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Paula Zahn

From Academic Kids

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Paula Zahn, during the December 6, 2004 broadcast of Paula Zahn Now.
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Paula Zahn interviews Barbara Bush in 1992.

Paula Zahn (born February 24, 1956 in Omaha, Nebraska) is a news anchor for CNN.

Paula Zahn grew up in Canton, Ohio and Naperville, Illinois. She attended Stephen's College in Columbia, Missouri on a music scholarship.

Zahn spent 10 years working in local news markets including Dallas, San Diego, Houston, Boston, and Los Angeles. In 1987 she took an offer to work at ABC News, initially anchoring The Health Show, then moving on to anchor the networks early morning newscast and news segments for Good Morning America.

In 1990 Paula went to work at CBS News, co-anchoring CBS This Morning with Harry Smith. After changes were made at the morning show in 1996 she went on to work as anchor of the Saturday edition of the CBS Evening News, as well as filling in for Dan Rather during the week, and contributing reports to 48 Hours, Public Eye with Bryant Gumbel, and CBS News Sunday Morning.

After 9 years at CBS News she moved to cable news at the Fox News Channel where she launched her prime time program The Edge with Paula Zahn. Two years later Fox News discovered she was in negotiations with CNN over a possible move there, and fired her for alleged breach of contract. A suit Fox News filed against her agent was subsequently thrown out by a New York State Supreme Court judge.

Paula Zahn began her work at CNN on September 11, 2001, joining anchor Aaron Brown in the coverage of the events of that day. She began her scheduled morning shift the next day, and by January she launched her CNN morning news program titled American Morning with Paula Zahn. Over that first weekend of January, 2002, CNN aired an advertisement for American Morning which called Zahn "sexy" and paired the adjective with a sound effect some interpreted to be a zipper opening. The ad was quickly pulled after the network received significant criticism for what was considered an undignified and sexist portrayal of a serious journalist. CNN attributed the ad's content to a lack of oversight.

In 2003, during the war in Iraq, Zahn moved back to prime time, hosting a 2-hour program labeled Live from the Headlines which offered continuing coverage of the war and other events. Anderson Cooper took over the first of the two hours by early summer, and by September her program Paula Zahn Now was launched in her time slot, which she currently anchors.

Among other things, Zahn is also an accomplished cellist, and played at Carnegie Hall in May, 1992 with the New York Pops Orchestra.

She is married to Richard Cohen, a New York City real estate developer, and has three children.


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