CBS' Scott Pelley speaks to League of Women Voters despite approaching deadline
Scott Pelley, the anchor and managing editor of CBS Evening News and "60 Minutes" correspondent, spoke at the Darien League of Women Voters brunch April 21, even though he had an approaching 3 p.m. deadline for his 60 Minutes segment.
Pelley told the audience of 120 -- the largest attendance in LWV event history -- that he had left Boston at 9 p.m. Saturday night, arrived in Darien by midnight and was awake by 5 a.m. Sunday to work on the "60 Minutes" show for later that night. His piece featured an interview with Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis following the Boston Marathon bombing.
His presentation to the LWV was entitled "Balanced Reporting in a Biased Media," and showcased some of his work from the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and a clip of a Senate hearing during which time a senator referred to the "60 Minutes" interviews as the best and most clear information regarding the spill.
Pelley spoke for roughly 45 minutes, according to Mogenson, before rushing out the door to file his segment about Boston for the evening program. Earlier that morning, Pelley was working in his personal studio in his Darien home.
More InformationFact box
"It was fun that he mentioned a couple times that he came from around the corner to be there," said Sue Okie, a member of the nominating committee for the LWV.
After Pelley's presentation, the room was opened up for questions.
One question, according to Okie and Mogenson, took Pelley aback -- What is the story reporters aren't covering?
That's an amazing question, Pelley told the woman, adding that it's a question he normally asks the president. He took a minute to answer, Okie and Mogenson said.
Finally, he told the room that more focus needs to be given to the state of mental health in America, especially in light of the gun control debates.
Pelley also spoke about American journalism and journalism schools, Mogenson said. He told the audience that the best journalism system is in America, she said. He added that foreign news organizations constantly come to CBS to study the organization and learn how to run a free media.
We are a lesson to the world, Pelley told the audience.
"He was very polished and very gracious and obviously under a lot of pressure," Okie said.
Pelley spoke briefly about the week in Boston reporting on the bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, which killed three and injured more than 280 spectators and runners.
"On his news broadcast, they try as much as possible to be unbiased," said Joan Davis, a member of the League of Women Voters. "They check everything and they try to show both sides of the story."
The next event for the League of Women Voters is the annual meeting in June, which is open to the public. Mogenson said she was in the process of developing a panel discussion with State Representative Terri Wood, R-141, who was the co-chairman of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's task force for mental health, about the civil engagement reaction to the deadly shooting in Newtown.