Open main menu

David Marc Chalian (born July 20, 1973),[1] is CNN's current Political Director, where he oversees the political coverage across all of CNN's platforms.[2] He succeeded to the position in 2014, taking over from CNN's former Political Director, Mark Preston.[3]

David Chalian
David Marc Chalian

(1973-07-20) July 20, 1973 (age 46)
ResidenceWashington D.C. area
EducationMarlboro High School, New Jersey
Alma materNorthwestern University (B.A.)
OccupationPolitical Director; Political Analyst; Journalist
Known forCNN Political Director (2014—);
Vice President, Video Programming, Politico (2012—2013);
Washington Bureau Chief, Yahoo (2011—2012);
Political Editor, PBS NewsHour (2010—2011);
Political Director, ABC News and Political Analyst, World News with Diane Sawyer, Nightline, and Good Morning America (2007—2010)
Justin Tyler Bernstine (m. 2017)
Parent(s)Robert P. Chalian and Carol Chalian (née Steloff)
WebsiteOfficial webpage at CNN

Early lifeEdit

Chalian was born in July 1973 to Robert P. Chalian and Carol Chalian (née Steloff).[1][4] His father - who died in 1984 - worked as a salesman[4] and was of Armenian heritage.[5][better source needed]


Chalian was educated at Marlboro High School, a public comprehensive high school in Marlboro Township, New Jersey, from which he graduated in 1991. He then attended Northwestern University, where he obtained a bachelor of arts degree.[6]

Life and careerEdit

After university, Chalian joined NY1 News, a 24-hour cable news television channel in New York City, and produced the nightly news program, Inside City Hall.[6] He then went to work as political director for ABC News and appeared as a political analyst on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, Nightline, and Good Morning America.[6] At ABC, he created and co-anchored the daily political webcast, "Top Line." In January 2009, he won an Emmy Award as part of the team that produced ABC News' presidential inauguration coverage.[6] He next worked as the political editor and an on-air political analyst for the PBS NewsHour and then as Vice President for Video Programming at POLITICO.[6]


Chalian served as Yahoo! News' Washington bureau chief but was fired from his position after he can be overheard on a live microphone during an online broadcast from the Republican convention that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his wife Ann were "not concerned at all" and "happy to have a party with black people drowning" when Hurricane Isaac was hitting Louisiana.[7][8] Chalian later apologized for his remarks: "I am profoundly sorry for making an inappropriate and thoughtless joke. I was commenting on the challenge of staging a convention during a hurricane and about campaign optics. I have apologized to the Romney campaign, and I want to take this opportunity to publicly apologize to Gov. and Mrs. Romney."[8][7]


After Yahoo, he was hired as political director at CNN replacing Mark Preston; he often appears on-air as a political analyst on such shows as New Day and The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer.[6]

Personal lifeEdit

Chalian lives in Washington, D.C.[6] He has been married to Justin Tyler Bernstine since 2017.[9]


  1. ^ a b "New York Times - Archives / 1973 - Births - Chalian". The New York Times. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  2. ^ CNN Profiles: David Chalian retrieved February 28, 2017
  3. ^ Dylan Byers (June 6, 2014). "CNN names David Chalian political director". Politico. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Robert P. Chalian, 43, of the Morganville section of Marlboro Township, died yesterday at Old Bridge Regional Hospital, Old Bridge Township. He was born in Brooklyn, where he lived most of his life, before moving to Marlboro Township 16 years ago. Mr. Chalian was a salesman for Robert Jerome Sales, Manhattan. He was a member of Temple Shaari Emeth, Manalapan Township, and B'nai B'rith, Brooklyn. He was an Army veteran from 1960 to 1962, stationed at Governors Island, N.Y. Surviving are his wife, the former Carol Steloff; a son, David M., at home; a daughter, Jill M., at home; and two brothers, Michael R., of New York, and George R., of Matawan". Asbury Park Press. November 14, 1984.
  5. ^ "ANCA". Retrieved 2017-11-21.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g Georgetown University lecturer: "DAVID M. CHALIAN" retrieved February 28, 2017
  7. ^ a b Huffington Post: "David Chalian Fired From Yahoo News For Saying RNC Doesn’t Mind Watching ‘Black People Drown’ (VIDEO)" By Rebecca Shapiro August 29, 2012
  8. ^ a b 5Towns Jewish Times: "GOP Updates: Yahoo Bureau Chief Fired Over Slur – CNN Black Camera Women, Assulted With peanuts (Video)" retrieved February 28, 2017
  9. ^ New York Times: "David Chalian, Justin Bernstine" November 5, 2017