In 1950 he turned to the new medium of television, joining the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS), where he covered (1952) the first televised presidential nominating conventions. A decade later he was named managing editor and anchor of the
The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite, which became American television's dominant evening news program. Calm and authoritative, he became a national institution, and in 1973 was voted America's most trusted public figure. He was especially known for his coverage of such events as the 1968 Democratic convention; the Vietnam War; the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr.; the Watergate affair, and the accomplishments of the American space program. In 1981 he stepped down as news anchor and became a special correspondent for CBS News; he subsequently made several documentaries and also did programs for other networks. His books include Challenges of Change (1971) and a memoir (1996).
See his Conversations with Cronkite (with D. Carleton, 2010); biography by D. Brinkley (2012).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2023, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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