Entertainment TV Look Back at 'Today' Anchors Through the Years in Honor of the Show's 70th Anniversary In honor of the Today show's 70th anniversary, here's a look back at every principle anchor since its broadcast debut on Jan. 14 in 1952. By Skyler Caruso Skyler Caruso Instagram Skyler Caruso is the Editorial Assistant of PEOPLE Digital. People Editorial Guidelines Published on January 14, 2022 08:30 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Trending Videos Photo: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images; Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images 01 of 16 Dave Garroway, 1952-1961 NBC NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images Dave Garroway was the founding host and anchor of NBC's Today and held the position for nine years. Garroway's broadcasting career began as an NBC page in 1938. He then hosted a variety show titled Garroway at Large in 1951. This led to his hosting gig at Today, where he was known for his relaxed, unconventional style and was recognized as the "Roving Announcer," always able to find an interesting story. Following his Today departure in 1961, he dedicated his life to spending more time with his children. He died at age 69 in 1982. 02 of 16 John Chancellor, 1961-1962 NBC/NBC NewsWire; Hugh Patrick Brown/Getty Images John Chancellor took over as Today host for Dave Garroway when he retired in 1961, and was host for just over one year. Prior to Today, he was a popular personality on NBC Nightly News, which made him a considerable candidate to fill Garroway's position. Contrary to Galloway's easy-going persona, Chancellor was uncomfortable in the position and never really connected with the audience. After 14 months as Today host, he was asked to be released from his contract in 1962. He returned to NBC News and covered wars from Vietnam to the Persian Gulf, and even served as a White House correspondent from 1963 to 1965. 03 of 16 Hugh Downs, 1962-1971 getty Hugh Downs was host of Today for nine years. Prior to becoming a Today anchor in 1962, Downs was known as a popular news anchor, author, music composer and even served as host for the popular gameshow Concentration from 1958 to 1969. After retiring from Today in 1971 after nearly 10 years, he became widely recognized as the Emmy-winning co-anchor for ABC's 20/20 alongside Barbara Walters. 04 of 16 Frank McGee, 1971-1974 NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty (2) Frank McGee was host of Today for two years. Prior to that, he was a co-anchor on NBC Nightly News alongside John Chancellor and David Brinkley. McGee moved to Today after the network made Chancellor the permanent anchor for the following year. During McGee's time at Today, he took the show in a more serious direction and worked alongside Barbara Walters until his death at age 52 in 1974. 05 of 16 Barbara Walters, 1974-1976 NBC NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty; Ida Mae Astute/Disney General Entertainment Content via Getty Barbara Walters was host of Today for nine years. It wasn't until Frank McGee's death that Walters moved from writer and producer on the show to co-host in 1974. During an era when women weren't in the forefront of television, Walters was a trailblazer for women on TV. Since her Today departure in 1976, she went on to host shows such as The View, 20/20, and more. Recognized as a journalism icon, her career has spanned 60 years. 06 of 16 Jim Hartz, 1974-1976 NBCUniversal via Getty; Michael Loccisano/Getty Jim Hartz was host of Today for two years. Prior to his start in 1974, he was recognized as NBC's youngest correspondent. After serving as an anchor, the network promoted him to Today host alongside Barbara Walters. Following Today, he has held various other hosting gigs throughout his career and even won five Emmy Awards for his work. 07 of 16 Tom Brokaw, 1976-1981 NBC NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty; Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Tom Brokaw was host of Today for five years. Brokaw began his career in the NBC Los Angeles bureau where he covered future President Ronald Reagan's first run for public office and Robert F. Kennedy's assassination. He also served as the network's White House correspondent during Watergate. Although Brokaw retired from Today in 1981, he's the only anchor to have helmed NBC's three flagship shows: Today, NBC Nightly News, and Meet the Press. He retired from NBC News in 2021 after 55 years with the network. 08 of 16 Jane Pauley, 1976-1989 NBC/NBC NewsWire; Noam Galai/Getty Images Jane Pauley was host of Today for 13 years. Pauley was the first woman to co-anchor a major evening newscast for an NBC affiliate in Chicago. Nearly ten months later, she was selected to replace Barbara Walters on Today (making her the second woman to hold the position). After her hosting gigs – first alongside Tom Brokaw and then Bryant Gumbel – ended in 1989, Pauley went on to work on Dateline NBC, CBS Sunday Morning, among others. 09 of 16 Bryant Gumbel, 1982-1997 NBC NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty; Dia Dipasupil/Getty Bryant Gumbel was host of Today for 15 years. Prior to becoming the principle Today anchor in 1982, Gumbel served as a co-host for NBC Sports, covering various sporting events. His work earned him four Emmy Awards. Following Gumbel's Today run in 1997, he went on to host HBO's acclaimed Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel and earned a Peabody Award in 2012. 10 of 16 Deborah Norville, 1990-1991 Bettmann/ getty; Gary Gershoff/Getty Deborah Norville was host of Today for one year. Before Today, Norville became known as the only solo female anchor of a network newscast for her work on NBC News at Sunrise in 1987. When Jane Pauley stepped down from Today, Norville was named her successor. She eventually won an Emmy for her coverage of the Romanian Revolution. Following her maternity leave in 1991, Norville decided not to return to the show. She went on to further her career in television, radio, and even wrote a few books, including one that recalled her experiences at Today titled Back on Track: How To Straighten Out Your Life When It Throws You a Curve. 11 of 16 Katie Couric, 1991-2006 Mark Reinstein/Corbis via Getty; Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Katie Couric was host of Today for 15 years. Prior to Today, she served as the NBC News Pentagon Correspondent in 1989. She became a permanent co-anchor of Today when Norville left the show. After her Today departure in 2006, Couric went on to work for both CBS and NBC News. Throughout her career, she's been a host for almost every television broadcast across the three major networks, ABC, NBC, and CBS. 12 of 16 Matt Lauer, 1997-2017 NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty; Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Matt Lauer was host of Today for 20 years. He orginally co-anchored shows such as Today in New York and Live at Fives, before serving as a news anchor on Today. He was eventually named host in 1997. During his 20-year stint at Today, he's hosted the Olympics, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, interviewed Prince William and Prince Harry, and starred in a segment called Where in the World is Matt Lauer. His time at Today ended in 2017 when he was fired by the network due to inappropriate sexual behavior. 13 of 16 Meredith Vieira, 2006-2011 George Lange/NBC/NBC Newswire/NBCUniversal via Getty; Paul Archuleta/Getty Meredith Vieira was a host of Today for four years. Prior to Today, Vieira served as host of ABC's The View and was the first host of the American syndicated version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, winning multiple Emmys for her work. During her time at Today, she replaced Katie Couric and co-anchored alongside Matt Lauer. She simultaneously hosted Millionaire, contributed to Dateline NBC, and covered multiple Olympics. After her Today departure in 2011, Vieira became the host of her own talkshow titled The Meredith Vieira Show in 2014. 14 of 16 Ann Curry, 2011-2012 Darryl Estrine/NBC/NBC NewsWire; Stephen J. Cohen/Getty Ann Curry was host of Today for one year. Before hosting Today in 2011, Curry served as a photojournalist and reporter with a focus on human suffering in war zones and natural disasters. She also worked as a national and international correspondent for NBC News, in addition to contributing to Dateline NBC. In 2012, she was abruptly let go from Today in 2012. She later departed from NBC as a whole in 2015, which ended her nearly 25-year run with the network. In 2018, she admitted to reporting Matt Lauer for sexual harassment on behalf of a colleague. Curry went on to found her own multi-platform media startup, moderated a panel between the Dalai Lama and Lady Gaga, and produced a PBS series called We'll Meet Again with Ann Curry. 15 of 16 Savannah Guthrie, 2012-Present Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images; Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images Savannah Guthrie is the current co-anchor of Today and has been there for 10 years to date. Before Today, she served as a White House correspondent and the co-anchor of MSNBC's The Daily Rundown. She substituted for Meredith Vieira and Ann Curry on Today, which lead to her co-hosting gig of the 9 a.m. hour alongside Natalie Morales and Al Roker. She ultimately replaced Curry on Today after her departure and worked alongside Matt Lauer as co-anchor. Guthrie succeeded Lauer in 2017, and became an anchor beside Hoda Kotb. 16 of 16 Hoda Kotb, 2018-Present Virginia Sherwood/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty; Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images Hoda Kotb is the current co-anchor of Today and has been there for four years. Prior to Today, she served as a correspondent for Dateline NBC and all NBC News platforms. Kotb also worked as co-host of Today's first fourth-hour weekday morning broadcast before being named Today co-anchor with Savannah Guthrie (after Matt Lauer's NBC termination). She also serves as a co-host of Today with Hoda and Jenna.