Jim Lehrer Biography (1934-)

Full name, James Charles Lehrer; born May 10, 1934, in Wichita, KS; son of Harry Frederick (a bus station manager) and Lois Catherine (a bank clerk; maiden name, Chapman) Lehrer; married Kate Staples (a writer), June 4, 1960; children: Jamie, Lucy, Amanda.

Writer, news anchor
Birth Details
May 10, 1934
Wichita, Kansas, United States

Famous Works

  • Television Appearances
  • Series
  • Anchor (with Robert MacNeil), The Robert MacNeil Report, PBS, 1975
  • Anchor (with MacNeil), The MacNeil/Lehrer Report (also known as The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer and The Robert MacNeil Report, with JimLehrer), PBS, 1975-1983
  • Moderator, U.S. Chronicle, PBS, 1980
  • Anchor (with MacNeil), The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, PBS, 1983-1996
  • Host (with others), The Heart of the Dragon, PBS, 1985
  • Nova, PBS, 1993
  • Anchor, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, PBS, 1996-?
  • Television Work
  • Producer; Series
  • The Heart of the Dragon, PBS, 1985
  • Associate Editor; Series
  • The MacNeil/Lehrer Report (also known as The NewsHour with JimLehrer and The Robert MacNeil Report, with Jim Lehrer), PBS, 1975-1983
  • Television Appearances
  • Specials
  • Campaign: The Last World, PBS, 1988
  • Fifteen Years of MacNeil/Lehrer, PBS, 1990
  • Moderator, The Democratic Presidential Candidate Debate, PBS, 1992
  • Host of the specials Debating Our Destiny: Forty Years of PresidentialDebates and My Heart, Your Heart, PBS; also moderator of severalother presidential and vice presidential candidate debates, including broadcasts in 1992, 1996, 1998, and 2000.
  • Television Work
  • Producer; Specials
  • Producer of the special My Heart, Your Heart, PBS.
  • Associate Editor; Specials
  • Fifteen Years of MacNeil/Lehrer, PBS, 1990
  • Stage Plays
  • As James Lehrer
  • Cedar Chest (two-act), produced at New Stage Theatre, Jackson, MS,1986
  • Chili Queen (two-act), Hartley House Theatre, New York City, 1986and at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC.
  • Silversides Thruliner (two-act), New Stage Theatre, 1986
  • Church Key Charlie Blue, New Stage Theatre, 1988
  • The Will and Bart Show, 1992
  • Novels
  • (As James Lehrer) Viva Max!, Duell, Sloan, and Pierce, 1966
  • Kick the Can, Putnam (New York City), 1988
  • Crown Oklahoma, Putnam, 1989
  • The Sooner Spy, Putnam, 1990
  • Lost and Found, Putnam, 1991
  • Short List, Putnam, 1992
  • Blue Hearts: A Novel, Random House (New York City), 1993
  • Fine Lines, Random House, 1994
  • The Last Debate, Random House, 1995
  • The Master Operator, Random House, 1996
  • White Widow, Random House, 1997
  • Purple Dots, Random House, 1998
  • The Special Prisoner, Random House, 2000
  • Also the author of No Certain Rest.
  • Nonfiction
  • (As James Lehrer) We Were Dreamers (autobiography), Atheneum (NewYork City), 1975
  • A Bus of My Own, Putnam, 1992 published as A Bus of My Own: A Memoir (autobiography), New American Library (New York City), 1992
  • Author of "Politics: Dallas," a column in the Dallas Times Herald.

Further Reference


  • The film Viva Max!, released by Commonwealth United in 1969, was based on Lehrer's novel. The television movie The Last Debate, Showtime, 2000, was based on his novel.
    • Broadcasting and Cable, September 11, 2000, p. 44
    • New York Times, February 7, 1988
    • Publishers Weekly, December 30, 1996, p. 39
    • Texas Monthly, October, 1995, p. 58; March, 2000, p. 28
    • Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, http://www. mmys.tv/whatwedo/halloffame/macneil-lehrer, October 8, 2001

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