Every weekday morning, at 9 sharp, the smiling voice of Mark Haines boomed, "Liiiive, from the financial capital of the world," as he introduced CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" show. Sometimes he substituted "universe" for "world;" either way the observations that followed were informed by a veteran's insight, a showman's humor, and a journalist's appropriately skeptical outlook. When news of his death hit, his many admirers offered their respects. Below is the official CNBC release:
Veteran journalist Mark Haines, a fixture on CNBC for 22 years, died Tuesday evening. He was 65 years old. The founding anchor of CNBC's morning show "Squawk Box," Haines was co-anchor of the network's "Squawk on the Street" program, providing insight and commentary, sometimes humorous and occasionally acerbic.
CNBC President Mark Hoffman called Haines a "building block" of the financial networks' programming. Hoffman said Haines died at his home.
"With his searing wit, profound insight and piercing interview style, he was a constant and trusted presence in business news for more than 20 years," Hoffman said in a statement to CNBC employees. "From the dotcom bubble to the tragic events of 9/11 to the depths of the financial crisis, Mark was always the unflappable pro. "Mark loved CNBC and we loved him back. He will be deeply missed."
Haines may be best remembered for his calming and commanding presence during the 9/11 tragedy when he reacted unflappably to the furious stream of incoming rumor and even more astonishing truth with a professionalism that rivaled any television anchor, said CNBC senior economics reporter Steve Liesman.
Haines was well-known around the newsroom for giving his colleagues on-air nicknames. He was responsible for calling David Faber "The Brain," Joe Kernen "The Kahuna," and Steve Liesman "The Professor." If a colleague complained about it, he would respond, "What's worth more, your name or the nickname?"
He also often helped make his colleagues look good on air, saying, "Hey, when they look good, I look good, too."
Haines served as a news anchor for KYW-TV in Philadelphia, WABC-TV in New York, and WPRI-TV in Providence, before joining CNBC.
Haines held a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and was a member of the New Jersey State Bar. In 2000, he was named to Brill's Content's "Influence List."
His death quickly reverberated through the financial committee.
Traders at the normally bustling New York Stock Exchange paused for a moment of silence.
On social networking site Twitter, world spread and condolences poured in.
"If Mark Haines is interviewing God this morning, he's giving him the Devil," tweeted Dan Davison.
"i will really miss mark haines....so sad...i didn't know him, but i feel like he was an old friend," wrote jeanienyc.
"Someone asked what it was like working with Mark Haines. Truth? He did his thing. The best anyone at CNBC could do was let Mark be Mark," wrote Jonathan Wald, former senior vice president at CNBC and now at CNN.