Morales in 2011
|Born||Natalie Leticia Morales
June 6, 1972
Co-anchor and national correspondent (2006–2011), News anchor and Third Hour Co-anchor (2011–onwards)
|Spouse(s)||Joe Rhodes (1998–present)|
Natalie Morales-Rhodes (born Natalie Leticia Morales; June 6, 1972) is an American broadcast journalist, working for NBC News. As of 2013[update], she is the Today Show News Anchor and Third Hour Co-Anchor and appears on other programs including Dateline NBC and NBC Nightly News.
Morales was an anchor and correspondent for MSNBC from 2002 to 2006. She covered a number of major news stories there including the 2004 Presidential election, the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece, the Iraqi prisoner abuse, Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, the Northeast Blackout of 2003, the 2002 Beltway sniper attacks, and the investigation and trial of Scott Peterson. Additionally, she was named one of Hispanic Magazine’s Top Trendsetters of 2003.
Morales joined the Today show in 2006 as a National Correspondent, and was named co-anchor of the third hour of the show in March 2008. On May 9, 2011, it was announced that Morales would replace Ann Curry as the news anchor for Today, when Curry succeeded Meredith Vieira as host of Today in June 2011.
Prior to joining MSNBC, Morales served as a weekend anchor/reporter and morning co-anchor at WVIT-TV in Hartford, Connecticut, where she reported on the Columbine shootings, Hurricane Floyd, the 2000 Presidential election, and the September 11, 2001 attacks. She also co-hosted and reported for the Emmy-nominated documentary, Save Our Sound, a joint production with WNBC on preserving the Long Island Sound. She began her on-air career at News 12 – The Bronx as the first morning anchor. She also served as camera operator, editor and producer for that network. In 1999, she was voted one of the 50 Most Influential Latinas for her news coverage and reports by the Hispanic daily newspaper El Diario La Prensa. Previously, Morales spent two years working behind the scenes at Court TV.
Morales holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rutgers University with dual majors in journalism and Latin American studies. She was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and graduated Summa Cum Laude. Following college, she worked at Chase Bank in New York before pursuing her journalism career. In 2007, she received the "Groundbreaking Latina in Media" award from Catalina magazine and the National Association of Latina Leaders. People en Español named her one of its Fifty Most Beautiful People for 2007. She came in at #1.
She appeared on NBC's The Marriage Ref as the fact checker, and she hosted the Miss USA 2010 at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino and the Miss Universe 2010 at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, both in the Las Vegas. She also hosted Miss Universe 2011 on September 12, 2011, at Credicard Hall in São Paulo, Brazil.
Morales was born in Taipei, Taiwan, to a Brazilian mother, Penelope Morales, and a Puerto Rican father, Lieutenant Colonel Mario Morales, Jr. She speaks Spanish and Portuguese and spent the first eighteen years of her life living overseas in Panama, Brazil, and Spain as a "U.S. Air Force brat".
Morales married Joseph Rhodes on August 22, 1998. They have two sons, Joseph "Josh" and Luke, and reside in Hoboken, New Jersey. She took a four-month maternity leave from the Today Show between September and December 2008 to give birth to her second son Luke, who was born on September 9, 2008. She is an avid runner, having competed in five marathons, including three New York City Marathons. Morales also participates in triathlons. She has been featured in a full-length article and on the cover of the October 2010 issue of Triathlete Magazine.
- TODAY anchors show their driver’s license photos (Television production). NBC. September 21, 2012. Event occurs at 52 seconds. Retrieved May 4, 2013.
- "NBC names Morales as 'Today' correspondent". USA Today. 2006-04-19. Retrieved 2011-02-18.
- "Kathie Lee Gifford joins fourth hour of TODAY". MSNBC/Today. 2008-03-31. Retrieved 2011-02-18.
- "Natalie Morales". MSNBC/Today. Retrieved 2011-02-18.
- Thielman, Sam (May 9, 2011). "'Today' sets new anchor lineup". Variety.
- Romano, Allison (November 18, 2007). "Natalie Morales: Fast Riser". Broadcasting & Cable.
- "Having it all: Anchor and Hoboken resident Natalie Morales reflects on motherhood, juggling family and career, and the birth of her son", Hudson Reporter, May 17, 2005. Accessed June 29, 2012.
- Grant, Amanda (November 19, 2009). "Today Show’s Natalie Morales: Hooked On Triathlon". Triathlete.com. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
- Super Administrator (September 9, 2010). "Behind The Scenes With Natalie Morales". Triathlete.com. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
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