Just six years after leaving NECN for ABC News, Dan Harris has been named permanent anchor of "World News Sunday," the network announced yesterday.
Harris, who grew up in Newton and attended Newton South High School, replaces Terry Moran, who now co-anchors "Nightline."
By network television standards, Harris, who is 35, is on quite the fast track.
Some are now speculating that he could one day replace Charlie Gibson. (It can't come too soon in my opinion, but that's another story).
"Any smart news organization would be building a bench for the future. Dan has the journalistic chops and reporting skills," said Philip S. Balboni, president of NECN where Harris reported and anchored from 1997 to 2000. "I'm thrilled for him."
Harris, who has been regularly substituting in the position for a year, said he's -- of course -- delighted with the promotion and his whirlwind experience at ABC.
"The craziest thing was getting the job from NECN to the network," he told me yesterday. "I remember the first time they interviewed me. I was a 28 year old kid. They didn't tell me what I was interviewing for. At the end of the meeting, they asked what I would want to do here. I said, custodial work?"
Harris said he was a "punk" in high school. "My lifelong dream was to be a drummer in a rock band. My guidance counselor had to walk me to math class throughout my freshman year. I didn't want to go."
Working at ABC, Harris has reported from Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Korea, Israel and Iraq. "These were defining moments in my life," he says. "I had been to Europe like any good boy but never anywhere they shoot. I think I have increased understanding and sympathy. "
Harris said he'll be working six to seven days a week with the new gig and his old responsibilities reporting.
"It sounds bad but it's not a problem. I really love this a lot. I go a little stir crazy when I don't have a couple of projects going."
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