Lemon at the 2013 Inaugural Dignity Gala
March 1, 1966 |
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
|Residence||New York, New York|
Louisiana State University
Lemon was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in 1966. Lemon was educated at Baker High School, a public high school in the small city of Baker. He majored in broadcast journalism at Brooklyn College in Brooklyn, New York and attended Louisiana State University. While in college, Lemon worked as a news assistant at WNYW in New York City.
In his early career, Lemon reported as a weekend anchor for WBRC in Birmingham, Alabama and WCAU in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; anchor and investigative reporter for KTVI St. Louis; and anchor for WBRC Birmingham, Alabama.
Lemon reported for NBC News' New York City operations, including working as a correspondent for Today and NBC Nightly News and an anchor on Weekend Today and MSNBC. In 2003 he began at NBC O&O station WMAQ-TV (5 in Chicago), and was a reporter as well as local news co-anchor.
Lemon joined CNN in September 2006. Lemon has been outspoken in his work at CNN, criticizing the state of cable news and questioning the network publicly. He has also voiced strong opinions on ways that the African-American community can improve themselves, which has caused some controversy.
During an on-air interview with members of Bishop Eddie Long's congregation in September 2010, Lemon said that he was a victim of sexual abuse as a child, and that it was not until he was thirty years old that he told his mother about it.
In his memoir, Transparent, Lemon came out as gay and discusses colorism in the black community, and the sexual abuse he suffered as a child. He has Creole ancestry (his great-grandfather was of French descent) in addition to Nigerian, Cameroonian, and Congolese ancestry.
Honors and awards
Lemon won an Emmy Award for a special report on the real estate market in Chicago. He received an Edward R. Murrow Award for his coverage of the capture of the D.C. area sniper, and a number of other awards for reports on Hurricane Katrina, and the AIDS epidemic in Africa.
The Columbia Journalism Review Darts & Laurel blog named Lemon among the worst of the worst in journalism for the year 2014 for reasons such as questioning whether Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was swallowed by a black hole, asking an alleged Bill Cosby rape victim why she didn't "use her teeth" to prevent forced oral sex, and stating “Obviously, there’s a smell of marijuana in the air” during coverage of the 2014 Ferguson unrest. Lemon was the only named journalist, although publications were also mentioned.
- "Don Lemon". CNN. Retrieved January 8, 2011.
- Don Lemon: Address; Distinguished Alumnus Award, Brooklyn College.
- Williams, Wyatt (December 22, 2011). "Can Don Lemon set CNN straight?". Creative Loafing. Retrieved December 23, 2011.
- Lemon, Don. "Black People. Clean Up Your Act". July 23, 2013. CNN. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- Brett, Jennifer (August 2, 2013). "Fact-checking CNN's Don Lemon". Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- Lemon, Don (September 25, 2010). "CNN: Don Lemon - "I Was Attacked By A Pedophile"". YouTube. Retrieved May 13, 2014.
- Folkenflik, David (May 16, 2011). "Livelihood 'On The Line,' Anchorman Reveals He's Gay". NPR. Retrieved May 19, 2011.
- Carter, Bill (May 15, 2011). "Gay CNN Anchor Sees Risk in Book". The New York Times.
- "Anchors & Reporters - Don Lemon". CNN. 2012. Retrieved February 11, 2012.
- Laurence Watts (September 15, 2011). "Interview: Don Lemon, CNN's openly gay anchorman". Pink News. Retrieved February 11, 2012.
- "CNN NEWSROOM transcript". CNN.com. April 18, 2009.
- "The Worst Journalism of 2014". Columbia Journalism Review. 2014. Retrieved May 1, 2015.
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