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Jonathan W. Delano

Money & Politics Editor, KDKA-TV Columnist, Pittsburgh Business Times Adjunct Professor of Public Policy & Politics, Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College

Think of a well-recognized, award-winning analyst in Pennsylvania who combines years of “inside experience” on Capitol Hill with the perspective of the private sector and life outside the Washington Beltway, and one name leads the list: Jon Delano.

After 14 years on Capitol Hill in Washington and over 20 years on local television, Jon Delano has developed a solid reputation as the guy in Pennsylvania to turn to for even-handed on-air analysis of political and governmental events and for a quick quip or sound bite on what exactly it all means to the average citizen. A political analyst for KDKA-TV (CBS) since 1994, Jon became the station's first Money & Politics Editor in September 2001. In addition to daily reporting on government, politics, and economic issues, he also hosts a Sunday morning public affairs program called “The Sunday Business Page” and is the back-up host for the "KD/PG Sunday Edition" show, another public affairs show.

As one of Pennsylvania's respected commentators, Jon is recognized for his ability to analyze complex issues and make them understandable to any audience.  Having worked in both government and the private business world, practiced law, reported on radio and television, written extensively, and taught at the graduate school level, Jon's combined experiences allow him to speak with some authority about governmental, political, and economic issues.

So far this year in 2018, Jon has had one-on-one interviews in Pittsburgh with Vice President Pence, Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to the President, and Donald Trump Jr.  He was also invited to join the White House Press Corps during President Trump's 2018 visits to Pittsburgh and was the only local reporter to question the President regarding the special congressional election.

In May 2017, Jon was one of a half dozen television journalists from around the nation (and the only CBS and Pennsylvania reporter) invited to the White House to interview seven members of President Trump's Cabinet. Those interviews included Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. David Shulkin, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, SBA Administrator Linda McMahon, Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway, and Public Liaison Director Omarosa Manigault.

Jon reported from both the 2016 Republican & Democratic presidential conventions with over 25 on-air appearances. At the Republican Convention in Cleveland, Jon was the only TV reporter from Pennsylvania given an exclusive one-on-one interview with then-Vice Presidential nominee, Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana. He also interviewed Donald Trump, Jr.

Following the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia, Jon had an exclusive one-on-one interview with both Secretary Hillary Clinton and U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine.

In March 2011, Jon became the first Pennsylvania television reporter to interview President Obama in the White House, and he was invited back in March 2012 for a second interview.  That interview, which featured comments from the President on Afghanistan, became the lead story on CBS Evening News. His last White House interview in the Obama administration was in May 2016 with Vice President Joe Biden.

In the 2012 presidential campaign, Jon had a sit-down television interview in July with Republican presidential nominee, Gov. Mitt Romney, after interviewing him twice in the 2008 campaign, and in August 2012, Jon became the first Pennsylvania television reporter to interview the GOP vice presidential candidate, Cong. (now House Speaker) Paul Ryan. That interview made national news broadcasts when Ryan discussed his views on abortion and rape. During the 2012 campaign, Jon also interviewed First Lady Michele Obama, Mrs. Romney, and Dr. Jill Biden.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Jon was the first Pennsylvania television reporter to interview then-Sen. Barack Obama and has now had eight TV interviews with him. At the final G-20 summit press conference in Pittsburgh in September 2009, Jon was the only local reporter called on by the President to ask a question.

Over the years, Jon has interviewed a number of national political figures including Sen. John McCain, Gov. Sarah Palin, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Gov. John Kasich, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and others.    

A trial lawyer by training, Jon worked behind the scenes as chief of staff to former Congressman Doug Walgren, serving as president of the U.S. House Chiefs of Staff Association in the mid-1980s. His firsthand Washington experience led to his appointment in 1995 as an adjunct professor of politics and public policy at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy. His graduate school courses include such topics as money and politics, legislative policy‑making, public policy implementation, media and public policy, and campaign management. Jon also writes a monthly column for the Pittsburgh Business Times.  

In 2011, Jon won an Edward R. Murrow Award for the best 'hard news story' in Pennsylvania, New York & New Jersey. In 2007, he won the local area Small Business Journalist Champion of the Year Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration. In 2003, Jon was presented the “Good Government Award” from the League of Women Voters of Greater Pittsburgh for his work in helping the public understand governmental issues. He has won two Golden Quill awards, two Robert L. Vann awards from the Pittsburgh Black Media Federation, a Matrix honorable mention from the Women in Communications, and the Clarity Award from the Pennsylvania Bar Association for being a lawyer who can write in plain English. 

Jon is recognized statewide as a frequent guest on Pennsylvania Cable Network’s (PCN) “Journalists Roundtable,” and is heard often on KDKA Radio, the nation’s first station to broadcast election returns in the 1920 presidential race.

A graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh (Year V), Jon is a frequent lecturer to subsequent classes. Jon’s law colleagues have elected him three times to the Board of Governors of the Allegheny County Bar Association (1999, 2002, and 2007).  He has served on many non-profit boards, and he is also active in his church as a lay Eucharistic minister and in a variety of Diocesan and Parish positions.

Jon moderates and facilitates seminars, candidate debates, and programs and speaks on governmental and political issues to many civic, business, and labor groups. His reputation as an even-handed, non-partisan political analyst has led to his selection as a moderator and panelist for many candidate debates, including statewide debates for Governor, U.S. Senate, and PA Attorney General, and many local debates and forums for Mayor of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County Executive, Congress, and the PA General Assembly. His most recent debate was the KDKA-TV congressional debate between Conor Lamb & Rick Saccone.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Haverford College and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, Jon and his wife Jane live in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, two blocks from where he grew up. They have two adult children.

Courses Taught

  • 90-778 - Media And Public Policy
  • 90-726 - Money & Politics

Additional Information