From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Harris, Lauretta

Lauretta Harris, the first African American hired full-time in Lexington televised news broadcasting, went on to be the first African American anchor. She was at Kentucky State University when she was hired by Buzz Riggins, the WKYT News Director [prior to 1975].

Harris was later the weekend anchor at WRAL TV in Raleigh, NC, before becoming the weekend anchor at WAVE in Louisville, KY. She was a news co-anchor with WDRB in Louisville from 1990 to 2001.

Lauretta Harris was the initial anchor for the newly launched news department at WDRB with its debut of the 30-minute newscast, The News At 10. In 1996, while still at WDRB, she served as chair of the Taishoff Task Force of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ). She would leave WDRB for WSMV-TV News in Nashville, TN. She left television broadcasting in October 2001 and became a Jesus Christ of Nazareth Minister in March 2005.

Information for this entry was gathered from Lauretta Harris and Buzz Riggins and forwarded by Ken Kurtz of WKYT (Channel 27). See also Lauretta Harris in Broadcasting: the newsweekly of broadcasting and allied arts, July 16, 1979, p. 73; Tom Dorsey, "Meteorologist Garrison is let go at WDRB," The Courier Journal, 9/19/2001; SPJ News (online), 3/19/1996; and "Breaking Grounds in the Media" at the Kentucky Women in the Civil Rights Era website.

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Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Courier-Journal [Louisville] (newspaper)
NKAA Source: Broadcasting : the newsweekly of braodcasting and allied arts

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Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Harris, Lauretta,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed July 18, 2024,

Last modified: 2021-09-01 17:11:47