Steve Bell (news anchor)

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Steve Bell
Born(1935-12-09)December 9, 1935
DiedJanuary 25, 2019(2019-01-25) (aged 83)
EducationCentral College, Pella, Iowa, BA 1959, PhD, 1969
Northwestern U., MS, 1963
Occupationtelevision reporter, anchorman
EmployerBall State University, USA Network, KYW-TV, ABC, WNEW, WOW-TV, WGN and WGN-TV Radio-TV, WOI-TV, KBOE-FM
Spouse(s)Joyce Dillavou
AwardsEmmy nominations, 1965, 73
Overseas Press Club award, 1969
Headliner award, 1975

Stephen Scott Bell (December 9, 1935 – January 25, 2019) was an American journalist and educator. He was news anchor of the ABC News programs Good Morning America and World News This Morning, and a professor emeritus of telecommunications at Ball State University.[2][3]

Early life[edit]

A native of Oskaloosa, Iowa, Bell studied as an undergraduate at Iowa's Central College and went on to earn a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University.[4]


Bell was an ABC News correspondent from 1967 to 1986. He first covered the Vietnam War in 1967, and was held in detention in Cambodia in 1970 while investigating an alleged massacre of nearly 100 Vietnamese civilians by Cambodian soldiers.[2][5][6] He met Ted Koppel, later the anchor of the ABC program Nightline, during his years in Southeast Asia, and they became good friends.[7] After his return to the United States, he began working on Good Morning America, becoming the broadcast's news anchor in 1975.[8] He stayed for 11 years. He left ABC in 1986 and moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to co-anchor evening newscasts for KYW-TV. While there, he also anchored short-form news updates for the USA Network, alongside his colleagues at KYW, titled USA Updates.[9]

Bell left KYW in 1992 during an overhaul of the station's newscasts. He became a telecommunications professor at Ball State University in August 1992.[10] He was inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame in 2004.[2] Interviewed in 2005, Bell said he did not miss his work as a newscaster and reporter.[7] He retired from Ball State in 2007, becoming a professor emeritus.[2]

Bell appeared on Nightline in 2005 to present a report on how China has changed since Mao's rule; he and Koppel had earlier filmed a documentary there during the Mao Zedong era. The Steve Bell News Packaging Scholarship is given each semester at Ball State University to students for excellence in television news story packaging.[citation needed]

Bell died on January 25, 2019 at the age of 83.[11]


  1. ^ "Stephen Scott Bell". The Complete Marquis Who's Who (Fee, via Fairfax County Public Library). Marquis Who's Who, 2010. Retrieved 30 May 2011. Gale Biography In Context. Gale Document Number: GALE|K2014385459
  2. ^ a b c d "Former ABC Reporter Steve Bell Retiring". ABC News. 2007-04-27. Retrieved 2008-01-25.[dead link]
  3. ^ "Medill Honors Dinner Program Profile". 1999. Archived from the original on 2006-09-04. Retrieved 2007-02-07.
  4. ^ Woodress, Fred (March 26, 2004). "Steve Bell • 2004". Indiana EDU. Retrieved January 27, 2019.
  5. ^ Logan, Joe (1989-06-06). "Steve Bell recalls detention in Cambodia". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2008-01-25.
  6. ^ Hirashiki, Yasutsune (2017). On the Frontlines of the Television War : a Legendary War Cameraman in Vietnam. Irving, Terry (editor). Havertown, PA: Casemate. ISBN 9781612004730. OCLC 973832040.
  7. ^ a b Shister, Gail (2005-11-22). "One name draws Steve Bell out of academe: Koppel". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2008-01-25.
  8. ^ "Former Ball State professor, 'Good Morning America' anchor Steve Bell dies at 83". 13 WTHR Indianapolis. 2019-01-26. Retrieved 2019-01-28.
  9. ^ Kolson, Ann (1986-12-30). "Hail and Farewell from 'GMA' to Bell". Retrieved 2008-01-25.
  10. ^ Shister, Gail (1992-10-20). "Steve Bell, former KYW-TV anchor, enjoys new role as a classroom act". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2008-01-25.
  11. ^ Smith, Andrew (January 26, 2019). "Steve Bell, former ABC News anchor and Ball State professor, dies at 83". 10 News. Retrieved January 26, 2019.

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