Inspirational Women Of Detroit: Carman Harlan



When most people think of WDIV, they think of Carmen Harlan.

The station’s most recognizable face, Local 4’s senior anchor can be seen on Local 4 News at 5, 6 and 11 p.m. Carmen is also proud to co-host Local 4’s annual coverage of Detroit’s International Freedom Festival Fireworks and America’s Thanksgiving Parade.

Carmen started at WDIV in 1978 and, happily, says she’s “been here ever since.”

She calls the Motor City her hometown. Carmen attended Mumford High School on Detroit’s west side and graduated from the University of Michigan.

Although her storied career has had a host of achievements, she cites the time she carried the Olympic torch in the summer of 1996 her proudest moment. And she repeated the honor as the torch again passed through Detroit en route to the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Carmen’s commitment to the well-being of children, and especially her involvement with placing foster children in permanent homes, not only helped WDIV’s “Focus On Families” become a ratings success, but has inspired people to adopt children with special needs. The show was acknowledged by the state of Michigan as being the most effective recruitment tool to help place special-needs children.

When not working, Carmen enjoys time with her family and two Bouvier des Flandres dogs, Misty and Chance; cats MyLynn, a Siamese; and Rags, whom she says is “an alley cat,” but corrects that by saying, “er, a domestic shorthair.”

If you would like to contact Carmen, e-mail her at

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