John Callaway


Media, Political

Full Bio

SPEECH TOPICS - Politics - "Problem Society" examines the complexity in which legislatures, politicians, business people and citizens currently operate. There are so many issues and so much information it has become very difficult for people to be effective in their roles. His insight and background lends useful perspective to his audiences; helping them to better understand the way things work. - News Media - Moderator ABOUT JOHN CALLAWAY John D. Callaway is a journalist for all seasons. In his more than 45 years of professional journalism, he has excelled as a broadcast executive, radio and television program interviewer and host, news anchor, reporter and analyst, documentary producer and narrator, magazine writer, print columnist, book author, university teacher and fellowship program administrator, national lecturer and moderator and, most recently, stage performer and writer. Callaway is perhaps best known for his work as moderator of WTTW's Chicago Tonight news interview and analysis program which he hosted from its inception in l984 to June, l999. After stepping back from that full-time position, he is now Host and Senior Editor of WTTW's Chicago Stories program, the critically acclaimed Monday evening documentary and interview series that won three Emmys in its first season. In the latest chapter of his storied career, Callaway starred in John Callaway Tonight, an autobiographical one-man show he wrote and performed which was given its world premier by the Pegasus Players Theater in Chicago in March-April, 2001. The Chicago Tribune described the show as "smooth, skillful and surprisingly touching." The show is being presented again in April/May at the Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Callaway's broadcast journalism work has been honored with more than one hundred awards, including the coveted Peabody Award and twelve Emmys. A drop-out from Ohio Wesleyan University who hitchhiked to Chicago with 71 cents in his pocket in l956, he is the recipient of nine honorary doctorate degrees, including those from Northwestern University, Loyola University and the John Marshall College of Law. John Callaway began his career as a police reporter for the famed City News Bureau of Chicago. He then joined CBS in Chicago in 1957 as a reporter/documentary producer for WBBM Radio and WBBM TV. At CBS he distinguished himself with his coverage of the American civil rights movement, winning seven national awards for his 13-part radio documentary series entitled, The House Divided". In l968, as News Director at WBBM, he helped develop that station's all-news format and later that year was appointed Vice President of CBS Radio in New York to implement the development of all-news formats at CBS stations across the nation. In l973 he returned to Chicago to serve as the lead reporter for the new WBBM-TV newsroom and mini-cam approach to local television news. In l974, he joined WTTW where he began his 27-year career in public television as the host of the station's first nightly news program. His national PBS series have included John Callaway Interviews, Dilemmas Of Disarmament and Campaigning On Cue. In addition to his work at WTTW, John Callaway was also the founding Director of the William Benton Fellowships in Broadcast Journalism Program at the University of Chicago. He is the author of the best selling book of essays, The Thing of It Is. His singing stints have included benefits for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Callaway and his wife, Sandy, live in Chicago.

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