Randall Pinkston is a semi-retired award-winning journalist who covered national and international issues. Pinkston worked freelance as a reporter and anchor at Al Jazeera America from September 2013 until April 2016. Prior to joining Al Jazeera America, Pinkston worked at CBS for more than 30 years.
After a decade at CBS flagship WCBS-TV, Pinkston joined CBS News in 1990 as a White House Correspondent, covering the administration of President George H. W. Bush. After Bush’s re-election defeat, Pinkston became a general assignment correspondent in CBS’ Washington Bureau.
Pinkston covered many of the major stories of the past three decades, including the Kosovo conflict; the crisis in Haiti; the war in Afghanistan; the war in Iraq; earthquakes in Turkey, Italy, and Chile; Tiger Woods’ return to the Augusta National Golf Club Masters Tournament; the final launch of NASA’s shuttle, Discovery, from the Kennedy Space Center; and the election of Pope Francis. He also contributed to CBS’s “Sunday Morning” and “48 Hours.)
Pinkston is a former adjunct professor at City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism, Stony Brook University School of Journalism and the University of Mississippi’s School of Journalism. He is currently a lecturer at the Morgan State University School of Global Journalism and Communication. Pinkston is the recipient of the Society of Professional Journalists’ 2008 Public Service Award for coverage of the AIDS crisis among African Americans. He also won three national Emmy Awards and two for local Emmy awards for news coverage. In 1996, he received an Emmy for Outstanding Investigative Journalism and the Edward R. Murrow Award for the documentary, “CBS Reports: Legacy of Shame.”
Pinkston was born in Yazoo County, Miss., and grew up in Jackson. He attended Jackson Public Schools and enrichment programs at Jackson State College and Tougaloo College. After attending Wesleyan University in Connecticut, he transferred to Millsaps College where he received a BA degree in History.
While at Millsaps, he began his career in broadcasting as an announcer at WJDX-FM and later as an anchor-reporter at WLBT-TV. Pinkston earned a J.D. degree from the University of Connecticut Law School and received honorary degrees (D.H.M.) from Tougaloo College, Millsaps College and the University of Connecticut.