Backround: Mr. Quintanilla’s big TV break came during his six-year stint as a reporter with the Wall Street Journal, which had struck a deal to share content and talent with CNBC.
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His appearances from 1999 through 2002 showed such natural promise that CNBC made him co-anchor of “Wake Up Call.” NBC News heeded the call. As a Chicago- and New York-based correspondent, Mr. Quintanilla became familiar to “Today” and “Nightly News” viewers with his reporting on everything from forest fires to hot spots in the Middle East and Hurricane Katrina’s devastating visit to New Orleans, where his work earned an Emmy, a Murrow Award and a Peabody. Rather than be one of many constantly traveling correspondents, he chose to return to CNBC.
Buzz: Mr. Quintanilla is on the radar at every network news operation because he’s shown he’s got what it takes to do anything, including handling the unexpected verbal bank shots from fellow “Squawk”-er Joe Kernen for three live hours each weekday. A frequently heard characterization: “He’s the next Matt Lauer.” A lot of people would like to have the next Matt Lauer in a world where a smart, solid, unflappable, comfortably telegenic man is increasingly hard to find. A plus: He’s nice.