MSNBC has announced that Ali Velshi will join the network. Velshi was previously an anchor and chief business correspondent for CNN before he jumped to Al Jazeera America in 2013. He was the first major journalist to join AJAM and stayed with the network until it folded earlier this year.
At CNN, Velshi was known for his tough interviewing style as well as his hurricane coverage that briefly made him into an online sensation. At AJAM, Velshi’s programs were relative bright spots in the ratings. However, there were internal difficulties as Velshi’s tough questions for then-CEO Ehab Al Shihabi led to Al Shihabi openly threatening Velshi in the newsroom. Al Shihabi was later demoted.
Once AJAM folded, Velshi made appearances on radio and on CNN and there was speculation that he would return to CNN.
Velshi will report to Janelle Rodriguez, the NBC News vice president of editorial who oversees MSNBC daytime. MSNBC head Phil Griffin said in his memo, “Ali’s sharp economic analysis will be a valuable asset to MSNBC as we dig deeper into every angle of the news.”
Velshi starts tomorrow.
Read the memo from Phil Griffin:
I’m pleased to announce Ali Velshi joins MSNBC beginning tomorrow.
Ali brings a unique mix of experience and perspective on both domestic and international issues. He was most recently a primetime anchor at Al Jazeera America and previously had a long career with CNN as an anchor and chief business correspondent.
Ali made a name for himself covering tragic events in Pakistan and Turkey, the debt crisis in Greece, and the impact of devastating hurricanes here at home. He has earned a first-rate reputation as a business expert through his reporting on the 2008 financial crisis, the U.S. government’s bailout plan, the automobile industry, and the debt ceiling and budget debates.
Ali’s sharp economic analysis will be a valuable asset to MSNBC as we dig deeper into every angle of the news and build on our ratings momentum in all dayparts. He will join our strong bench of talented journalists and report to Janelle Rodriguez.
Please join me in giving Ali a warm welcome to MSNBC.