Lester Holt, one of the moderators for the first Democratic debate and a long-time NBC News anchor, is married to a real estate agent. His wife’s name is Carol Hagen-Holt.
Together, Lester Holt and his wife are parents and grandparents. She called him “Grandude” in a recent tweet. Lester Holt has been tapped by NBC to helm presidential debates before; for example, he moderated the first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump too.
Lester Holt also hosts NBC’s Dateline and occasionally filled in on Today. He also joined other journalists on New Year’s Eve 2018 to drop the ball in Times Square.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Lester Holt & His Wife Carol Have Two Sons Together & Recently Welcomed Their First Grandson
Hagen-Holt and Holt have two grown sons, Stefan and Cameron. Stefan followed his father into the news business and is a graduate of Pepperdine University. He worked as an anchor in West Palm Beach and Chicago before moving to WNBC in New York in April. Both WNBC and NBC Nightly News are broadcast from 30 Rockefeller Plaza.
Cameron Holt is currently an Equity Derivatives Trader at Morgan Stanley, according to his LinkedIn page. He earned a B.S. in Mathematical and Computational Science and an M.S. in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University.
Lester and Carol Holt became grandparents when their son Stefan had his first child with wife Morgan, a son named Henry. Stefan Holt took to Facebook and Instagram to announce the big news.
“Breaking news! A new member of the Holt family will be joining us in September,” Stefan Holt wrote on Facebook. He wrote on Instagram after the baby was born: “Say hello to the newest member of our family. Henry Holt, born last night in NYC. Baby and Mom are doing great! #babyholt #family.”
According to Today, the Holts became grandparents again in June 2019. “Stefan Holt welcomed his second child with wife Morgan on June 5. Samuel Richard Holt joins 21-month-old big brother Henry,” the show wrote. Lester declared himself as “very happy” to Today and said he couldn’t wait to hold the new child.
A week before the debate, Holt posted the above picture on Instagram and wrote, “Best thing ever: spending time with my two grandsons Henry and Samuel. Happy early Father’s Day to all my fellow grand-dudes!”
2. Carol Hagen-Holt, a Licensed Real-Estate Agent, Loves Modern Design
On Twitter, Hagen-Holt refers to herself as “A Global Real Estate Nomad, Devoted Mother, Loving Wifey. Celebrating the amazing world of real estate, urban living and design.” She writes a lot about real estate issues on her Twitter page.
Hagen-Holt is a licensed real estate salesperson, based in New York, New York, where her husband is works as the anchor of NBC Nightly News. According to her Town Real Estate profile, she specializes in helping clients relocate and “maximizing resale potential.” Hagen-Holt herself has frequently had to relocate along with Holt, as he’s worked in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York during their marriage. Hagen-Holt has also lived in San Francisco.
Hagen-Holt has also worked in the travel industry and sales and management, according to her Town Real Estate bio. “Her extensive experience working closely with people has made her an exceptional listener who takes great care in understanding the diverse needs of her clients,” her bio reads.
Her bio also notes that she is “a lover of modern design and architecture, as well as an avid jazz fan and skier.”
3. The Couple Have Been Married for Over 30 Years & He Says ‘Laughing’ Is the Secret to a Long Marriage
Lester Holt married his wife in 1982. In an interview with Extra TV in June 2015, Holt explained that laughing together is very important.
“We laugh a lot, we really do. I can be silly, she can be sillier. We just laugh through things and we know that everything, tough times will be a story at some point, and boy have I put her through some tough times with this job,” he said.
He also explained that she understands how difficult and time-consuming his job can be. Essentially, he is on call.
“I love her to death, she’s has been so wonderful, she knows this job is going to bring a lot of late-night phone calls, but she’s there for me and that means an awful lot,” he told Extra TV.
4. Hagen-Holt Often Travels With Her Husband & Went to the Rio Summer Olympics
Hagen-Holt frequently uses her Twitter page to show off pictures of herself with Holt on trips. She accompanied him the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics in August.
Holt’s wife often travels with him on trips. In 2013, when he returned to Chicago for some time off, she went with him to meet friends and do business. Unfortunately, the trip was cut short for Holt, who had to cover tornadoes in Oklahoma that summer.
“She’s got friends here. She’s got things to do. It’s not like the time I left her in Barcelona to go to the tsunami in Japan,” Holt told the Chicago Tribune at the time.
5. Hagen-Holt Met Holt When She Was Working as a Flight Attendant
Hagen-Holt was a flight attendant when she met Holt in 1980. When they met, he was still studying at California State University and, by the time they married, he was working in New York City. “He was the fastest mike in the west,” she told People Magazine in a 2004 profile of Holt. That year, Holt was promoted from MSNBC to Weekend Today.
After 12 years on Weekend Today, Holt took over permanent anchor duties on NBC Nightly News, following the Brian Williams scandal. Hagen-Holt surprised Holt during his last Weekend Today episode.
“It’s been very odd because my wife and I kind of really embrace Monday and Tuesdays,” Holt said.
“It will be really nice to be able to sleep in on a Saturday and Sunday,” Hagen-Holt added.