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CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin, who has been a staple of the news channel’s afternoon lineup since she joined the company in 2008, will depart next month.
Baldwin announced the news at the top of her show during the 3 p.m. hour Tuesday, saying “there is more I need to do outside the walls of this place, this place I have been privileged to call home for the past 13 years.”
“I am so grateful for your loyalty and passion for the world we cover, and so grateful for my show team, to Jeff Zucker, to my very large CNN family, and to you,” Baldwin added. “The next chapter of my life will be focused on what I love the most about my work, amplifying the lives of extraordinary Americans, and putting my passion for storytelling to good use.”
Baldwin added that her book, called Huddle: How Women Unlock Their Collective Power, will also be released in April.
Zucker earlier this month announced his own plans, to remain at the channel through 2021, expecting to depart after that time. His announcement raised questions about what parent company AT&T planned to do with the venerable cable news channel.
Baldwin announced her departure just a month after CNN unveiled a rejiggering of its dayside lineup, which saw an expansion of Jake Tapper’s 4 p.m. program The Lead to 6 p.m. Baldwin’s show had been temporarily pulled from CNN’s schedule in the lead-up to last year’s presidential election, returning later in November.
Cable news hours do not open up very often, and whoever CNN chooses to take over 3 p.m. will send a message for what the channel’s priorities are. Baldwin’s news hour was for the most part a general news program, tackling all subjects depending on the news cycle, whereas the hours that followed in Tapper and Wolf Blitzer’s programs are decidedly politically focused.
Baldwin initially joined CNN in Atlanta, when that was still the channel’s center of gravity. As more programming moved to Washington, D.C., and New York, she followed, moving to CNN’s New York bureau in 2014. While details about her next steps aren’t clear, Baldwin said that she does not have anything specific lined up yet.
“No, I don’t have a job I am jumping right into, and yes, yes I am feeling very vulnerable,” Baldwin said. “But what is it Brené Brown says? Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change, and I am so excited about what is to come.”
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