SUNY Empire State College

Benita Zahn – Keynote

Benita ZahnWNYT/NewsChannel 13 news anchor and health reporter Benita Zahn will deliver the keynote address on Friday, May 17, at 1:15. She will speak on the roles of joy and happiness in personal well-being.

Zahn co-anchors NewsChannel 13 Live at 5 and 6 p.m. with Jim Kambrich. She is also the station’s health reporter, covering issues including wellness, treatment breakthroughs, aging, nutrition and the latest health-care trends. She also co-produces and hosts “HealthLINK,” aired Thursday nights on WMHT.

Zahn’s work has garnered her numerous accolades, including being named one of the 100 Women of the Century by the Albany-Colonie Chamber of Commerce, the Arthur Kapner Spirit of the Chamber Award, three Emmy nominations, the NYS Broadcasters Award, the gold and bronze medals from New York Festival’s International Television, the Distinguished Communicator Award from American Women in Radio and Television, 1997 YMCA Citizen of the Year Award, the NYS Health Education Week Award, and awards from the American Cancer Society, American Lung Association and American Heart Association.

She also has covered numerous national political conventions, the inauguration of President Barack Obama, the aftermath of 9/11, Hurricane Katrina and the Unabomber trial.

Zahn is a community liaison to the St. Peter’s Hospital Ethics Board and honorary chair for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Run. She also is on the boards of Kelly’s Cause, Building on Love (which supports the Ronald McDonald House) and Park Playhouse.

She is an avid runner and active in local theater. Her theater credits include performances at the Fort Salem Theater, Albany Civic Theater, Schenectady Civic Theater, Schenectady Light Opera and Park Playhouse.

Zahn has a Master of Science  in Bioethics from Albany Medical College/Alden March Bioethics Institute and is pursuing her doctorate.