It all started when I was only in the third grade. I did a science project on weather. I always thought it was fascinating to look at the clouds, read thermometers, and wonder why the wind blows. I was also fascinated by watching the local TV weather forecasters try to predict and explain the upcoming weather.
Believe it or not, my parents were against me becoming a TV meteorologist. They told me there just weren't enough jobs out there to make a career of it. I went to a very small grade school in northern Illinois where there were only 110 students in grades 1-8. Actually, there were only 11 in my class, and as far as I can remember, I was the only one who had his mind set on what he wanted to do for a living. Who said dreams can't come true?
After graduating high school in Antioch, Illinois, my mind was still set on becoming a TV meteorologist. My parents, who were still against it, suggested I take up Chemistry, or even join the Navy. There aren't many schools that offer a degree in Meteorology, and going to an out-of-state school was something that would be very difficult for my parents to handle financially.
So I went to junior college for 2 years, then I transferred to Northern Illinois University. It's a school that has an excellent reputation for its Meteorology program, and one that offers its students a chance to audition for their cable TV news that airs every night. What an opportunity! By my senior year, I was the main on-camera Meteorologist for the "Dekalb Evening News". Even though I didn't my degree yet, it was great being called a Meteorologist by future journalists in the newsroom.
Schooling was tough. A lot of physics and calculus. It was even harder to get my first job in television. After sending out numerous tapes, and being rejected by just about everyone, I was able to land my first job with WSAU-TV in Wausau, Wisconsin, as weekend Meteorologist. That was the break I needed.
I worked in Wausau only six months, before I took a weekend job at WOI-TV in Des Moines, Iowa. Two years later, I got the big call to come here to Dallas. I've been at KDFW for more than 30 years, and I've loved every minute of it. I can't think of a better place to live or work than here! In my spare time, I umpire baseball -- that's something I've done for almost 20 years. I'm qualified to umpire up to minor-league AA professional baseball, but I mostly call games for Pony and Mustang leaguers. If I weren't working in TV full-time, this would be my second career choice.
In my "other" spare time, I teach Meteorology at several colleges and universities in the area. It's nice being on the other side of the desk for a change.
I am also a Ham Radio operator, with a technician license. My call sign is N5OJT, and you can usually find me on Weather RACES Nets across the area, during severe weather.
I live in beautiful Cedar Hill. I'm also a big animal lover, with a black lab, 2 cats (one which weighs 32 pounds) and a large parrot.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for watching!
KDFW FOX 4
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