CBS announced Sunday that chief political director John Dickerson will replace the retiring Bob Schieffer this summer as host of the political roundtable Face the Nation. Here are four facts to play catch-up on the veteran journalist’s career.
1. Dickerson spent 12 years covering politics for TIME.
Dickerson worked for TIME from 1993-2005, spending the final four years as the White House correspondent during the George W. Bush administration.
In 2003, Dickerson co-authored an article for TIME titled, “A War on Wilson,” which in 2007 resulted in his being named by White House spokesman Ari Fleischer as one of two reporters to whom he leaked the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame. Dickerson has refuted the claim and offered his own account of events.
2. He is a podcast maven
On Slate’s popular Political Gabfest podcast, the three-person team of Dickerson, Atlas Obscura CEO David Plotz and New York Times Magazine reporter Emily Bazelon discuss the week’s current events. Dickerson is also the one-man host of Whistle Stop, a U.S. political campaign history podcast.
Fans will be happy to hear Dickerson will continue podcasting.
3. His mother was a pioneering journalist
In 1960, when journalism was almost completely male-dominated, Nancy Dickerson became CBS News’ the first female correspondent. She was also an associate producer on Face the Nation — including the very first broadcast of the show in 1954.
In 2006, John Dickerson wrote about his pioneering mother in the biography, On Her Trail, in which he retraces her life and explores their relationship, after her death in 1997. In a 2006 interview with TIME, he said, “I owe her more gratitude than I ever expressed and more sympathy than I ever demonstrated.”
4. The man loves his history
When Dickerson dives into William Henry Harrison’s first ever presidential campaign or the curious quirks of President Harding it is obvious that much of his success in journalism is because of his passion for history.
However, as CBS News president David Rhodes puts it, “John is first and foremost a reporter — and that’s what he’ll be as anchor of Face the Nation.”
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