Jim Gardner

Jim Gardner signs off as Rick Williams takes the Anchor

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Rick Williams is ready for his close-up as the Anchorman of 6ABC’s 11 pm Action News, replacing Philly News Legend, Jim Gardner.

Last night was weird. Not bad or good weird. Just weird, knowing that, after 45 years of doing so, Tuesday night’s 11 pm. Action News was the last time that anchorman Jim Gardner would broadcast late at night of 6ABC. 

Cue the forever beloved “Action News” theme…

Didn’t I just write about Gardner for his cameo appearance on last week’s pilot episode of ABC’s “Abbott Elementary”? Where was he going so fast? 

Jim Gardner

Yes. Retirement was imminent. We knew that. Jim Gardner, 73, said back in November that he would be retiring at the end of 2022, continuing on with Action News’ 6 pm broadcast through the rest of the year and getting out of the 11 pm slot by January. We knew. But still. Parting, meet sweet sorrow, meet reality.

“Thank you for allowing me into your homes so late at night for the past 45 years,” said Jim Gardner, warmly. “I have never taken your hospitality for granted.”

Aw. When was the last time a newscast made you cry? At least one that didn’t involve lousy Philly sports stats.

So, then the other part of the headline is that starting tonight, Jan 12, longtime Action News anchor and smooth deep-voiced Rick Williams would be the anchor face of the late night 11 p.m. broadcast. Bully for him. 

He’s been part of that Bala Cynwyd station for more than 30 years, hosted that weekly “Crimefighters” series, as well as Action News at 5 p.m, and used to co-anchor Action News Mornings. All day with Rick Williams.

Jim Gardner

For the upcoming 11 pm, Williams will team up with Ducis Rodgers and Cecily Tynan for what promises to be a stellar, swift-moving showcase.

Even Jim Gardner tweeted in with the big headline:

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