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Brian Lehrer in 2009
|Alma mater||State University of New York at Albany (B.A.)|
Columbia University (M.P.H.)
Ohio State University (M.S.)
|Occupation||Journalist, radio talk show host|
Brian Lehrer (born October 5, 1952) is an American radio talk show host on New York City's public radio station WNYC. His daily two-hour 2007 Peabody Award-winning program,The Brian Lehrer Show, features interviews with newsmakers and experts about current events and social issues. Lehrer was formerly an anchor and reporter for NBC Radio Networks, and has been in broadcast journalism for more than 20 years. Lehrer also hosts a weekly tech- and web-oriented television show, BrianLehrer.TV on CUNY TV.
Lehrer obtained B.A. degrees in Music and Mass Communications from the State University of New York at Albany. While a student there, he hosted a radio program on the college radio station WSUA which has since become WCDB Albany.
He holds a Master of Public Health degree from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and a master's degree in Journalism from Ohio State University. Lehrer resides in Inwood, Manhattan with his two sons. His wife died in 2014.
Lehrer has been hosting his show, originally called On the Line, since its inception in 1989. The format is interviews with newsmakers, combined with listener phone calls. Newsmakers are local, national and international, often authors on book tours, or metropolitan area politicians, including both of New York's senators, and most congress, state and city representatives from the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut area. Sometimes guests are less-famous individuals affected by the news, like Brooklyn residents on the site of giant housing developments, or neighbors of noisy Manhattan night clubs. Frequent topics are housing, health care, transportation, education, and other government functions; the arts; the experience of living in New York and the surrounding area; and international affairs, such as the Iraq war or Israel/Palestinian conflict, particularly from a New York perspective. Lehrer's programs often use The New York Times for leads and guests. He tries to maintain a balance between issues as they affect listeners, and "horse-race" pundit discussions of politics.
Lehrer hosted a cable TV talk show called BrianLehrer.TV (formerly Brian Lehrer Live) on CUNY TV (channel 75 on New York City cable systems) until June 2015. In 2009 the show was nominated for a regional Emmy award (New York Emmy Awards).
He began hosting a new show called POTUS 2016 in September 2015.
Lehrer's op-ed pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The New York Sun, Newsday, and the New York Daily News, and on Slate.com. His WNYC commentaries are also distributed globally on the NPR.org website.
Lehrer was a questioner in the WABC-TV New York City Mayoral Debates in 1997, 2001, and 2005. He has appeared on television as a commentator on New York 1, WNET Channel 13, and CNNfn, and hosted public affairs shows on WNYC-TV and WNET from 1990-1998.
Lehrer was the recipient of the Associated Press New York Broadcasters "Best Interview" Award in 2000 for an interview with a rape survivor, and in 2001 for his role as moderator on NYC radio of the only mayoral primary debate between Michael Bloomberg and Herman Badillo. During his tenure as host of NPR's On The Media, the national program was named "Best Weekly Show" by the Public Radio News Directors in 1999.
Lehrer is also an award-winning author and documentary producer. He was awarded the New York Press Club's "Heart of New York Award" for his documentary on new immigrants Immigrant New York: The Last 20 Years, and a New York Public Library "Best Books For The Teenaged" award for The Korean Americans.
He currently moderates several major public forums, including The Nation vs. The Economist series and the Harper's Forum series, and has moderated or hosted major events for the American Museum of Natural History and Westinghouse Science Foundation, among others.