Alex Trebek Suggests Black Lawyer, Laura Coates, to Replace Him as Host of Jeopardy

Legal analyst, former prosecutor and bestselling author Laura Coates launches show on SiriusXM at SiriusXM Studio on May 8, 2017, in Washington, D.C.
Photo: Larry French (Getty Images for SiriusXM)

Alex Trebek, host of our dearly beloved nightly nerd fest, Jeopardy, has suggested a righteous black woman to replace him when his contract expires in 2020.

What is, I can get with that for $800, Alex!

When speaking to TMZ recently, the 76-year-old was asked one, if he planned to re-up his contract in two years (“50-50,” he responded) and if he had any ideas for replacements.


Initially, Trebek named another Alex, Alex Faust, the play-by-play announcer for the Los Angeles Kings, but when Harvey Levin asked him his thoughts on a woman, our favorite game-show host immediately rattled off the name Laura Coates.

“There is an attorney, Laura Coates,” said Trebek. “She’s African-American, and she appears on some of the cable news shows from time to time.”

Coates is a former federal prosecutor and civil rights attorney who now teaches law at George Washington University. She is also a regular legal analyst on CNN, hosts a SiriusXM radio show called The Laura Coates Show, and authored the book You Have the Right: A Constitutional Guide to Policing the Police on citizens’ rights in encounters with law enforcement.

Coates tweeted her thrill at Trebek’s nod, noting that she’s a longtime fan and that she was “honored & humbled” that Alex T. thinks she’d be a “great host of my fave game show ever.”


Time reports that Coates grew up in St. Paul, Minn., and went to Princeton before receiving her law degree from the University of Minnesota Law School. She started her law career in private practice but left to join the U.S. Justice Department as a prosecutor in the civil rights division focusing on voting rights.


Honestly, she’d fit right into what I call the “new” Jeopardy, which is expanding its categories and even its cultural references to be more inclusive. My fave? When there was a category called “Yas Queen.” It tickled me to hear Alex say it (in this case over and over again):



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Angela Helm

Ms. Bronner Helm is a Contributing Editor at The Root. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.