Rick Williams has been named anchor of the 11 p.m. news at WPVI Philadelphia, starting January 12. He succeeds Jim Gardner, who plans to retire at the end of the year. Williams arrived in Philadelphia in 1988 from WRAL Raleigh, and has been the 5 p.m. anchor, along with helming the 10 p.m. newscast on Nexstar’s WPHL.
“I’m delighted that Rick Williams will anchor Action News at 11 p.m. following Jim Gardner,” said Bernie Prazenica, WPVI president/general manager. “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.”
Gardner has been WPVI’s 6 and 11 p.m. anchor since 1977. He will continue to anchor the 6 p.m. news and will retire at the end of 2022.
“It’s no small thing to be able to follow a news icon and, in many ways, a role model,” said Williams. “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!”
Williams will team up with sports anchor Ducis Rodgers and chief meteorologist Cecily Tynan at 11.
“Rick is a veteran journalist who has been living and working in Philadelphia at 6abc for more than 30 years,” said WPVI VP of news Tom Davis. “Rick has a rare combination of being a great newsman and an even better person! He’s truly earned our viewers respect and trust.”
Born in New York, Williams graduated from Howard University. He has also worked at WOWK Huntington (WV) and WUSA Washington. ■
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