stanford in 1994 and has a doctorate in politics from the University of Oxford.
She had her first radio hosting job at WRNX in 1999 while she was first seen on TV as a regular panelist on the MSNBC show Tucker. The liberal political commentator later became an MSNBC political analyst and was a regular panelist on Race for the White House. The first time she hosted a program was when she substituted for Countdown with Keith Olbermann. Eventually, she got her own nightly show The Rachel Maddow Show. Together with Brian Williams, Maddow is also the network’s special event co-anchor.
Wendy Williams – $15m
Wendy Williams hosts the popular TV talk show The Wendy Williams Show since 2008. She is known for her outspoken personality that has gotten her into several bouts with guests. Even way before her career on television, when she was a radio DJ, and host, her on-air feuds with celebrities have already made her a household name that she was made a subject of the reality TV series The Wendy Williams Experience.
Williams is also quite the businesswoman with her creations of product lines including a wig line, a jewelry collection, and a fashion line. She also has a New York Times best-selling autobiography and six other books. She was also inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2009. She even has a street renamed after her.
Megyn Kelly – $15m
Megyn Kelly is a former corporate defense attorney, and one of her first few jobs was a general assignment reporter where she conducted live coverage of the confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court Justices. When she joined Fox News, she hosted her own legal segment called Kelly’s Court during Weekend Live as well as appearing on a weekly segment on The O’Reilly Factor. In 2010, she hosted America Live.
From 2013 to 2017, Kelly hosted the nightly program The Kelly File which at times, overtook the network’s regular number one The O’Reilly Factor in ratings. Kelly has been listed as one of the 100 most influential people on Time. Eventually, she left Fox News in 2017 and joined NBC News and hosted the third hour of the morning show Today with her program Megyn Kelly Today. However, her contract with NBC was terminated in January 2019.
Ainsley Earhardt – $400k
Ainsley Earnhardt began her career in journalism before she graduated from USC when she was hired to work as a reporter for WLTX-News 19, the local CBS Station in Columbia, South Carolina. She worked as the morning and noon anchor from 2000 to 2004. In 2007, she moved to New York and was hired by Fox News Channel. She has co-hosted a few programs including America’s New’s Headquarters, Fox and Friends Weekend, and Fox’s All-American New Year’s Eve as well as being a panelist on The Live Desk.
Today, she appears on Hannity with her own segment called Ainsley Across America. Earnhardt is an author of two children’s books namely Through Your Eyes and Take My Heart, and a memoir entitled The Light Within Me.
Erin Burnett – $3m
Erin Burnett started out in the financial industry as a financial analyst for Goldman Sachs. She was then offered to work at CNN as a writer and booker for CNN’s Moneyline. In the next few years, she hosted and anchored different shows including CNBC’s Squawk on the Street and Street Signs. She also appeared occasionally on The Celebrity Apprentice as an advisor to Donald Trump.
In 2011, Burnett returned to CNN and anchored her own show called Erin Burnett OutFront. It was this program where she experienced hosting live from the borders of Afghanistan, Mali, Rwanda, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates. She was once labeled by Joe Scarborough as “The International Superstar” because of the number of documentaries she has filmed outside the United States.
Giada de Laurentiis – Minimum $3m
Giada de Laurentiis dreamt of becoming a pastry chef after studying at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, but that clearly didn’t pan out. Instead, she worked as a chef in several Los Angeles restaurants including the Wolfgang Puck-owned Spago. She was working as a food stylist when Food Network contacted her after they saw her styling piece in Food & Wine magazine in 2002. She rose to prominence with her first show Everyday Italian. Since then, de Laurentiis has been a staple in the network, and she has created an empire that led to more TV series, several cookbooks, and restaurants.
Other TV series that was birthed from her first show included Behind the Bash, Giada On The Beach, Giada’s Weekend Getaways, Giada in Paradise, Giada in Italy, Giada Entertains, Winner Cake All, and her most recent, Giada at Home. She also appears as a contributor and guest co-host on NBC’s Today. De Laurentiis has received awards and accolades such as the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lifestyle Host, and in 2012, she was inducted into the Culinary Hall of Fame.
Katy Tur – $500k
When she was starting out, Katy Tur worked for different news outlets including KTLA, News 12 Brooklyn, HD News/Cablevision, and Fox 5 New York. She also had a stint at The Weather Channel as a storm chaser. In 2009, she landed a job at NBC’s local station in New York City, which led her to the NBC national headquarters. On the same year, she was given AP’s Best Spot News Award for her coverage of the crane collapse on the Upper East Side if Manhattan.
Tur reported for several NBC News platforms such as Today, Early Today, Meet the Press, and NBC Nightly News. She was also NBC’s reporter for the Donald Trump presidential campaign. She was the one who informed the Trump campaign about the controversial tape of Trump’s conversation with Billy Bush about women. A Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism was given to Tur in 2017.
Anderson Cooper – $11m
Anderson Cooper had no formal education in journalism, but he had the sheer will and intelligence for the job. He interned at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) while studying political science at Yale University. In pursuit of a career in journalism, he worked as a fact checker for a small news agency. Later, he traveled to Myanmar to meet students fighting the Burmese government, of which he created a homemade news segment and eventually sold it to Channel One.
Cooper later worked his way up and rose to the position of co-anchor and eventually became one of the most distinguished anchors in television. He used to host his own daytime talk show, Anderson Live. He is currently the primary anchor of the CNN news show called Anderson Cooper 360° and a correspondent for 60 Minutes.
Tomi Lahren – $200k
Tomi Lahren is a conservative political commentator who gained attention on her show Tomi on TheBlaze. She was known for her three-minute video segments at the end of the program, often called “final thoughts,” where she spoke quickly about her opinions on different matters. Lahren frequently lambasted liberal politics and several of her videos went viral so that she was dubbed as a “rising media star” and was also touted as “the young Republican who is bigger than Trump on Facebook.”
In March 2017, she was suspended from TheBlaze because she believed that women should have access to abortion when she made a guest appearance on The View. She now works at Great American Alliance, a pro-Donald Trump advocacy organization. Lahren is also part of Fox News as a contributor.