WTTW announced today that on Tuesday, June 29, 2021, Chicago Tonight Alexandra and John Nichols Chief Correspondent and Host Phil Ponce will wrap up his regular twice-weekly appearances on the show, and shift to special assignments and appearances for WTTW News, including as a guest host for WTTW’s groundbreaking weekly series LATINO VOICES.
“Over three decades, Phil Ponce has been a trusted guide to our community of viewers on CHICAGO TONIGHT,” said WTTW President & CEO Sandra Cordova Micek. “Phil’s work has embodied the values of public media as he provided essential, independent news and information about our city and region. We are grateful for his years of exceptional work and steadfast commitment to fact-based journalism, and we are looking forward to his continued presence on our air in the months to come.”
“I’m excited about the adventures ahead, and look forward to continuing to contribute to CHICAGO TONIGHT in new ways,” said Phil Ponce. “Doing this important work has been the honor of a lifetime, and I remain committed to maintaining the high journalistic standards that have been synonymous with the program for more than 35 years.”
Ponce signed on at WTTW in 1992 as a correspondent for CHICAGO TONIGHT and frequent substitute for longtime host John Callaway. In 1997, he joined the Washington, DC-based NEWSHOUR WITH JIM LEHRER as an anchor, and two years later, returned to Chicago as the permanent host of CHICAGO TONIGHT. Ponce grew up in neighboring East Chicago, Indiana, began his career in broadcast journalism at WRTV in Indianapolis, and spent 9 years as a reporter at WBBM-TV in Chicago. In 2007, he was an honorary inductee into Alpha Sigma Nu, the Jesuit honor society, and his other awards include Illinois Journalist of the Year, the Studs Terkel Award for Journalism, the City Club of Chicago’s Award for Excellence in Journalism, and the IU Latino Alumni Award from Indiana University. Currently, Ponce lectures at the Loyola University of Chicago School of Communication.
He and his wife Ann, who is a painter and teacher, live in Chicago and have three grown children, a daughter who is a noted photographer and two sons who have followed in his footsteps as Chicago broadcast journalists.
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