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Lind: WDAY-TV’s first female co-anchor remembers joining newsroom, having ‘good chemistry’ before becoming regular with Bossart

Claudia Danovic was WDAY-TV’s first female

co-anchor. She might even have been the first female TV co-anchor in the entire

Fargo-Moorhead TV market.

But almost for sure, she was the first TV news anchor to hold someone on her lap during a newscast.

A Neighbors reader had wondered when Claudia was WDAY’s co-anchor with Marv Bossart. Claudia responded with a bit of her story.

“I joined the newsroom in the fall of 1970,” she writes. “(WDAY) news director Norm Schrader had me doing lots of general reporting and writing for a couple of years before he actually put me on the air. I started with reading the ‘Today Show’ cut-ins, then ‘Noonday’ and the Sunday 10 p.m. news.

“I can’t seem to find anything confirming the date, but I believe it was election night 1976 that was the trigger for me being named Marv’s first


“We had good chemistry on the air that night,” Claudia writes, “and a few days later I was (regularly) on the air with Marv, Dewey (Bergquist, who gave the weather), and Boyd (Christenson, sports). Pretty exciting.

“I adored everyone who worked there,” Claudia says. “We had lots of fun. But the whole newsroom and the entire company was a hardworking, competitive team proud of the product we put on the air each night and happy to be part of the ‘dependable WDAY’ family.

“I should add,” she says, “that if anyone comes up with a different date for the start of my time on the

6 p.m. news – like after election night in ’74 or even ’78 – I wouldn’t be able to put up much of an argument. But it’s nice to be remembered.”

Claudia also sends along “a little history.”

“Steve (her husband) and I are now permanent Arizona residents. We moved here in 2002 but continued to drive back north each summer to spend time at Pelican Lake (in Minnesota) and later our Fargo condo.

“Now, we are spending summers two hours up the mountain in Flagstaff where temperatures are

30 degrees cooler than Phoenix in the summer. And I like the two-hour drive much better than the three day drive to Fargo. (And she adds a smiley to her email).

“Both of our kids live and work in Phoenix,” Claudia says. “They live very close by and we have family dinners almost every Sunday.

“This is my tenth year as a volunteer reading tutor at an elementary school, and I’m in a movie club and a book club.

“I was in Ecuador a few years ago as part of the Global Volunteers organization and we travelled to Colombia last winter with our kids, but mostly I enjoy being home with Steve and our golden retriever and a pile of good books.

“Following a second breast cancer diagnosis a few months ago, I am more grateful than ever for family, good friends and good health. I’m on the mend and doing well, so blessed am I.”

And Claudia adds this memory:

“I had been co-anchor for several years before our daughter Libby was born in 1981, and I brought her with me to WDAY for a

6 p.m. newscast, and she sat on my lap for the closing few minutes of the news that night.”

Claudia doesn’t say that Libby stole the show. But you can about imagine.

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