Mitchel on his last news broadcast in 1984
8 November 1920
|Died||18 August 1996
|Education||Trinity College Dublin|
|Occupation||Actor and newscaster|
|Notable credit(s)||Nine O'Clock News|
Charles Gerald Mitchel (8 November 1920 – 18 August 1996) was an Irish actor and broadcaster best known as a newsreader for the RTÉ News from 1961 until 1984. He was the first person to read the news on Telefís Éireann.
Born in Dublin, Mitchel was educated at Clongowes Wood College boarding school in Clane, County Kildare. Mitchel subsequently attended Trinity College Dublin where he studied forestry. It was here that his interest in acting developed and he quickly became a leading member of the Trinity Players. Mitchel left Trinity in 1947 without taking a degree. He immediately joined the Gate Theatre where he played with the Longford company until 1958. He was one of the founders of Irish Actors Equity and served as president of the Catholic Stage Guild.
In 1961 Mitchel joined the newly formed state television station, Telefís Éireann, as chief newscaster. His starting salary was £26 per week. Mitchel was one of the first faces seen on the new station when he read the first news bulletin on 31 December 1961, minutes after the station was launched. He received numerous honours, including being awarded television personality of the year, and was the first RTÉ presenter to win a Jacobs' Award. Mitchel retired from the station in November 1984.
Mitchel was keenly interested in animal welfare and served as vice-president of the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for several years in the 1980s. He bred basset hounds and adjudicated at dog shows.
- Dictionary of Irish Biography, Patrick Long, "Mitchel, Charles Gerald", retrieved 22 December 2010
- The Irish Times ("Death of Charles Mitchel, the voice of news on RTÉ", p.4) , 19 August 1996
- The Irish Times ("Voice of an Era", p.37) , 24 August 1996