Atlanta’s first black news anchor Jocelyn Dorsey recalls making history

Luther Vandross was outed as gay after his death.

Over 40 years ago, Jocelyn Dorsey become the first African-American news anchor in Atlanta. Now, she is part of the Georgia Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame, and WSB-TV’s Director of Editorials & Public Affairs.

Recently, Dorsey gave an interview with Cox Media Group for Black History Month in which she recalled the difficult journey she went through as the first black news anchor.

“It was a very difficult time for me,” she said. “The audience had to get used to me, which was a very interesting journey.”

“They weren’t used to seeing African Americans on TV, especially behind an anchor desk,” she explained before going on to describe how one of the most unexpected controversies was over the way she wanted to style her hair.

“I decided I was gonna have an afro and they really weren’t used to seeing that and that created quite a stir. It was very controversial,” she said. “Now, people look at it and probably laugh about that but at the time people did not want to see that type of ethnicity on the air and I got a lot of backlash from it.”

Last year, as Dorsey was inducted into the Hall of Fame, members of the US House of Representatives gave her tribute as well.

“Jocelyn is a professional who shines in the spotlight, who deserves the fame and acclaim, but the reason she lasted 40 years in a tough business is because she loved the people and the institution she served.  We could feel it, and we loved her back,” said Rep. John Lewis of Georgia.