Kevin Rowson covered hundreds, if not thousands, of crime stories over 30-plus years on TV, including 22 years at 11 Alive.
Now he’s jumped over to the other side as a public affairs specialist at the FBI office in Atlanta.
“It’s a great transition for me from doing crime and law enforcement my whole career as a journalist to taking a step to the other side,” said Rowson, who began his job a month ago.
Rowson said special agents had been handling his job but they decided to hire a civilian so agents can focus on their primary jobs.
He left 11 Alive (WXIA-TV) as part of a buyout in April. “I’ve always had a back-up plan,’ he said. “I’ve always explored these kinds of opportunities.”
Rowson said he likes having set hours, knowing he’ll be home at a particular hour every night. And having worked nights for years, he’s had to adjust to a more normal schedule. “One nice thing is I was able to spend Labor Day weekend off and not have to fight or beg for the time off,” he said.
Rowson started in radio 40 years ago. He said he began on TV around 1984 in Charleston, S.C. before moving to New York. He came to Atlanta in 1994 at 11 Alive.
“I’m thankful for all the opportunities in journalism because quite frankly, it had a lot to do with why I got this job,” he said.
He will receive a Silver Circle Award for longevity in the broadcast business on Friday from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Southeast, along with former Fox 5 host Lisa Rayam.
Rowson said his most memorable story at 11 Alive was covering the 1996 Centennial Olympic Park bombing and the aftermath until Eric Rudolph was captured and imprisoned.
Donna Lowry, the long-time education reporter at 11 Alive, took the buyout as well. She recently nabbed a job handling public affairs for Cobb County public schools.
Keith Whitney, another reporter who took advantage of the buyout, has decided for now to enjoy his severance before moving on to his next job.
By RODNEY HO/ email@example.com, originally filed Thursday, September 8, 2016