When Scott Pelley assumed the role of CBS Evening News anchor in 2011, he'd had a long and storied career of reporting from war zones, refugee camps and even campaign trails. So when he moved into his office overlooking the CBS newsroom, Pelley filled the space with items that remind him of and pay homage to his career at CBS. Above all else, however, his office is a working space for the team responsible for Evening News' soaring ratings. "I think of my office as a meeting place for our correspondents, producers and staff," Pelley said. "We pull up the chairs around the round table in the middle and talk about writing, reporting and the direction of our coverage. The office has floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the newsroom one floor below. I always keep the drapes pulled fully back so everyone can spot me and know that my door is open. We're hyper-collaborative. A lot of great ideas are hatched in my office, but they're rarely my own."
Pelley’s staff gifted him the plane on the Evening News’ first anniversary—it’s an exact replica of “Smokey Joe,” the B-17 bomber Pelley’s father flew in World War II.
The photos are memorable CBS News moments—including Edward R. Murrow lighting Marilyn Monroe’s cigarette.
“The U.S. flag flew over the Capitol on June 6, 2011, the anniversary of D-Day, but also, my first day on the job as anchor and managing editor of the CBS Evening News,” he said.
“Those are military ‘challenge coins’ that I have been given by unit commanders on various battlefronts in Afghanistan and Iraq. They’re a military tradition,” said Pelley. “They are called ‘challenge coins’ because if you run into that commander again in another place and time, he will challenge you to produce the coin. If you don’t have it, you’re buying the drinks. There are more than 30 coins.”
This story first appeared in the Feb. 22 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.