Born In: Maysville, Kentucky, United States
Nicholas Joseph Clooney is an accomplished and award-winning American journalist, anchor, game show host and television host who rose to prominence hosting ‘The Money Maze’ and ‘The Nick Clooney Show’. He is also known as brother of American singer-actress Rosemary Clooney and father of renowned American actor, film director, producer, screenwriter and philanthropist George Clooney. Nick became passionate about gathering and delivering news at an early age and started his broadcasting career in Maysville. With time he made his mark as a reporter, anchor, news director and managing editor in Lexington, California, New York, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Kentucky, Ohio, Utah and Salt Lake City. He thrived as a speaker and master of ceremonies; delivered commencement address at different universities, colleges and high schools; and remained moderator or panellist at over 3,000 events. A strong activist for Darfur, Nick filmed a documentary ‘A Journey to Darfur’ with his son George, sale proceeds of DVDs of which were donated to support the people of Darfur. Nick received two Emmy Awards; was named a Kentucky Distinguished Broadcaster; was inducted into the Ohio, Cincinnati and Kentucky Journalism Halls of Fame; and was elected to the Ohio Radio and Television Broadcasters' Hall of Fame.
Also Known As: Nicholas Joseph Clooney
Spouse/Ex-: Nina Bruce Warren
father: Andrew Joseph Clooney
mother: Marie Frances Guilfoyle
siblings: Betty Clooney, Gail Stone, Rosemary Clooney
children: Adelia Clooney, George Clooney
Born Country: United States
Ancestry: German American
U.S. State: Kentucky
Nicholas Joseph Clooney was born on January 13, 1934, in Maysville, Kentucky, US, to house painter Andrew Joseph Clooney and his wife Marie Frances (née Guilfoyle) as one of their five children. He is of Irish and German descent from his father’s side and Irish descent from his mother’s side.
His siblings include American singer-actress Rosemary Clooney and American singer and television presenter Betty Clooney. Reportedly his father drank a lot and his parents had a troubled marriage. The couple divorced in the late 1930s, and Frances went on to marry William Stone in 1939. Nick’s step-sister Gail was born through Frances’ second marriage. According to sources, while growing up, Nick spent a lot of time with his grandmother.
Nick Clooney served as a Corporal in the U.S. Army and during such tenure Nick performed as a disc jockey in the American Forces Network while in Germany as also hosted the shows ‘Melody-Go-Round’ and ‘Music in the Air’.
Following his stint in the army, Nick Clooney relocated to California in pursuit of making a career in the entertainment industry. When such effort failed, he shifted to Ohio.
Nick Clooney worked at WKYT-TV in Lexington, Kentucky, from 1958 to 1966. He later moved to Ohio where he started hosting his own local morning television show in 1968 for WLWC television in Columbus, Ohio, called ‘The Nick Clooney Show’, which included a variety and talk-show format. In 1969, the show was broadcast in Cincinnati's WCPO-TV. Nick rose to prominence with the show in the early 1970s, when it was aired on WKRC-TV.
Nick Clooney gained national fame for the first time in December 1974, presenting the ABC television game show ‘The Money Maze’. He hosted the show on WKRC-TV, the then-ABC affiliate, in Cincinnati, concurrently with ‘The Nick Clooney Show’, with WKRC scheduling ‘The Money Maze’ at 10:30 a.m., just before broadcast of ‘The Nick Clooney Show’ at 11:00 a.m. The show however faltered and was wrapped up on June 27, 1975, following which Nick became news director and lead anchor of WKRC-TV.
While working with WKRC, Nick caught attention as a journalist covering the 1977 Beverly Hills Supper Club fire and its aftermath. The station halted its Saturday night prime-time schedule to break news of the devastating fire and many people in the region came to know about the fire for the first time through this broadcast that was presented by Clooney. His hard news focus, rather than the sensationalism approach frequently seen on local television, and leadership led WKRC-TV to climb atop the local news ratings replacing CBS affiliate WCPO-TV that dominated ratings for over 20 years under the leadership of Al Schottelkotte.
Nick left WKRC in 1984 and moved to Los Angeles, California, where he joined KNBC, as the 5 pm and 11 pm co-anchor. He later re-joined WKRC-TV in the late 1980s and following his tenure there; he relocated to Salt Lake City, Utah and hosted the newly created evening news program on KSTU, a Fox-affiliated television station.
In 1994, he served as a news anchor for WGRZ-TV, an NBC-affiliated television station in Buffalo, New York.
He served American Movie Classics cable channel as a host and researcher for some time. While there, Nick teamed up with Bob Dorian to introduce and present backgrounds of classic movies.
He re-joined the radio station WSAI in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1999 and started working as afternoon host on September 13. After Bob Braun was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and retired from WSAI on November 24 that year, Nick replaced him as the morning host.
When Ken Lucas, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Kentucky's 4th district did not seek re-election during the 2004 United States House of Representatives elections in Kentucky, he selected Nick as the Democratic nominee to run for the open seat with Republican Geoff Davis as an opponent.
Although Nick did a promising start with a commanding early lead, he lost 44% to 54% amidst his Republican opponents’ elucidation of the race as "Hollywood vs the Heartland" and support of ‘The Kentucky Enquirer’ and the ‘Community Press’ for Davis. Nick announced end of his short career in politics while giving his concession speech.
Nick travelled to Darfur, Sudan, with his son George in April 2006. They spent ten days in Chad and Sudan and made the documentary titled ‘A Journey to Darfur’ which accounted the situation of refugees of Darfur. The documentary was aired on American cable TV and in the UK and France. Its DVD was released in 2008, sales proceeds of which were donated to the International Rescue Committee to aid the people of Darfur. A strong activist for Darfur, Nick has taken part in several rallies for Darfur and also did many open forums and speeches at local high schools in Kentucky and Ohio.
Meanwhile, he received an honorary Class of 1952 diploma from St. Xavier High School on March 16, 2007, after a Darfur rally. He spoke with students of Cincinnati’s Turpin High School about Darfur on October 11 that year. It was announced by the University of Kentucky that Nick would be awarded with an honorary degree at the university’s 2007 commencement.
He hosted the Dayton Literary Peace Prize awards ceremony in 2007 and again served as its evening's host in 2008 and 2009. He became American University School of Communication and Newseum Distinguished Journalist in Residence at American University in Washington, D.C. in fall 2008. He served as host of the fifth annual AU School of Communication-Newseum Reel Journalism Film Festival as well as other events at the Newseum.
Meanwhile in fall 2008, he taught Opinion Writing and in spring 2009, he taught a new course called ‘Films that Changed Us’. It was based on his 2002 book ‘The Movies That Changed Us: Reflections on the Screen’ that presents a unique catalog of. iconic American films such as ‘The Birth of a Nation’, ‘Saving Private Ryan’, ‘Star Wars’, ‘The Graduate’, ‘Stagecoach’, ‘The Jazz Singer’ and ‘Dr. Strangelove’ and analyses the way these films influenced and changed the world of cinema as well as the world we live in.
On June 8, 2012, Nick appeared as the commencement speaker for the University of Cincinnati. The next day he was awarded with an honorary degree.
The George Clooney directed and starred blockbuster hit 2014 war film ‘The Monuments Men’ featured Nick in the older version of Lt. Frank Stokes, while the character’s younger version was played by George.
Nick met his future wife Nina Warren while he was judging a beauty pageant where Nina took part as a contestant. The two married in August 1959. The couple’s two children include daughter Adelia (known as Ada) and son George.
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