(UPDATE: Some of these babes have moved from one outfit to another, so for YOU, I'm trying to update my links.)
In a shameless attempt to drive traffic to this site, I am conducting a contest for the best-looking young women in television journalism. But hey, isn't that what the networks are doing?
Now, this contest is not for hall of famers like Katie Couric or Paula Zahn, or semi-retired all-stars like Deborah Norville; and the dark side of this on-camera competition for women who have not enjoyed such career longevity was recently covered in Broadcasting & Cable. So click on that link if you will; and if you still want to have some fun, let's proceed. For ladies who think this is a male chauvinist thing, read my post on how you evolved men to pay lots of attention to your looks.
I hold these truths to be self-evident: when a young woman with model-quality looks is reporting a story on camera, men's hands on their remote controls become paralyzed; and women check her out for hairstyle, makeup, and wardrobe tips. I personally deduct points for roots, excessive makeup, frown lines, and unnatural vocal style. Your mileage may vary.
So as not to be a bandwidth leech or get sued for copyright infringement, I am going to link to newsbabes' photos and bios below. The floor is open for additional nominations. Comments are encouraged. Insults are not, especially those directed at me. Here are the nominees:
Melissa McDermott -- bio & smaller photo / larger photo only / Wiki
This young lady is absolutely arresting. She looks even more stunning with her new, longer hairstyle. Melissa functions as CBS's Woman of Male Distraction, powerful enough to keep the Up to the Minute overnight news audience from surfing during commercials or falling asleep.
UPDATE: As part of the apparently not-so-brilliant Sean McManus' overhaul of CBS News, Melissa was relegated in March, 2006, to reporter status.
Betty Nguyen -- bio & photo / photo only / Wiki
This awesome Asian-American anchor caught my attention sharing the CNN screen with three Rita-buffeted correspondents in three different locations. As attention-grabbing as it was to watch the reporters brave the hurricane, Betty was the force of nature that blew me away.
UPDATE: CBS has hired Betty away from CNN. She anchors the CBS Morning News and reports for The Early Show.
Erica Hill -- bio & (new) photo / new photo only / old photo only / Wiki
This up-and-coming summa cum laude anchor, co-host, and correspondent at CNN Headline has star quality and is more mesmerizing on screen than in her old photo linked above (which has been UPDATED with a much better new photo). If I were Erica's coach, I'd give her maximum minutes of playing time.
UPDATE: CBS snagged Erica too. She now co-hosts The Early Show, a promotion announced early in December 2010.
To be fair to the great journalists in the field, let me say, I didn't really consider Katrina a world-class disaster until Christiane Amanpour got there; but I wondered: What took her so long?
Let the games begin.
UPDATE: Voting is ongoing and we have two worthy new candidates.
Liz Cho -- fan site / bio & photo / wikipedia
Touting her as "The Hottest News-Babe In The Business. Period," the linked fan site has many screen and video caps of Liz in action.
Melissa Theuriau -- beaucoups de photos / wikipedia (links to fan site and footage)
We leap the Pond at a single click to gaze at the many expressions of this "hot French news anchor." Formidable.
UPDATE: This picture is supposed to be a half-nakey of Melissa. NSFW.
This competition is heating up . . . .
UPDATE: Reporters and correspondents are eligible too.
Megyn Kelly (formerly Megyn Kendall) -- bio & photo / Wiki bio / new photo / old photo / mediabistro.com photo / screen caps / candid photo courtesy of a commenter
I spotted this lady lawyer and Fox News reporter for the first time on Brit Hume's show. She recently changed her screen last name to Kelly. I may like her delivery better than...
Lisa Daniels -- bio / photo / Wiki
I first saw this lawyer-turned-anchor reporting from the French Quarter for MSNBC and had one of those "Who is that?!" responses.
Either of these legal eagles could work on my briefs.
Monica Crowley -- radio bio & photo / her site / Wiki
Besides being a Fox News, Washington Times, and McLaughlin Group contributor, a PhD, author, and WABC radio host, this multitalented lady is quite an eyeful. And she posts an email address. Extra points for that and the great hair.
Christi Paul -- bio & photo / photo only / Wiki
She's a full-fledged anchor for CNN Headline now and definitely worth a look. Trust me.
OK, we're getting to the embarassment of riches stage here.
UPDATE: I'm adding another beautiful brunette to the lineup. This FOX News Channel news update and weekend anchor for Fox & Friends has a mesmerizing smile.
Kiran Chetry -- bio & photo / Wiki bio / large photo
UPDATE: Kiran has moved to CNN.