In Memory of Gwen Ifill

When I want real news, real information, I turn to PBS. Though Bill Moyers and Jim Lehrer cemented my appreciation for PBS, I think I became addicted to the PBS Newshour because of Gwen Ifill. I sensed an exceptional commitment to honesty in the woman. She was, to me, the Walter Cronkite of recent television journalism; I believed her and valued her because I trusted her. She tethered me to truth and shielded me from the sensationalism that is so prevalent in other media. I don’t discount her co-anchor, Judy Woodruff; but it was Gwen Ifill who was my favorite. And I, rabidly anti-political in many respects because I tend not to trust politicians, loved Washington Week. How she captured my attention so that I tried to watch every Friday evening, I don’t know. She and her panelists talked rationally about issues that really mattered; maybe that’s what mattered to me.

Almost the entire PBS Newshour tonight was dedicated to her life and its impact on her profession and society. I watched it, but I am glad I recorded it, as well. I suspect that touching program will provide solace from time to time as I watch it again.

I’m saddened at her death. I have fond memories of Gwen Ifill and I know there is a deep, empty hole in the PBS Newshour that will be hard to fill. Hari Sreenivasan, who has been doing a fine job in her absence, may be her successor. If so, he will have incredibly big shoes to fill.  I wish all of Gwen Ifill’s friends, family, and legions of fans the best in dealing with the grief of her loss.



About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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One Response to In Memory of Gwen Ifill

  1. robin andrea says:

    We were so sad to read about Gwen Ifill’s death yesterday. We don’t often turn on the news, but whenever we did we would watch the PBS News Hour. So, last night we tuned in and watched such a beautiful tribute to an excellent, committed and honorable journalist. She will be missed.

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