Don Lemon

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Don Lemon (born March 1, 1966 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana) was a former news anchor for CNN and also a former weekend news anchor for WBRC-TV.

Lemon graduated from Baker High School in East Baton Rouge Parish, where he was president of his senior class. He went on to attend the Manship School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Louisiana State University and finished his degree in broadcast journalism in 1996 at Brooklyn College, while interning at WNYW-TV (Fox 5).

Lemon came to Birmingham shortly after graduating. For a WBRC segment on the assassination of fashion designer Gianni Versace in 1997 he conducted a live remote from a Birmingham gay bar. After 11 months he left for KTVI-TV in St Louis, Missouri, and later worked at WCAU-TV in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He broke into network news with NBC in the late 1990s, appearing on The Today Show and NBC Nightly News as a guest anchor, as well as on MSNBC. He won an Edward R. Murrow Award for his reporting on the Washington D.C. sniper shootings in 2002.

Lemon accepted the job of lead nightly news anchor for WMAQ-TV in Chicago, Illinois and won a regional Emmy for his reporting on the local real estate market. In 2005 he won two more Emmys for his reporting on AIDS in Africa and on Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

Lemon joined the CNN Network Newsroom in Atlanta, Georgia in 2006. In 2010 he interviewed members of Bishop Eddie Long's congregation in Atlanta after several lawsuits were filed accusing Long of coercing young males into sexual relationships. During the interview he related his own experience of being sexually molested as a child by a teenage neighbor. In a 2011 memoir he made public his homosexuality. He broke down on the air during his reporting of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut in 2012.

In 2014 Lemon was made the permanent host of the nightly program CNN Tonight, later renamed Don Lemon Tonight. On November 10, 2017 Lemon interviewed attorney Trenton Garmon about allegations in The Washington Post that his client, Roy Moore, had pursued sexual relationship with underage girls while working as a prosecutor in Etowah County. At the start of the interview, Garmon said, "I hope that I'll be able to give you the name, Don, easy peasy lemon squeezy, right. So take it easy on me." After repeating the name, Lemon requested that Garmon use his real name. (transcript)

In 2022 Lemon was reassigned to mornings, joining Kaitlan Collins and Poppy Harlow on CNN This Morning. His tenure on that program was marked by several accusations of misogynistic comments and behavior. He was fired from the network in April 2023.


  • Lemon, Don (2011) Transparent. Farrah Gray Publishing. ISBN 9780982702789
  • Lemon, Don (2021) This Is the Fire: What I Say to My Friends About Racism. Little, Brown & Co. ISBN 9780316257572.


  • "Don Lemon" (April 24, 2023) Wikipedia - accessed April 24, 2023