October 21, 1960 |
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
|Education||Ohio Wesleyan University|
|Notable credit(s)||CBS Evening News
|Children||Christiani Pitts, Brittni Pitts, Tiffani Clayton|
Byron Pitts (born October 21, 1960) is an American journalist and author working for ABC News. Until 2013, he served as a chief national correspondent for The CBS Evening News and a contributor to the newsmagazine 60 Minutes. He has covered the September 11, 2001 attacks and Iraq.
Early life and education
Pitts was born October 21, 1960, to Clarice and William Pitts in Baltimore, Maryland. He grew up in working-class neighborhood, raised by a single mother. In his memoir, Pitts discussed that he had debilitating stutter as a child and was "functionally illiterate" until about age 12. He attended Archbishop Curley High School, an all-boys Catholic high school in Baltimore. He went on to Ohio Wesleyan University, but spent summers in Apex, North Carolina. He graduated in 1982 with a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Journalism and Speech Communication.
Pitts always wanted to be a journalist. It was his goal since he was 18 was to be on 60 Minutes. He interned at WTVD in Durham, North Carolina. After graduation, he bounced around to various television stations on the east coast. During 1983-84, he reported and served as weekend sports anchor at WNCT-TV in Greenville, N.C. He was a military reporter for WAVY-TV in Portsmouth, Virginia (1984–86), and a reporter for WESH-TV Orlando (1986–88). He moved across the Florida peninsula to Tampa to be a reporter and substitute anchor for WFLA-TV (1988–89). After a brief stint, he moved to Boston as a special assignment reporter for WCVB-TV (1989–94). His last local job was as a general assignment reporter for WSB-TV in Atlanta, Georgia(1994–96).
Pitts then moved to Washington, D.C. as a correspondent for CBS Newspath, the 24-hour affiliate news service of CBS News (1997–98). He was named CBS News correspondent in May 1998, and was based in the Miami (1998–99) and Atlanta (1999–2001) bureaus and eventually New York City in January 2001.
Pitts was one of CBS News' lead reporters during the September 11 attacks and won a national Emmy Award for his coverage. As an embedded reporter covering the Iraq War, he was recognized for his work under fire within minutes of the fall of the Saddam Hussein statue. Other major stories covered by Pitts include Hurricane Katrina, the war in Afghanistan, the military buildup in Kuwait, the Florida fires, the Elian Gonzalez story, the Florida Presidential recount, the mudslides in Central America and the refugee crisis in Kosovo.
Pitts other awards include a national Emmy Award for his coverage of the Chicago train wreck in 1999 and a National Association of Black Journalists Award (2002). He is also the recipient of four Associated Press Awards and six regional Emmy Awards.
He wrote Step Out on Nothing: How Faith and Family Helped Me Conquer Life's Challenges, which was released September 29, 2009.
Pitts departed CBS News in March 2013 and currently works at ABC News.
- Guthrie, Marisa. "Correspondent Byron Pitts Departing CBS News for ABC News". Retrieved 31 March 2013.
- Byron Pitts Found Faith To 'Step Out On Nothing' NPR Excerpt, November 16, 2009, (accessed May 24, 2010).
- Byron Pitts. CBS News (2002-10-09). Retrieved on 2011-06-02.
- Byron Pitts | Greater Talent Network Speakers Bureau. Greatertalent.com. Retrieved on 2011-06-02.
- Menconi, David How Byron Pitts came out on top Newsobserver.com December 17, 2009 (accessed May 24, 2010).