Dan Lewis announces plans to step away from KOMO anchor desk

Dan Lewis announces plans to step away from KOMO anchor desk »Play Video
Dan Lewis.
SEATTLE -- After 27 years as KOMO 4's primary anchor, Dan Lewis is stepping down.

During an emotional speech in the newsroom on Wednesday, Lewis told his co-workers it's time for him to walk away from the daily grind.

"Coming to Seattle 27 years ago was the best move I ever made. KOMO has been a wonderful place to work and this community is just amazing. It's a difficult decision that has been two years in the making," Lewis said.

Lewis came to Seattle from Washington DC in the summer of 1987. He was originally paired on the anchor desk with Jim Harriott and Kerry Brock. One year later, Kathi Goertzen took the seat next to him and the rest is history. Lewis and Goertzen became one of the longest running anchor teams in the country, delivering the evening news at KOMO for nearly 25 years.

On August 12th, 2012 one of the most difficult days of his life, Lewis bravely and tearfully took his seat on the KOMO 4 anchor desk to report that Kathi had passed away after a long battle with brain tumors.

"He was more than just a consummate professional that awful day, he was a patriarch, a leader, a compassionate man who guided all of us through that incredibly painful day" said Holly Gauntt, KOMO 4 News Director.

Lewis commented, "The people of this community are incredible and have helped our newsroom through some very dark times. They've responded with an amazing amount of compassion, support and love and for that I will always be grateful."

During his four decades in TV news, Lewis covered some of the biggest stories of our time. From the Pang Warehouse fire to the Nisqually earthquake and recently the crash of the KOMO 4 helicopter. Viewers across Washington have come to rely on Lewis for their news.

"Television news," he told the staff Wednesday, "has been my passion for four decades. To this day I love my job but I just feel like I need a break from the news."

Lewis went on to say "The most difficult part for me will be not seeing and working with all of you, my KOMO colleagues on a daily basis. This is the hardest working, most dedicated and compassionate team you can imagine."

Vice President and General Manager of Sinclair's Seattle properties Janene Drafs has worked with Lewis for 25 years. She says when he walks away from the anchor desk on May 28th, he won't be walking away from KOMO for good.

"We all love Dan and can't imagine him not returning to KOMO from time to time for special projects. He's an avid golfer who keeps saying 'there are too many courses and too little time!' I'm sure he'll travel the country playing a bunch of them but his heart will bring him home," Drafs said.