A Special Surprise Letter for NBC’s Kristen Welker

Dear Kristen,

Congratulations on this well-deserved award. Your father and I are extremely proud of you, not just today but always!

Journalism has been your passion for as long as I can remember. I feel so fortunate that I have been able to follow your career from day one when at age four you were using crayons to create your own newspapers chronicling your stuffed animals.

You have come a long way from the stuffed-animal beat! Starting with an internship on TODAY, to reporting in Redding, California; Providence, Rhode Island; Philadelphia and all the way to the White House beat and Co-Anchoring the Weekend TODAY for NBC News. If there is one thing I know for sure, it is that you have always worked very hard and diligently studied your craft.

Kristen, you have always displayed remarkable clarity, vision and passion for the field of journalism. When your father tried to convince you to become an engineer and I encouraged you to join me in my real estate company, you were clear that you had a different calling! You listened politely to our recommendations and made it clear you felt strongly about following your own path. Thank goodness you listened to your own drummer.

When we watch your news reports and broadcasts, one thing has never changed. You are the same Kristen we have always known with the same tenacity, determination and skill, combined with the warmth, fairness and respect that I know viewers love as much as we do. You have definitely earned this most prestigious Outstanding Journalist in Broadcast Television Award.

We love you,

Mom and Dad

From Julie Welker, mother of Kristen Welker, along with her father, Harvey. Kristen Welker is an NBC News White House Correspondent.