Baldwin struggled to maintain composure after a brief montage of her CNN moments, then addressed the audience for the final time.
“‘This job using my voice for over a decade has been nothing short of a profound privilege,” Baldwin said. “So to you at home, thank you. Thank you for trusting me. Thank you for holding me accountable. And thank you for all of the love.”
Baldwin announced her leave in February. telling viewers, “There is just more I need to do outside the walls of this place.” But she also hinted in an interview that there were other reasons, calling CNN a “male-dominated network” and noting that its highest-paid anchors and executives are men.” She had expressed some frustration at having her hour pulled from the 2020 presidential campaign for Jake Tapper.
Today, Baldwin put any lingering acrimony aside, thanking her “CNN family.” She added, “Thank you for making me better. Thank you for pushing me. Thank you for believing in me and my big backflip off the high dive today.”
“I’m leaving this place even better than I found it.”
Baldwin hasn’t said what her next move will be, but said, “I’m a journalist and a storyteller for life.”
Her final thoughts included a call for more diversity. “We do need diverse voices telling our stories from in front of the camera and to the executive suites. We are making progress. So whatever industry you are in, my parting words: Get a little uncomfortable, speak up, and keep pushing. I’m Brooke Baldwin here in New York, and I cannot wait to have you join me on our journey together.”