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Lester Holt Quotes

Lester Holt

Lester Holt quotes: the successful journalist and news anchor gives us the goods.

“You never know what doors are going to open up and why they are going to open up.  You’ve got to be ready to walk through them.”

“What I’ve come to know is that in life, it’s not always the questions we ask, but rather our ability to hear the answers that truly enriches our understanding.  Never, never stop learning.”

“Journalism is my first love.  But music comes in a close second.  What’s important for me is that whatever you do, whatever your passion is, you should have another passion – something in your life.  And when I put on that musician hat and I put the bass in my hands, I’m not Lester Holt the TV guy anymore.  I’m just Lester Holt who likes music.”

“The challenge is right now, I call it the death of critical thinking in America.  It’s a very worrisome development.  More and more people seem to be resisting the idea of standing back and asking questions about something, challenging their beliefs.”

“Today we all are enjoying the fruits of the digital era.  Millions of sources of information coming at us at lightning-fast speed.  That technology has also democratized the gathering and dissemination of news, allowing for ‘citizen journalists’ to make their mark, even usurping the role of mainstream news organizations at times.”

“You have to go where the story is to report on it.  As a journalist, you’re essentially running to things that other people are running away from.”

“One of the most important skills at reporting is not so much what comes out of your mouth but what you hear.  To listen.  When you interview people, it’s very important to understand the nuances of what they’re saying and to understand when they have actually made news – when they’ve told you something that they haven’t told anybody else.”

“For 30 years I’ve been schooled in everything from government and economics… to medicine and international relations.  But don’t be impressed.  Someone once said being a general assignment reporter simply means you are equally ignorant about most everything.  In other words, I know a little about a lot.”

“The biggest thing I worry about is the unsubstantiated story.  You have to tell the people what you know – and acknowledge what you don’t know.”

“I never believed the anchorman should be the know-it-all.  And I try to communicate that to the audience.  While I have some knowledge from my years of experience, what I want to do is walk you through this because we’re all walking through this together.”

“There’s no experience like going down an empty freeway toward a hurricane and then looking in the opposite lane and seeing bumper-to-bumper traffic, people fleeing that scene.  Or going to a toxic spill and seeing people go the other way.  You talk yourself into thinking you’re invincible in order to do that.”

“This is a time to be brave.  To push aside the smoke screens that are meant to block us from the truth.  Our honorees tonight remind us of the power and potential of broadcast journalism; to change lives, to open eyes, and to hold those in positions of power or influence accountable.  That’s our job.  That’s what we do.  And that’s what we will do.  So let’s get started.”

“I’m a morning person, so rising at four-something on weekends is not a huge challenge for me.  I am not, however, much of a morning eater – not at that hour, at least.”

“Everyone knows I’m black.  I am who I am.  This is the person that Lester Sr. and June Holt raised, and I make no apology for it.  At the same time, I’m never going to pull a race card to get what I want.  You can’t have it both ways.”

“I’m very mindful of the significance.  There’s a lot of pressure that comes with a job like this and that’s one of them.  That’s one of the responsibilities.  I’m gratified by those who have taken pride in that.  I’ve never made race a big part of who I am.”

“I’m not terribly athletic.  And there’s a lot of things I’m not good at.  And if it makes anybody feel better, I was really a pretty bad math student growing up.”

“As a 13, 14-year-old kid, I’d sit on my bed with a tape recorder and a newspaper.  I would do my own newscast.  I would practice my diction.”

“Not to get too deep on shaving my mustache, but it was kind of symbolic of, ‘This is a moment of liberation, a chance to reinvent yourself.’  That’s kind of what I did.”

“I have a couple of basses in my office.  And I try to be courteous of my co-workers, but sometimes I get carried away and I crank up my amp and I rock out.  It’s kind of my stress reliever.”

“Sometimes, I’ll be flipping the channel at home and think, ‘Wow, there’s a lot of me on TV.'”

“I like to report.  I like to go to the newsmakers.  I like to get out.  I’ve heard about people talking about the anchor as the voice of God.  That set is not an altar.  It’s a great job, I love doing it, but I don’t take that role as my identity – the anchorman – it sounds very old-fashioned.”

“There’s a lot to like about what I do for a living.  As a network television anchor and correspondent, I get to meet and interview famous people, I get to travel to interesting and exotic places, and simply be in-the-know.  But when people ask me what I appreciate most about what I do, I tell them this: ‘It’s the insight I get into how fragile life is.’  To understand how tenuous our existence and the lives that we lead are.”

“I’ve seen life turn on a dime, the tragic and sudden death.  I see triumph.  I see the mighty fall, the humble become a roaring lion.  It is an amazing vantage point in life to be a reporter.”

“There have been many a day when I’ve gotten out of bed, looked in the mirror and wondered, ‘What’s happening here?’  Everything I’ve done in my career, hopefully, has prepared me for an opportunity like this, no matter how it came about.”

“At the end of the day, I’m reading the news.  I’m not digging ditches.  I’m not fighting fires.  It’s a long day, and it’s a lot of responsibility, and it can be a little bewildering sometimes with the schedule.  But, you know, it’s a job, and they pay me well to do a job.”

What next, right?  How ’bout some Brian Williams wisdom?

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