The name Times Square comes from the short period the New York Times had their headquarters in the location. The news organization has since moved, but the area is a top tourist destination and where the ball drops is New York. Fittingly this year, journalists are the special guests for the Times Square Ball Drop who will push the button to lower the ball before the end of the year. Times Square Alliance and Countdown Entertainment announced the journalists who will join the Committee to Protect Journalists at the event.
The journalists are Karen Attiah, Global Opinions Editor, The Washington Post; Rebecca Blumenstein, Deputy Managing Editor, The New York Times; Alisyn Camerota, Co-Anchor, CNN’s New Day; Vladimir Duthiers, Correspondent, CBS News and Anchor, CBSN; Edward Felsenthal, Editor-in-Chief, TIME; Lester Holt, Anchor, NBC Nightly News and Dateline NBC; Matt Murray, Editor-in-Chief, The Wall Street Journal; Martha Raddatz, Chief Global Affairs Correspondent and “This Week” Co-Anchor, ABC News; Maria Ressa, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Editor, Rappler; Jon Scott, Anchor, Fox Report Weekend on Fox News Channel; Karen Toulon, Senior Editor, Bloomberg.
“As the Ball drops, the Special Guests will lead the sixty-second countdown to 2019 joined by millions of revelers with a message of unity and harmony for the new year,” said Jeff Straus, President of Countdown Entertainment. “We thank the news organizations and the journalists for helping us celebrate journalism and press freedom around the world.”
“We are honored to have such a respected group of media entities and journalists join us to#CelebratePressFreedom as we ring in the New Year,” said Tim Tompkins, President of the Times Square Alliance. “In one of the world’s most famous public squares it is fitting to celebrate free press and free speech as we reflect on where we’ve been during the past year and what it is we value most as a society.”
“The group of journalists who will join us on stage to inaugurate the countdown to 2019 are highly distinguished,” said Joel Simon, Executive Director of the Committee to Protect Journalists. “They are also representatives of all journalists in the United States, and around the world who work hard every day to keep their communities informed and hold the powerful to account. It’s the freedom to do this critical work that we celebrate.”