Diane Rehm, host of National Public Radio’s “The Diane Rehm Show,” will be retiring, says WAMU, where the show is produced. From the NPR announcement:
Rehm’s exit from the show will not take place immediately; she is expected to remain as its host through the 2016 presidential election. A date for her exit has not been established.
“Diane, WAMU and NPR are working together closely on what comes next, and we are in active conversations about WAMU’s plans for a successor program for the public radio morning audience,” WAMU General Manager J.J. Yore said in a statement about the plans.
A Peabody Award winner, Rehm’s show reaches more than 2.4 million on-air listeners each week. Originating from American University, it’s distributed to nearly 200 public radio stations as well as through digital networks and a podcast.
Rehm’s faith and ties to The Episcopal Church were an element in her on- and off-air advocacy of death with dignity, an advocacy that was made even more personal by the death of her husband, who had Parkinson’s and chose to end his own life. (See Cafe coverage here.)
Rehm began hosting the show in 1979, when it was called Kaleidoscope (until its name change in 1984).
When President Obama awarded Rehm the National Humanities Medal last year, he commended her “for illuminating the people and stories behind the headlines.” The president added, “In probing interviews with everyone from pundits to poets to presidents, Ms. Rehm’s keen insights and boundless curiosity have deepened our understanding of our culture and ourselves.”