Simmons, 68, has been a fixture of the WNBC anchor desk for the past three decades. New York Post gossip columnist Cindy Adams reports that WNBC declined to renew Simmons’ contract, even though the station decided to give her longtime co-anchor Chuck Scarborough, who is also 68, another three years.
According to Adams, Simmons was informed a year ago about WNBC’s new direction. Around the same time, WNBC brought on anchor Shiba Russell, who many thought would eventually replace Simmons.
In January, Simmons moved off of WNBC’s 6 p.m. newscast and now only anchors the station’s 11 p.m. newscast, alongside Scarborough.
The winner of four Emmys while at WNBC, Simmons joined the station in 1980 from WRC, NBC’s D.C. station, where she spent four years as an anchor and reporter.
Simmons is expected to remain at WNBC until her contract expires in June.
[New York Post]
So far, WNBC has been mum on Simmons’ future with the station. WNBC released a statement today that emphasizes the station’s “tremendous respect and admiration” for Simmons.