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Lisa Cooney to Retire from WLWT News

Lisa Cooney, the popular longtime news anchor at WLWT (Channel 5), is retiring.

The station announced Thursday that Cooney will step aside from her post as morning news anchor in April after thirty years at WLWT.

The Northern Kentucky native is a graduate of Notre Dame Academy and Eastern Kentucky University.

She was hired at Channel 5 in December, 1988 as a part-time writer. Since then, Cooney rose through the ranks to become an Emmy-winning reporter, and anchor of morning and evening newscasts.

Since 2004, Cooney has hosted WLWT's morning newscasts which finished at the top of the ratings in November.

“It’s hard to describe what Lisa has meant to WLWT,” said WLWT President & General Manager Branden Frantz. “Her tireless work for more than three decades is a lasting tribute to the commitment she’s made to the people and communities we serve,” Frantz added.

“It’s been an honor and privilege to work in a job that I’ve loved so much in my hometown," Cooney said in a statement. "I will always be grateful to the wonderful people of Cincinnati, to WLWT, and to my managers and co- workers here at the television station.”

As a reporter, Cooney covered the 1993 Lucasville prison riot, staying on-site for eleven days and was part of the team that stayed on the air for eight straight hours as part of the agreement between the inmates and the FBI to end the riot. She also covered Pope John Paul II's visits to the United States in New York in 1993 and St. Louis in 1999, and astronaut and U.S. Senator John Glenn's last space shot.

Cooney was briefly off the air in early 2001 while donating a kidney to a family friend. Since the transplant, she has advocated for the need for more donors.

“Lisa’s experience and hometown knowledge has guided viewers through so many of Cincinnati’s biggest news stories,” said WLWT News Director Jeff Benscoter. “Working a morning news shift can be very demanding, yet it’s something she did for most of her three decades at WLWT. It truly speaks to her passion for journalism, and her commitment to the people we serve every day.”

-Staff report

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