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|Born||June 2, 1943|
|Died||December 8, 1972(aged 29)|
Michele Clark was a news correspondent with CBS in Washington DC with a budding career in broadcasting. Originally from Chicago, she graduated Columbia University in Journalism, and became one of the first black female news correspondents CBS Morning News. In 1972, she was on the cusp of her big break as a journalist with an exclusive story on the Watergate scandal, but tragically died in a plane crash with 43 other passengers at the age of 29.
Michele Clark was born in Gary, Indiana. During her youth, her father managed an appliance store in the South Side of Chicago. She attended the University of Chicago Laboratory High School, Grinnell College and Roosevelt University. She then attended the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, and graduated in 1972. There, she was participated in a program focused on training minority journalists called the Summer Program for Minority Journalists. The program was alternatively known by some as "journalism bootcamp". While in the program, Michele was consistently in the top of her class.
After graduating from Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, Michele Clark's career began to take off. She caught the attention of many producers due to her charisma, intelligence, and elegant beauty. She also had a knack for journalism in ways many of her peers did not. Gary Gilson, head of the Summer Program for Minority Journalists said:
"She had tremendous instincts as a reporter. Some reporters will listen, write it down and report (the story) but have no understanding of the dynamics. She understood the power relationships in a story and what motivated people. She had a great understanding of human psychology."
Clark was tasked with covering the 1972 Presidential Election as a floor reporter, where she received recognition from news correspondent Walter Cronkite.
On December 8, 1972, Clark was on United Airlines Flight 553 to Chicago from Washington D.C. to visit her parents after a day's work at CBS News.
Michele Clark Magnet High School, located in Chicago, Illinois, was named after Michele in her honor.
- Weingarten, Paul (July 13, 1986). "AND NOW, THE MINORITY VIEW . . . HOW HARRY PORTERFIELD AND ROBIN ROBINSON GOT CAUGHT IN THE LONG-RUNNING BATTLE OVER WHO SHOULD DELIVER TV NEWS". The Chicago Tribune.
- Dawkins, Wayne (May 31, 1994). "Michele Clark not forgotten". NABJ Journal. 11.