News Director


Get Out Alive

WBIR teamed up with Rural/Metro Fire Department and the Knox County Fire Prevention Bureau to produce this public service video.   We set a series of fires in a donated home to show how fires get started, how to react once they do, and how to escape from a burning home.  Eventually, we let the fire consume the whole house, while one camera recorded it all from the inside.  I planned, field produced, and wrote the entire project.



Henry’s Story

An in-depth look at how prescription painkiller addiction took a promising young life, told through the words of his family.  I developed the concept, and served as Executive Producer for the project.



Lane Kiffin Departure

From the minute he arrived as the University of Tennessee’s head football coach, it was clear to East Tennesseans that Lane Kiffin was not “one of us.”  Still, many Volunteer faithful sensed that it might take an outsider to return the program to glory.  So, despite misgivings, most fans defended Kiffin through his rule violations, inflammatory comments, and generally boorish behavior.  He might have been a jerk, but he was our jerk.   So, when Kiffin repaid that support by skipping town for USC after one mediocre season, anger boiled over. The University hastily scheduled a news conference for 9pm, and put out the word there would be tight restrictions – no live coverage of any kind, and cameras wouldn’t be allowed to record most of it.  Even with angry crowds gathering outside and students packing the hallways, most of the media in the room were content to let the University’s conditions stand unchallenged.  A small contingent of us refused to go along, however, and video of that confrontation briefly became an internet sensation:  


A series of articles, posts, and awards followed:

I never imagined how much attention this would get (if I had, I sure as heck would have gotten a haircut first).  I still don’t know who shot the video.  But I’m very proud of what it accomplished.  Partly because of all the negative publicity, the University of Tennessee no longer puts any restrictions on coverage of news events or news conferences.  More importantly, it stands as a reminder that public universities belong to the public – and we get to make the rules.


Bay St. Louis Thanksgiving

After Hurricane Katrina wrecked the Gulf Coast, East Tennesseans – and WBIR – were looking for a way to help.  We found it in Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi.   We got to know the town through three relief trips, and then partnered with two other organizations to realize Mayor Eddie Favre’s dream – Thanksgiving Dinner served to the entire town on the lawn in front of the train depot.  Not content with just that, we also organized an event the next day that provided Christmas Toys for more than 800 families.  This video covers the entire project, from a week before the trip to the Monday after.  I organized the entire effort and coverage – from securing donations to organizing the distribution to field producing the coverage.  It was the best Thanksgiving my wife and I have ever had.  



Nielsen overnights from my last two days at WBIR, plus my last ratings book.

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