September 2014
In "Off Camera" This Month:
Gold & Silver Circle 2014: Five Chosen For Distinguished Silver Circle
Editor's Note
Local, National News Media Descend On Napa Valley Following Earthquake
Criminals Target Bay Area TV News Crews
Ashley Gold Messina Is KRON's New General Manager
KHON Launches 9 p.m. Newscast
Friends Of Faith Benefit In San Francisco Oct. 3
Harry Sweet, 93; Was Sacramento Valley's First TV News Photographer
KQED Newsroom Reunion Sept. 13
Emmy-Winning Cinematographer is Sacramento's New Talent
Soundbites: KRON 4's Catherine Heenan
The Health Reporter
The Yoga Corner
Bay Area High School Student Writes About Field Trip To Fresno TV Station
Fresno Reporter Leaves Business For PR Gig
On The Move
Do You Remember?
NATAS Picks New Chairman Of The Board

Off Camera

    Kevin Wing, Editor 

the board of governors




  Keith Sanders, San Jos

  State University

Vice President, San Francisco: 

  Kevin Wing, ABC-TV/"Good

  Morning America"  

  Vice President, Sacramento: 

  Cynthia Zeiden, Zeiden


Vice President, Fresno: 

  Kim Stephens, KMPH FOX 26 

  Vice President, Hawaii

  Pamela Young, KITV 4

  Vice President, Reno: 
    Terri Russell, KOLO 8
   Vice President, Smaller Markets: 
    David Waxman, Waxman TV
    Alison Gibson, Media Cool
  Past President:

  Javier Valencia, Consultant


national trustees:

Linda Giannecchini, KQED 9

(National Awards Chair)

Alison Gibson, Media Cool

(National 2nd Vice Chairperson)

Cynthia Zeiden, Zeiden Media

(National Program Chair)

Steve Shlisky, KTVU Channel 2  (Alternate) 



Zara Arboleda, KGPE CBS 47

Kent Beichley, KRON 4

Wayne  Freedman, KGO ABC 7 

Luis Godinez, KDTV Univision 14

Michael Harabin, Pac 12

Richard Harmelink, KFSN ABC 30  (Nominating Chair) 

Pablo Icub, KUVS Univision 19

Brian Johnson, KHSL/KNVN

George Lang, The Big Picture

Da Lin, KPIX 5

Terry Lowry, LaCosse Productions  

(Gold & Silver Circle Chair) 

Sultan Mirza, KPIX 5 (Webmaster) 

Jen Mistrot, KPIX 5

Joyce Mitchell, 4 U Productions

John Odell, CCSF Emeritus

(National Rules Chair) 

Ross Perich, Trainer Communications

Greg Rando, KTVU Channel 2

Brenda salgado, KGMB/KHNL, Hawaii News Now  

Sandy Sirias, KFTV Univision 21

Matt Skryja, AAA 

Stephanie Stone, KFSN ABC 30

Karen Sutton, Beyond Pix Studios

David Waxman, Waxman TV

Melanie Woodrow, KTVU Channel 2 

Alice Yu, KVIE 6


committee chairs:


  Cynthia Zeiden, Zeiden Media 


  John Catchings, Catchings & Associates

  Linda Giannecchini, KQED 9 


  Julie Watts, KPIX 5


  Steve Shlisky, KTVU Channel 2 


  Jim Spalding, Spalding & Company  


  Mark Pearson, ARC Law Group 


  Kym McNicholas, Kymerview


  Patty Zubov, Platonic TV


execUtive director:

Darryl R. Compton, NATAS 

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Five Chosen For Induction 
To Distinguished Silver Circle
Nov. 1 Ceremony In S.F. For Class of 2014 - Dwyer, Lang, Shlisky, Sinkovitz, Stephens


Silver Circle class 2014
By Kevin Wing
Chapter Vice President, San Francisco
        Nov. 1 in San Francisco will be a celebrated day of recognition and honor for five distinguished northern California television professionals, all of whom will be inducted into the Silver Circle as the Class of 2014.
        Each of this year's inductees -- Diane Dwyer, George Lang, Steve Shlisky, Tom Sinkovitz and Kim Stephens -- will join 236 inductees of the collective Gold & Silver Circle of the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. All Silver Circle inductees, including those from this year's class, represent distinguished television professionals who have worked in the television industry for 25 years or more, with a majority of those years in any of the local markets that are represented by the Chapter. 
       This year's Gold & Silver Circle induction luncheon ceremonies will be held Nov. 1 in the Grand Ballroom of the Parc 55 Hotel in San Francisco. Also to be inducted that day will be Don Knapp and James Scalem, both of whom will be enshrined in the Gold Circle. Each has worked in the industry 50 years or more. 
       Off Camera will feature more information about how to purchase tickets in its October issue. Information can also be found on the Chapter website at www.emmysf.tv.

      This year's Silver Circle inductees are:
     Diane DwyerFormer Anchor/Reporter, KNTV and KTVU 
     Dwyer grew up in San Francisco and the Peninsula with six brothers and sisters, and she credits the Irish gift of storytelling for her success in journalism. She is a two-time Emmy award winner and has received awards from the New York Film Festival, Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists and others as well.           She started her career in 1988 as an anchor/reporter at KXLF in Butte, Montana, where she survived the second coldest winter on record there. A year later, she moved to Chico to work at KHSL, until relocating to KTVU in 1990. While at KTVU, Dwyer's reports included the Oakland Hills firestorm, President Bill Clinton's inauguration, exclusive interviews with death row inmates and the search for Polly Klaas. Dwyer launched the Morning Show on KTVU with Ross McGowan in the mid-1990s and then became solo anchor on the weekend news in 2000. 
    In 2002, she found her way to San Jose and became the solo anchor for the weekend news for NBC Bay Area. She traveled to Beijing and Torino (Italy), providing Olympic coverage, and to Washington, D.C., for President Barack Obama's inauguration.  Dwyer is also a faculty member at the Berkeley-Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley (her alma mater) - teaching there for the past six years.  She is on the board of directors for the International House at UC Berkeley and Curry Senior Center in the Tenderloin of San Francisco. She serves as emcee, auctioneer and advisor for more than two-dozen non-profits including: Summit Bank Foundation of Oakland, Asian American Donor Program, Rebuilding Together Peninsula, De Marillac Academy of SF, & Golden State German Shepherd Rescue. 


     George Lang, President, The Big Picture Film and Video Arts

     Lang, an award-winning cinematographer/director, is an entertainment industry veteran with more than 30 years of broadcast television, corporate event, video, advertising, and public relations experience. In addition to working for every major television network as a cinematographer/director, Lang has worked in advertising and public relations for both Ketchum and Foote, and Cone & Belding. 

     While working for ABC News in 1980, Lang received an Emmy� Award for his coverage of the Winter Olympics at Lake Placid; he received a second award in 1989 for the PBS documentary, Paradise Lost on Bikini Atoll. In 1994, Lang traveled to Rwanda to cover the civil war for ABC, earning him a Peabody Award, and his third Emmy� Award. Known for his expertise in cutting-edge technology, Lang serves as a high-definition instructor for the Santa Fe High Definition Workshops. In 1997, Lang launched his own video and film production company, The Big Picture Film and Video Arts. As president, he continues to serve as the director of photography for broadcast television and commercial shoots, and as the director/producer of corporate videos and events. An active member of the NATAS Board of Governors, for the last four years, Lang has sponsored two $3,000 NATAS scholarships in memory of Jerry Jensen and Steve Davis, two KGO-TV colleagues. 


    Steve Shlisky, Producer/Editor, KTVU 

    Shlisky grew up the Bay Area cities of Napa, Cupertino and Saratoga. At the age of twelve he shot and edited his first feature. After a brief stint in Southern California, Shlisky returned to the Bay Area to accept a job at KNTV in their mailroom and film departments. Currently, he is a full-time local programming producer/editor at KTVU and co-chairs Laney College's Media Communications Department, where he is a lecturer. He has produced and edited programs, including the last 19 years of San Francisco's Chinese New Year's Parade; all eight years of Legends of the Bay; My 20th Century; Our Town; and The Great American Toy Test. A 12-time Emmy award recipient, Shlisky has received six RTNDA awards, AP's Mark Twain Award, seven Telly awards and seven Joey awards, plus numerous other honors for producing, editing and writing. 

    Shlisky has also produced videos for Maddie's Fund, Hopalong Animal Rescue, InterPeace Global, and Opera Foundation. A mentor to many students, he chairs NATAS' Education Committee, is a member of the Awards Committee, Alternate Trustee and the recipient of the Governors' Service Medallion for Distinguished Service. Shlisky has a master's degree from San Francisco State University's BECA Department.

    A mentor to many students, Shlisky chairs NATAS' Education Committee
(one responsibility brought you today's scholarship awards), is a member of
the Awards Committee, Alternate Trustee and the recipient of the Governors'
Service Medallion for Distinguished Service.  

    Tom Sinkovitz, Former Anchor, KNTV and KRON

    Sinkovitz has been a professional broadcaster for more than four decades. His career began in 1969 in the American Armed Forces Saigon newsroom featured in the Robin Williams' movie, Good Morning Vietnam. Since then, he has worked as a reporter and anchor at television stations in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (his hometown), Cincinnati, Baltimore and Atlanta, before moving to San Francisco in 1990 to work at KRON 4 and later, at KNTV NBC Bay Area. Throughout his career, Sinkovitz covered Three Mile Island, Hurricanes Agnes and Hugo, the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion, the Oakland Hills firestorm, the Los Angeles riots, Super Bowl 16, the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, numerous elections, and the San Bruno pipeline explosion. 

    His numerous honors include three Emmy awards, a Peninsula Press Club honor for his Return to Vietnam series, and a New York Film Festival award for news writing. In addition to mentoring, Sinkovitz also works with the Cupertino Educational Endowment Foundation, Veterans Memorial Project Advisory Committee, Make-a-Wish Foundation and Tony LaRussa's Animal Rescue Foundation, as well as the San Francisco church community focusing on maintaining schools.  


    Kim Stephens, Anchor/Co-Host, KMPH       

    A three-time Emmy nominee, Stephens spends her days co-hosting Great Day, the popular five-hour morning show on KMPH Fox 26 in Fresno. After receiving a B.A. from California State University in Chico, Stephens' career began in 1988 at KERO in Bakersfield, moving to WBIR and WVLT in Knoxville, Tennessee. While there, she earned her Master's in broadcast management from the University of Tennessee. 

    Stephens relocated to KNTV in San Jose as part of its technology reporting team. By the fall of early 2003, she had taken on an anchor position at KMPH Fox 26 and the opportunity to help launch a new morning program. That show became Great Day, where Stephens continues to maintain an instant connection with all of her viewers. She also anchors the station's weekday Midday newscast and co-hosts the annual St. Jude Children's Research Hospital telethon.
    Stephens finds time to be an ambassador to the community by volunteering as mentor and motivational speaker, dealing with topics of workplace protocol, healthy living, positive personal and professional growth and volunteerism. Her community involvement includes working with Muscular Dystrophy, Sunnyside Taekwondo Parent Club, Reading for the Blind and Dyslexia, YMCA, MAAD, MS Society, United Way, Ronald McDonald House and the Salvation Army. A two-term member of the NATAS Board of Governors, Stephens was recently elected the Chapter's Regional Vice President for Fresno. 


Editor's Note

       Hello, NATAS Members!
       Welcome to your October edition of Off Camera. We've got a lot going on within the Chapter these days, especially with the selection in August of the Silver Circle Class of 2014! We're just under two months away from this year's induction Luncheon, and we hope you'll be joining us in San Francisco Nov. 1 as we induct five outstandingly talented veteran television professionals. Please join me in congratulating Diane Dwyer, George Lang, Steve Shlisky, Tom Sinkovitz and Kim Stephens! They will join this year's Gold Circle inductees, Don Knapp and Jim Scalem, on what will be a very memorable day for them and for all of us in our Chapter!
     There's much more "below the fold" and this month's advertisements. As you know, late summer in the Chapter was a busy one for news coverage. Television news crews and journalists from radio and print -- spanning local, national and international outlets -- descended on the Bay Area following the death of
Robin Williams and the magnitude 6.0 earthquake in the Napa Valley.
     And, it is with much sadness that we say goodbye to one of our own. Harry Sweet was one of the pioneers of northern California television. He was the Sacramento Valley's first television news photographer and, only naturally, was an inductee of our distinguished Silver Circle. Everyone knew Harry, and even if they didn't know him personally, they knew of him and all of his significant contributions to our industry and our Chapter. Harry lived 93 years. He loved the business, and he lived for the industry that he loved so much.

Kevin Wing
Off Camera



Local, National News Media Descend on Bay Area
Following 6.0 Napa Valley Earthquake

By David Wiegand

San Francisco Chronicle 


      The alarm went off early on Sunday morning when a 6.0 quake hit just north of American Canyon, causing widespread damage in Napa and elsewhere, and injuring more than 250 people. It also immediately roused Bay Area media and especially local television with the reminder that no one can be too prepared when disaster strikes.

         Overall, TV coverage of the quake ran the gamut from sadly useless to stunningly exhaustive. At its best, local TV coverage proved that it can and should still play an important role in covering disasters and getting vital information to local residents.

         It is, of course, worth noting that we are only a few months away from the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta quake. Both the actual landscape and the media landscape have changed dramatically since the October 1989 event: The Central Freeway is gone, and the Internet and social media have revolutionized how we get information. Doomsayers like to say that the Internet is killing legacy media, and that includes television. In truth, television news is often doing a fine job of killing itself with a greater and greater reliance on fluff in broadcast and cable, and agenda-driven hot air as a substitute for fact-based reporting on Fox News and MSNBC.

        From the early hours of Sunday, however, we often saw how social media and TV can actually work together to cover breaking and evolving news. Within minutes of the 3:20 a.m. temblor, Twitter was buzzing about the quake. I'm sure I wasn't alone in going immediately to the Internet, Twitter and TV to confirm that the quake had occurred and to find out how big it was. Twitter did confirm it, the U.S. Geological Survey site told me the magnitude and the epicenter, and in short order, local TV and newspaper websites posted briefs as well.

       Soon, there were news crawls on KGO and KPIX screens, both of which were airing infomercials at that hour. And not too long after that, those two stations as well as KNTV were on the air with live, seat-of-the-pants coverage. KTVU, surprisingly, lagged behind the others in getting on the air, and while it eventually found its footing, it never really rose to the level of thoroughness and currency we have come to expect from the channel until its 10 p.m. broadcast on Sunday. By Monday morning, KTVU was doing a solid job.

       KRON was still airing infomercials long after the others were doing what they could to cover the news. Although KRON got around to covering the quake, much of its coverage consisted of airing press conferences and aerial footage fed from Sky7.

      Although the NBC and CBS outlets did a great job through the day, they couldn't hold a candle to what KGO did. Yes, it stayed on the air far longer than the other stations, but that was, in part, because the other stations were committed to sports events like preseason football and the PGA tour. ABC's Matt Keller was first on the air Sunday morning with the breaking news that the quake had occurred, shared the anchor desk for a while with Cheryl Jennings and Kristen Sze, and then went to Napa to report live from the scene. He was still on the air into the late afternoon.

     Something tells me KGO is going to have a chunky overtime bill when this is all over, but that is probably true for most of the other local stations as well.

     That said, there was room for improvement with even the better local stations and at this point, that shouldn't be the case. While it may be understandable that the newsroom wasn't fully staffed at that hour, it took too long for the news crawls to start appearing on the screen during the infomercials. However, KPIX was very quick to get a brief story on its website, as was KGO. I wasn't monitoring the time similar stories were posted on the other channel sites at that point.

Criminals Target Bay Area TV News Crews Again
One Beaten, One Robbed, in San Francisco and Oakland


      Police in Oakland and San Francisco are investigating after television news reporters were targeted in unrelated crimes -- one beaten, one robbed -- in the last several days.

      The crews represent KTVU Channel 2 in Oakland and KRON 4 in San Francisco.

      Oakland police are seeking a woman who assaulted a KTVU news reporter Aug. 31 as the reporter covered a fatal shooting at the Coliseum swap meet in east Oakland.

      The female reporter was working on a story about the shooting of 22-year-old Hector Uribe, of Oakland, by two security guards at the swap meet when she was confronted and punched at least twice in the head by an unidentified woman who fled before police could arrest her, authorities said. The suspect is being sought. The reporter was shaken and treated at the scene.

      Lee Rosenthal, news director at KTVU in Oakland, said Tuesday that the reporter -- whose name was not released by police -- is recovering.

     Oakland police spokeswoman Officer Johnna Watson said the assault is being investigated and that police would like any witnesses to come forward. Police did not release a description of the suspect.

     Across the bay, a KRON reporter was robbed of equipment and personal property Sept. 2 in San Francisco's Potrero Hill neighborhood, police said.

     Jackie Sissel was sitting in his news van on the Interstate 280 overpass near 18th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue about 5 a.m., preparing a report on work that was recently completed on the freeway.

     Two men with bandannas hiding their faces got out of a car, opened the van doors and put a gun to Sissel's head while ordering him to get in the back, police said.

     The assailants stole a laptop computer, a wallet and a camera tripod before fleeing in their car. No arrests have been made.

    Station managers declined to comment Tuesday.

    The incident was the latest in which robbers targeted the news media. The heists have prompted many stations to hire security guards to accompany news crews, including in Oakland. Many of the guards are former police officers.

    In September 2013, two men were arrested after robbing a KRON reporter in an incident that ended when a security guard with the employee - a former Oakland officer - fired shots in San Francisco's Bayview neighborhood, hitting one suspect near the groin.


    (The San Francisco Chronicle and the Contra Costa Times contributed to this report.)


Media General Taps New General Manager For KRON
Ashley Gold Messina Leads San Francisco Station Starting Sept. 10

By Kent Beichley
Chapter Governor

      KRON 4, the Bay Area's major independent station in San Francisco, has a new general manager.
      Parent company Media General has named Ashley Gold Messina as the station's new vice president and general manager. She begins Sept. 10.
      Messina will leave her position as vice president and general manager of WDCW in Washington, D.C. She replaces Brian Greif, who left the station in January.
      Messina began at WDCW in 2001 as a local account executive. She became the station's national sales manager in 2007 and its general sales manager in 2009. 
      She was elevated to general manager in 2010.
      "Ashley is a strong leader and a great competitor," says Deborah McDermott, senior vice president of broadcast markets for Media General. "She is the right person to take the leadership role at KRON.
      "It is an honor to work with the great team at KRON," Messina says. "Our mission will be to serve the Bay Area viewers and grow the station."
      In other KRON news:
      Earlier this year, KRON announced a move to KGO-TV ABC 7's Front Street studio to occupy the third floor and extra studio of that station. Not long after, Media General put up for sale the Van Ness Avenue studios of KRON. In May, the building sold above the $20 million asking price. The sale ends a nearly half century of broadcasting for KRON at that location. With that long history came the highest of high ratings as an NBC network affiliate, and the marginal lows of today's oversaturated broadcast media market.

       When KRON went on the air in 1949, it was owned by the deYoung family. They also published the San Francisco Chronicle. The deYoungs moved KRON to its Van Ness lAvenue ocation in 1967. In that time, the Van Ness Avenue building housed such notable staff as Soledad O'Brien, and hosted notable guests like Maya Angelou and Robin Williams. In June 1999, the deYoungs decided to liquidate its Chronicle Publishing's assets, selling KRON to Young Broadcasting. Young Broadcasting then merged with Media General in the fall of 2013, and today is working on a merger with LIN Media. This merger is expected to close in early 2015.


KHON Launches New 9 P.M. Newscast Sept. 8

      KHON welcomes veteran newscaster Howard Dashefsky back to the anchor desk when it launch its 9 p.m. newscast on Sept. 8. 
      He will co-anchor with Marisa Yamane, who moves from the weekend anchor desk. 
      KHON2 News at 9 p.m. will air Monday through Friday and stream live on KHON2.com. 
      "We look forward to offering Hawaii viewers a comprehensive Late News option at 9 p.m.. We have been wanting to add a 9 p.m. news for awhile, and we think the time is right, and Howard is the perfect addition to our news team. We are committed to serving the viewers of Hawaii and providing more local news content both on-air and on-line," says Kristina Lockwood, KHON general manager.
      Dashefsky brings 25 years of news experience to KHON's anchor lineup. 
     "We're proud to have Howard return to the anchor desk at KHON2. I've worked with him for many years, and I respect and admire him as a journalist," adds news director Lori Silva.
     In recent years, Howard's developed a communications consulting business, has served as a writer, producer, and host for his Emmy Award-winning show, Sports People Hawaii, and has served an on-air personality for OC Sports.
Oct. 3 Friends of Faith Benefit Features 
Behind-the-Scenes Look at Newscast Production

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and to kick off the observance, Friends of Faith is hosting a fabulous event.  

       Attendees will have a rare opportunity to get an up-close-and-personal, behind-the-scenes look at how a daily newscast is created and produced at one of San Francisco's major TV stations.  Attendees will have the opportunity to meet the anchors of the newscast and share in the excitement of hearing the latest news firsthand.  

      After the newscast, you will enjoy a special wine and food tasting guided by KGO-TV ABC7 chief meteorologist and wine expert, Spencer Christian

      Tickets are also available for purchase for just the wine and food tasting portion of the evening at a lower price.  

      There are a limited number of tickets available for this exclusive event. Visit www.faithfancher.org for more details.  

      Unable to attend? Please consider making a donation to help low-income women and men battling breast cancer by clicking the "donate" button on our web page at www.faithfancher.org.


Harry Sweet, KCRA Photographer, 93
Silver Circle Inductee Was Sacramento's First TV Cameraperson



      Harry Sweet was the Sacramento Valley's first television news photographer. He was known for his many years at KCRA, but was also renowned as the man who had great foresight to keep his news footage, donating more than 25 years of Sacramento history on film to local archives. 

     The pioneering TV news cameraman died in mid-August from pneumonia, according to his family. Sweet was 93 years old. 

     In 1986, Sweet was inducted into the first class of the Silver Circle of the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In 1999, the Chapter honored Sweet with the Governors' Citation for his contributions to northern California television.

     Sweet was a historic figure in broadcast journalism as the first television news photographer in the Sacramento Valley. He started at KCCC (now known as KTXL FOX 40) in 1953 and filmed the capital's first TV broadcast, which included a special greeting from Gov. Goodwin Knight. In 1957, he joined KCRA and went on to witness decades of history through the camera lens.

     He filmed leaders and celebrities, including Presidents John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford; five California governors; entertainment legends Bob Hope and Bing Crosby; and major sports stars. He filmed infamous figures, including death-row inmates Caryl Chessman and Aaron Mitchell, mass murderer Juan Corona, and Patty Hearst and her captors.

     Sweet traveled more than two million miles on assignments in more than 30 countries - and survived five plane crashes. Besides innovating techniques in time-lapse photography and pioneering camera shots that are used today, he filmed a moving story with music about the Sierra Nevada ghost town of Bodie that won national recognition, says Mel Boyd, a former KCRA news photographer. .

    "He was one of the nicest people you'd ever meet, and I think it was because he was a creative person," Boyd said. "He wasn't always trying to be first at things; he was trying to be good at what he did and to be innovative."

    Sweet took home film cans from work "to keep a record of how I was progressing professionally," he told the Sacramento Bee in 1985.

    Over time, he amassed hundreds of thousands of feet of news film that overflowed his closets, garage and backyard storage shed. When space limitations forced him to move his collection back to KCRA, he persuaded station officials to donate the footage to the city of Sacramento.

    Before retiring in 1988, he spent four years editing and indexing the material for KCRA and for the Center for Sacramento History, the city's archive. Today, the center's KCRA Film Collection contains more than 9 million feet of 16mm news film from 1957 to 1982, including images of historic regional and national events that have been licensed in major film documentaries.

     "We thought he was a little crazy," former KCRA anchorman Stan Atkinson said. "Back in the '50s, we just thought you shoot the film, use it and throw it out. Harry had that sixth sense about history, and he knew it would be valuable in time."

    In 1990, Sacramento station KOVR planned to dump more than 1,100 miles of news film in preparation for moving to its new studio in West Sacramento. Instead, Sweet rented a U-Haul van, retrieved the footage and drove it to California State University, Sacramento.

    Today, the Harry Sweet Film Collection at the campus Library Media Center preserves footage of major events from 1967 to 1981 - including Ronald Reagan's 1967 gubernatorial inauguration, Robert F. Kennedy's 1968 presidential campaign and the Hearst kidnapping - as a learning and research tool.

    Born with a twin sister in 1920 to Armenian immigrants in Fresno, Sweet was 5 when his family moved to Sacramento. He graduated from Sacramento High School and worked as a watchmaker and in a civilian job at McClellan Air Force Base before going into broadcasting.

    He married Mauvis Allen in 1942 and had four children. Although he traveled often for work, he was a devoted husband and father who "always had great stories when he got home and brought great souvenirs," his daughter Sue Norton said. A lifelong bowler with a 195 average in his 70s, he played the sport with his wife and children every Sunday for many years at Country Club Lanes.

    "That was our family time," his daughter says. "Our motto was, 'The family that bowls together never splits up.'"

    Sweet's wife of 61 years died in 2003. In addition to Norton, he is survived by three sons, Michael, Mark and Tim Sweet; 15 grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren.

    A memorial service was held Aug. 31 in Sacramento.


(The Sacramento Bee contributed to this article.)


KQED Newsroom Reunion Sept. 13 In S.F.

        The second annual KQED Newsroom Reunion is happening in San Francisco on Sept. 13 at the Delancey Street Foundation, in the city's South of Market neighborhood, not far from the station's old Fourth and Bryant location and two blocks from AT&T Park.
        Organizers say the reunion, between noon and 5 p.m., will feature a picnic lunch with water and soft drinks. There will also be a cash bar. The venue also features a 150-seat, state-of-the-art theater, where a KQED clip reel will be shown.
        Cost is $35 per person. 
        For more details, contact Jim Scalem at jimscalemprod@aol.com.

New Sacramento Talent In Emmy-Winning
One-Man-Band Documentary Cinematographer


By Joyce Mitchell

Chapter Governor


     Passion plus innate talent propelled 32-year-old Joel Sandvos into the 2014 Emmy Spotlight. He climbed the stairs and appeared on stage to claim his statue for Best Documentary and it was his first Emmy win as well as his first documentary.                                                                                                              

     The Sacramento area man's love of still photography evolved into filmmaking and it clicked. "I just fell in love with it," Joel Sandvos said. "I got into video, did it for fun. Then I got some part-time work. That turned into full-time work doing video."                                                                                                                                     Without any formal training, Sandvos traveled to Cambodia in 2011 and 2012 as a cinematographer, director, co-producer, lighting director, audio person, and editor for The Pink Room. He was essentially a one-man band for the powerful one-hour documentary that sheds light on the problem of human trafficking in Cambodia.  "I took a minimal amount of gear with me, like a tourist would and didn't feel in danger or ever at risk," Sandvos said.                                                                                                                            

     The program aired September 2013 on Sacramento Public Television Station KVIE Channel 6. Sandvos was introduced to the project by the Agape International Mission (AIM) based in the northern California community of Rocklin. AIM is a ministry that started exposing child sexual slavery in 2005. "AIM took me around to different places to make sure that I was safe," Sandvos said. "But I was not going to turn this documentary into an infomercial about AIM."                                                                                                  

Joel Sandvos
Cinematographer is new talent for Sacramento
   As a result, Sandvos diligently worked to capture the heart of the story. "The Pink Room was never raising awareness about the problem but raising awareness about the solution," Sandvos said. "That was the essence of it. Not to show how terrible it was but trying to focus on positives and making sure that it was hopeful. Obvious, content was difficult but it's hopeful."                                                       
     Sandvos said that during his trips to Cambodia he experienced some things he'll never forget. And, in fact, he said that he remains haunted by some of the memories. "I happened to be in Cambodia when AIM wanted to check out some new Karaoke bars. We went to see what happens on the inside."                                                   
    According to Sandvos, AIM heard a trend was underway to use Karaoke bars for negotiating sex with young women from ages of about 16 to late twenties. "You would go into this room and sit down. There would be this big screen and big sectional couch that wraps around the room and workers would bring in ten to 15 girls to sing Karaoke with us," Sandvos said. 
   "We just sat there and had a beer. There was no physical contact for us but if anybody wanted to from that point, a customer in the bar could take one of the young women to a hotel or apartment afterwards and negotiate sex with them." Many of the young women were at high risk for future exploitation.                                                                                                                              
    Married with three young children, Sandvos said that he has learned human trafficking is a complex issue, that the girls are often pressured by family or finances to participate. The Pink Room profiles the stories of young girls who were raised near Cambodia's capitol city of Phnom Penh, an epicenter of child sex slavery.              Cambodians were brutalized under the regime of Pol Pot during the 1970s. As many as two million people died in the genocide. The nation and people were left devastated, impoverished, and emotionally damaged. The documentary sets the tone for why and how young Cambodian girls are swept into the sex trade.                                                                                                   
    The Pink Room also documents heroic efforts being made to help stop the problem. Many of those efforts emanate from right here in Northern California through AIM. At the moment, while Sandvos is waiting for his next effort of passion, a documentary with as much heart and soul as The Pink Room, he has taken a job with 3 Strands - freedom love & empowerment, a nonprofit based in Vacaville, California that sells handcrafted bracelets and tee-shirts made by young women in Cambodia.                                                                                 AIM rescues the women from human trafficking and 3 Strands provides opportunities for a better way of life. While both nonprofits fight against sex trafficking, 3 Strands offers retail outlets in northern California for Cambodian women to sell their bracelets and Tee-shirts. Sandvos produces vignettes for the organization to promote the product line.                                                                                                                                       Sandvos said that it was a privilege to work on the documentary The Pink Room. As for receiving an Emmy Award for the program, Sandvos said that he was stunned. "I mean shocked for sure but I am really glad that the Emmy is going to bring a lot more light to people getting involved in the fight against sex trafficking," Sandvos said. Beyond generating passion for the humanitarian effort, Sandvos said that his work on the documentary has changed him forever, giving him a feeling of responsibility and connection to others both near and far.
Soundbites/Kevin logo

Born and raised a Midwest gal, some might say KRON 4's Catherine Heenan is also a California girl. Fortunate to not have hopscotched all over the country during her television career, Heenan comes from a class of rare television professionals who have worked in just two major markets, and successfully at both. In this month's edition of Soundbites, find out more about Heenan and how she's made the San Francisco Bay Area her home.

Where did you grow up?
Indiana and Illinois - always driving distance from Chicago.

What were you like growing up as a child?
I loved books, animals and going places.  All still true.

When did you first realize you wanted to be in television news?
Probably as early as grade school. TV reporters got to travel, see interesting things and then talk about it.  I loved the idea of telling stories for a living.

First job in TV?
The NBC station in Milwaukee -- WTMJ.  I was mostly surrounded by smart people who knew what they were doing. Very ethical. No baloney. In my television news career, I've been lucky to have worked in just two places -- Milwaukee and San Francisco.  I suppose that's a little unusual these days, but I think it's helpful to have some people around who have been in the same place for awhile.  You can't know all the people who watch, of course, but I think you begin to know the kinds of people who do -- and you have a little better idea who's out there beyond the camera.

Who has inspired you in your career?
David Brinkley - that crisp, smart writing and delivery. Early mentors like John McKean at WTMJ.  Brilliant.  But also kind enough to take time to help out baby-faced reporters. And the wonderfully curmudgeonly Hughes Rudd of CBS.  He'd be doing the morning news as I got ready for school and I'd refuse to leave until he wrapped up the show with a final wry little human interest story.  Sometimes he'd actually smile. Hughes understood the power of understatement.

Who has inspired you as a person?
My darling father.  My Daddy was my biggest fan and probably the only person who never tired of seeing me on television. Trying to make him proud was very important.

How do you spend your weekends?
Exploring the bay area.  I recently moved to Marin County and it's a whole new playground of woods, beaches and restaurants.

Are you involved with any charitable organizations?
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.  

Perfect meal for dinner?
At the moment, it's the roasted chicken at Mill Valley's Balboa Cafe.

Have any guilty pleasures?
'Celebrity Ghost Stories' on LMN....

Who is your favorite television journalist?
Brian Hackney.  He can do it all - and with brains and wit.  

Favorite newspaper read?
Aside from the local papers, I love the feature stories in the Wall Street Journal.
They do a great job of capturing the quirky side of life.  It's in my driveway every morning.
I have to admit I also love the Daily Mail, which I read online.

What book are you reading? (i'm sort of adding this one, Kevin!)
I'm reading Gary Kamiya's 'Cool Gray City of Love.'  He has a talent for capturing San Francisco and its people. In our business, we have to cover the daily goings-on, of course, but it's really the people who stick in my mind and I suspect many viewers are the same way.  Kamiya also has a good sense for the historic oddities.

What are your favorite TV shows?
Mad Men, House of Cards -- and of course reruns of the Andy Griffith show.

See any good movies lately?
I recently watched 'Ruggles of Red Gap' with Charles Laughton again. 
Along with Hitchcock's 'Rear Window' -- it's one of the few movies I can see over and over.

Have any advice for the next generation of television journalists?
Learn to write.  It's still the most important thing.  And go easy on the hyperbole.

What's your favorite vacation destination?
Wherever I'm going next.  Growing up, I love that I got to spend entire summers in places like Japan, Ireland and England.

Where have you yet to travel?
New Zealand.  I think I even have a long-lost cousin there.

Favorite music?  What's on your iPod?
Barry White, Sinatra and Kool & The Gang are heavily featured.  Also George Clinton and Johnny Cash.

Wine tasting or a cold bottle of beer?
Wine tasting.

Favorite spot in the Bay Area?
In and around Mill Valley - and Carmel.

How important is social media to you?
I'm not obsessed by it, but it's fun.  I'm particularly fond of Instagram.

Stories you've 'owned'?
In the news business, we try to look forward rather than back, but some assignments stand out.
For example - KRON sent me to Northern Ireland in 1998 to cover the Good Friday Agreement and its aftermath.  It was particularly interesting since my parents were from Northern Ireland and I still have  relatives there. Photographer Rich Carlson and I tried to cover the emerging peace agreement the same way we often covered the South Bay -- to capture a sense of how ordinary people stood out from the constant bickering and drama. And then there's the time Rich and I were lost - and knocked on the door of some cloistered nuns in Los Altos Hills.  That led to a series of unforgettable stories.


Stay tuned!
In the October issue of Off Camera, Soundbites spotlights Jeanette Pavini, perhaps best-known as host of The Real Deal. Jeanette has been a consumer reporter for KPIX 5 and KNTV NBC Bay Area, and since those years on Bay Area television, she's taken her career to the national level with her own show and the development of a very successful production company! Find out more about Jeanette next month in Soundbites!

Kevin Wing is a San Francisco Bay Area/Northern California producer for ABC News' Good Morning America and ABC World News. He is also Chapter Vice President, San Francisco, on the Board of Governors of the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and serves as editor of Off Camera. Would you like to see someone profiled in Soundbites? Tweet Kevin @KevinWingABC or write him at kevin.offcamera@gmail.com.

The Health Reporter

health rep header


"A year from now you will wish you had started today."  

~ Karen Lamb


       When the subject came up the other day, I realized that it's been a year sinc
e my skin cancer diagnosis. It's unbelievable that an entire year has passed. All is well, by the way, and I am grateful every day for my dermatologist, Dr. Minh Dang, who found the nondescript lesion and performed my surgery.

       Then yesterday, I received a reminder note that it's time for my annual mammogram. How could that be? If you had asked me, I would have said I had my last one about five or six months ago... max.

       Do your days zip by in the flurry of day-to-day activities? When you reflect on the past year, do you wonder where the time went? You vowed to lose 15 pounds a year ago, but ended up gaining 10. Sound familiar?

       If you have goals you want to achieve, dreams you want to fulfill, and things you want to experience, then start TODAY. It doesn't have to be anything monumental -- just one tiny step closer to getting where you want to be. By doing so, a year from now you won't wish you had started today.

       If you always wanted to write a book, then type a few lines TODAY. If you want to 'get in shape', then start a habit of putting your shoes, socks and sunscreen by the door TODAY. Whatever it is you want to do, start now... and enjoy the journey. =)


Karen Owoc is a San Francisco Bay Area-based reporter and producer and is host of The Health Reporter. She also served on the Board of Governors of the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. 


The Yoga Corner 


Alignment is a Good Tune-Up for Any Body

       Stop. Don't move. Just notice.
       Where are your shoulders? Are they high, maybe even above your ears? Are they rounded forward?
       How about your chin? Is it parallel to the ground? Is it pointed upward creating tension in your neck? Or perhaps pointed downward doing the same as you glare at a laptop?
       How do you feel?

     Last month, we talked about breath and how consciously breathing using the Ujjayi breathing technique can create presence and peace in your body. This month we're talking about alignment. The way we carry our bodies throughout the day is very telling. Most of us can picture the phrase 'carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.' It implies a burden and one that's easy to see. The way we walk when we are happy and excited looks different from the way we walk when we are sad or stressed. Understanding where you carry emotions in your body 
is the first key to making minor adjustments that can help you feel better.
    Most of us think of alignment as good posture, but it's more than a straight spine. Alignment begins at your base (your feet) and extends all the way up through the crown of your head.

   Whether you're standing or sitting, here are a few tips for checking in with your alignment:

   1) Feet - Most of us roll in or out. A good way to tell is to check the soles of your favorite sneakers for where they are most worn. When you're standing see if you can imagine spreading invisible x's across
your soles. In other words, ground down through both the big toe mounds and pinky toe edges as well as your inner and outer heels. This can be fun to practice barefoot as you spread your toes wide. You can also practice shifting the weight around on your feet until you find how to evenly anchor and ground down through both.

  2) Shins and knees - It's very common when standing to hyper-extend at the knees. Instead, try standing with a little micro-bend in your knees while simultaneously pressing your shins a bit forward. Yes, this is a lot to think about but just start to notice. It might be fun to practice the next time you're waiting for a press conference to begin.

    3) Stomach - We've all heard about sucking in your stomach, but let's be more specific. It starts at your tailbone. To find proper alignment around your middle and up your spine, you want to scoop your tailbone
while lifting your pelvic floor (think lower abdomen) and drawing your 
belly button to your spine. Your lower back will thank you.

    4) Chest and shoulders -- Opening up the chest usually starts with the shoulders. Again, take notice the next time you're super stressed in the field or in the newsroom. Your shoulders are probably higher than where they should be. Roll the shoulders up, back and down into their sockets. This one takes practice but feels so good! No masseuse needed!

    5) Chin and neck - To relieve stress in your neck, first bring your chin into alignment by bringing it parallel to the ground. Again, take notice. Most of us lead with our chin (hey, we're in a rush). When the chin is up and out, there is undue strain on your neck. Of course if you're hunched over a laptop in a live truck, your chin is going to be pointed down. Once you bring your chin parallel to the ground, gently 
draw your jawline back. This will bring your neck into alignment. This is a great one to practice when you're driving! Bonus points for noticing if you clench your teeth. Leaving a little space between your bite will also alleviate neck tension.
    Finally, see if you can relax the space between your eyes. I often catch myself on camera with the squinty, concentrated look. Softening 
the space in between your eyes will release tons of tension from your face.
    Forget fancy yoga poses for just a moment. Give yourself a few minutes to follow these tips and stand in alignment while taking a couple of conscious breaths. Now again, notice. How do you feel? Do you feel
differently than you did when you took notice at the start of this article? Awareness is yoga.
    So we have tackled breath and now alignment. Next month we'll move onto what I believe is the most critical element to any yoga practice. How's that for a tease? Happy news gathering yogis and yoginis!

     Melanie Woodrow is an investigative reporter at KTVU Channel 2 and a certified yoga instructor and health coach. She is also on the Board of Governors of the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Have a question or suggestion for a future column? Tweet Melanie @MelanieWoodrow

TV 101: Behind-the-Scenes of a Newscast
Bay Area Student Writes About Experience at Fresno FOX Station

By Kaidyn McClure
Special to Off Camera

(Editor's Note: Kaidyn McClure is a senior at California High School in San Ramon. The Bay Area resident is an aspiring television journalist. Last month, she visited KMPH FOX 26 in Fresno. In the following story, she shares her experience with Off Camera.)

      On August 15, I sat behind the scenes at KMPH FOX26 News in Fresno, and watched the Great Day morning news. The experience was both exciting and informative. 

      I had the privilege of shadowing news anchor, Kim Stephens, and her co-anchor, Kopi Sotiropulos, during one of the busiest shows of the year. To get the full understanding of this five-hour live show, I needed to wake up before the sun even thought to rise. 


High School Student Gets Close-Up Look At KMPH
Kaidyn McClure, on the Great Day set

     Dressed and ready at 3:45 in the morning, I arrived at the news station at 4 a.m. The first hour was quiet compared to the several hours following. However, this hour was the most imperative. Within this short timeframe, Kim and her crew worked quickly to edit and revise the scripts for the show, as well as prepare the lines so they could be delivered smoothly. This single hour provided the foundation for the remainder of the day.

      Due to the continuous and constant work during the next six hours, there would be hardly any time to eat some food! So, Kim prepared a little breakfast for herself and the rest of her co-workers so they would be awake and energized for the news. I learned that creating positive relationships within the newsroom resulted in a smooth show. Everyone had each other's back, and this made the work seem even more fun. I also learned that every minute matters on set. I used to think that two minutes was hardly any time at all, but you'd be surprised at how much can be accomplished in two minutes! There's enough time to do makeup, read lines, crack a few jokes, and even steal a bite of fruit salad just seconds before the show airs. It's quite incredible. Efficiency and time management is definitely key to this business.

     The most thrilling moment of the morning was when the show finally went live on the air at 5 a.m. The cameraman shouted out the time remaining and before I knew it, the anchors were delivering the news live! Both anchors spoke slowly, clearly, and calmly, turning the script into a conversation adding their own flavor and personality. It was important that they were quick-witted and on their toes, always ready in case an issue arose.

Morning Camaraderie
Student Kaidyn McClure, with Kim Stephens and Kopi Sotiropulos and the Great Day crew

     Off set, the crew worked hard to keep the show running smoothly. The crew members taught me how to use the TelePrompTer and how to use the green screen. Everyone on and off set inspired me with their impressive teamwork. No matter how hectic the day became, everyone stuck together and made it seem effortless; and believe me, it was pretty hectic! That day was the beginning of the St. Jude Dream Home fundraiser, where people called to buy tickets to enter a raffle for a beautiful new home, and all the proceeds go to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. 

     Kim and Kopi took turns running up the stairs to report from the live phone bank where volunteers took viewers' calls and donations. Sometimes they only had a couple of minutes to leave the set and go upstairs, but no one ever panicked. On top of the charity business, there was also a live band playing at the station in a different room for the weekly Festive Friday segment. From reporting the local news to interviewing the charity members and band members, there seemed to be something different going on every minute! There was never a dull moment; every second was an opportunity to meet a new person or be informed of something interesting. 

    I was captivated all six hours that early morning, and after watching such exhilarating events, along with a few cups of coffee, I was jittery and ready to go on set and work as an anchor myself! 

    Well, maybe someday! 


Fresno Reporter Trades Notepad for PR Gig with Hospital


By Kim Stephens

Chapter Vice President, Fresno


      There have been a series of on-air changes at Fresno television stations in recent weeks.

      In the latest flurry of activity, Clayton Clark, a morning reporter at KMPH FOX26 , is leaving television news to work as communications specialist at St. Agnes Hospital in Fresno. His last day was Aug. 29.

      For five and a half years, Clark brought a lot of laughs and community information to viewers of Great Day, the station's morning newscast. But when his daughter was born in May, he said everything changed. He took six weeks off for paternity leave. 

      "When I came back to work, I realized I missed the family more than I missed being on TV," Clark says. 

Admittedly, he says he also won't miss coming to work at 3 a.m. or working on holidays.


On The Move


      Kelly Simek joins KHON in Honolulu as the station's new morning weather anchor. 


      Matt Otstot, reporter at KSEE in Fresno, has left the NBC station to work in public relations for Children's Hospital Central California in Fresno. His last day at KSEE was Aug. 15. 


      George Kiriyama, who was a nightside reporter at KNTV NBC Bay Area in San Jose from 2006 to early 2014, joins KEYT/KCOY/KKFX in California's Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-San Luis Obispo market. He will be managing editor for KCOY. He begins his new position in late September. 


     Jahmai Webster, weekend sports anchor at KITV in Honolulu, joins the sports department at KMGH in Denver. He begins work in late September.


     Have a new gig or a promotion? On The Move and Off Camera would like to spread the word!  Please drop us a line at kevin.offcamera@gmail.com and let us know!  


Do You Remember?

Who is this young reporter? Take a closer look.
Here's a hint: She is now a member of the Silver Circle.

In last month's Off Camera, we wanted to know 
if you could name these former CNN anchors? 
They have strong ties to Northern California television.  
Longtime KCRA Anchors Dave Walker
and Lois Hart (now retired; Silver Circle Class of 2003

NATAS' New Chairman Of The Board
Is Former Warner Bros. Vice President
Charles Dages Ready To Lead Organization Into "Second Golden Era" of TV

      The governing Board of Trustees of The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) today announced the election of Charles L. Dages, former Warner Bros. Executive Vice President, Emerging Technology, as Chairman of the Board. 

      Dages will be working with the Executive Committee and the Board of Trustees on all major programming, sponsorship and marketing of the non-profit organization and securing its mandate of recognizing excellence in the television and media industry.

     "Much has been written in the consumer and professional press of the changes occurring in our industry...the television industry," Dages says.  

     "These well documented changes are tectonic: the diversity of new channels continues; the new business models for funding and paying for content are multiplying; the mobile platforms that laterally free the consumer to watch anytime and anywhere," he adds. "This is an exciting time and the opportunities and challenges we must master will lead those who lead to reap the rewards.  I am confident that with the combined talents of our board of trustees and NATAS staff, working together with our experienced leadership across the country in our nineteen regional chapters, the National Academy will grow and prosper while leading its membership into in this exciting time that many are calling the 'second golden era' of television."


Contact Information:

National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences
San Francisco/Northern California Chapter
Darryl Compton,
Executive Director
4317 Camden Avenue
San Mateo, CA 94403-5007
Phone: 650 341-7786 or 415 777-0212
Fax: 650 372-0279


The name "Emmy�" and the graphic image of the statuette, are registered trademarks of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.