WPVI Philadelphia Ups Rick Williams To 11 P.M. Anchor
ABC-owned WPVI Philadelphia promoted Rick Williams to anchor of its 11 p.m. newscast, beginning Jan. 12. Williams replaces the legendary Jim Gardner, who is stepping down from the role.
“I’m delighted that Rick Williams will anchor Action News at 11 p.m. following Jim Gardner,” said WPVI President-GM Bernie Prazenica. “Rick is uniquely qualified by his 30-plus years of experience in anchoring Action News in the morning, noon and evening. His knowledge of our region and deep roots in our community make him the perfect choice.”
Williams expressed his admiration of Gardner and enthusiasm about his new role: “It’s no small thing to be able to follow a news icon and, in many ways, a role model. Jim set the journalistic bar very high at 11 o’clock, and I hope I can maintain the same standard of excellence … while also having a bit of fun with my evening colleagues. It’s going to be exciting.”
A Philadelphia mainstay for more than three decades, Williams will team up with Ducis Rodgers and chief meteorologist Cecily Tynan, the latter with whom Williams spent five years anchoring the morning newscast together from 1997-2002. Currently co-anchoring Action News at 5 p.m. and Action News at 10 p.m. on WPHL, Williams has kept WPVI viewers informed for more than 25 years as an anchor and reporter. He also reports for Action News’ weekly Crimefighters series. Williams previously co-anchored Action News Mornings.
Vice President of News Tom Davis added: “Rick is a veteran journalist who has been living and working in Philadelphia at 6abc for more than 30 years. Rick has a rare combination of being a great newsman and an even better person. He’s truly earned our viewers respect and trust.”
During his tenure at WPVI, Williams has also covered a variety of big events and interviewed various presidents, politicians and celebrities. One of his favorite assignments is hosting the station’s Thanksgiving Day Parade alongside Cecily Tynan, which he has enjoyed every year since 2009. Among his numerous awards, Williams was also inducted into the Broadcast Pioneers Hall of Fame in 2010.
Williams arrived in Philadelphia in 1988 from WRAL Raleigh, N.C. Prior to that, he worked at WOWK Huntington, W.Va.; and at WUSA Washington. He began his career in radio soon after graduating from Howard University with a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism.