Ted Koppel, who ended a quarter-century run on ABC News’ “Nightline” in November, will join NPR.
NPR announced Thursday that, starting in June, Koppel will provide commentary about 50 times a year to its programs “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered” as well as “Day to Day,” its new midday newsmagazine. He also will serve as an analyst during breaking news and special events and contribute to the NPR Web site and the network’s podcasts.
“I have been an unabashed fan of NPR for many years and have stolen untold excellent ideas from its programming,” Koppel said. “It’s time to give something back.”
Koppel’s deal is for one year.
“Ted and NPR are a natural fit, with curiosity about the world and commitment to getting to the heart of the story,” said Jay Kernis, NPR senior vice president for programming. “The role of news analyst has been a tradition on NPR newsmagazines and there is no one better qualified to uphold and grow that tradition than Ted.”
NPR, with 815 public radio outlets, draws almost 26 million listeners to the nearly 150 hours of programming it produces and distributes weekly.
Koppel’s new NPR duties supplement his recently announced three-year deal to host and produce documentaries and town hall broadcasts for cable’s Discovery Channel. Through a joint agreement, NPR will make an audio simulcast of Discovery-originated town hall programs available to NPR member stations for airing.
In addition, Koppel will be a contributing columnist for The New York Times, appearing periodically in the opinion and editorial section beginning Jan. 29, the paper announced Thursday.
The 65-year-old Koppel left ABC News after 42 years. “Nightline,” the much-honored late-night news show he originated in 1980, has continued with three new anchors, replacing Koppel’s single-topic format with a magazine approach that has left critics cold.