Sue Simmons Will Be a Standout Wherever She Lands Next

This week was a bit sad for New Yorkers who found out that one of the true characters of the city’s TV news corps—Sue Simmons—would be departing from WNBC-TV when her contract is up in June.

Local TV news usually hires Barbie and Ken lookalikes as anchors because God forbid viewers should have to watch an ugly fat person deliver the news. So good looks, earnest demeanors, and bright smiles (the latter for the seemingly endless news team promo campaigns) are usually required traits. And of course, the ability to read a teleprompter in an urgent tone that suggests the undivided attention of viewers is absolutely required.

Simmons was a standout. No one would mistake her for a Barbie. She brought something better to the party—a personality. Granted it was a personality you tended to love or hate, which was great fodder for the New York cocktail circuit. Fortunately for the station, the lovers tended to out-number the haters.

She even did pratfalls---pretending to fall asleep during one semi-silly segment about periodontal disease and its connection to Alzheimer’s disease—and then literally falling out of her chair, live and on-air.



Local news is a place where raging fires and body bags tend to dominate. Simmons, who could be serious without taking herself too seriously, also knew how to convey to viewers that despite some of the nasty stories she narrated, Armageddon wasn’t just around the corner.

And my guess is the Sue Simmons Show has at least one more chapter before it runs its course. There’s a growing “Save Sue” movement on the Internet. Who knows whether it will keep her at Channel 4 or not. More than likely she’ll end up at a competitor.

Money, natch, is an issue. She gets paid a whopping $5 million a year according to the New York Post. You have to wonder if any TV news anchor is worth that much.

But Simmons is going out on a high note—her pairing with long-time partner Chuck Scarborough at 11 p.m. is still the top rated late-night newscast in town.

And for stations that aren’t number one, that’s motivation to strongly consider the veteran New York anchor for their own versions of the If It Bleeds It Leads Show. They could use a little lightening up.

5 comments about "Sue Simmons Will Be a Standout Wherever She Lands Next".
Check to receive email when comments are posted.
  1. Jay Oconner from World Colours Network Inc., March 9, 2012 at 4:07 p.m.

    Sue we will miss you. Thank your for years or wonderful reporting. We wish you the very best in the next phase of your career.

  2. Adam Davis from BlueCrisp Digital, March 9, 2012 at 4:20 p.m.

    This is a TRAVESTY for anyone who has called NYC home over the last 32 years. Be sure to join in unity with 44,444 New Yorkers to officially Save Sue.

  3. Sarah Daniels from Sarah Daniels inc, March 9, 2012 at 5:17 p.m.

    WNBC Staff Pissed About "Inaccurate" NY Post Story
    And staying on the NBC beat....
    Yesterday FTVLive posted a story from the New York Post about WNBC anchor Sue Simmons and her "$5 million a year salary"....
    The Post story has many WNBC staffers seeing red. 
    Sources tell FTVLive that a number of newsroom staffers at WNBC are furious at station brass for the management-fed character assassination of beloved anchor Sue Simmons in Thursday's New York Post. The story was filled with anonymous quotes from "station executives," "direct managers,"  and other bosses. It painted a picture of an old, disinterested Simmons, and even insinuated she has an alcohol problem. Except nothing in the article is true. And now station employees worry that if management could pull a hatchet job like this on a 32 year employee who is number one in the ratings, what could they do to the rest of the staff?
    The article quoted management sources as saying Simmons earns $5 million per year. Insiders tell FTVLive that "number is preposterous."
    Sources say that Simmons' pay was cut last year when she was taken off the 6PM news. The decreased work load reflected her decreased pay. Why else would Chuck Scarborough continue to anchor the 6PM news solo? You would think if NBC paid Simmons $5 million dollars per year they would ask her to do as many shows as possible. The 6PM ratings could sorely benefit from the team of Chuck and Sue. But Sue's current contract is about less work for much less pay. Nonetheless, management allowed the Post to print the unheard of salary of $5 million per year.

  4. Rob Frydlewicz from DentsuAegis, March 9, 2012 at 7:47 p.m.

    Let's see, Chuck Scarborough and Sue Simmons are both 68 years old and they extended his contract but not hers. With budgets much tighter for TV stations nowadays I think it suggests that WNBC decided that being a consummate professional trumped being a clown.

  5. Raycent Edwards from Cache Brand Imaging, March 13, 2012 at 12:35 p.m.

    I echo Jay's sentiments--Ms Simmons, you will truly be missed as one of the true journalists still left on our local news circuit. THANK YOU for all your years of service to the NYC Tri-State community! It was a pleasure to meet you in the 5th grade and it still remains a highlight for me & classmates some 25+ years later. All the very Best with your next chapters!!

Next story loading loading..