Norah O'Donnell

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Norah O'Donnell
Born Norah Morahan O’Donnell[1]
(1974-01-23) January 23, 1974 (age 44)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Status Married
Education B.A., M.A.; Georgetown University[2][3]
Occupation Television journalist
Years active 1996–present
Notable credit(s)
Title Co-Anchor
Spouse(s) Geoff Tracy
Children 3

Norah Morahan O’Donnell (born January 23, 1974) is an American print and television journalist, currently serving as the co-anchor of CBS This Morning, a position she has held since July 2012, when she replaced Erica Hill. Before that, she spent one year as Chief White House Correspondent for CBS News in Washington, D.C., after moving to the network from NBC. She is also the substitute host for CBS' Sunday morning show, Face the Nation.

Early life

O'Donnell was born in Washington, D.C., the daughter of Francis O'Donnell, a doctor. Her parents are both of Irish descent.[1] When Norah was 3, her family moved to San Antonio, Texas,[4] where she graduated from Douglas MacArthur High School.[5] She holds a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy and a master's degree in liberal studies from Georgetown University.[6][3]


O'Donnell initially served as staff writer for Roll Call, where she covered Congress.[citation needed]

A commentator for the NBC News Today Show, Chief Washington Correspondent for MSNBC, and from September 2003 to May 2005, the White House correspondent for NBC News, O'Donnell was also a contributing anchor for MSNBC Live, and a rotating news anchor on Weekend Today. O'Donnell has done reports that have appeared on numerous NBC News broadcasts, including NBC Nightly News, The Today Show, Dateline NBC, and MSNBC. O'Donnell has also filled in for Chris Matthews as host of Hardball with Chris Matthews and was a regular pundit for The Chris Matthews Show. She also co-hosted the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade on WNBC since 2007.

Since joining CBS, she has filled in for Scott Pelley on the CBS Evening News multiple times, the first being October 10, 2011.

Washingtonian Magazine has named O'Donnell as one of Washington's 100 most powerful women. O'Donnell has also been named to Irish American Magazine's 2000 "Top 100 Irish Americans" list.

O'Donnell became a co-anchor on CBS This Morning in fall 2012, replacing Erica Hill.

In 2013 she appeared in "The City That Never Sleeps" as herself anchoring CBS This Morning interviewing fictional actor, Russell Berke played by actor Marc Blucas on the 2nd episode of the 4th season of the CBS hit series Blue Bloods.

Career timeline

Personal life

O'Donnell lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband, restaurateur Geoff Tracy (owner of D.C. restaurant, Chef Geoff's), whom she married in June 2001. On May 20, 2007,[7] Norah and Geoff became the parents of twins, whom they named Grace and Henry.[8] Their third child, daughter Riley Norah Tracy, was born on July 5, 2008; O'Donnell noted that her daughter's first name had been suggested by Tim Russert, who died three weeks prior to Riley's birth. O'Donnell and her husband Geoff Tracy made a cookbook for parents titled Baby Love: Healthy, Easy, Delicious Meals for Your Baby and Toddler, released on August 31, 2010.[9]


O'Donnell won the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Breaking News Coverage for the Dateline NBC story "DC In Crisis," which aired on the night of September 11, 2001.[citation needed]

She also won an Emmy for NBC News' Election Night coverage in 2008.[citation needed]


O'Donnell was heavily criticized by conservatives for her interview of a Sarah Palin supporter attending a book signing. While speaking with people in the line, O'Donnell pointed out the obvious inconsistency of Palin supporter Jackie Seal's wearing a shirt against the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which Palin supported. Several conservative hosts and bloggers, most notably Glenn Beck, criticized O'Donnell for the interview.[10]

In April 2010, O'Donnell implied that Newt Gingrich made racist comments at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference when he criticized Barack Obama with a basketball reference. Gingrich said: "What we need is a president, not an athlete. Shooting three-point shots may be clever, but it doesn't put anybody to work."[11] In response to the criticism, Gingrich said, "The left is becoming a parody of itself ... she immediately said that must be a racist comment. It's relatively hard to go from 'we need somebody who is a good president more than somebody who shoots three-point shots' to 'that must have been racist.'"[12]


  1. 1.0 1.1
  2. Norah O'Donnell Guest Speaker
  3. 3.0 3.1 Staff (2011-06-16). "Norah O'Donnell Gets CBS White House Beat". NewsCheckMedia LLC. Retrieved 2014-02-17.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Impressive! S.A. TV alumna joins CBS News by Jeanne Jakle. San Antonio Express-News, 16 Jun 2015. Retrieved 2015-06-17.
  5. Jakle, Jeanne (2012-10-02). "S.A.'s Norah O'Donnell perking up 'This Morning'". San Antonio Express-News. Retrieved 2014-02-17.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Norah O'Donnell". CBS News. 2014-02-05. Retrieved 2014-02-17.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. O'Donnell. Posted February 24, 2008; retrieved January 22, 2009
  8. Lynch, Lorrie (2007-09-02). "Who's News: Norah O'Donnell". USA Weekend.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. O'Donnell profile in The Washingtonian
  10. Calderone, Michael (Do the math 1974+17=1991) (2009-11-20). "Palin fan responds to O'Donnell interview - Michael Calderone". Politico. Retrieved 2010-05-02.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. Brian Montopoli (April 8, 2010). "Newt Gingrich: We Need a President, Not An Athlete". CBS. Archived from the original on November 16, 2011. Retrieved December 10, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Team Fox: Gingrich gripes about MSNBC's Norah O'Donnell". Washington Examiner. 2010-04-13. Retrieved 2010-05-02.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>[dead link]

External links