Through working 24-hour shifts, holidays and weekends, Joe Roetz Jr., KLN '07 always believed he would succeed.
"Overall it takes commitment and a lot of sacrifice." Roetz turned a communications degree into an Emmy award as well as national and international recognition.
After graduating, Roetz pursued a career in broadcast journalism.
"My dad always had the news on in our house—we were a news family—the Sunday paper always sprawled across the table," he said.
Since his first job in Syracuse, New York to a subsequent post in Fort Myers, Florida and in Miami today, Roetz has covered an array of topics. His clips include coverage of deadly hurricanes in Florida, President Barack Obama's first trip to the Florida Everglades and the history behind the sunken U.S.S. Mohawk off the coast of Florida. In 2014, he received an Emmy for his coverage of a Florida family who relocated to Colorado seeking the use of medical marijuana as an alternative treatment to their son's seizures.
At Temple, Roetz recalls interning for NBC10 and other broadcast media stations throughout the city. He said he grew close with professors who remained actively involved in the field.
Scott Gratson, director of the Communication Studies program, encouraged Roetz to take advantage of the international media and communications program in London, and thus was one of his inspirations while in undergrad.
"It was always a pleasure working with Joe in the Communication [Studies] office," Gratson said. "He was known for constantly smiling, being utterly friendly, and was a positive force within the program."
Within months of receiving his degree, Roetz secured a position as an assignment editor at Fox 29 in Philadelphia. During this one-year experience, he shadowed many of the station's senior anchors, often attending recordings and eventually acquiring a resume tape.
"Never have a sour attitude and always be willing to learn," said Roetz. His heavy networking led to connections with news anchors across the country and to other positions in media.
He has received an Edward R. Murrow Award, recognition honoring outstanding achievements in electronic journalism, and multiple Associated Press Awards. He is now one of four main anchors for 7News in Miami. He lives with his wife and two daughters and enjoys the occasional skydive.
"I'm proud to have seen his dedication and bravery during the coverage of the Florida hurricanes and suspect nothing but more of the same great work in his future," Gratson said. "Bravo, Joe! Carry on!"