I am very sad to share the news that our dear friend and beloved colleague Gwen Ifill passed away today in hospice care in Washington, D.C.
Gwen was a special person and will always hold a special place in the hearts of St. Louisans. She held St. Louis in high regard, graciously visiting with our supporters, and frequently collaborating with us here at Nine Network. She brought Washington Week to St. Louis twice and was a special guest over the years at numerous events. She hosted a national town hall meeting in St. Louis on President Obama’s first 100 days in office, she helped us launch American Graduate with a national Teacher Town Hall, and she hosted a necessary conversation with America After Ferguson, a national town hall.
Gwen was one of the nation’s leading lights in journalism. She was the moderator and managing editor of Washington Week and co-anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour. Gwen covered eight presidential campaigns, moderated a primary debate between Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, and moderated two vice presidential debates, one of which was at Washington University in St. Louis. Gwen was a pioneer, leading the way for many women and people of color to follow in her footsteps as a prime-time anchor and correspondent. She was also the best-selling author of "The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama."
She was a trusted source for news. She commented that her role in public media was to bring “more light, less heat” to the issues that mattered most to communities and our country. But even more than her professionalism, she was a trusted friend—a guest in our living room each weeknight.
PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger sums up my feelings at this very sad moment, “Our sorrow at her passing is a part of our profound gratitude for all that she did for our system and our nation. It was an honor to know Gwen and to work with her.”
Gwen Ifill was my friend and a special friend of the Nine Network. She will be dearly missed for a long time to come.
President and CEO