Bruce Johnson (journalist)

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Bruce Johnson
Bruce Johnson.jpg
Bruce Johnson
Born (1950-06-05) June 5, 1950 (age 66)
Louisville, Kentucky
Occupation Broadcast Journalist, Author
Children 1 daughter and 1 son

Bruce Johnson, also known as C. Bruce Johnson, is an American news anchorman and reporter for WUSA-TV in Washington, D.C.[1] He is an expert on D.C. city government and urban affairs in the United States.[2] Johnson is also the author of the book Heart to Heart and has won 19 Emmy Awards as a broadcast journalist.[3] In 2003, the Society of Professional Journalists inducted him into the Hall of Fame.[4]

Professional career[edit]

Johnson began his career at WCPO-TV in Cincinnati, Ohio.[2] He later worked at WUSA 9, the CBS affiliate in Washington, D.C. For over 30 years, he has served as an anchor and reporter covering Washington D.C. city government and urban affairs issues in the United States.[2]

Johnson's news coverage spans notable stories, including the 1982 Washington Metro train derailment that killed three people and injured twenty-five more.[3] Johnson covered the 1977 Hanafi Siege where twelve gunmen seized three Washington D.C. buildings, held 149 hostages and killed a radio journalist and police officer. The gunmen eventually released all hostages after a 39-hour standoff.[5]

In the early 1990s, he reported documentaries for WUSA 9's "Capitals of the World."[3] His special assignments took him to Moscow, Paris, Stockholm, Budapest, Tokyo, Dakar, and Bangkok.[3]

In 2010 he traveled to Port-Au-Prince to cover the earthquake and aftermath in Haiti.

Johnson has extensively covered former D.C. Mayor and now councilman Marion Barry, including his arrest at the Vista Hotel for smoking crack cocaine, his prison sentence and return to an elected political office.[6] In 2012, Johnson provided reports and analysis on the resignation of Harry Thomas, Jr., Washington D.C. Ward 5 Councilmember.[6][7] Thomas pleaded guilty to falsifying his tax returns and misappropriating government funds.[7] Also in 2012, Johnson covered the resignation of D.C. City Council Chairman Kwame Brown, who pleaded guilty to bank fraud as part of a federal probe into D.C. corruption.[8][9]


In 1992, Johnson suffered a heart attack while covering a news story in Washington, D.C.[10] He had confronted drug dealers working next to a summer jobs sign up hosted by D.C. mayor Sharon Pratt Kelly.[10][11] He felt a tightening in his chest and his cameraman drove him to a local firehouse.[10][11] Firefighters transported Johnson to the hospital where doctors informed him that he had suffered a near-fatal heart attack. He was 42 years old.[10] Chronicling his recovery, he authored the book Heart to Heart featuring the recovery and comeback stories of 11 young heart attack survivors.[10][11] The book was also published by the People's Medical Publishing House in China.[11]

Johnson authored a second book in 2012 entitled All Or Nothing, The Victor Page Story, which documents the life of former NBA prospect Victor Page.[12]

Publication Year Title Publisher Notes
2009 Heart to Heart[13] iUniverse ISBN 1440170754
2012 All Or Nothing: The Victor Page Story[12] eBook2go Amazon Digital Services for Kindle

Awards and recognition[edit]

Johnson has been honored by many organizations as part of his journalist and volunteer work in the District of Columbia and surrounding areas.[2][14][15] In 2003, Johnson was voted into the Society of Professional Journalists' Hall of Fame, when the D.C. City Council recognized Johnson in 2003 for being one of the nation's best urban affairs and investigative journalists. In 2007, Johnson won a local Emmy for his report on repairs at the Duke Ellington School and has won a total of 19 Emmy awards throughout his career.[2][14] Johnson also received the Doctor's National Award from the Association of Black Cardiologists in 2011.[15]


After his near-death experience, Johnson now advocates for people to become healthier in order to prevent heart attacks.[16][17] His efforts and those of his producers resulted in a three-part television series that won national recognition from the American Heart Association.[16] After his recovery, Johnson began long-distance running and completed a 26.2 mile Marine Corps Marathon.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Johnson is married with three adult children and three grandsons. He enjoys road biking and practices yoga.[4][17]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "BRUCE JOHNSON WUSA-TV9 Reporter/Anchor Washington, District of Columbia reporter/anchor/author". BlogTalkRadio. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Notable Alumni: Bruce Johnson". Northern Kentucky University Alumni Association. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d "30th Anniversary Of Metro Crash That Killed 3 People On Blue/Orange Line (video)". WUSA 9. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Heart Attack Survivors Share Intimate Stories in Heart to Heart by C. Bruce Johnson". PR Newswire. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  5. ^ "Hanafi Hostages: 35 Years Later (video)". WUSA 9. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Montgomery, Sonsyrea Tate (29 May 2012). "Chuck Brown fans pay respects at Howard Theatre". The Washington Post. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Suderman, Alan. "Harry Thomas Jr. To Resign, Says WUSA9". Washington City Paper. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "Washington, D.C. Council chairman Kwame Brown resigns hours after being charged with bank fraud (video)". WUSA 9. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Grass, Michael (6 June 2012). "D.C. Council Chairman Kwame Brown Has 'No Plans To Resign' (UPDATED)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c d e Martin, Michel. "Journalist Tells Of Having Massive Heart Attack At Age 42 (radio)". Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c d Mavity, Rachel Swick. "Lewes resident Bruce Johnson promotes book in China". Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  12. ^ a b Johnson, C. Bruce. "All or Nothing, The Victor Page Story". Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  13. ^ Johnson, C. Bruce. "Heart to Heart". Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  14. ^ a b "2006 Emmy ® Award Recipients" (PDF). The National Capital Chesapeake Bay Chapter Of The National Academy Of Television Arts And Sciences. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  15. ^ a b "Author Spotlight: Heart-Healthy Advocate and Author of Heart to Heart C. Bruce Johnson Wins Doctor's National Award". iUniverse. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  16. ^ a b "Award-Winning Reporter Adds a Heart Healthy Lifestyle to His Beat". Bruce Johnson Heart to Heart website. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  17. ^ a b c Johnson, C. Bruce. "Marine Marathon (video)". Retrieved 10 April 2013.