Lester Holt is an award-winning journalist and anchor of “NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt,” the network’s flagship broadcast currently celebrating its 70th anniversary. Holt also leads NBC News’ special reports, breaking news, primetime political coverage, and anchors “Dateline NBC,” which soon begins its 27th season.
Holt was named to the role of “NBC Nightly News” anchor in June 2015 after eight years as anchor of “NBC Nightly News” weekend editions and 12 years as co-anchor of “Weekend TODAY.” In addition, Holt has served as principal anchor of “Dateline NBC” since September 2011.
Holt joined NBC News in 2000 and is known for his outstanding work in the field, reporting and anchoring from breaking news events across the globe. He traveled to London and Helsinki in July of 2018 to lead NBC News’ coverage of President Trump’s first trip to the United Kingdom and the president’s summit with President Putin in Finland. He was also on the ground in Singapore for President Trump’s historic summit with Kim Jong Un. For the 2018 Winter Olympics, Holt travelled to PyeongChang where he anchored NBC News’ coverage of the games, broadcasting “Nightly News” from South Korea and reporting on the stories behind the world’s greatest athletes in what was his ninth trip to the Olympics. Over the past several years, he has reported from Manchester, Brussels and Paris on the terrorist attacks that took place across Europe. Previously, Holt anchored from South Africa during the Nelson Mandela memorial service; reported from the streets of Cairo on the latest political and civil unrest in Egypt during the Arab Spring; covered the earthquake and nuclear crisis in Japan; and reported on the immediate aftermath and response to the devastating earthquake in Haiti.
As a preeminent broadcast journalist, Holt was selected to moderate the first presidential debate of 2016, which was the most-watched debate in American history. Holt’s one-on-one with President Trump in May 2017 stands as the most consequential interview of the Trump presidency, after Trump told Holt the firing of former FBI head James Comey was tied to the Russia investigation. In January 2017, he traveled with President Obama on the Commander in Chief’s final trip aboard Air Force One, for an in-depth interview in Chicago. In 2018, Holt sat down with FBI Director Christopher Wray at the Aspen Security Forum, which coincidentally occurred after President Trump’s controversial summit with President Putin.
Holt came to MSNBC from after 14 years at WBBM-TV in Chicago. Previously, Holt worked as a reporter at WCBS-TV in New York City and sister station KCBS-TV in Los Angeles as a reporter and weekend anchor. His work has been recognized with numerous honors, including multiple Emmy Awards and a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism award. In June 2017, Holt was honored with Quinnipiac University’s Fred Friendly First Amendment Award. In April 2016, Holt received several notable designations: he was featured on TIME’s 100 Most Influential People list, The Hollywood Reporter’s Most Powerful People in New York list and was named “Journalist of the Year” by the National Association of Black Journalists. He was named to Variety’s New York Power List in September 2016.