Kent Ninomiya

Kent Ninomiya

Kent Ninomiya is the first male Asian American broadcast journalist to be a primary news anchor of an American television station. The Asian American Journalist Association, known as the AAJA, notes that there are a great number of Asian American women on television news in the United States but very few Asian American men. This disparity is even more pronounced with television news anchors. Kent Ninomiya was the first Asian American man to make it to the top job.

Early Life

Kent Ninomiya was born in San Francisco and raised in San Diego. He graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in 1988 with a bachelor's degree in Social Sciences emphasizing in History, Political Science and Mass Communications. He was also a fellow of Journalism Ethics at the Poynter Institute.


Ninomiya began his television career working behind the scenes at KTVU in Oakland in 1987, KGO-TV in San Francisco in 1988, and the Washington D.C. bureau of CNN in 1988. His first appearance on television was in 1989 at WGGB, the ABC television station in Springfield, Massachusetts where he was an assignment editor/reporter. Ninomiya first appeared as a news anchor later in 1989 when he became the weekday morning news news anchor and reporter for KIEM, the NBC television station in Eureka, California. Ninomiya was later a news reporter and fill-in anchor for KJEO (now KGPE) the CBS television station in Fresno in 1990, KFSN the ABC owned and operated television station in Fresno in 1990, KGTV the ABC television station in San Diego from 1991 to 1993, and WLS-TV, the ABC owned and operated television station in Chicago from 1993 to 1998.

Kent Ninomiya became a full time news anchor in 1999 when he became the weekday 5am - 7am morning news anchor for KGO-TV, the ABC owned and operated television station in San Francisco. While there he worked with several prominent co-anchors including Beth Spicuza, Carolyn Johnson and Elizabeth Bermudez. From 2001 through 2003 Ninomiya anchored the weekend evening news at KCOP in Los Angeles. He worked with several prominent co-anchors included Gina Silva, Jennifer Gould, Maria Quiban and Lauren Sanchez. While working at KCOP the station became part of a duopoly with LA's FOX station KTTV. Ninomiya filed live news reports for both Los Angeles television stations. Ninomiya was named primary news anchor for KSTP-TV in Minneapolis-St Paul in 2003. His co-anchor was Harris Faulkner, an African American female. The all minority main anchor team in a predominantly white television market was heralded as a bold step forward by journalist organizations across the country. He also served as managing editor and main anchor for WICD in Champaign in 2006 and 2007.

Ninomiya is currently managing editor of, a web site for Americans looking to benefit from an emerging Asia and Pacific Rim. He is also the Senior Southwest U.S. Correspondent for China Daily, the national English language newspaper of China. Kent Ninomiya is also a writer for print, broadcast and the internet.


During a September 2007 trial for 19-year old Erin Davis on a DUI charge, Davis testified that she drove drunk on September 17, 2006 after she was given alcohol by WICD reporter Emily Carlson. Davis claimed she had to drive drunk to avoid being sexually assaulted by Carlson and Ninomiya. Neither Carlson, who did not testify in the Davis trial, nor Ninomiya, who did testify, was charged with any crime regarding Davis. Davis struck two parked cars on South Neil Street in Champaign, heavily damaged her own car, then kept driving into Campustown where University of Illinois police spotted her. [ [ News Gazette September 13, 2007] ] Davis was found with a blood alcohol level of .20 which is two and a half times the legal limit in Illinois. Carlson denied the allegation writing to the Star Tribune that Davis' defense was a fabrication. "Clearly the state attorney's office found me to be the credible witness, not Erin Davis." Ninomiya also denied the accusation to the Star Tribune writing "Both me and Emily Carlson were subpoenaed as witnesses for the prosecution. Don't you think the state's attorney would have loved to come after an anchor and reporter if there was any wrongdoing? Her story was her attempt to avoid taking responsibility for her actions." Davis was initially identified as a former intern in news reports but was later confirmed to be a former operations department employee by WICD's general manager. [ [ C.J.: News alert: Ex-KSTPers tell their side of Champaign story] ] Ninomiya, Carlson and Davis had all left WICD before the Davis trial.


* [ Kent Ninomiya American Journalism Review]
* [ Kent Ninomiya AAJA]
* [ Kent Ninomiya Asian Week article]
* [ Kent Ninomiya University of Maryland report]
* [ Kent Ninomiya background]
* [ Kent Ninomiya Asian Pages article]
* [ Kent Ninomiya Broadcast pioneers article]

External links

* [ Kent Ninomiya web site]
* []

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