THE BACK STORY
Linda Levy has been a News Director in markets ranging from large...including the top ten market at KTVT, the CBS O&O in Dallas ...to medium, including WKBW in Buffalo, WDSU in New Orleans and KOCO in Oklahoma City...to small, such as KATC in Lafayette, LA.
She's also worked in news at the corporate level, as Director of News Services for Belo. In that role, she oversaw shared coverage of major news events, including the Oklahoma City bombing to hurricanes to the '96 Presidential campaign.
Her coverage of the big stories got noticed. When describing WDSU's coverage of a nationally watched gubernatorial election, The Times Picayune told its readers to "keep an eye on...News Director Linda Levy…who seems determined to stir things up." The newspaper also recognized WDSU as "the market leader in special campaign coverage." In fact, C-Span carried the station's election night coverage. This made Linda's parents very happy because they were finally able to figure out what she did for a living.
Linda has local programming experience too. While at Belo, she served as one of the Senior Producers of "Prime Time Texas", a weekly newsmagazine that aired in several markets in the state. Linda was also the Director of News and Local Programming for WKBW in Buffalo. And she was the Director of News Programming for Bay News 9 in Tampa, which included Bay News 9 and Bay News 9 en espanol and Bay News 9.com.
Linda also served as a faculty member of the Reynolds National Center for Courts and Media, which was formed by The National Judicial College. Its goal is to better communications between judges and journalists through seminars and workshops. In addition, Linda served as a guest faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies.
Jan Allen has been called everything from the "queen of the turnarounds" to a" hired gun." And, well, some other things she just doesn't want to talk about.
Jan was Vice-President and Station Manager of KATU in Portland, Oregon, where she was responsible for News, Creative Services, Design, Operations, I.S., and Local Programming. Local shows were the daily morning talker "A.M. Northwest" and the weekly "Town Hall". The name says it all.
She was News Director at KATU for a year prior to her promotion.
Former Fisher Broadcasting CEO Pat Scott called Jan "a passionate manager who cares about people and results."
One of her most exciting turnarounds was when she was News Director at KXTV in Sacramento. She feels her team accomplished a lot in her 14 month tenure.
The Sacramento Bee said "Perennial TV powerhouse KCRA is feeling the hot breath of KXTV in what has become the first legitimate race for number one in the history of Sacramento television," Another article announced "Channel 10's evening newscast makes historic rating jump"
She was Managing Editor at KOMO-TV where she was part of a great group that took the station from third to first place in all major newscasts. The Seattle Weekly had this to say about her departure:
Jan's luck held out at KREM-TV in Spokane where she was News Director for 3 years.
Jan knows what it's like to be in front of the camera, too. She started her stint at WJIM-TV in Lansing as an anchor/reporter/weather bunny. After a few years, she was promoted to News Director where she took the station to number one for the first time ever.
She began her broadcasting at WWTV in Cadillac, Michigan where she was an anchor/reporter and generally a one- man band.
There's been recognition and awards too. When Linda was News Director at KTVT, the station was cited by the Pew Center's "Project for Excellent in Journalism" as the #1 major market late newscast in the country. KTVT also was awarded a Heartland Emmy for Outstanding Daily news coverage as well. Another Emmy came to "Prime Time Texas".
Jan can't remember exactly how many awards her organizations have won. But there have been dozens and dozens. Some that stand out: Best Newscast at KOMO 4 out of 5 years from the Emmy folks, 2 consecutive years winning N.P.P.A. Station of the Year, National Best Newscast from UPI, also at KOMO, and National Edward R. Murrow Award for Continuing Coverage at KATU.
Sacramento was being judged alongside the number 5 market, San Francisco. And guess who won Best Newscast? Little ol' Sacramento. That was huge.
But it's not about the awards. As we mentioned earlier, Jan and Linda specialized in coming into newsrooms, raising the bar, improving the product, building great teams, and raising the ratings.
They take that same turnaround approach in working with those looking to The NWT Group for guidance. Their goal: Help you improve your journalistic skills.
As a large market Executive News Director, David has developed a reputation as a "turn-around specialist" and a top talent coach.
David's on-camera reporting career began at the typical small market hole-in-the-wall in Wyoming as a one-man band, producer, editor, photographer, window-washer …you get the picture. During the next 20-years he rapidly moved up in markets as an Anchor/Reporter in markets ranging from Arizona to Illinois… finally joining the FOX O & O in Dallas as an Investigative Reporter and Anchor.
He covered most major news events during his more than 20 years of reporting and anchoring. Then, (in a moment some call temporary insanity) he decided it was time to explore the next chapter in his career as a News Director. The goal was to utilize decades of experience and work with young journalists to build some of the best newsrooms in the country.
David turned a small market station in Tennessee into the highest rated ABC-Affiliate in America; went on to southern Illinois and turned three co-owned news operations into market leaders that for the past five years have won every award possible including "outstanding news operation in state," "best newscast in state," and "top investigative reporting." He has built newsrooms from the ground up, hiring and coaching entire staffs and launching new newscasts that rapidly defeated long-standing legacy stations. In West Palm Beach, David rebuilt the entire news operations at CBS-12 and FOX 29 and in less than one year turned both stations into strong news organizations.
Along the way his work has been consistently recognized with more than 75-Local, State, Regional and National awards for "Excellence in Broadcast Journalism." However, the largest accomplishment in his career was not winning awards but working as an investigative journalist to expose corruption, chase crooked politicians, solve a few previously unsolved murders -- and the crowning jewel -- a series of undercover investigative reports documenting how people across the Southwestern United States were dying from misfiled prescriptions. That series is credited with saving countless lives and changed pharmacy laws across the United States.
David knows first-hand about the struggles facing today's newsrooms and management challenges…"to be successful in today's rapidly changing newsrooms you need to understand we are all being asked to do more with less resources than ever before. Managers have no time for whining talent but at the same time valuable talent needs to be rewarded and compensated for what they bring to the team."
Cathy Younkin: "In a land this big, don't dream small." That's the motto Cathy lives by and believes the saying applies to each of our lives in one way or another.
Her television career started nearly 20 years ago in Cleveland as an assignment desk assistant. Within just a few short months, she morphed her way into the world of producing; coming back into the station in the overnight hours to train with the morning producer on her own to learn the craft. A producer was born and within six months, she was hired as a full time line producer for the ABC affiliate.
Liz Hart’s career working with broadcast news talent spans more than 25 years. She is known within the television news industry as one of the leading talent agents who negotiates top contracts and salaries, always working with the highest ethical standards while navigating and developing the careers of hundreds of on-air television journalists.
Hart was recruited to the NWT Group as Director of Digital News/Programming in November of 2015. Over the past several years, she has successfully choreographed and placed her clients into highly sought after broadcasting positions including: CBS News, CBS Syndicated Television, CNN’s “New Day,” CNN correspondents, NBC’s Weekend Today, ABC News, NFL Network and into many Top 10 markets.
Her personalized efforts with individual clients has garnered her a reputation for having a keen eye for recognizing the untapped potential in emerging talent and coaching them into their dream positions. Hart is a trusted confidant to many within the industry who have worked with her over the years.
Television news managers from around the country rely upon Hart’s recommendations for standout talent and often seek her advice regarding their own career paths.
In 1994, Hart founded her agency, Hart Talent and Management, in San Francisco, California. She later merged with another agency where she spent the past 11 years.
Prior to becoming an on-air agent, Hart served as Vice President/General Manager for one of the leading talent recruitment firms in the country, Don Fitzpatrick Associates in San Francisco, beginning in 1988. In this role, she successfully placed news managers and broadcasting journalists into new positions as well as overseeing the day-to-day operations and budgets of the company. She recruited and presented candidates including: producers, executive producers, assistant news directors, news directors, anchors, weathercasters, sportscasters and reporters to local stations and networks seeking superior candidates.
From 1992 to 1994, Hart was a station Sales Executive with Preview Media/News Travel Network in San Francisco. In this position, she managed station accounts for and bartered travel television inserts syndicated across the country.
She began her broadcasting career in 1985 at KPIX Television in San Francisco, as a newsroom intern. She later became the overnight Assignment Editor.
Hart earned her B.A. degree in Mass Communications from California State University East Bay and was chapter president of The Society of Professional Journalists, Sigma Delta Chi. She resides in Los Angeles, California.
Martha Pepper is the Marketing Manager for The NWT Group. She is instrumental in helping our folk's various needs as well as overseeing marketing initiatives both internally and externally. Martha loves the field of communications and has been a valued member of the NWT family since 2006.
She got her BA from Brigham Young University where she decided on a degree in public relations because it satisfies her interests in marketing, journalism, and relationships. Before joining NWT, she worked at Community Action Services in Provo, Utah as part of their communications team.
Martha is a native Michigander, but has lived in various parts of Texas for the past 12 years. Martha loves to write, organize, and see people have success and gratification from their job. If you have any questions, or need help with anything from managing a move, filling out a form, getting that stubborn video to upload, and all things in-between – just give Martha a call!
Vonne Velez is the Business Manager for The NWT Group. Vonne brings the team more than a decade of experience in a richly diverse myriad of industries including Human Resources, Business Management, and Accounting. Vonne is the former Director of Human Resources and the Office Manager for KTVT-TV the CBS O&O in Dallas, Texas.
In her role at KTVT-Dallas/Fort Worth, Vonne coordinated all the administrative duties for the News Director as well as travel planning and day-to-day logistics for out of town crews. In 2006 Vonne was promoted to the position of Human Resources Manager for the station where she worked until 2012. Vonne is “a people person” and has extensive experience dealing with HR issues along with the trials and tribulations that our clients deal with on a daily basis. In other words, she fits right in here at NWT.
Vonne coordinates the entire behind the scenes business with our company. You will most likely hear her cheerful voice when you call our main number so please feel free to say “hi” when you call in for your agent or need help in any way.
Rich Everitt began his broadcasting career when, at age 10, he read a local newspaper over a "crystal radio" he made from a coil of wire and a 10-cent diode from Radio Shack. Since then, he has won numerous major market awards for investigative reporting, public service reporting, and producing. As a TV reporter, Rich has exposed corruption in local governments, covered civil unrest in the South (he was the first Television News Reporter to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan and returned with the video), and has interviewed most of the major newsmakers of the past 20 years.
Ed Sardella is the author of Write Like You Talk…A Broadcast Newswriting Handbook. His book came from his many years spent covering news.
Ed served for thirty years as a primary news anchor and senior editor at KUSA-TV in Denver, Colorado.
Ed is considered by many to be one of the primary anchors around the country. He has helped hundreds of journalists improve their skills…both in the newsroom and in the classroom.
Ed also taught broadcast news reporting and writing on the college level for many years at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
His book…Write Like You Talk…continues to serve as a valuable resource to journalists around the country.
Barbara is a former award-winning anchor and reporter at numerous stations around the country. She took that experience and coupled her journalistic talents with her other skills…knowing what will work on-camera so that you look your best. Barbara is now an appearance coach…consulting on-air talent around the country.
Barbara also serves as the makeup and appearance consultant for The NWT Group. Her sharp eye and vast experience have helped numerous journalists look camera ready.
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