Shepard Smith is stepping down from his role as chief news anchor and managing editor of breaking news at Fox News Channel. Smith’s final show was Oct. 11. Rotating anchors will fill his 3 p.m. slot until a new program is announced.
Smith was an original hire at the network in 1996.
“Shep is one of the premier newscasters of his generation and his extraordinary body of work is among the finest journalism in the industry,” said Jay Wallace, president and executive editor at Fox News Media. “His integrity and outstanding reporting from the field helped put Fox News on the map and there is simply no better breaking news anchor who has the ability to transport a viewer to a place of conflict, tragedy, despair or elation through his masterful delivery. We are proud of the signature reporting and anchoring style he honed at Fox News, along with everything he accomplished here during his monumental 23-year tenure. While this day is especially difficult as his former producer, we respect his decision and are deeply grateful for his immense contributions to the entire network.”
Smith anchored Shepard Smith Reporting weekdays at 3 p.m. Before that, he anchored The Fox Report and Studio B.
The announcement--Smith let viewers know on his last show--follows a dust-up between Smith and prime time Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson, who complained when Smith defended a comment by a Fox analyst that President Trump may have broken the law.
“Recently I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News and begin a new chapter. After requesting that I stay, they graciously obliged,” he said. “The opportunities afforded this guy from small town Mississippi have been many. It’s been an honor and a privilege to report the news each day to our loyal audience in context and with perspective, without fear or favor. I’ve worked with the most talented, dedicated and focused professionals I know and I’m proud to have anchored their work each day — I will deeply miss them.”
Smith said per his agreement with Fox he won't be reporting anywhere else in the near term.
Prior to joining Fox News, Smith was a correspondent at the Fox affiliate news service, Fox News Edge. He had been a reporter at WSVN Miami, the former WCPX Orlando, WBBH Fort Myers and WJHG Panama City.
Smith had a reputation for delivering straight political news, when others on the network stuck closer to party lines. Last month, Smith pushed back on the President's claims about a border wall.
The President this week, in a tweeted attack on Fox, included Smith in a list of folks that he said "doesn't deliver for US anymore."