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Photo courtesy of Flickr/PBS NewsHour
Photo courtesy of Flickr/PBS NewsHour
Television journalist Gwen Ifill died on Monday after undergoing cancer treatment. She was 61.

Gwen Ifill, a Queens-born television journalist for PBS and NBC, died on Monday at age 61.

Ifill died after several months of cancer treatment, according to a statement from PBS NewsHour.


Born to Barbadian and Panamanian parents, Ifill was one of five children. Her father, Oliver Urcille Ifill, was a minister at an A.M.E. Church in Jamaica.

She got her start in journalism as a reporter for the Boston Herald-American. She later worked for the Baltimore Evening Sun, The Washington Post, The New York Times and NBC.

In October 1999, Ifill became the moderator of the PBS program “Washington Week in Review.” In August 2013, she was named co-anchor and co-managing editor of PBS NewsHour along with Judy Woodruff. She moderated vice-presidential debates in 2004 and 2008 and in February, moderated a democratic debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.

She also wrote a book titled “The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama,” which was published on inauguration day in 2009.

“Gwen was a standard bearer for courage, fairness and integrity in an industry going through seismic change,” said Sara Just, PBS NewsHour executive producer. “She was a mentor to so many across the industry and her professionalism was respected across the political spectrum. She was a journalist’s journalist and set an example for all around her. We will forever miss her terribly.”


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