Meredith Vieira

Nadine Caridi

Meredith Louise Vieira, the award- winning American journalist, and television host is popularly known as Meredith Vieira. Her career as a game show host and talk show host has earned her recognition as well as awards. She is best known for being the moderator of The View, an ABC talk show. Her career in the journalism industry has proved to be exemplary since she started out in 1975. She was also a part of hosting Today, a long- running NBC news program. She has hosted television shows like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (American Version), Rock Centre with Brian Williams, Dateline NBC etc. She also has her own talk show that ran for 2 years, The Meredith Vieira Show. She is a contributor and a correspondent for Today, Dateline NBC, NBC News and NBC Nightly News.


Early Life

Meredith was born on December 30, 1953. Born in Providence, Rhode Island, she was raised in an area near East Providence.  She is the youngest daughter of Mary Elsie Rosa and Edwin Vieira. Both of her parents were immigrants from Portugal. Her mother was a homemaker and her father was a doctor. She has three older brothers, Steve, Edwin and Jeff and is the youngest and only daughter of her parents. Her grandparents came from one of the nine islands in the archipelago, Azores. In the 19th and 20th century, they moved to New England from their hometown permanently. They settled in the Rhode Island. Her parents were very religious and she was raised as a Roman Catholic. In Portuguese her family name, Vieira means scallop.

Meredith graduated her high school in 1971. She attended an all- girl’s school in her hometown, Providence, the Lincoln School. After graduating high school, she went on to further study at Tufts University. She graduated with an English degree in 1975. She entered the broadcasting industry in 1975.


Early Career

She started her career in 1975 for WORC radio in Worcester, Massachusetts. She was a news announcer during the B.J. Dean Show broadcasting afternoon news. In Providence, she was an anchor and a local reporter for WJAR- TV starting her career in television. From 1979 to 1982, she worked as an investigative reporter at WCBS- TV making her career in the newsroom. Her latter work was in New York City. One of her assignments in early career was the Republican National Convention in Detroit in 1980. Another one of her popular assignments is an award- winning series on child molestation.


CBS Career

She worked for CBS for a brief time where she was first recognized nationally as a CBS reporter. She was based in the Chicago bureau of CBS from 1982 to 1984. After starting a few years in CBS, she worked as a correspondent for news- magazine shows throughout the nation. She was promoted to a correspondent after working for only two years as a reporter.  Her shows as a correspondent during her career in CBS were:

·         West 57th: Meredith worked as a correspondent for the West 57th from 1985 to 1989. She went to New York to work as a principal correspondent for West 57th, a CBS newsmagazine. During the season 1987- 1988 of West 57th, Vieira won four Emmy Awards for covering stories. After her first child was born, she cut back on her work on the West 57th. She was already working on the 60 minutes. 

·         60 minutes: From 1989 to 1991, she was the co- editor of the newsmagazine 60 minutes. She worked for the acclaimed award -winning segment during 60 minutes. She worked on the “Ward 5A”, which was the San Francisco’s first AIDS ward. A report on Christians who saved Jewish people during the Holocaust, Thy Brother’s Keeper helped her win her fifth Emmy Award. After she became pregnant with her second child, she scaled back her work and the producer confessed that the show needed a full- time correspondent and Vieira left the program. For her first pregnancy, the show’s producer allowed her to work part -time but after her second pregnancy, her request to work part- time was not accepted. Her firing made headlines for a number of days and a national debate broke out whether women could balance family and career.

·         Verdict: In June 1991, she contributed on actual courtroom trails with the prime series Verdict as a correspondent.

·         CBS Morning News: From 1992 to 1993, she anchored on CBS Morning News and CBS Evening News with Dan Rather. She contributed as a national correspondent in the latter. She was a co- anchor at the CBS Morning News, which was also her final assignment in the CBS.


After CBS: Move to ABC, Lifetime Network

After leaving CBS, Meredith initially moved to ABC as one of the regular correspondents for various news- magazine shows. She worked in the show Turning Point from 1994 to 1999. She was a chief correspondent and won an Emmy Award while working for Turning Point. She won her Emmy for a report on a white supremacist group, Inside the Hate Conspiracy: America’s Terrorists. Some of her other reports included her interviews with eight women who fought for another chance after killing their partners who abused them. She won The Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television Award.

She was the host of Intimate Portrait, a Lifetime Network show that debuted in January 1995. The show ran until August 28, 2004.

She was the original co- host and moderator of ABC’s talk morning show The View. She hosted the show when it first debuted on August 11, 1997, and stopped working on June 9, 2006. The show’s news offered fans topics from politics, entertainment, and legal issues. The show earned a number of Emmy nominations for Outstanding Daytime Talk Show and the hosts received nominations for Outstanding Talk Show Host.


Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?

Meredith served as the host of the American version of syndicated quiz, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. She started the show on September 16, 2002, that was previously known as an ABC primetime show previously hosted by Regin Philbin. She had an excellent career as the host of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire as she won two Daytime Emmy Awards in 2005 and 2009 for being an outstanding game show host. She is the first woman to win the awards multiple times and the second woman who won an Emmy in the category. She was also the co- producer of the show until her departure from the show since 2005.

She worked on the show for eleven seasons and hosted more than 1800 episodes. She left on January 10, 2013, to focus on other projects.


NBC Career

A day after Katie Couric announced she was leaving the show Today and joining CBS Evening news, it was announced that Meredith Vieira accepted to co- host the show. On April7, 2006, Vieira announced she was to leave the show, The View and join NBC’s Today. She joined the Today show from September 13, 2006, until June 8, 2011, when she was contributing as an anchor for Dateline NBC. While she was working for Today, she was still filming as a host of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. On May 9, 2011, she departed as a co- host of Today but remaining a special correspondent. She broadcasted on a few occasions like Halloween and for the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. She was also a part of Rock Center with Brian Williams and Dateline NBC. She collaborated with Hoda Kotb and Matt Lauer on various occasions.  She filled in for Kathie Lee Gifford in January 2013. While working on Dateline NBC she reported a story, Inconceivable.

She also covered the 2012 Olympics as one of the NBC’s hosts. She co- hosted the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Summer Olympics Games with Matt Lauer for which they were criticized. She also helped cover the Olympics during the games from Today. She also covered the 2014 Winter Olympic Games for two weeks of the games with Matt Lauer. She became the first woman ever to anchor NBC’s Olympics primetime coverage solo on February 14, 2014. She left The Today Show in 2011. She wanted to focus more on her family life; her husband was diagnosed with sclerosis during the time.


The Meredith Vieira Show

 Vieira announced in July 2013 that she was hosting her own afternoon talk show after a year.  The show was produced and distributed by NBC. The show had a strong starting and extended for two seasons. However, the popularity declined consequently afterward. The show was later cancelled after finishing two seasons and never made it to its 3rd season.


Other works

Meredith also worked in films and animations. She was seen in the comedy movies Get Me to The Greek and Gulliver’s Travels. She also featured in Shrek Ever After as the Broomsy Witch, an animated romp. She was a pre- show host in 2000 Academy Awards. She appeared in various scenes of a Broadway show in 2003, Thoroughly Modern Millie. She appeared as Bree Flanders in an episode of General Hospital. She appeared in The Stepford Wives, the 2004 version as a host of a game show. She interviewed cast members and crews of the ABC TV series Desperate Housewives in California. She was featured in five episodes of the NBC series 30 Rock. She lent her voice to a scene in the animation film, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa. In 2010, she appeared in an episode of Pawn Stars. She made a cameo in the final episode, The Wedding of River Song, of the sixth season of Doctor Who. In 2011, she was a part of The Ellen DeGeneres Show audience. It was announced that she will anchor and cover the 2016 Rio Summer Games on The Today Show and NBC.


Personal Life

Relationships and Marriage

·         Meredith is a married woman. Much information about her past relationships is not known. She has been married to Journalist Richard M. Cohen. She met the CBS News journalist when she was a correspondent in Chicago. He is also a television news producer. A year after she moved to New York, the couple got married. They have been married since June 14, 1986. There has been no news about the couple’s disputes and they are happily married.

They have three children together, two sons and a daughter. She resides in her Irvington home in New York. Since he was 25 years old, Richard had multiple sclerosis and had two bouts of colon cancer. Meredith is a vegan now.

Their younger son walked into the footsteps of his parents and joined the broadcasting arena. Currently, he is a reporter for KOMO- TV in their Seattle unit. Previously he worked at KHQ- TV in the Spokane unit.


 Career and Family

During the mid -1990s, she was offered to work for ABC and CBS as a co- host. She declined to host The Early Show and Good Morning America because her children were young. She wanted to focus on her family life during these times. She discussed her views about family life and career life in a book by Elsa Walsh, Divided Lives: The Public and Private Struggles of three American Women.


Recognition, Honors, and Awards

For her exemplary work in the media and entertainment field, Vieira received a P.T. Barnum Award from the Tufts University where she graduated.  She received the award in 2006.


Net Worth

The 62-year-old journalist is worth $40 million. Her monthly income is about $916000. She earns $229 weekly and $32700 on a daily basis. Her salary for the year 2016 has been revealed and it is about $11 million. She is one of the richest anchors in the Unites States. 

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