Robin Roberts coming out is just the most recent indication that being on TV news just may be the gayest profession ever. Here are 8 more out TV news personalities that she joins out of the closet (and one that could soon follow her lead).
Dan Kloeffler may not be as well known as some of the other names on our list, but anyone who can come out while hitting on Zachary Quinto deserves a little bit of recognition. As you’ll see in the clip above, Kloeffler decided to insert himself into the story just a bit when reporting on Quinto’s coming out on ABC World News Now. Kloeffler later called it “the most fun you can legally have at 3AM.” We’re sure that if Quinto happened to be strolling by the studio, Kloeffler would’ve perhaps found another way to have more fun…
Today show weekend anchor Jenna Wolfe had more than one big reveal when she decided to come out last spring. In a special segment for Today that was followed by a blog post on their website, Wolfe revealed that she was pregnant and partnered with a longtime girlfriend who is also a journalist with NBC, foreign news correspondent Stephanie Gosk. On August 21, Wolfe gave birth to a baby girl, Harper Estelle Wolfeld Gosk.
It may seem like hunky MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts has been out forever, but it wasn’t official until remarks that he made at the 2006 annual convention of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association in Miami, FL. “When you hold something back, that’s all everyone wants to know,” he said. Around the same time, Roberts was involved in a nude pic scandal that may or may not have been the cause of his departure from CNN, but he landed on his feet at MSNBC not long after.
Unlike some others on this list, CNN anchor Don Lemon wasn’t working in the public eye with rumors of his sexuality brewing for a long period of time, so it was a bit of a shock when he came out in 2011 at the age of 45. His coming out was part of a media blitz for his memoir Transparent, which dealt with his sexual orientation, experiences growing up in the south, and the sexual abuse he endured as a child. He still anchors on CNN, and recently completed the three-week test run of a new show The 11th Hour, which is still awaiting word on whether or not it will be picked up for more episodes.
Jenna Wolfe isn’t the only dual coming out on this list. When longtime GMA weatherman (and stealth hot daddy) Sam Champion came out, he also decided to announce his engagement to Miami-based photographer Rubem Robierb. Champion and Robierb have since married, and Champion recently left GMA to take on a role at The Weather Channel, where he’ll be seen starting in early 2014.
He’s been seen on ESPN and has won a GLAAD media award for online journalism, but LZ Granderson is probably best known as “that guy” to people who’ve seen him give his opinion on everything from the Trayvon Martin case to President Obama’s reelection as a regular contributor on CNN. Granderson broke the story of pro athlete Sheryl Swoopes coming out, and has been out for most of his own professional career, bringing his dual identities as a gay man and sports fanatic to most of his work.
Differing a bit from the other anchors, Rachel Maddow came out in an interview with the campus newspaper as a freshman at Stanford University. She’s been an out and proud lesbian since entering the national stage first as a radio host at the now defunct Air America and then as a contributor and panelist on various shows on MSNBC. She is currently, of course, the host of The Rachel Maddow Show, one of MSNBC’s highest rated shows and is also the author of Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power, published by Crown in 2012.
Of course, no list of out TV news personalities would be complete without Anderson Cooper. The son of Gloria Vanderbilt, former Mole host, and current host of Anderson Cooper 360 on CNN had been dogged by rumors of his sexual orientation for years before finally coming out via email to Andrew Sullivan while on an international vacation in the summer of 2012. It was the “secret” everyone already knew, and with Cooper’s admission that he is and “always will be” gay, a glass closet that was talked about for years was finally shattered for good.
OK, so our bonus guy Shepard Smith isn’t officially out yet, but he’s definitely taking the glass closet crown away from Anderson Cooper. The Fox News anchor has never confirmed his sexual orientation, but came close to being outed by a story earlier this year in which staff at a Chelsea haunt confirmed his many visits with a “muscular 6-foot-2 thirtysomething white male” they referred to as “his boyfriend.” Smith stayed mum, and his glass closet is still intact until he decides to break free of it and officially join the other awesome out news personalities on our list.