Don Lemon: “This is my time to be me on TV”

don-lemon“I love what I do right now. I feel like I found my voice and found my groove. This is my time to be me on TV,” CNN Tonight anchor, Don Lemon, 54, tells the Los Angeles Times. Though he does note, “I think about how much longer I can continue to do this at this pace and the amount of negativity that comes my way.” Lemon regularly hosts two hours of television, and with breaking news, is sometimes on even longer — and as of late, he’s been anchoring on Sunday nights, too.

The 2.4 million people watching Lemon’s program in May was up 75% from the previous year, the most growth of any cable news show that month, according to Nielsen data.

Regarding Lemon’s “maturation” as a host, CNN president Jeff Zucker said, “I think he knows how important this moment is — he’s been preparing for it his entire career. Don has always brought a little of himself and his emotion to his reporting and that’s why he’s stood out. On this story, he’s done it in an insightful and measured way that I don’t know the Don Lemon of six years ago would have done.”

Though Lemon’s mother is still concerned about him. “I am very proud of him. The only thing I don’t like is how people attack him. I’m concerned about his safety. I don’t care how old he gets. That’s my child. I’m always concerned about him.”

“[My work has] garnered me a lot of enemies,” Lemon agreed. “A lot of them in person as well. I have to watch my back over it.”

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