DMA 72

KCCI Des Moines Anchor Kevin Cooney To Retire

Hearst Television’s CBS affiliate KCCI Des Moines, Iowa (DMA 72), said Tuesday that senior anchor Kevin Cooney will retire Nov. 24 after working for more than four decades at the station.

KCCI 5 p.m. anchor Steve Karlin will add the 6 and 10 p.m. newscast to his anchor duties when Cooney retires. Karlin has worked at KCCI since 1989, reporting and anchoring the station’s 5 p.m. and morning newscasts.  He is a graduate of Iowa State University. 

Cooney started his television career as a studio floor director in 1969 at KRNT (now KCCI) while he was in high school.  During college in the early 1970s, Cooney worked for the sports and news departments, landing a full-time position in the newsroom in 1974 after his graduation from Iowa State University.

Cooney reported human interest stories for several years in his Kevin Cooney Covers Iowa segments. He left the station in 1980 for San Jose, Calif., to be with his then-fiancée Mollie Smith, who also had worked at KCCI.  Together, they co-anchored weekend newscasts for KNTV San Jose. They returned to KCCI in 1982, when Kevin began anchoring and producing the 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts with Paul Rhoades and Russ Van Dyke.  He’s been at the anchor desk ever since.

According to KCCI News Director Dave Busiek, “It’s a remarkable period of stability for a television news anchor today to have such a long relationship with viewers at one station.  Kevin is a class act, and we’ve been lucky to have him.”

“Kevin will always be remembered for the big stories he’s covered, but his real legacy is the thousands of lives he’s impacted as KCCI’s senior anchor,” said KCCI President-GM Brian Sather. “While I’ll miss Kevin’s energy and enthusiasm for our mission, I’m delighted he will now have the chance to invest his time and energy into his family, friends and this great community he loves so much.”


Cooney has been recognized with the Jack Shelley Award, given to leading broadcast journalists in Iowa and named for his former ISU journalism professor, and the James Schwartz Award from Iowa State University.  In 2014, Cooney and his wife Mollie were both inducted into the Silver Circle, a lifetime achievement award from the Upper Midwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

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