Introducing our Ex-Lawyer of the Week: Savannah Guthrie.
Guthrie, NBC News' chief legal correspondent, co-hosted the "Today" show Friday morning with little on-air fanfare. Hours later, the network officially named the ex-attorney as the show's new permanent co-anchor. Guthrie's predecessor, Ann Curry, left the show Thursday.
Guthrie's career path, from top scorer on Arizona's bar exam in 2002 to second chair at America's No. 1 morning show, means the battle for breakfast-time TV ratings will soon be joined by not one, but two network news anchors with JDs.
Savannah Guthrie's "Today" show will compete against anchor Charlie Rose, JD's "CBS This Morning." Rose is a 1968 graduate of Duke University School of Law.
Guthrie, 40, a native of Australia who grew up in Tucson, Ariz., earned her law degree from Georgetown University in 2002. She scored highest on Arizona's bar exam (by tradition, Arizona's Supreme Court names the Top 3 scorers after each exam) and also passed the D.C. bar, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Guthrie worked just two years as a lawyer, then left for Court TV. She'd also worked at local TV stations in Arizona and Missouri prior to law school.
Guthrie will inherit "Today's" lead in the TV news ratings race, though ABC's "Good Morning America" recently snapped NBC's 15-year winning streak. That's what many say led to Ann Curry's abrupt (and tearful) on-air ouster.
Will Savannah Guthrie's "Today" show be able to meet the heavy burden of ratings production? She'll have a lot to prove, to viewers and to network bigwigs. At least Guthrie's lawyerlike sensibilities will come in handy as she scrutinizes her new contract -- and in case the network ever tries to break it.
Below are some video highlights of the attorney-turned-anchor, whose new official title at "Today" begins July 9, according to NBC.
Stay classy, Savannah Guthrie.
Curious about other ways to use your JD, or how ex-lawyers have found success in other fields? Check back here for more ex-lawyer profiles and success stories. And if you have suggestions for our Ex-Lawyer of the Week series, let us know by posting your tip on our FindLaw for Legal Professionals Facebook page.
- Savannah Guthrie Named Co-Anchor of NBC's 'Today' (TVNewser)
- Maybe You Could Leave the Law to Run a Major TV Network (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
- Lawyer Gets Bitten by Travel Bug, Makes Globe Trekking Her Job (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)
- 99 Things to Do With Your JD, Besides Practice Law (FindLaw's Greedy Associates)