Don Lemon’s bio: profile, age, education, CNN salary, net worth

Don Lemon’s bio: profile, age, education, CNN salary, net worth

Don Lemon is an American professional journalist currently working at Cable News Network (CNN). The three-time Emmy award-winning news anchor boasts of an illustrious career that stretches back to the early 2000s. Apart from CNN, Lemon has worked at MSNBC and NBC television networks. How much can you tell about him, though?

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Don Lemon
A portrait of Donald Carlton Lemon. Photo: @donlemoncnn
Source: Facebook

Many people like Lemon's excellent oratory skills and news presentation style. Aside from journalism, Don has an inspiring personality and lifestyle.

Profile summary

  • Birth name: Donald Carlton Lemon
  • Famous as: Don Lemon
  • Date of birth: 1st March 1966
  • Age: 56 years (as of 2022)
  • Place of birth: Baton Rouge, Los Angeles, USA
  • Nationality: American
  • Ethnicity: African-American
  • Father: Wilmon Lee Richardson
  • Mother: Katherine Clark
  • Sexual orientation: Gay
  • Partner: Tim Malone (2016 - present)
  • Height: 5' 10½" (1.79 m)
  • Net worth: $12 million
  • Residences: Sag Harbor on Long Island and Harlem in Upper Manhattan, New York, USA
  • Education: Baker High School, City University of New York-Brooklyn College
  • Occupation: News anchor, author
  • Instagram: @donlemoncnn
  • Twitter: @donlemon
  • Facebook: @donlemoncnn

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Donald Lemon's early life

Donald Carlton Lemon was born on 1st March 1966 in Baton Rouge, LA, USA. Carlton has the surname of her mum's then-husband and discovered his birth father at age five.

Don Lemon
Carlton sitting on a blue sofa near the window. Photo: @donlemoncnn
Source: Facebook

How old is Don Lemon?

As of April 2022, Don Lemon's age is 56 years old.

Who are Don Lemon's parents?

He is the son of Wilmon Lee Richardson and Katherine Clark. Wilmon was a prominent attorney. He participated in a successful lawsuit that stopped the segregation of public transportation in Baton Rouge.

What ethnicity is Don Lemon?

He is African-American. Carlton's maternal grandmother was born to a Black mother and a White dad.

Does Don Lemon have siblings?

Carlton was raised single-handedly by his mother alongside his two siblings, L'Tanya 'Leisa' Lemon Grimes and Yma Lemon. Leisa drowned and died in 2018 during a fishing trip in Denham Springs, LA.

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How tall is Don Lemon?

Carlton is 5 feet 10½ inches (1.79 m) tall.

Educational background

Don Lemon
CNN journalist Carlton wearing a white shirt and grey coat. Photo: @donlemoncnn
Source: Facebook

Don Lemon of CNN has an extensive educational background from reputable institutions. He attended Baker High School, where he was voted class president in his senior year.

Lemon then joined Louisiana State University. He later obtained a degree in broadcast journalism from the City University of New York-Brooklyn College in 1996.


Carlton has a successful journalism career worth envying. He began as a news assistant at the WNYW TV station while studying at Brooklyn College. Carlton later worked for Fox affiliates in Chicago and St Louis for some years.

He was also a correspondent for NBC affiliates in Chicago and Philadelphia. At NBC, he was a correspondent for news shows like Weekend Today, NBC Nightly News, and The Today Show.

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Carlton found his way to WBRC-TV, KTVI, MSNBC, and WCAU as a news anchor and investigative/general reporter while still working for NBC. He became a reporter and local news co-anchor at NBC's WMAQ-TV in August 2003.

Don Lemon's CNN career

Carlton joined CNN in September 2006 and became a voice for the plights of the African-American community. He and Brooke Baldwin began co-hosting CNN's New Year's Eve special from New Orleans in 2014.

The journalist began presenting the CNN Tonight with Don Lemon show in January 2018. He criticized President Trump's administration and accused him of racism. In addition, Carlton and CNN's Chris Cuomo launched The Handoff podcast in May 2021 to discuss politics and other issues.

Why is Don Lemon leaving CNN?

The last edition of CNN Tonight with Don Lemon was on 14th May 2021, but Carlton did not leave CNN after his show was cancelled. The journalist clarified his cryptic on-air announcement that implied his tenure at the news network was ending.

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The journalist showcased his prowess in journalism by covering numerous ground-breaking stories and events for CNN, including;

  • The Minneapolis bridge Collapse (2007)
  • Hurricane Gustav in Louisiana (2008)
  • The Death of Michael Jackson (2009)
  • The Inaugural of the 44th President (2009)
  • The death of Osama Bin Laden (2011)
  • The Colorado Theater Shooting (2012)
  • The Boston Marathon Bombing (2013)
  • The Charleston Church Shooting (2015)
  • The Orlando shooting at Pulse Nightclub (2016)
Don Lemon
Carlton playing with dogs. Photo: @donlemoncnn
Source: Facebook

What happened to Don Lemon at CNN Tonight?

CNN Tonight with Don Lemon show was rebranded to CNN Tonight; and Don began hosting the same program under a new name.

Don Lemon's books

Carlton is an accredited author of several interesting materials about his life and social issues like racism. Some of his books include:

  • Everybody's Scrap Book of Curious Facts: A Book for Odd Moments
  • Transparent (2011)
  • This Is the Fire: What I Say to My Friends about Racism (2021)

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Who is Don Lemon's husband?

Don Lemon
Lemon and partner Tim Malone sitting at the Polo Bar in a Ralph Lauren Restaurant. Photo: @donlemoncnn
Source: Facebook

Don Lemon and real estate agent Tim Malone met in New York in 2016 and began dating immediately. They made their relationship public in 2017 by kissing on CNN TV during the New Year’s Eve broadcast. The two are not yet married.

Is Don Lemon married?

Tim Malone proposed to Carlton in April 2019, and they postponed their 2021 wedding due to the COVID 19 pandemic.

Who was Don Lemon's first wife?

For many years, Lemon was rumoured to have been secretly married to Dominican American actress Stephanie Ortiz.

Don Lemon's net worth

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Lemon's net worth is about $12 million, and he is among the highest-paid journalists in the USA. Don Lemon's salary at CNN is around $4 million.

Where does Don Lemon live?

He has a house in Sag Harbor on Long Island and an apartment in Harlem, a neighbourhood in Upper Manhattan.

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  • Lemon has received an Edward R. Murrow Award, 3 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Awards, and a Native Son Award.
  • The CNN journalist was voted among Ebony magazine's 150 Most Influential African-Americans in 2009.
  • The Advocate listed Lemon among its 50 Most Influential LGBTQ People in Media in 2014.
  • He is African-American with hints of French and English/Scots-Irish ancestry.
  • Don was sexually assaulted as a child.

Don Lemon is, undoubtedly, one of the most established and respected journalists in the US. He has built his career from the ground up, starting as a news assistant. Lemon is now among the highest-paid anchors in CNN. He is an inspiration to many young people who would love to venture into journalism and broadcasting field.

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