She spent 45 years covering news in Omaha, 31 leading the Hearst ABC affiliate’s newsroom.
After 45 years in journalism and 31 years of leading the newsroom at Hearst’s ABC affiliate KETV Omaha, Neb., Rose Ann Shannon has decided to retire effective Feb. 28.
Shannon’s career began just a few years prior to the Omaha tornado of 1975. She said that firsthand experience covering such a devastating storm helped form her view of the importance of local broadcast journalism and the power and responsibility that comes with it.
According to KETV, “Integrity-first journalism is non-negotiable in her newsroom and it’s that leadership and mindset that has lead the KETV news product to the No. 1 position in every newscast. Market size is only a number to her and she fully expected the quality of a KETV newscast to challenge a top 10 market because that is the kind of journalism Omaha deserves. Every newscast on KETV ranks as a top 10 rated newscasts in the top 100 markets of ABC affiliates, with the 10 p.m. leading the pack at No. 1.”
Included among the hundreds of awards KETV has received throughout her tenure are:
- Two National RTDNA Edward R. Murrow Awards (2014, 2015)
- Six RTDNA Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards (2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
- Five Heartland Regional Emmy Awards (1999, 2007, 2008, 2014, 2015, 2017)
Shannon was inducted into the Omaha Press Club Hall of Fame in 2012, the University of Nebraska Omaha School of Journalism Hall of Fame in 2016, and the Nebraska Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2016. In addition to her work at KETV, she helped lead a relentless multi-year challenge to allow cameras in Nebraska courtrooms, resulting in more transparent and impactful coverage of criminal court cases in Omaha.
KETV President-GM Ariel Roblin said: “I have an enormous amount of respect Rose Ann. She never pretended to have all the answers, but in every moment of her career she never stopped pursuing them. She helped launch dozens of careers both in top anchor positions at KETV as well as other Hearst Television stations and networks. The greatest gifts she gave KETV are the leaders she helped foster in every corner of our newsroom.”
Shannon said: “From the very first minute I walked into that television newsroom as a reporter 45 years ago, I could never imagine myself doing anything else. I think what we do is very important and I will never stop fighting for the public’s right to know.”