Harvey Leonard, longtime WCVB chief meteorologist, announces retirement and new role

StormTeam 5 chief meteorologist Harvey Leonard, a New England icon widely regarded as one of the country’s top meteorologists, announced his retirement Wednesday.Leonard will retire from his weeknight appearances on NewsCenter 5 on May 25, but transition from his daily role to the position of chief meteorologist emeritus this fall, contributing to severe weather and climate coverage important to our community.Leonard has been part of WCVB StormTeam 5 for two decades and his remarkable career of forecasting weather in New England spans 50 years.”After five wonderful decades doing a job that I love, and after having received so many distinguished honors from dear colleagues and professional organizations, I’ve decided it’s time to step back from my day-to-day role at WCVB and transition to contributing in a new way,” Leonard said when making the announcement. Leonard says his new role will allow him to spend more time with family, while still being able to communicate important information n to New Englanders.”My new role will allow me the best of both worlds: I will still contribute to StormTeam 5 coverage serving our community with important information as well as remain an active member of the Channel 5 family, and I will get to spend more time enjoying activities with my personal family. Additionally, this new position will allow me more opportunities to engage in the community which is something I very much enjoy.””There is nobody who is more revered and beloved by the community and colleagues than Harvey Leonard,” Kyle Grimes, WCVB’s president and general manager said Wednesday.”We sincerely thank him for all he has done and what he’ll continue to contribute in his emeritus role.””Harvey’s contributions to Channel 5’s audience, to all of New England, and to the industry as a whole are legendary,” WCVB News Director Margaret Cronan said. Leonard’s co-workers learned about the announcement during a station wide meeting and video conference call on Wednesday afternoon.” He is treasured by them and by his newsroom family, and we’re glad that he ‘ll continue to contribute to StormTeam 5 in retirement,” Cronan said. Often fondly referred to as “the dean of weather,” Leonard has been a mentor to many aspiring meteorologists and today well over a dozen of his protégé serve as o n-air meteorologists in markets across the country.He joined WCVB in 2002 as StormTeam 5’s co-chief meteorologist with his longtime friend Dick Albert, who retired in 2009.Prior to joining WCVB in 2002, Leonard served as chief meteorologist for WHDH-TV from 1977 to 2002. He also served as chief meteorologist at WPRI-TV in Providence, Rhode Island. He began his forecasting career as a meteorologist for Universal Weather Services, Inc. Leonard is notably credited as the first meteorologist to correctly predict the impact and intensity of the Blizzard of ’78 and admits to a lifelong obsession with weather. Leonard was inducted into the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Boston/New England Chapter’s 2021 Gold Circle last year. He has received numerous awards throughout his career including four New England Emmy Awards for outstanding achievement in television weather casting, induction into the NATAS Silver Circle in 2004 and the prestigious NATAS Governors’ Award in 2016. In 2018, Leonard was inducted into the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame, and in 2019 he was named Broadcaster of the Year by the Massachusetts Broadcasters Association.Before Leonard’s final night as chief meteorologist on May 25, his storied career and numerous contributions to meteorology will be celebrated on WCVB in advance of his transition. An announcement regarding his successor as chief meteorologist will be made at a later date, WCVB management said.

StormTeam 5 chief meteorologist Harvey Leonard, a New England icon widely regarded as one of the country’s top meteorologists, announced his retirement Wednesday.

Leonard will retire from his weeknight appearances on NewsCenter 5 on May 25, but transition from his daily role to the position of chief meteorologist emeritus this fall, contributing to severe weather and climate coverage important to our community.

Leonard has been part of WCVB StormTeam 5 for two decades and his remarkable career of forecasting weather in New England spans 50 years.

“After five wonderful decades doing a job that I love, and after having received so many distinguished honors from dear colleagues and professional organizations, I’ve decided it’s time to step back from my day-to-day role at WCVB and transition to contributing in a new way,” Leonard said when making the announcement.

WCVB/Richard Freundel

Harvey Leonard speaks to the WCVB Channel 5 staff after announcing his retirement and new role.

Leonard says his new role will allow him to spend more time with family, while still being able to communicate important information to New Englanders.

“My new role will allow me the best of both worlds: I will still contribute to StormTeam 5 coverage serving our community with important information as well as remain an active member of the Channel 5 family, and I will get to spend more time enjoying activities with my personal family. Additionally, this new position will allow me more opportunities to engage in the community which is something I very much enjoy.”

“There is nobody who is more revered and beloved by the community and colleagues than Harvey Leonard,” Kyle Grimes, WCVB’s president and general manager said Wednesday. “We sincerely thank him for all he has done and what he’ll continue to contribute in his emeritus role.”

“Harvey’s contributions to Channel 5’s audience, to all of New England, and to the industry as a whole are legendary,” WCVB News Director Margaret Cronan said.

harvey leonard announces retirement from wcvb

WCVB/Richard Freundel

WCVB staff applauds as Harvey Leonard announces his retirement from day-to-day appearances on NewsCenter 5.

Leonard’s co-workers learned about the announcement during a station wide meeting and video conference call on Wednesday afternoon.

“He is treasured by them and by his newsroom family, and we’re glad that he’ll continue to contribute to StormTeam 5 in retirement,” Cronan said.

Often fondly referred to as “the dean of weather,” Leonard has been a mentor to many aspiring meteorologists and today well over a dozen of his protégé serve as on-air meteorologists in markets across the country.

He joined WCVB in 2002 as StormTeam 5’s co-chief meteorologist with his longtime friend Dick Albert, who retired in 2009.

Prior to joining WCVB in 2002, Leonard served as chief meteorologist for WHDH-TV from 1977 to 2002. He also served as chief meteorologist at WPRI-TV in Providence, Rhode Island. He began his forecasting career as a meteorologist for Universal Weather Services, Inc.

harvey leonard wcvb retirement announcement zoom

Leonard is notably credited as the first meteorologist to correctly predict the impact and intensity of the Blizzard of ’78 and admits to a lifelong obsession with weather.

Leonard was inducted into the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Boston/New England Chapter’s 2021 Gold Circle last year.

He has received numerous awards throughout his career including four New England Emmy Awards for outstanding achievement in television weather casting, induction into the NATAS Silver Circle in 2004 and the prestigious NATAS Governors’ Award in 2016. In 2018, Leonard was inducted into the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame, and in 2019 he was named Broadcaster of the Year by the Massachusetts Broadcasters Association.

Before Leonard’s final night as chief meteorologist on May 25, his storied career and countless contributions to meteorology will be celebrated on WCVB in advance of his transition.

An announcement regarding his successor as chief meteorologist will be made at a later date, WCVB management said.

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