A beautiful and brainy reporter who began her career working for local CBS stations, Vargas graduated to the national market in 1993 when she jumped ship to NBC to appear on Today and NBC Nightly News. She came to prominence on ABC as a correspondent for 20/20 (and its now-defunct offshoot, 20/20 Downtown), eventually becoming the news magazine's coanchor in 2004. Her candid delivery and at times controversial story angles (her interview with the killers of gay teen Matthew Shepard implied that the crime was not fueled by prejudice) garnered attention, and in January 2006 she became the first Latina to permanently anchor a major network newscast when she signed on to ABC World News Tonight opposite Bob Woodruff. But the pairing was short-lived — just a few weeks later, Woodruff vacated his chair after being seriously injured by a roadside explosion while in Iraq. That February Vargas announced that she and her husband, singer-songwriter Marc Cohn, were expecting their second child and that after her maternity leave, she would return to the air on 20/20 instead of the evening news.

Fast Facts

  • Father was an Army officer, so during her childhood, she lived on military bases in Germany, Japan and Belgium.
  • Anchored acclaimed news specials that focused on such topics as missing persons, same-sex marriages and child safety.
  • Husband Marc Cohn was shot in the head in 2005 during an attempted carjacking, but made a full recovery.
  • Selected with Bob Woodruff as replacements for the late Peter Jennings on ABC World News Tonight. She became the first Latina to anchor one of the three major networks' newscasts.


  • Anne Vargas — Mother
  • Ralf Vargas — Father
  • Zachary Rafael Cohn — Son
  • Marc Cohn — Husband (separated)
  • Samuel Wyatt Cohn — Son


  • University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri, United States (BA in Journalism)

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  • Birth Place: Paterson, New Jersey, United States
  • Profession: TV news anchor

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