Errol Barnett

Errol Barnett is an American correspondent and television anchor for the CBS News network. He is currently based in Washington D.C but previously anchored CNN’s “Newsroom” during overnight hours.


Errol was born on April 3, 1983 in Milton Keynes, England to Michael Christie and Pamela, so he’s half American half British. He also has an older brother, Danny. His mother divorced and later married Gary Barnett, a US Air Force sergeant stationed in UK. In 1993, the family relocated to Phoenix, Arizona. Errol went to Garden Lakes Elementary School and Westview High School, a public high school in Avondale, Arizona. He moved to Los Angeles since he was hired by Channel One News. A bit later, he attended the University of California, where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science focusing on international relations in 2008. As a college student at the UCLA, Barnett was a member of the Alpha Kappa Psi fraternity, the oldest and largest professional business fraternity to current date.

As mentioned above, in 2001, the in-school program Channel One News hired him as an anchor and reporter. He was just 18 years old at the time. He was on the program for five years during which time he successfully covered Barak Obama’s keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in 2004 and the 2001 September 11 terror attack. He also reported from the UN when the US Secretary of State Colin Powell presented flawed intelligence in regard to weapons of mass destruction and also from the US Capitol during the passing of the Homeland Security Act.

Barnett’s work has been commendable. He produced a TV series on heroin use in American suburbs. Teen People magazine chose him as one of the 20 Teens Who Will Change the World thanks his hard and contributing work. At this point, it is worth mentioning that the People magazine has a recorded readership of 46.6 million adults while the annual revenue is approximately $1 billion dollars each year – give or take a few millions. So, it comes easy to understand that the Teen section of the magazine was a big deal as well. But other than that, he was briefly an anchor and correspondent for ReelzChannel. He left Channel One News in 2006 to join UCLA to pursue his studies.

What is most surprising is that while you may think that Errol’s success stems from his passion on what he does, the truth is far from that. As he said in an interview with GQ South Africa, “I think lawyer was at the top of my list; I also wanted to be a track star (as a hurdler). I got into journalism because I had an interview TV show when I was in high school [in Arizona] that I enjoyed doing.”

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Almost immediately after he graduated college, Barnett served on CNN World News and CNN Newsroom. In 2008, he joined CNN International. Shortly after that, he worked as an anchor and correspondent for CNN International in Atlanta, Georgia. While at CNN International, he also was based in Johannesburg, South Africa in the capacity of general assignment correspondent. He hosted the award-winning cultural affairs program Inside Africa in January 2012.

Barnett has travelled extensively to various African countries including Ethiopia, Madagascar, Morocco and Senegal. In total, he has reported from 22 countries, not to mention that among other top stories, he has also reported on the illegal mining strikes, the blade runner Oscar Pistorius murder case, President Nelson Mandela’s ailing health and the search for MH370, the international passenger flight that disappeared on 8 March 2014 while flying from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Malaysia, to Beijing Capital International Airport in China.

In May 2013, Barnett was profiled in GQ South Africa and quizzed on his extensive travels. According to that interview, Senegal was Errol’s riskiest trip, when “during elections at the end of January 2012, the constitutional court announced that the then president Abdoulaye Wade could run for a third term, and that [musician] Youssou N’dour could not [run for election]. You could feel the tension on the streets. Where we travel, stability is fragile. When we were in the DRC, we had an armed police escort. That was a little unnerving.”

Other than all the achievements and jobs mentioned above at the network, he also contributed to CNN’s emerging markets television show Global Exchange, African Voices and CNN Marketplace Africa. In fact, previous to his appointment in Johannesburg, he was the solo anchor for a Middle East weekly news hour, Prism from CNN Abu Dhabi. It was during the Arab Spring. This CNN program detailed the unrest in Tunisia. A revolution erupted in Tunisia and similar uprisings erupted in Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Syria and Yemen.

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He also anchored the weekend editions of World Report and iReport for CNN. Barnett’s international major breaking news included events like the rescue of the Chilean Miners, the aftermath of Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunami and the global reaction on the death of Osama Bin Laden. Specifically for Syria, Errol was asked to analyse his thoughts on why the ripple effects of the Arab Spring took longer to manifest than in Egypt or Tunisia? His answer was: “You could argue that even in Tunisia there is still instability and high youth unemployment. It will take a long time for countries that have never experienced democracy to get into a rhythm with it. Syria, unfortunately, is the bloodiest of the Arab Spring nations.”

As of June 2016, the often called ‘international reporter’ has become a member of CBS News family. There, he serves as a correspondent, appearing on several shows CBS This Morning and CBS Evening News. And of course he proved his worthiness nearly immediately after he was hired by making jaw-dropping reports on UK’s “Brexit” referendum, Turkey’s coup attempt and last but not least, the US Presidential race.

The handsome Barnett is biracial; his father is a Jamaican and his mother, British. He got his US citizenship in 20015. Today he reportedly has an African girlfriend who is a professional model and travels frequently as well. In spite of their hectic schedule, they try to spent time together, as often as they can. Other than this relationship, there is nothing else known about his personal life; except the fact that he in his spare time he enjoys honing his photography skills – which makes loads of sense given that he’s travelled all around the world, so knowing how to best capture his experiences is a handy skill. He is not married, so divorce does not come in the picture, right now.

Last Modified: Feb 3, 2017


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