George Howell, native Austinite and Texas ex, was the crime reporter at KXAN TV (NBC) who blossomed into a go-to anchor from January, 2001 through July, 2004. Then, he headed to the northwest and disappeared from Austin screens, but not out of mind. Some at the TV station joked that George was McNabb’s other son. I considered that a nice compliment. I think my son did too.
In Seattle Howell’s life took several turns. He married and settled some. He was a reporter/anchor for KOMO TV (ABC), and later did freelance work for KIRO TV and KCTS TV (PBS). He also started George Howell Media. Where’s George Howell now? Not in Seattle.
About three weeks ago He and wife Khristian climbed in the car and drove diagonally across the country where Howell had accepted a position at Atlanta powerhouse WSB-TV (ABC) doing day-to-day big market news again. “We are really excited about being in Atlanta; we've been here for about two weeks now,” Howell said.
“I started work this week,” he continued. “I am absolutely loving WSB!” Knowing George I easily see why he loves the station. “The station is great! WSB remains the 800 pound gorilla of the Atlanta market, and I believe it's because the people here know what they're all about. The focus is on 'hard news', and enterprise stories - no gimmicks, or self-promotional stunts masqueraded as news, like some other places. Hard news, plain and simple, and that's what I'm all about!”
It’s exciting to know that there are still stations still doing “Big J” journalism—hard news and enterprise stories. And, yes, that’s Howell’s profile.
“Hot-lanta” is a good fit for another reason other than TV too. It is Howell’s spouse Khristian’s home town. One aspect, however, is taking some getting used to. “We're still getting used to the weather... as you can imagine, Atlanta is a bit warmer than Seattle! We're really happy about the move!” I asked George what was the temperature in Atlanta at that moment? “About 90,” he said.
It was 103-degrees here, but as the American-Statesman’s John Kelso said in the Sunday (July 5th) newspaper, “100 is the new 90.”
© Jim McNabb, 2009