Candy Altman, whose stewardship of Hearst Television’s coverage of politics has helped the company earn a Peabody Award and nine consecutive USC Annenberg Walter Cronkite Awards, will retire this June from her role as the company’s vice president, news. The move caps a 35-year career at Hearst.
“Candy has been an important architect and voice of Hearst Television’s industry-leading news brand and commitment to community service,” said Hearst Television President Jordan Wertlieb, in making the announcement. “Her leadership in the formation of our award-winning Commitment initiative set an industry benchmark for political coverage by local television groups; her vision and dedication to investigative journalism have positioned Hearst stations as trusted destinations for viewers seeking accountability from their community leaders. More recently, her efforts in helping launch Hearst Television’s State of Addiction project to address the nation’s opioid crisis have exemplified her contributions to the important and nationally recognized work of local TV journalism.”
Altman became Hearst Television’s VP of news in 2001, working with the news departments of the company’s stations around the country and coordinating their political coverage.
In the years since, the station group’s political-news coverage earned a singular set of honors: It received the prestigious Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Political Journalism, granted biannually by the Norman Lear Center of the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication, each year the award has been given out since 2001; and it received a George Foster Peabody Award for coverage of the 2008 elections.
Also during this time, Altman, in collaboration with other station groups, led the establishment of a Producer Academy to help develop the next generation of TV journalists; the project helped to train more than 300 news producers and emerging TV news leaders.
“Candy may be most proud professionally of the lives she’s touched and the news leaders she’s helped to develop,” said Barbara Maushard, Hearst Television SVP of news. “Whether she’s executing on internal training programs for young journalists or lending her talents to various industry organizations, Candy placed great value on mentoring the future leaders of our industry. She also implemented our successful producer fellowship program — named for our mentor Fred Young, Hearst Television’s retired senior vice president, news, with whom she worked for most of her career. It’s no surprise that one of the first things Candy will do after she ‘retires’ is teach journalism leadership at Boston University in the fall.”
From 1993 to 2000, Altman was VP-news director at Hearst’s WCVB Boston, overseeing a 100-person news staff and guiding the planning and direction of the station’s overall news coverage at a time when the station won a Peabody as well as two national Edward R. Murrow Awards for Overall Excellence from the Radio and Television News Directors Association, among numerous other honors. She joined WCVB in 1983 as executive producer of the station’s 11 p.m. newscast, rising quickly through the ranks and serving as WCVB’s political unit director for the 1992 election campaign period.
Altman joined WCVB from WPRI Providence, R.I., where she was executive news producer. From 1979 to 1981, she held a variety of news-production positions at WPLG Miami. She began her career as a reporter at KOMU Columbia, Mo., where she later became an associate news producer.
Altman has served as VP of the Associated Press Broadcast Advisory Board, as a member of the National Advisory Board of the Poynter Institute, and as president of the ABC News Affiliate Advisory Board. She has served on the boards of several local charities including The Massachusetts 9/11 Fund and The Kids Clothes Club. She is a Trustee of the A-Plus Scholarship Fund at WCVB.
Altman graduated from the State University of New York at Cortland in 1977 and received a master’s degree in journalism in 1978 from the Missouri School of Journalism at the University of Missouri.