Monday, June 30, 2008

Retired = Successfully Unemployed!

Today, my husband is retiring from the news business. Wow.  For over 35 years - since his freshman year in college - he has worked in broadcasting.  While still a student at Xavier
 University in Cincinnati, he worked in both the radio and television stations of the university.  While a junior at Xavier, he started working at WKRC in Cincinnati.  Eventually, he became a 
news producer at WBNS-TV in Columbus, Ohio (left).  It was during his time there - almost 31 years ago - that I joined him on his journey.

When Ted Turner decided to start CNN Headline News (then called CNN2)  in the early 80s, we moved to Atlanta to be part of that adventure.  For almost three years, Michael produced a number of shows on Headline News before moving to CNN to become executive producer of Week In Review.  He stayed there for a year until we moved back to Columbus when he was named assistant news director at WTVN (now WSYX).  Eager, however, to run his own shop, he accepted a position at KVBC-TV (right) in Las Vegas in 1987.  We lived in Las Vegas until our move to Nashville in 1995.

In a business where the average news director stays only about 2 years or so - either because the owner or GM wants to make a change or because the ND wants a new opportunity - Michael has been a bit different, staying in Las Vegas eight years and Nashville 13.  He's had the opportunity to move on and up,  in the past 10 years, but he always decided that it was more important to stay with a good company and good staff at NewsChannel5. I can tell you that while he is proud of the fact that he took both stations to the top of the ratings war, he  has always been most proud of having great people in his newsrooms.  The awards that NewsChannel5  won over the years is proof of this - local Emmys (over 70), national Emmys, a duPont, a Peabody, Murrows, AP and IRE awards.  (The photo at the top of this post is from an Emmy dinner when he won his second of four regional Emmys for News Excellence.).

In May, his company offered employees 55 and older (for which he just qualifies) a great incentive to retire early.  After a month of researching and debating the pros and cons involved in retiring this young, he surprised everyone by accepting it.  He says that I have put up with his hours (leaving the house 6:30 am and coming home at 7 pm or later) and work schedule (no vacations during ratings months of February, May, July or November), and he wants to spend more time with me (He doesn't know what he's in for.).  

Michael has always loved his job . . . always loved going to work.  I am proud of him, his dedication, his passion, his spirit and his good heart and have loved him for all of those reasons and more.  I know he's going to miss the newsroom, but they will survive without him, and he will survive without them.  As he ends this journey, he begins another one which, we both know, will bring a lot of excitement, change, and adventure.

Congratulations, dear, on your retirement.  You deserve it!


Eki Qushay Akhwan said...

Dear Chris,
Thank you for returning the visit and the thoughtful comment you made on my blog.

Congratulations and best wishes to you both on the new exciting journey of post retirement. I'm sure you and your husband have stores of exciting plans ahead.

Greetings from Bandung.

USelaine said...

Congrats to both of you, and best wishes on the second half of your adventure together!

Ineke said...

What a loving post!
I would have grabbed the opportunity too, but i am really wondering how your husband will go along with all this spare time. Something tells me he will quickly fins something else :)

Hyde DP said...

good luck

I'm so busy these days I sometimes wonder how I ever found the time to go to work!

quinttarantino said...

Apreciei imenso este "post".
Muito interessante e mostra bem o quanto amas o teu marido.
Uma vida muito interessante a que ele levou.
Está na hora de novos desafios!

Jim said...

I see why your son is town now. Congrats on retirement. Great post for your husband, thanks for letting us enjoy it. Are y'all scared, excited or both?

Olivier said...

félicitation pour la carrière de ton mari, il a su faire les bons choix pour son travail et sa vie. Alors bonne retraite, et il faut en profiter (un voyage en europe ?). un très beau texte.

congratulations to the career of your husband, he was able to make the right choices for his work and life. So good retirement, and you should take advantage of (a trip to europe?). a beautiful text.

Denton said...

Congratulations Michael. Best wishes to you and Chris in your next adventure. You will have to let us know how retirement goes.

Chris he is a lucky man to have such a wonderful wife.

Abraham Lincoln said...

You really do have a right to be proud of Michael and his journey through life loving his work.

Actually, if you love your work then you never have had a job. Which is what so many people never really learn how to understand.

And there are so many people who will not put one foot in front of the other foot for fear of failure. I have always been one to give up security in favor of something on my own or doing something different because I would sure hate to walk up to St Peter and tell him I pulled a punch press handle all my life and never took time to smell the roses.

I think you guys will get along fine in your retired years as long as you learn how enjoy it without trying to "feel" employed.

I have been retired since I have up teaching in 1977. I love it. I love life.

Abraham Lincoln
Brookville, Ohio happened naturally.

Jen, aka ChinaMom2005 said...

Congrats to both of you. What a great post about your husband's career. Good luck in enjoying the future togather.

Halcyon said...

I just went to a retirement party on Friday and today there is another party for someone at my work. (Although these two people are at the more "traditional" retirement age). It seems like this is the season to stop working. :)

Anyway, hope the next party of your journey is filled with happiness and fulfillment!

Jack and Joann said...

Happy Retirement!
My husband enjoyed working as a government accountant for 32 years but at the early age of 55 he retired in 2000. If you retire early, you are still young enough to make major lifestyle changes. Enjoy your husband's early retirement. I think too many people wait too long to retire then die shortly after retiring because they were not young enough in spirit to make the transition.

And your heading is so true: "retired = successfully unemployed!" I feel most sorrowful for those folks who have thru no fault of their own worked many years but lost their retirements because of unfortunate economic events. For instance, Enron employees and United Airlines pilots who lost all or most of their retirements.

And since you are retired and have time to read I invite you to my blog. Today's post is about the Smithsonian's Annual Folklife Festival on the mall in D.C. which Jack and I attended yesterday.

Snapper said...

Chris, that is the sweetest post I've ever read on a photoblog. And it's also a very sweet photo. And of course it also reminds me of watching Chris Clark and company on Channel 5 News when I lived in Tennessee. Congrats!

smilnsigh said...


This is your big news! Yeaaaaaa...

It can be the beginning of a fun and rewarding part of life. And I hope he has activities, to put his interest in. My husband worried about life-after-retirement. But he's been very happy with it.

In fact, doing the things he has loved for a lifetime, as hobbies... keeps him just as busy {maybe more so} than when he was working. :-)

My best wishes to the both of you, as you begin this new adventure.

'Miss' Mari-Nanci

ken mac said...

great homage!

crittoria said...

Congratulations! I hope he enjoys his retirement and gets to spend lots of time with you (And your son while he is home!). This is a wonderful post, Chris! Your words and photos show your love and pride in your husband.

Knoxville Girl said...

Congratulations to you both - this opens up a whole new dimension of opportunities to investigate. I hope you will keep blogging, where ever you travel.

ken mac said...

hi chris, thanks for visiting my site! Yes, I scribble for a few music magazines, remix, modern drummer, downbeat, etc....thanks for the dog pics too

D said...

Congratulations to your husband. What an outstanding career. How exciting to be starting a new chapter so young! Best wishes on a well deserved retirement.

Ms. Hays said...

Quite a career - Congratulations!!!

Ming the Merciless said...

Congratulations on the retirement.

Tell your husband, I want to be "happily unemployed" too.

Lynette said...

Yippee-yi-yea-yoh (or however you spell it) for this totally splendid news. It was well worth the wait to find out what it was!

Mo said...

Congrats! I'm so happy for you both. What a very nice tribute to Mike! Life is an adventure you're both getting ready for the next big adventure!
Wishing you both all the best!

Virginia said...

I've been retired for 4 weeks and am having a ball. Make time for all the things you said you wanted to do but didn't have time for. I made a long list and am checking them off one by one. Something tells me you two will do just fine. Congratulations.

Ham said...

Best wishes for a long and happy retirement!

Felicia said...

Congratulations! The fun has just begun - I hope that you've had one great week so far. I wish I was close to retirement, but it is a long long way away.