Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert Aren’t Jersey Natives, But They’re Local Icons

The late-night hosts are doing the most to keep us laughing and thinking.

Illustration of Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart

Illustration: Raul Arias

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert weren’t born in New Jersey, but the comedic icons have been tickling people’s funny bones from home bases in the Garden State for years.

The two friends skyrocketed to fame on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, which Stewart hosted from 1999 to 2015, taking a humorous and often blunt look at current events; Colbert was a correspondent on the program before getting his own show, The Colbert Report (2005 to 2014). There, he portrayed an over-the-top conservative pundit, typically mocking real-life right-wingers in the process. Colbert, in character, even announced a not-so-serious presidential campaign in 2007.

In 2015, Colbert gave up his alter ego to host The Late Show on CBS. Stewart, meanwhile, hosted The Problem with Jon Stewart on Apple TV+ from 2021 to 2023. In early 2024, Stewart delighted fans when it was revealed that he would return to his old stomping grounds on The Daily Show as a part-time host through the 2024 election. The stars have each won multiple Emmys, Grammys and Peabody Awards.

Stewart, who has an animal sanctuary in Colts Neck, has used his platform to advocate for 9/11 first responders and veterans. Colbert, who lives in Montclair, helped start the Montclair Film Festival and is a familiar face around town.

The 50 Biggest Pop Culture Moments in New Jersey

Get to Know NJM Cover Star Jack Antonoff
How Frank Sinatra Became Hoboken’s Favorite Son
Martha Stewart Is a New Jersey Icon Who Always Keeps Fans Guessing

No one knows New Jersey like we do. Sign up for one of our free newsletters here. Want a print magazine mailed to you? Purchase an issue from our online store.