Brokaw, Rose, Russert: DC’s Newsiest House

by Shilpi Paul


This article was originally published in 2012.

A stately five-bedroom Woodley Park house has been home to not one, not two, but three of the most recognizable broadcast journalists in recent decades. Tom Brokaw, Charlie Rose and Tim Russert all called 3124 Woodley Road NW home at some point between the 1970’s and the 1990’s.

We were interested in learning more about this news-worthy home and its more-than-coincidental streak of newsmen inhabitants. Paul Williams, aka DC’s House History Man, helped us investigate the back story.

First off, despite the stature of the aforementioned residents, another previous owner may have had the most journalistic cred.

James “Scotty” Reston, who worked for The New York Times, owned the home between 1951 and 1975. Despite the other big names associated with this house, information from Williams suggests that Reston may have been the most acclaimed resident of all. He was with The Times for over 50 years, earning a couple Pulitzer Prizes along the way for his work as a national reporter. He was the Times’ Washington Bureau Chief before rising the ranks and becoming executive editor, and then a director of the company.

3124 Woodley Road NW

Reston sold the home to Tom Brokaw in 1975. Brokaw has had a long, well-known career at NBC, with a long stint as the anchor for the NBC Nightly News starting in 1983. However, for a while in the 1970’s, he was NBC’s White House Correspondent. But that position was short-lived, and not long after purchasing the home, he left for New York City to act as host of The Today Show. He didn’t sell 3124 Woodley Road, however, renting it out for several years instead.

In 1984, Brokaw sold the home, but it went to another television personality: Charlie Rose, who hosts the show bearing his name on PBS. We scoured the resumes of the two men to find any overlaps, but they never worked for the same network. During Rose’s ownership of the home, however, he was the anchor of CBS’s Nightwatch. Though on different networks, perhaps the two men knew each other from news anchor happy hours.

In keeping with the home’s journalistic traditions, Charlie Rose sold it to Tim Russert in 1993. Russert worked for NBC for most of his career as a host for several shows — Meet the Press, The Tim Russert Show — and a political analyst for others. As a regular analyst for NBC Nightly News, he certainly knew Tom Brokaw; perhaps through Brokaw he found the Woodley Park home that seems so undeniably appealing to journalists.

Does the home office have a direct feed into a newsroom? How large is the library? We may never know what exactly made this home so perfect for anchormen and reporters, but we wanted to share a bit of the house history of one of DC’s newsiest homes.

See other articles related to: woodley park, tom brokaw, tim russert, nbc, charlie rose, bigwig digs

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Catherine Czuba




Mount Pleasant


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