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The Newsman

  • Also available as: Perfect Bound Softcover, E-Book
  • Published: March 2005
  • Format: Dust Jacket Hardcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 196
  • Size: 5.5x8.5
  • ISBN: 9781413468977
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This is the story of a small town Southern boy who grows up to be a local television icon. Following Dick McMichael’s life from the early years of radio to today’s television, we experience the great changes in the industry and the country. We also learn how he grew up in the segregated South and ended up working with a black female co-anchor who owes her first break in TV news to him. It is an inside look at the stresses and pressures that shape the broadcast newsrooms of America. It begins shortly after radio broadcasting began in the United States. “You could say that broadcasting and I grew up together. Radio broadcasting was born in Columbus in 1928 in a dressing room of the brand-new Royal Theater when WRBL went on the air. I was born two years later.”

We move with young Dick through the tough years of the Great Depression when his family’s small home was crowded with relatives who needed some place to stay until work could be found again, through World War Two when he saw his big brother, brother-in-law and first cousin head overseas with the U.S. Army, while he, as a Boy Scout, collected old newspapers for the war effort. All of this is paralleled by changes in the world of broadcasting.

We follow his career from the time he was a seventeen-year-old radio announcer, to the height of his radio career at WSB in Atlanta, and to his television days in Columbus, Atlanta and Columbia, South Carolina.

We see him get into hot water and almost fired as a result of his investigative reporting at one station. We get a firsthand look at what goes on inside the walls of broadcast newsrooms, and how economics affects the way news is covered and reported. We see both sides of the organized labor movement as he, on one hand, represents his fellow members in a union contract negotiation with one station, and, on the other hand, when he is on the other side of the fence as a vice president of news when a union tries to organize the staff at another station.

Dick McMichael has seen the way broadcast news has changed from its inception until right now. He has seen entertainment and commercial considerations triumph over serious journalism. He has also suffered personal tragedies, losing his dear wife to a chronic disease, but he has also has children and grandchildren to enjoy. His story is important because television news affects every one of us everyday. Not just network television news, but the hundreds of local television news operations that reach and affect just as many or even more people.

He was honored by the Georgia Association of Broadcaster’s with the 2004 “GAB Broadcaster of the Year” Gabby Award.

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Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
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Dust Jacket Hardcover(B/W)
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E-Book
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