Margaret Brennan

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Margaret Brennan
Margaret Brennan Face the Nation set.jpg
Margaret Brennan on the set of Face the Nation before broadcast on April 29, 2018.
Born (1980-03-26) March 26, 1980 (age 40)[1]
EducationConvent of the Sacred Heart
Alma materUniversity of Virginia (BA)
Notable credit(s)
Spouse(s)Yado Yakub
WebsiteOfficial website

Margaret Brennan (born March 26, 1980) is an American journalist based in Washington, D.C., the current moderator of Face the Nation on CBS News, and the network's senior foreign affairs correspondent.[2][3][4] Brennan was previously a White House correspondent for CBS and has covered Washington since 2012.

Prior to CBS, Brennan anchored the weekday show InBusiness with Margaret Brennan on Bloomberg Television. She was also a CNBC correspondent contributing to various NBC News programs.

Brennan is a term member at the Council on Foreign Relations, a John C. Whitehead Fellow with the Foreign Policy Association, serves on the alumni advisory board at the University of Virginia School of Politics, is a member of the Economic Club of New York, and serves on the Advisory Board of the Smurfit School of Business at the University College Dublin.

Early life and education[edit]

She was born on March 26, 1980 in Stamford, Connecticut to Edward Brennan, a senior director at the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America in New York, and Jane Brennan, an elementary school art and art history teacher in the Pennsbury, PA school district.[5]

She graduated with honors from the Convent of the Sacred Heart in Greenwich, Connecticut in 1998. At the University of Virginia, she graduated with highest distinction in 2002 with a B.A. in Foreign Affairs and Middle East Studies with a minor in Arabic language. She was named an Emmerich-Wright scholar for her thesis and also studied abroad at Yarmouk University in Irbid, Jordan, on a Fulbright-Hays Grant.

In 2015, she received an honorary doctor of letters degree from Niagara University for her work in international affairs.



Brennan began her business news career in 2002 at CNBC as a producer for prominent financial journalist Louis Rukeyser. She wrote, researched and booked guests for the weekly Louis Rukeyser's Wall Street program and primetime specials.[6]

Brennan later worked as a producer on Street Signs with Ron Insana for which she coordinated guest bookings and produced interviews with former President George W. Bush and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.[7]

As a CNBC correspondent, she covered the financial crisis with a focus on consumer issues.

She conducted interviews with former Walmart CEO Lee Scott and Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen. She broke the story of Circuit City's liquidation in 2009 and regularly covered changing consumer trends for the network.[8][9]

Bloomberg Television[edit]

On June 24, 2009, Margaret Brennan left CNBC to join Bloomberg Television:[10]

"I think across the board, you can't separate the business stories from the international political stories any longer. Covering the global consumer, covering the global markets—all that is going to be a part of the canvas here."

— Margaret Brennan, Observer

At Bloomberg, she anchored InBusiness with Margaret Brennan, a weekday program broadcast live from the New York Stock Exchange that covered the top political, economic and global financial news impacting the marketplace.[11] During her tenure she broadcast live from Riyadh, Dubai, Cairo, London, Dublin, Abu Dhabi and Davos. Brennan covered top breaking news stories involving the European debt crisis, the largest insider trading case in U.S. history and the BP oil spill. She anchored live from Tahrir Square as Hosni Mubarak stepped down after 30 years in power.[12]

Additionally, Brennan has interviewed the International Monetary Fund's Christine Lagarde,[13] investor George Soros,[14] former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, as well as Ireland's Prime Minister and Dubai's ruler during their respective debt crises.

She also helped lead anchor coverage of Bloomberg's 2012 Republican presidential candidate debate.

Brennan left Bloomberg in 2012.[15] On April 27, 2012, she hosted her last show of InBusiness. No reason was given for her departure, other than the choice to pursue new opportunities.[16]

CBS News[edit]

Brennan with Secretary of State John Kerry in 2015

Brennan joined CBS News in July 2012. Since 2012, she was based in Washington and reported on the White House across the Obama and Trump administrations for CBS programs.[2] She substitute anchors on CBS This Morning and the CBS Evening News. Brennan was also part of the CBS News team honored with a 2012-2013 Alfred I. Dupont-Columbia Award for coverage of the Newtown tragedy.

Brennan's reporting has taken her to Tehran, Baghdad, Kabul, Beijing, and Havana. She has covered diplomatic negotiations including the nuclear deal with Iran, the chemical weapons deal in Syria, and the reopening of relations with Cuba. She conducted the first US interview with South Korean President Park Geun-Hye covering her hardline policy against North Korea.[17] The interview made headlines in Pyongyang and Seoul, where her etiquette was the topic of a morning show.[18] She was also among the first reporters to interview Hillary Clinton about the fatal attack on the US mission in Benghazi, Libya.

At a press conference on September 9, 2013, she asked Secretary of State John Kerry about any possibility for the Syrian government to avoid a U.S. strike. Kerry answered that Assad could "turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week"[19]—although later his answer was retracted as "a rhetorical argument about the impossibility and unlikelihood of Assad turning over chemical weapons he has denied using" by a State Department spokesperson—led Russia's foreign minister Sergey V. Lavrov to propose this as a solution to the crisis.[20]

On February 22, 2018, she was named the 10th moderator of Face the Nation, the network's Sunday morning political interview show, becoming only the second woman to moderate the program.[21]

Honors and awards[edit]

Brennan (right) speaks on Irish-American identity with Mary Gay Scanlon and Alice McDermott in 2020

Irish America magazine named her one of the top Irish Americans and one of the top 100 Irish-Americans in business and in media. In 2003, she was named one of the top journalists under the age of 30 by the NewsBios/TJFR Group.[22]

Brennan received the Fulbright Award for international understanding in 2010.

Personal life[edit]

Brennan married Yado Yakub, a Jordanian-American attorney in the Marine Corps,[23] in 2015.[24][25][26] During an appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on April 30, 2018, Brennan announced she was pregnant with their first child, a boy. He was born on September 11, 2018. [27][28]


  1. ^ "Margaret Brennan Age, Husband, Married and Salary". NetWorthAge. Retrieved 4 February 2018.[unreliable source?]
  2. ^ a b "Margaret Brennan". CBS News. 2017-03-29. Retrieved 2017-04-28.
  3. ^ "Margaret Brennan - Aspen Security Forum". Retrieved 14 July 2015.
  4. ^ February 22, CBS News; 2018; Am, 9:59. "Margaret Brennan named Face the Nation moderator". maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Vincent M. Mallozzi. "It Took Time but Was Worth It - The New York Times". Retrieved 2019-09-15.
  6. ^ Battaglio, Stephen. "Margaret Brennan will anchor 'Face the Nation' for CBS". Retrieved 2018-04-26.
  7. ^ Brennan, Margaret. "Margaret Brennan". CNBC. Retrieved 2018-04-26.
  10. ^ Gillette, Felix (26 June 2009). "Margaret Brennan Leaves CNBC for Bloomberg TV". Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  11. ^ "No shouting on the air for Bloomberg TV's Brennan". 7 April 2010. Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  12. ^ La Roche, Julia (26 April 2012). "The Amazing Life And Career Of Bloomberg TV Star Margaret Brennan". Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  13. ^ "Lagarde: Need to 'Forcefully` Address U.S. Housing". 19 April 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  14. ^ Bloomberg (23 March 2012). "George Soros Discusses U.S. Dollar, China Stock Market: Video". Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  15. ^ Ariens, Chris (25 April 2012). "Margaret Brennan leaving Bloomberg TV as Net Shakes Up Mornings". Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  16. ^ La Roche, Julia (25 April 2012). "Margaret Brennan Is Leaving Bloomberg TV". Retrieved 1 May 2018 – via
  17. ^ "South Korean president: North Korea will "pay" for any attack". Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  18. ^ "Margaret Brennan is Popular in South Korea". Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  19. ^ "Press Conference by Kerry, British Foreign Secretary Hague". Retrieved 14 July 2015.
  20. ^ Gordon, Michael R. (2013-09-09). "Obama Calls Russia Offer on Syria Possible 'Breakthrough'". The New York Times.
  21. ^ Grynbaum, Michael M. (2018-02-22). "Margaret Brennan Named Host of 'Face the Nation' on CBS". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
  22. ^ "Past NewsBios 30 Under 30 Award Winners". NewsBios, A Division of the TJFR Group, Inc. 2010-02-12. Archived from the original on October 23, 2013. Retrieved 2015-01-16.
  23. ^ Malone, Michael. "Reena Ninan Joins CBS News as Correspondent". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved Sep 16, 2019.
  24. ^ McDonough, Megan (17 April 2015). "On Love: Margaret Brennan and Yado Yakub". Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  25. ^ Mallozzi, Vincent M. (12 April 2015). "It Took Time but Was Worth It". Retrieved 4 February 2018 – via
  26. ^ "CBS News Correspondent Margaret Brennan's Classic Washington, D.C. Wedding". Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  27. ^ Brito, Christopher (30 April 2018). "Margaret Brennan, "Face the Nation" moderator, reveals she's pregnant during Colbert appearance". Retrieved 1 May 2018.
  28. ^ Lejeune, Tristan (14 September 2018). "'Face the Nation's' Margaret Brennan gives birth to baby boy". TheHill.

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
John Dickerson
Face the Nation Moderator
February 22, 2018 – current
Succeeded by
Preceded by
David Begnaud (interim)
CBS Evening News anchor
May 28, 2019 – May 31, 2019 (interim)
June 12, 2019 - June 13, 2019 (interim)
Succeeded by
David Begnaud (interim)
Jim Axelrod (interim)