Florida’s First Female News Reporter and Anchor Dies

By Kevin Eck 

Molly Turner, the first female reporter and anchor in Florida, has died at the age of 93.

Turner started her career at WTVJ in 1951 on the Saturday morning Country & Western themed Uncle Martin Show.

She joined ABC affiliate WPLG in the 1960s as a midday anchor and public service director. In 1969, Post-Newsweek bought WPLG and made her the region’s first female reporter.

Her influence was immeasurable, paving the way for the late Ann Bishop, another WPLG TV news legend, who once credited Turner for thrusting doors open for female broadcasters. Also, Carmel Cafiero, WSVN-Channel 7’s first female reporter, who retired June 30 after 43 years at the station, and WSVN’s current news anchor Belkys Nerey.

“I grew up watching her on TV, 100 percent,” said Nerey. “She did all the consumer stuff. Such a strong, hard-hitting reporter. One of those women that nothing could stop them. ‘If there’s a wrong, I’m righting it’ and that’s what a good journalist is. I remember watching her in middle school and thinking, ‘That is some job that lady has got.’”