STUDIO CITY, Calif. (CBS) — NewsCentral’s Pat Harvey is celebrating 20 wonderful years with KCAL 9 Friday, and the Los Angeles City Council is recognizing her anniversary and achievements by proclaiming Friday as Pat Harvey Day.
Harvey, an award-winning and nationally recognized broadcast journalist, joined KCAL in 1989, and has anchored Prime 9 News since it was launched a few months later.
She is the longest-running anchor in prime time at one station in Los Angeles and the only African-American female. In addition to her anchoring duties, Harvey regularly reports on issues of concern to Southern California and the world. In 2009, Pat attended the inauguration of President Barack Obama and filed live reports for the CBS duopoly from Washington D.C. In 2008, she conducted an exclusive interview with the Cobles, a couple who lost their three children in an horrific truck crash in Orange County. The interview and subsequent investigations into the trucking industry, lead to calls for safety regulations.
That same year, Pat received the Genii Award for excellence in TV broadcasting from Southern California’s chapter of American Women in Radio and Television. She is only the second TV News journalist in the chapter’s near 60 year history to receive the honor.
In 2005, Harvey traveled to Rome, where she covered the Papal Conclave live from Vatican City. Her reports included an interview with Los Angeles Cardinal Mahoney on the night before the secret conclave.
The year before Harvey received the Joseph M. Quinn Lifetime Achievement award from the L.A. Press Club. A 16-time Emmy award winner, Pat was awarded the Emmy for a multiple report on basketball great “Magic” Johnson a decade after he was diagnosed with HIV. In 2001, Harvey took home an Emmy award for a series of reports from East Africa on the AIDS epidemic and the brutal, centuries-old practice of female genital mutilation.
Several years earlier, her reports on the first all-race election in South Africa brought honors from the New York Television and Film Festival. Harvey’s documentary entitled “Sex and AIDS in Russia” received multiple honors, as did a documentary and multi-part series called “Women and Aids”.
Other awards include being named “Best News Anchor” by the Associated Press, a national Emmy, five Golden Mikes, a national American Women in Radio & Television award, the Society of Professional Journalists for investigative reporting, the Edward R. Murrow award presented to KCAL news for overall excellence, the National Association of Black Journalists, L.A. Press Club and the Hollywood Women’s Press Club for ethics in journalism.
The veteran newswoman has anchored live coverage for KCAL 9, from the riots following the verdict in the Rodney King case, to the fires, floods and the devastating earthquake in 1994. During the O.J. Simpson trial, Harvey landed the first interview with dismissed juror Jeanette Harris, which was seen worldwide and changed the way we view our criminal justice system. Pat also hosted several high-profiled town hall meetings for the station, which included the war in Somalia and a two-hour live broadcast from Los Angeles featuring representatives from the White House, local, and state political and community leaders and residents affected by the riots.
She has also anchored the station’s political coverage from the Democratic conventions in Chicago and Los Angeles, and in Atlanta for WGN in 1988, where she broke a national news story regarding the change of leadership in the DNC.
Harvey began her television career in 1976 in her native city of Detroit. In 1979, she became a general assignment reporter in Saginaw, Michigan where she later produced and anchored the station’s evening newscasts. In 1981, Pat helped launch CNN Headline News in Atlanta, becoming one of its original anchors. Later, she anchored CNN’s Daybreak newscast, where she regularly interviewed heads of state and other dignitaries. Pat joined Chicago Superstation WGN as a news anchor in 1985, where she was seen on cable systems throughout the United States and South America. While working for WGN, Pat was invited to Brisbane, Australia to co-anchor an hour newscast.
Her most rewarding work is reporting stories that have had a major impact on people’s lives. In 1988, Pat went to Capitol Hill and testified in the Illinois state legislature following her investigative reports into the high number of deaths of women from faulty pap smears. As a result, the governor of Illinois passed new health legislation to regulate cytology labs in the state. A lab in Tarzana, California responsible for many of those defective smears was shut down.
Harvey also traveled to El Salvador during that country’s civil war for a sensitive report on the “Children of War” for KCAL 9 News. The series resulted in the fitting of artificial limbs for an orphan, an innocent victim of the war.
Active in community affairs, Pat has received recognition from the Boy Scouts of America to the NAACP. In 1999, Pat was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in the Humanities from American Intercontinental University. In 2005, she was awarded another honorary doctorate from Mt. St. Mary’s College.
In a huge step toward promoting progress and contribution to community service, she is a co-chair of the Good News Foundation. A group comprised of four other fellow newswomen in Los Angeles. The organization gives out annual scholarships to deserving, future, broadcast journalists and raises funds to help various charities.
Pat is married to Ken Lombard and cares for her daughter Michelle, sister and nephew.
All of us here at NewsCentral congratulate Pat on her many achievements and wish her continued success and happiness in the future.