Allison Payne Biography – Allison Payne Wiki
Allison Payne was a former news anchor, who anchored newscasts on WGN Channel 9 from 1990 to 2011. She was a 21-year veteran of WGN-TV, who was hired in 1990 as a 25-year-old out of Saginaw, Michigan. She went on to cover numerous important stories across the globe, including tracing former President Barack Obama’s roots in Kenya and traveling to the Ivory Coast alongside the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
Payne was a Detroit native who eventually called Chicago home for many years, playing an active role in the community by mentoring students and eventually establishing a foundation for students looking to enter the journalism field.
After a series of unfortunate health events, Payne and WGN parted ways in September 2011 as she returned to her hometown of Detroit, WGN-TV reported. The daughter of an educator, Payne loved sharing her wealth of knowledge so much so that she looked into becoming a journalism professor at a community college in the Motor City after she left Chicago.
A native of Richmond, Virginia, Payne grew up in Detroit and graduated from the University of Detroit and Bowling Green State University. She began as an intern and reporter at WNWO, the ABC affiliate in Toledo, Ohio. In 1988, she was hired as news anchor at WNEM, the NBC affiliate in Saginaw, Michigan.
Her big break came two years later when she was discovered by WGN news director Paul Davis and she moved to Chicago to replace Pat Harvey alongside Rick Rosenthal on the 9 p.m. Monday-through-Friday newscast. Payne later co-anchored with Steve Sanders and Mark Suppelsa.
Allison Payne Age
She was born on February 12, 1964, in Richmond, Virginia, United States. She died on September 1, 2021, in Detroit, Michigan. She was 57 years old.
Allison Payne Husband – Allison Payne Husband Bobby Richardson
Was Allison Payne married? It is unclear if she was ever married. However, she had an encounter with Bobby Richardson in 2004, according to WDW.
Allison Payne Children
Allison Payne never had any children.
Allison Payne Health Issues
In January and August 2008, Payne went on medical leave after suffering from a series of mini-strokes. In November 2008 WGN-TV announced that Payne would take an indefinite leave of absence because of ongoing health issues. Payne admitted in an interview with Chicago Tribune media columnist Phil Rosenthal that she sought treatment for depression during her absence months earlier. In January 2010, Payne publicly admitted that she was a recovering alcoholic, after having previously battled alcoholism for 20 years. In late December 2010, Payne took a leave of absence from WGN-TV to rest her vocal cords.
Allison Payne Death
Former WGN-TV anchor Allison Payne died on September 1, 2021, at the age of 57. She passed away at her home in Detroit, according to a WGN press release.
“WGN-TV is mourning the loss of longtime former news anchor Allison Payne, who died at the age of 57…Allison Payne was a monumental contributor to the history of WGN-TV, and we mourn her loss greatly,” WGN-TV in Chicago said in a statement.
Dean Richards, WGN-TV’s Emmy Award-winning entertainment reporter and critic, wrote on Twitter: “I’m so sad to report the death of former WGN TV anchor, Allison Payne in her hometown of Detroit. She co-anchored WGN News for 21 years earning 9 Emmys. Allison suffered a series of health issues although a cause of death has not been released. She was 57. RIP my friend.”
“Allison Payne was a one-of-a-kind talent who quickly became one of Chicago’s Very Own. We are grateful for the many contributions she made to WGN-TV and to Chicago. Talented and much admired, she will be greatly missed,” said Paul Rennie, Vice President General Manager, WGN-TV.
“Allison was young, vibrant, sharp, articulate. She was amazing. You looked at Allison and thought here is a young journalist who has the world before her. One could only speculate where that incredible career was going to go,” said Tom Skilling, WGN-TV Chief Meteorologist, and longtime co-worker. “She was a delight, a kind human being… so sweet.”
“While so many journalists worry about the list of questions they want to ask, she taught me the most important part of an interview, is the listening. That even if you don’t ask the right questions, if you listen well enough, the story will reveal itself,” said WGN-TV producer Tyra Martin.
Fellow Chicagoland journalist Afuna Owusu tweeted: “I am heartbroken over the death of Allison Payne. For 21 years she was theee face of @WGNNews for me, a little black girl living in Bolingbrook, IL. My parents moved my bedtime to 9:30p so that I could watch the nightly news with @AllisonPayneTV & Steve Sanders.
“A decade+ later, I started working at WGN. @allisonsnews took me under her wing. She was kind, gracious and an incredibly talented journalist. Allison Payne understood the importance of lifting others up so they too could have an opportunity to shine.
“I’d be a fool to not acknowledge, now, that I am who I am today because Allison Payne knocked down the doors and made room in the halls that me and so many other young black journalist walk through.”
Allison Payne Cause of Death
Allison Payne’s cause of death was not revealed. She battled addictions and other health issues during her later years in Chicago.
Allison Payne Net Worth
Allison Payne’s net worth was estimated to be $1 million.