Ben Brown, host of #KPBA 2022
Born and bred in Kent, award-winning journalist Ben is a familiar face on the BBC News Channel, the BBC One O’Clock News and weekend news bulletins.
He joined the BBC more than 30 years ago, and as a reporter, he has covered some of the biggest stories of the last few decades including the fall of the Berlin Wall, 9/11, the Rwandan genocide and the 2004 Tsunami, as well as many conflicts, including the first and second Gulf Wars in Iraq in 1991 and 2003, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo and Chechnya.
He was the BBC’s Moscow correspondent for several years between 1991 and 1995, and he watched the red flag come down at the Kremlin as the Soviet Union collapsed. He has won several awards, including Bayeux War Correspondent of the Year (twice) and a Royal Television Society award for his reporting from inside a white-owned farm when it was being seized by Mugabe militants in 2000. He has written a novel, based on his career as a foreign correspondent, entitled Sandstealers.
As a boy, Ben lived in Biddenden, Sutton Valence and Smarden. He went to Sutton Valence school before winning an Open Scholarship to Oxford, where he studied philosophy, politics and economics.
He is married with three children and now lives in Fulham. He plays football twice a week and supports Liverpool, where he worked in local radio before joining the BBC.
Commenting on hosting this year’s Kent Press & Broadcast Awards ceremony, Ben Brown said: “Local news reporting and journalism is the lifeblood of our industry, and indeed our democracy. We need it desperately to hold power to account, and of course to keep people fully informed about the issues that matter to them, in their cities, towns and villages.
“As a trainee reporter, I worked at what was then BBC Radio Medway, which became BBC Radio Kent, and saw for myself at a young age how people rely on local news. And in local radio in Glasgow and Liverpool, I had some of the most satisfying years of my career, making contacts and breaking stories. Long may local journalism thrive!”