Brian Williams

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Williams speaking at the John F. Kennedy Library

Brian Williams(born May 5, 1959) is a American broadcast journalist and currently suspended anchor of NBC Nightly News. He was the seventh anchor of the thirty minute Nightly News program.


Before William's work as a broadcaster, he was an intern at the White House during Jimmy Carter's administration. Later he became a correspondent for CBS's news division in Philadelphia. He later became the assistant administrator of the political action committee of the National Association of Broadcasters in Washington.

Williams joined NBC in 1993. He soon became a lead journalist for the network, covering nearly every major issue going on in the world. After his first year at the network he was named Chief White House correspondent.[1] This new job gave him many opportunities, including flying with the president on Air Force One and closely covering domestic and national issues. In 1996 he became anchor and managing editor of "The News with Brian Williams." The show was a one-hour, live, newscast, which aired on MSNBC and CNBC and lasted seven years.

In 2005, Williams obtained the coveted anchor's chair from Tom Brokaw, who had retired at the end of 2004. NBC held its position as the largest and most watched nightly news network. As anchor Williams received praise for his reporting of Hurricane Katrina.[2]

On 2015, Williams ended up fired after he was exposed for repeatedly lying about his helicopter being shot down over Iraq.[3]


Brian Williams has been scrutinized for an alleged liberal bias. Critics use past examples and statements to validate their point.[4] After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Williams stated that America’s “military swagger” was a reason for the attacks. Also, while covering operation Enduring Freedom, he remarked on the United States' bombing campaign, comparing it to the United States' bombing of Japan. The comparison brought criticism from Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, who said, “I heard various commentators expansively comparing what's taking place in Iraq today to some of the more famous bombing campaigns of World War II. There is no comparison. The weapons that are being used today have a degree of precision that no one ever dream of in a prior conflict.” [5]

Williams showed his support for liberal president Bill Clinton, when he said in an interview that, "[Clinton is] perhaps the most intellectually and physically active person to have held the job in decades. I've also said that if Americans were paying Presidents by the thought, we're getting a bargain in this guy because, he's just always moving, his brain's moving, he hardly sleeps.”[6]

He also expressed his thoughts of conservative values after a January 2000 Republican debate. Saying, “It’s red meat for conservatives, the positions rather strident tonight: anti-gay, pro-Jesus, and anti-abortion and no gray matter in between.”[7]

In defense of charges of bias, Williams says that, "[NBC News has] inordinate number of editors. Every word I write, before it goes on air, goes though all kinds of traps and filters, and it's read by all kind of different people who point out bias."


Brian Williams has received four Edward R. Murrow Awards, five Emmy Awards, the duPont-Columbia University Award and the George Foster Peabody Award.[8]


  • He was the only and first major nightly news anchor to report from New Orleans before Hurricane Katrina hit and later to report from the Superdome when the storm hit.


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