Washington Press Club Foundation


For more than thirty years, Belva Davis has been reporting on the San Francisco Bay Area. As the first African-American broadcast reporter on the West Coast, Belva Davis has an unusual perspective on the civil rights movement, the women's movement, and California's constantly changing cultural landscape.

She has interviewed Martin Luther King, Jr., Robert Kennedy, Malcolm X, and migrant rights crusader César Chavez. Married to William Moore, a television news photographer (for KTVU-TV, Oakland), Davis is literally immersed in the news business every day.

Born in Monroe, Louisiana, and raised in Oakland and Berkeley, California, by her mother's family, Davis could not afford college. With no formal training in journalism, she learned about journalism by freelanding for Jet magazine and writing for an East Bay black newspaper.

She landed a daytime show on the local black radio station, and then, when a KPIX-TV (San Francisco) personality quit, Davis decided that she would replace her. She trained herself for television by reading news copy in front of a mirror. Davis was chosen for the job over sixty other applicants.

So began a television career that continues in 1993. Davis covers urban affairs for KRON-TV in San Francisco. She has been honored with several dozen journalism awards during her career, including national recognition from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Ohio State, San Francisco State and the National Education Writers Association. She has won five local Emmys, a Certificate of Excellence from the California Associated Press Television and Radio Association for "best live coverage," as well as being honored for "Outstanding Achievement" by Delta Sigma Chi.

She is also active with Women's Forum West and she is a board member of the Howard Thurman Educational Trust, Blue Shield of California, and the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame.

Shirley Biagi
April 26, 1993

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