WKYT News @ 5, 530, 6 & 11PM
"I've worked at WKYT for half my life, and nearly every day is different," says Sam Dick, co-anchor of WKYT's evening newscasts.
He was born in Lexington during the first years Central Baptist Hospital started delivering babies. Both his parents had small town roots. His mother, Rose, was first generation Italian, and grew up in Centerville, Iowa. Sam's father, David, was raised in Bourbon County, mostly in North Middletown and Paris. "As a boy I remember coming to Central Kentucky, and visiting a small farm on Plum Lick that my father loved dearly." Sam's father eventually moved the family to Washington, D.C., where he started his network reporting job at CBS. Later the family moved to Atlanta, and Sam graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in Journalism.
Sam never forgot his dad's love of the Bluegrass, and after graduating from college returned to Kentucky for his first news reporting job at WKYT in 1979. He wasn't in news long before he made the move to co-host of "PM Magazine." The 30-minute, early evening program was a big hit with Kentucky viewers every weeknight at 7. "It was an incredible experience. We did stories on white water canoeing, mountain climbing in West Va., cave exploring, the Dukes of Hazard visiting Hazard and so much more. It was a blast!"
Sam had a strong connection to television and telling stories. His father was a CBS Correspondent for 19years, and Sam grew up watching his father report from all over the Southeast. Sam says, "I have always enjoyed meeting new people with interesting stories to tell, and then using pictures to help tell that story." After "PM Magazine," Sam took his storytelling to New York and worked as a general assignment reporter for WCBS. Later he went to Orlando, Fla., and specialized in health, consumer, and investigative reporting at WESH. Then one day the phone rang. WKYT General Manager Ralph Gabbard had an opening on the anchor desk. "I was thrilled at the opportunity. I felt like I had tasted the larger markets, but Lexington was home." Sam started his second stint at WKYT on Labor Day 1987, and has been here ever since. Among his favorite trips on the job: covering the Final Four trips with the Wildcats in 1996 (New York City), 1997 (Indy), 1998 (San Antonio), and 2011 (Houston). "I also relished the trip I took with Coach Cal to Haiti. It was eye opening to be in an already impoverished country that was now dealing with a disaster. Washing the feet of the children receiving new shoes with the Coach was a humbling experience."
Sam says the saddest, most gut-wrenching day came when Comair Flight 5191 went down. "The phone rang at about 6:30 that morning. I just happened to be up, and it was my news director. He said very calmly, you need to come in, we think there's been a plane crash. I went on the air at 7 a.m., and stayed on the air most of the day and into the evening. As the hours went by, I realized it would be one of the most important stories I would report on for this community. I tried to be as honest and respectful as I could."
Sam is the winner of numerous awards including four regional Emmy Awards and two Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards. He is also an Eagle Scout.
Away from the camera, Sam has been married to the love of his life, Noelle, for 16 years. He has three grown children, Sam III, Leah, and Christina, and a grandson, Sam IV. He and his wife have restored a century old home near downtown Lexington. They are also the owners of a small business called Swim Bike Run of Kentucky which helps multisport athletes. Sam is a triathlete, and has competed at the world and national levels. He and his wife are members of Central Christian Church.
"Lexington is home, and although I love to travel and visit new places, it's always reassuring returning to my Bluegrass home."