PBS NewsHour Launches West Coast Bureau

By A.J. Katz 

PBS NewsHour is officially “straight west-coastin,” as younger TV newsers might say.

Sara Just, executive producer of the nightly broadcast, today announced the launch of PBS NewsHour West at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

“As news cycles continue shrinking, and America’s appetite for fair, contextual and trustworthy reporting intensifies, PBS NewsHour West at ASU’s Cronkite School of Journalism will allow us to better serve our audiences across platforms and time zones,” Just, who also serves as a WETA senior vice president, said in a statement “With a team located at the Cronkite School and Arizona PBS, we will have an ideal perch from which to better cover the important issues in the west with alacrity and insight and serve our West Coast audiences even better.”

At its launch, slated for later in 2019, the PBS NewsHour West team will consist of up to six positions, which includes a correspondent who will serve as West Coast anchor.

The positions will post to the PBS NewsHour job page on Thursday, March 7, so west coast newsers who might be looking for new opportunities should take note!

According to the broadcaster, Several factors played into the NewsHour’s decision to open PBS NewsHour West at ASU, The university has one of the strongest journalism programs west of the Mississippi, and serves as the home to Arizona PBS. The bureau will also allow for NewsHour to work more closely with PBS stations and other media partners on the west coast. Additionally, the west coast is where more than 20 percent of the average nightly NewsHour’s audience resides.

Cronkite School Dean and Arizona PBS CEO Christopher Callahan added, “PBS NewsHour has a long history of setting the standard for broadcast journalism. We are honored to be a part of this great partnership, and we look forward to helping NewsHour deliver critical news coverage to communities across the Western United States.”

Judy Woodruff will remain primary anchor and managing editor of NewsHour, as one would expect, but when news warrants, the PBS NewsHour West team will update PBS NewsHour’s 6 p.m. Eastern time zone broadcast for West Coast audiences also carried in some cities as late broadcasts on radio, TV and streaming platforms.