About Keith Morrison – Dateline NBC Correspondent – Matthew Perry’s Father

By | May 28, 2024

Keith Morrison is a legendary journalist with a career spanning over 50 years. He is most recognizable as a correspondent for NBC's well-known true crime program "Dateline." His career has experienced a recent boost because of his appearance on several Dateline-inspired podcasts.

However, Morrison is perhaps even more famous for being the stepfather of the late "Friends" actor Matthew Perry.

Keith Morrison with son Matthew Perry

Keith Morrison with son Matthew Perry

Early Life

Keith Ernest Morrison was born in Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, Canada, to Margaret Esther (née Smith) and Ernest Newell Morrison on July 2, 1947. His mother was a music teacher, while his father was a preacher for the United Church of Canada.

Morrison has four siblings - Marjorie, Murray, Kathleen, and Phyllis.

After high school, he went to study history at the University of Saskatchewan, from where he graduated in 1966. In a 2019 interview with GQ Magazine, Morrison admitted that he initially wanted to become a lawyer but flunked out of law school.

His father pulled some strings and found Morrison a position as a minister. Shortly after, in 1966, Morrison landed his first news publishing gig at the Saskatoon Star Phoenix.


Following his journalistic debut at the Star Phoenix, Morrison began working as a television news anchor at various stations in Saskatchewan, Toronto, and Vancouver. In December 1973, Morrison became the news anchor for "Canada AM," a position he held until January 1975.

Keith Morrison at Canada AM

Keith Morrison at Canada AM

In January 1975, Morrison began working as a correspondent for CTV News. He ascended the ranks to become a reporter and anchor before finally becoming the national affairs correspondent and anchor for CTV News in 1979.

After three years in that position, Morrison moved on as a correspondent for the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC). While with the CBC, he also worked as a political correspondent and anchor for CBC's "The Journal."

In 1986, Morrison relocated to Los Angeles, California, to work as the West Coast NBC news correspondent. He experienced a career highlight in China when he reported live from the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989.

Morrison returned to his native Canada in 1992 to work as a substitute anchor for CTV News. It was widely believed that he would secure the top anchoring job. However, after behind-the-scenes subterfuge, Morrison ended up being publicly fired.

Luckily, he had been working as a freelance journalist for NBC's Dateline. In 1995, Morrison officially joined Dateline as a correspondent, a position he holds till today.

True Crime Icon

In recent years, Morrison has experienced an explosion in popularity thanks to his many true crime podcasts. His most notable podcasts include Dateline NBC, The Girl in the Blue Mustang, Morrison Mysteries, The Seduction, and The Thing About Pam.

He is known for his signature deep and gravelly voice, which he jokes was developed from drinking lots of vodka and ice. He also credits his mother for his soothing, musical cadence.

Keith Morrison is the correspondent for Dateline NBC

Keith Morrison is the correspondent for Dateline NBC

Comedian Bill Hader has parodied Morrison on Saturday Night Live, much to Morrison's amusement. A popular Instagram account, Keith Morrison Leans on Things, documents Morrison leaning on many inanimate objects pulled from dozens of different Dateline episodes.

Initially, Morrison was reluctant to be a true crime reporter because he worried that the genre was exploitative towards victims of crime. However, fans of his work appreciate the attention to detail Morrison exhibits.

He says working in this particular genre has required him to forgo certain journalistic edicts and display more emotionality than he was accustomed to.

His empathy and sincerity have led some to dub him the "granddaddy of true crime" and the "Mister Rogers of murder."

Morrison has amassed a net worth of roughly $10 million.

Personal Life

Morrison has been married twice. He met his first wife, Barbara, while they were both students at the University of Saskatchewan. They married after graduation and had one son together, Michael. However, they divorced in 1974, citing irreconcilable differences.

Morrison met his second wife, Suzanne Langford Perry, while she was working as the press secretary for Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. The pair married in May 1981. The couple have four children together - Caitlin, Emily, Will, and Madeline.

Suzanne Perry and Keith Morrison

Suzanne Perry with husband Keith Morrison

Morrison became a stepdad to Perry's son Matthew Perry, who enjoyed a close and amiable relationship with Morrison till his death in 2023.

In 2017, as a guest on the Bravo program "Watch What Happens Live," Morrison disclosed that the best birthday present he ever received from his stepson was a sports car. He also said he always knew Perry would become famous, though they weren't sure his fame would come from acting.

In his 2022 memoir "Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing," Perry credited his stepfather with holding the family together. After his untimely death a year later, Morrison requested all Perry's fans to honor his memory by donating to the Matthew Perry Foundation.


While he has advanced in years, Morrison has no intention of slowing down his active lifestyle. He maintains his lean, 5'7" frame by walking as often as possible and eating a lot of trail mix.

In an interview with "The Cut," Morrison said he still follows the wellness advice he received from his late friend Jack LaLanne. Given the serious nature of his work, it's only sensible that Morrison is careful to tend to his mental health as well.

His wife Suzanne nicknamed him the Buddha because of his tranquil temperament. Morrison maintains his optimism by reading philosophers like Seneca and Heraclitus. He also enjoys reading detective novels or what he calls untrue crime.

Keith Morrison remains optimistic by reading books

Keith Morrison remains optimistic by reading books


In his life of 76 years, Morrison has certainly led a rich and fascinating existence. When he isn't at home in Laguna Beach, California, he is traveling all over the United States, which has him on the road about 40 weeks out of the year.

Social Media Links

You can follow Keith Morrison on Twitter for more updates - @dateline_keith

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