The “Other” CNBC 20th Anniversary Party

By Chris Ariens 

Former NBCU Chairman Bob Wright and former CNBC anchor Felicia Taylor at a CNBC Anniversary party coordinated by some of the channel’s original employees.

This afternoon about 200 CNBC originals gathered in Times Square for their own 20th Anniversary party – one that did not include the people currently running the NBC cable business channel.

Former CNBC anchor Ted David, who’s been planning the event over the last two months, told the raucous crowd, “Frankly, there’s a guy across the river who thinks he made this happen. There’s a guy across the street who thinks he made this happen. And we know, [and the crowd joined in on this last part] we made it happen.”

[The reference to the “guy across the street” is to Roger Ailes who became president of CNBC in 1993, and would later found Fox News and Fox Business.]

• After the jump: who showed up, who didn’t, plus video of remarks from former NBCU Chairman and CEO Bob Wright, who insiders tell us wrote a sizable check to make today’s party at the Crowne Plaza hotel happen.

CNBC celebrated its anniversary April 17. It went on the air 20 years earlier, born from the merger with Financial News Network and counts Ted David, Ron Insana, who returned to the network in March as a contributor, and Sue Herera, among its founding anchors. We chatted briefly with David and Insana. Herera, still an integral part of the CNBC lineup as co-anchor of “Power Lunch”, was scheduled to attend and may have after we left.

We also spotted Susie Gharib, now with PBS’ Nightly Business Report, Alan Chernoff and Felicia Taylor now with CNN and, respectively, and current CNBC NYSE correspondent Bob Pisani.

In addition to Wright, former NBC cable president Tom Rogers spoke at the event. Rogers, now CEO of TiVo joked that at the next reunion, everyone would be able to fast-forward through the speeches. Also on hand, former NBC cable honcho David Zaslav, now CEO of Discovery Communications. Below is part of Wright’s remarks…

We didn’t see some of the other former CNBCers who’ve moved on to Fox News/Business, like Neil Cavuto and Liz Claman. But some employees who followed Ailes to Fox were at today’s CNBC party catching up with old friends.

In his remarks, David also mentioned CNBC chief commentator Bill Seidman who passed away earlier this week. “Bill was a wonderful man. His integrity was unquestionable. His ability on the air to field any question was amazing,” said David.