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Connie Chung joins CNN

Connie Chung is slated to have an 8 p.m. show on CNN sometime in the spring.  

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Former CBS, NBC and ABC anchor Connie Chung made the jump from broadcast to cable news Wednesday, inking a contract with CNN to host an hourlong, prime-time news and interview show from New York.

Chung, 55, will fill the 8 p.m. spot opened by the departure of Greta Van Susteren, who left CNN for the Fox News Channel this month. Chung's program, still to be named, is expected to begin in the spring.

"I'm delighted to be part of an organization of dedicated journalists whose sole mission is to report the news every minute of every hour every day," Chung said.

Walter Isaacson, chairman and CEO of the CNN News Group, praised Chung as a "consummate journalist who brings a wealth of experience and expertise to our network."

The Connie Chung file

Age: 55

Born: Washington, D.C.

Family: spouse, Maury Povich (married in 1984); son, Matthew Jay (adopted in 1995).

Career: WTTG-Washington, 1969-71; CBS News, 1971-76; KNXT-Los Angeles, 1976-83; NBC News, 1983-89; CBS News, 1989-97; ABC News, 1997-2002.

Shows include: "Saturday Night With Connie Chung," "Eye to Eye With Connie Chung" and "Face to Face With Connie Chung."

Awards include: Three Emmy Awards, a Peabody Award and a 1991 Clarion Award.

Little-known facts: Born Constance Yu-hwa Chung; her father was an intelligence officer in the Chinese Nationalist Army under Chiang Kai-shek.

"She has the insight and flexibility to manage any topic in an informative and compelling way," he said.

Sid Bedingfield, executive vice president and general manager of CNN/US, hailed the addition of Chung, saying it gives the network "the most distinctive and distinguished prime-time lineup in its history."

In August, Chung landed the only broadcast interview with U.S. Rep. Gary Condit, D-California, embroiled in the disappearance of former Washington intern Chandra Levy, for ABC's "20/20" newsmagazine show.

Acquiring Chung is the latest in several high-profile hires at CNN. In the fall, Paula Zahn, now host of CNN's "American Morning," joined the network. She had anchored the 10 p.m. slot for Fox.

Former ABC anchor Aaron Brown also jumped to CNN, joining Zahn in immediate on-air service after the September 11 terrorist attacks.

After launching her career in her hometown of Washington in 1969, Chung worked as a national correspondent and anchor for CBS and NBC -- including a stint as Dan Rather's co-anchor on CBS from 1993 to 1995. She moved to ABC in 1997.

Chung has won three Emmy Awards and is married to TV talk-show host Maury Povich.

She had a year remaining on her ABC contract, but the Disney-owned network did not object to her negotiations with CNN.

"Connie's been a valued member of the ABC News family," said ABC News President David Westin in a statement released Tuesday. "This is an important opportunity for her to have her own program. We wish her nothing but great success and happiness."

CNN is a subsidiary of Turner Broadcasting System, an AOL Time Warner company.




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