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Diane Stern retires from WBZ Radio after 33 years

Veteran Boston reporter and anchor Diane Stern retired from WBZ NewsRadio on Tuesday after 33 years.

“After 40 years in Boston radio, mostly at WBZ, it’s time to hang up the headphones,” she told listeners before signing off for the last time, to a standing ovation by her colleagues.

The Marblehead High School and Boston University graduate joined WBZ NewsRadio 1030 in 1983 as an anchor after previously working at several other stations.

“It just kind of appealed to me,” Stern told colleague Laurie Kirby about what drew her to radio all those years ago. “I had been told that I had a nice voice and I thought, ‘Gee, what can I do with that?”

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Stern shared with Kirby her most memorable moments on the air, which included her fascination interviewing Boston scientists on the cutting edge of the medical world and the times she talked to presidents and would-be presidents. She spoke with President Bill Clinton by phone from the Oval Office in 1995 and once found herself “shooting the breeze” with Barrack Obama before he was president.

“It’s such a privilege for me to say I’ve interviewed all of these people, I mean what other profession could you say that about?” Stern said.

Stern said she was on the air during the blizzard of 1978, when she was forced to broadcast by candlelight.

Kirby praised her colleague’s ability to remain “calm under pressure,” citing her work during the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013 as proof.

Stern has received several Associated Press awards for her work in radio and was a finalist in the New York Radio Festival Awards. She won Best Newscaster in the March of Dimes Achievement in Radio Awards of 2000.

What’s next for Stern?

She says she will keep tutoring at the Immigrant Learning Center, Inc. in Malden, something she enjoys. She also wants to travel a lot.

Stern said she’ll miss her colleagues and told her listeners, “Thank you for joining me on this journey all these years.”

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