Veteran of NBC News and ‘Nightline,’ Cynthia McFadden, will depart

Cynthia McFadden, a seasoned television news anchor with a remarkable career spanning from co-anchoring ABC News’ “Nightline” to holding a prominent position on NBC News’ investigations team, has decided to take a break from broadcast journalism.

In a heartfelt message to her colleagues, McFadden expressed the difficulty of leaving a job she truly loves. However, she emphasized that now is the right time for her to pursue the things she has always wanted to do. McFadden remarked, “I have a list of things I have often said I wanted to do ‘someday’. Well, someday is now, while I am still eager and ready to take on new challenges.” She also hinted at the possibility of surprising both her colleagues and herself with what lies ahead.

During her time at NBC News, the experienced correspondent has had the opportunity to cover a wide range of stories. From reporting on a humanitarian crisis in Central Africa to investigating the troubling issue of babies being lost by veteran U.S. Marines and their families stationed at Camp Lejeune due to exposure to toxic water. Recently, she presented a one-hour special report on this topic on NBC News Now, the live-streaming service.

Throughout her impressive thirty-year career, McFadden has had the incredible opportunity to travel the globe, delving into the depths of humanitarian crises and the harrowing world of human slavery. Alongside this, she has also dedicated her time to examining important matters of justice and national security. In February 1994, McFadden made her entrance into ABC News as a legal correspondent, following her role as the executive producer of Fred Friendly’s Media and Society seminars, which were held at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.

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In October 2005, she became the co-anchor of “Nightline” when Ted Koppel decided to step down from his long-standing role as the show’s host. McFadden had occasionally filled in for him and took on more responsibilities as the late-night news program adapted to the changing interests of its audience, delving into lifestyle subjects and conducting celebrity interviews. Additionally, she reported on high-profile legal cases involving O.J. Simpson and Martha Stewart.

Leaving ABC after 20 years and giving up the anchor chair at “Nightline” was a major decision for McFadden. However, the opportunity at NBC to delve into some of the world’s most complex issues was too enticing to pass up. Reflecting on her time at NBC, McFadden expressed her happiness with the leap she took, stating that these years have been incredibly gratifying and productive in her long career.

At NBC, McFadden was encouraged to tell intricate and nuanced stories, often focusing on topics like injustice and corruption, particularly when it came to the challenges faced by children. She traveled to various locations, from rural Mississippi to the Triangle of Death in the Central African Republic, from the Red Cloud reservation to the mica mines of Madagascar and the mothers of Camp Lejeune. Her reporting took her to the American Arctic, the Rohingya camps, the Peruvian gold mines, and Cancer Alley.

Through her stories, McFadden and her team were able to make a significant impact. Sometimes their work led to hearings, federal investigations, or policy changes. Other times, they were able to give a voice to individuals who had never had one before. NBC provided a platform for McFadden to tackle complex and challenging issues head-on, allowing her to contribute to meaningful change.

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Throughout her career, she has been recognized with prestigious accolades including a Peabody Award, an Emmy, and a Loeb Award.

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