By M. ALEXIS SCOTT (www.atlantadailyworld.com)
TV anchor/icon, known as “America’s Sweetheart,” Katie Couric came to Atlanta this week to promote her upcoming daily TV talk show, “Katie,” which premieres on WSB-TV on Sept. 10.
“I like to work,” Couric said in an interview on July 17 at WSB-TV. “I have the greatest job in the world. I like people and I love talking about important issues.”
Couric, who is best known for her 15 years as co-anchor, first with Bryant Gumble, and then Matt Lauer, on NBC’s “Today” show, said she is looking forward to addressing issues on a daily basis on her new show, which will air every Monday through Friday at 3 p.m.
She said the show will have a sense of immediacy and urgency to address breaking news. It will be a combination of interviews with guests and pre-recorded stories. She said it will resemble the topicality of the late night talk shows, but “there’ll be no monologue.”
Some of the topics Couric said she wants to explore include unemployment.
“I want to look at the best ways to find a job in the current economy,” she said. “I want to use hiring someone to work on the show as a way to demonstrate to everyone what skills and real strategies are needed to get a job.”
Women’s issues will also be explored, she said. She referred to recent reports about women being able “to have it all,” as well as the fact that being a single parent is the biggest predictor of poverty for women.
“Single mothers don’t have that partnership,” she said. “It makes it tough for kids. It also impacts social mobility.”
Other issues include looking at wealth and how it perpetuates itself, rags- to- riches stories becoming more rare; the alarming number of suicides among military personnel; and post-traumatic stress disorder among returning military veterans.
Couric, who once worked as a producer here in Atlanta at CNN, said she has been very fortunate but not without challenges, especially as a woman.
“Some people haven’t taken me seriously,” she said. She said she thinks it’s partly because of her sunny personality, her interest in both lighter news stories as well as hard news and her inclination to be a “girly girl.”
“I have a wide variety of interests,” she said. “It makes it hard when some people want to categorize you.”
Katie Shares Her Personal Side
ADW: What was your favorite gift as a child?
KC: A tetherball for Christmas. I was nine years old. It was a surprise Christmas gift and we set it up on the base of my mother’s clothesline tree in the backyard.
ADW: What’s your favorite city to visit?
ADW: What place do you want to visit?
KC: Portugal. It’s so beautiful and it has a cool language.
ADW: What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you on TV?
KC: My interview with (comedian/actor) Robin Williams. He was all over the place. He was hilarious.
ADW: What’s your favorite thing to cook?
KC: I like to make pasta with fresh vegetables from my garden. I like to eat healthy.
ADW: How do you relax?
KC: I like to take a bubble bath and read a book in the bubble bath. I like to talk on the phone with my friends. And I like to play the piano. I play by ear and it relaxes me.
ADW: How much sleep do you need?
KC: I need to get about seven or eight hours each night.
ADW: What’s your favorite television series?
KC: Andy Griffin Show; Mary Tyler Moore (her TV producer role); Julia with Dianne Carroll; L.A. Law; Sex and the City; and Mad Men.