Henderson's Charlie Rose named North Carolinian of the Year by NCPA

Oct. 29, 2013 @ 07:43 PM

Charlie Rose, a respected national television personality from Henderson, is the North Carolinian of the Year.

The N.C. Press Association will make the announcement in its weekly electronic message to members Thursday morning. Rose will accept the award, the association’s highest honor, on Feb. 27 at the association’s annual awards banquet in Chapel Hill.

“Charlie Rose has been a respected journalist for years, and this award, which honors North Carolinians who bring honor to our state, is well-deserved,” said Les High, president of the NCPA, in a prepared statement. “His interview with Bashar al-Assad raised his stature even more, but that notwithstanding, Charlie practices the type of serious and thoughtful journalism that is needed more than ever and deserves recognition. I know the people of Henderson are proud of their hometown son.”

Rose is a co-host of “CBS This Morning” and “Person to Person.” On PBS, he hosts “Charlie Rose,” which airs nightly.

“He’s more than deserving. You barely have to make the case,” said Beth Grace, executive director of the NCPA.

For the first time, nominations were accepted from the members of the NCPA. In past years since the award’s inception in 1993, the president and executive committee nominated and decided.

Grace said a “handful” of nominations were received, three were finalists and Rose was the overwhelming choice.

Rose was nominated by The Dispatch and by High.

“He’s always talking about North Carolina on TV,” Grace said. “I love hearing that. The way he talks about it, it’s always with great fondness and great respect. And that’s the kind of thing we look for in a North Carolinian.”

Rose is a popular interviewer. And the A-list answering his questions hardly misses any measuring component, from occupations to demographics to relevance in American society.

The CBS website narrows the description to: “Guests on the show include major international political figures and a mixture of renowned personalities from literature, theatre, film, dance, fashion, sports, science, medicine, and business.”

And that still might not cover it all.

In an interview with The Dispatch published Feb. 19, 1982, Rose talked about the influences in his life. Then just 40 years old and a year into being a television show host, he described loving parents and a hometown that inspired his curiosity.

“I believe,” Rose said, “that I am driven by the words of Oliver Wendell Holmes, the great jurist, who said, ‘Man ought to be part of the action and passion of his time or be judged not to have lived.’”

At the time, the list of his interviews already included President Ronald Reagan, then-Vice President George H.W. Bush, Rev. Jerry Falwell, Alan Alda and Dr. Joyce Brothers among many others.

Thirty years later, most any of the top names in any area of society has likely sat opposite Rose. That list includes four living presidents, rival threats to the U.S. such as al-Assad, and even one of the great one-on-one interviewers, Bill Moyers.

It was Moyers who hired Rose as managing editor of “Bill Moyers’ International Report” in 1974. In the 1982 interview with The Dispatch, Rose said Moyers had a great influence on him.

Rose is the son of the late Margaret and Charles Rose of Henderson. His father was a longtime councilman and a past president of Rose Gin and Supply. He graduated from Henderson High in 1960, went to Duke University originally as pre-med and left with degrees in history (1964, bachelor’s) and law (1968, juris doctor).

Contact the writer at awooten@hendersondispatch.com.