Walter Cronkite
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Faces of the news

Walter Cronkite
Education and experience used to be essential to a journalism career, but beauty often gets more attention than brains these days. Here’s a look at newscasters through the years who have had to prove (or not prove) that they’re more than just a pretty face.

Walter Cronkite

Network: CBS

When: 1962-1981

Cronkite was “the most trusted man in America,” but the sexiest? There’s something about guys named Walt that inspires feelings of paternal comfort rather than amorous leering. (Associated Press)
David Brinkley
David Brinkley

Network: NBC

When: 1956-1970

He delivered the news with a kind of dry wit that made audiences focus on the news, not his face. (Getty Images)
Barbara Walters
Barbara Walters

Network: ABC

When: 1979-present

Always an attractive woman, she’s synonymous with class these days. (NBC)
Anderson Cooper
Anderson Cooper

Network: CNN

When: 2001-present

A former model for Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and Macy’s, Cooper has been attracting female -- and male -- attention for years. (Turner Broadcasting)
Peter Jennings
Peter Jennings

Network: ABC

When: 1965-2005

When Jennings died of lung cancer in August 2005, several bloggers confessed their attraction to the anchorman with ruggedly good looks and brainy appeal. (ABC)
Jillian Barberie
Jillian Barberie

Network: Fox

When: 1995-present

Barberie doesn’t take herself too seriously as she wears halter tops and talks about L.A. weather on her Fox morning show. People don’t expect her to, either. They just like that she’s there. (Fox)
Arianna Huffington
OPINIONATED: “I think the mainstream media ... are increasingly accepting that there’s nothing wrong with opinion-based journalism if it is also fact-based at the same time,” says Arianna Huffington(Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times)
Maria Bartiromo
Maria Bartiromo

Network: CNBC

When: 1993-present

She’s considered so sexy, Joey Ramone wrote a song in her honor called “Maria Bartiromo.” The song features lyrics such as “I watch you on TV every single day / Those eyes make everything OK/ I watch her every day / I watch her every night / She’s really out of sight.” (Mat Szwajkos / Getty Images)
Paula Zahn
Paula Zahn

Network: CNN

When: 2001-2007

Even ads for Zahn’s then-show “American Morning” called the journalist “sexy.” After much criticism that they were inappropriate, the ads were pulled, but it didn’t change what people had in their heads: Paula Zahn is hot. (Mark Mainz / Getty Images)
Rachel Maddow
Rachel Maddow

Network: MSNBC

When: 2005

Rachel Maddow is the first openly gay/lesbian anchor to host a prime-time news program, and she also hosts a syndicated radio program on Air America Radio. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Katie Couric
Katie Couric

Network: CBS

When: 2006

Known to some as ‘America’s little sister,’ Couric’s appealling onscreen persona made her extremely popular. But on her 15th anniversary as permanent co-host of “Today” in 2006, Couric announced her decision to leave the network and become the anchor of the CBS Evening News. The move made her the first female to solo anchor an evening network newscast in history. (Richard Drew / Associated Press)
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