|Occupation||Broadcast journalist (1975-Present)|
Ross Becker is a journalist who primarily works in television, radio or digital. He is currently president and CEO of TvNewsmentor.com which is dedicated to growing and mentoring talent. Most recently he was also the news director at KMIR-TV in Palm Desert, California.
Becker began his career in broadcasting in 1975 as a reporter at WFRV-TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin, before moving in 1977 to WTHR-TV in Indianapolis as a weekend anchor and field reporter. He then moved to KCBS-TV (then-known as KNXT) in Los Angeles in 1980 as a reporter, eventually becoming head of the Investigative Team and weekend anchor, as well as host of a short-lived 7 p.m. newscast. He received three Emmys for coverage of the Cerritos plane crash, and Southern California windstorms. He also received six Golden Mike Awards and the AP Mark Twain Award for news writing. During his tenure at KCBS, he also served two years as President of the Radio/TV News Association of Southern California. In 1990, Becker moved on to KCOP-TV to anchor the station's only newscast, replacing Warren Olney. At KCOP he received an Emmy Award for coverage of the Reginald Oliver Denny beating which started the L.A area riots.
In 1995, Becker quit KCOP, complaining about "sold-out, disgusting, tabloid" journalism in Los Angeles. In January 1996 Becker was hired as a freelance journalist and conducted a 90-minute interview with O.J. Simpson. It was the first interview with Simpson following his acquittal on murder charges. The interview was controversial at the time because it was distributed as a videotape for sale instead of airing on "free" television or cable. During the interview Becker agreed not to ask about Simpson's children, finances, or the then-pending civil lawsuit, however he disclosed this at the beginning of the interview and ultimately ended up questioning him about those subjects. In the video, Simpson blamed people "in Faye Resnick's circle" for the murder and accused Mark Fuhrman of planting evidence related to Simpson's guilt. Many television stations and the National Enquirer, which printed many details about the trial, refused to carry advertising for the video. Becker himself later said that Simpson was lying during the video.
After conducting the interview, Becker decided to take a break from big city television news. Becker and his wife, Linda, purchased WIEL, WKMO-FM, and WRZI-FM in Elizabethtown, Kentucky in 1995. He sold the stations to Commonwealth Broadcasting in 2000 and jumped back into the broadcast news business when he accepted a position as an anchor for MSNBC in 2002. Later that year, he returned to local news when he joined KTNV-TV in Las Vegas as its evening anchor. Becker left KTNV in December 2004 to "pursue other opportunities". He returned to Los Angeles in 2005 as a freelance reporter for KNBC before being hired full-time. He left KNBC at the end of 2006 to join KTVX-TV in Salt Lake City, Utah, as an evening anchor. He left the station on December 31, 2009 and joined KUSI-TV in San Diego. At KUSI he was a featured reporter and co-anchor of the 11 p.m. newscast. At the end of 2016, Becker left KUSI for KMIR in Palm springs.
Becker also has a mentoring website, www.tvnewsmentor.com, helping them prepare and improve their skills in broadcast journalism. Becker is the immediate past president of the Board of Directors of APTRA, the Associated Press TV and Radio Association which serves 12 western states as a liaison with the Associated Press.
- Johnston, Andrew. "Ross Becker - News Director". Retrieved 2017-07-29.
- "Kcbs News Anchors Set". 29 November 1986 – via LA Times.
- BROW, RICK DU (25 September 1990). "Olney, Rutledge Out as KCOP Anchors : Television: Ross Becker and Kim Devore have been named as replacements. Rutledge will leave the station, Olney may stay on" – via LA Times.
- Weinstein, Steve. "He's Had Enough of `Sold-Out' TV News." Los Angeles Times, Aug. 3, 1995. Page 1.
- H-Net Multimedia Reviews: Drew Philip Halevy on The O.J. Simpson Interview Videotape
- BRAXTON, GREG (11 January 1996). "Hype Begins as Simpson Video Is Set to Be Released" – via LA Times.
- "Tuesday shorts - LA Observed".
- "University Journal - Newsmakers".