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Joan Lunden (1950)

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  Summary  

Joan Lunden is an American journalist, author and television host. She was the co-host of ABC's Good Morning America from 1980 through 1997 and is the author of 8 books. Lunden has appeared on the Biography program and Biography Channel.

  Biography  

 early life
Lunden was born as Joan Elise Blunden in Fair Oaks, California, the daughter of Gladyce Lorraine (née Somervill) and Erle Murray Blunden, who was a physician. She has a liberal arts degree from Sacramento State University. She also studied Spanish and anthropology at the former Mexico City campus of Universidad de Las Americas. She was a visiting instructor at Montclair State College in New Jersey, where she taught a course in broadcast journalism.

She began her broadcasting career in Sacramento, California, where she worked for KCRA-TV and Radio as co-anchor of the daily noon television news program. She also produced the noon news broadcast and hosted KCRA's television specials.

 career
 Good Morning America
Lunden joined GMA in the fall of 1976 as a feature news/consumer reporter, and later became fill-in co-host when former co-host Sandy Hill left to work on ABC's coverage of the Winter Olympics. Lunden's popularity with viewers led to her quick promotion to co-host with David Hartman, the program's original host. Later she would spend the majority of her career hosting with ABC's Charlie Gibson. An Entertainment Weekly national viewer poll named her "television's favorite morning anchor" during her years at GMA.The program lost more than a million daily viewers when Lunden retired from the morning news shift, according to TV Guide.

She reported from 26 countries, covered four presidents, five Olympic Games, and two royal weddings. Her popularity on the GMA program from the 1970s through the 1990s allowed her to interview U.S. Presidents and First Ladies Gerald and Betty Ford, Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, George and Barbara Bush, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and also Texas Governor George and Laura Bush prior to the younger Bush's 2000 election as President.

In 1975, Lunden joined New York's WABC-TV Eyewitness News and a year later became co-anchor on the weekend newscasts. As the co-host of GMA, Lunden traveled the world, covering historic events, such as the 50th anniversary of VE Day in 1995; the 50th anniversary of D-Day; the 1984 and 1988 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo and Calgary; and the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales. She covered the administrations and inaugurations of three presidents: Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan. She was one of only three American journalists to interview Prince Charles during his 1983 visit to the United States.

Lunden was known for her willingness to take risks in her role as host. She climbed and rappelled Alaska's famed Mendenhall Glacier and bungee-jumped off a 143-foot bridge and parapented off a 2,000-foot mountain during the program's highly rated trip to New Zealand. She also navigated the whitewater rapids of a Georgia river for a GMA show in 1994. She has been at the controls of an F-16 jet and flown with the United States Air Force Thunderbirds, as well as flown in a T-34 Naval flight training plane. She is also a skilled horsewoman, jumping thoroughbred horses, and also has gone to bat with the Chicago Cubs at spring training.

 Hosting and other work
She was a host on the A&E cable network program Behind Closed Doors (1996-2001) which was an on-location, undercover reporter program; she also frequently guest hosted A&E's Biography.

Lunden's most recent television shows include hosting DirectTV's series Hometown Heroes and the Emmy-winning special America’s Invisible Children. She is also the face of Murad's skincare line, Resurgence.

Lunden hosts Health Corner, a Lifetime series sponsored by Walgreens.

 personal life
Lunden was married to Michael A. Krauss from 1978 until their divorce in 1992; the couple have three daughters: Jamie Beryl Krauss, born July 4, 1980; Lindsay Leigh Krauss ; and Sarah Emily Krauss . She married Jeff Konigsberg on April 18, 2000; they have four children: two sets of twins, each consisting of one boy and one girl, Max and Kate, born on June 10, 2003, and Jack and Kimberly, born on March 1, 2005. The two sets of twins were born with the help of a surrogate mother, and Lunden has become a spokeswoman for surrogacy.

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Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Joan Lunden", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.