The 2014 Elon University graduate was honored as an outstanding news producer by the Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
If you had told Jeff Ackermann ’14 a decade ago that he’d earn an Emmy Award, he wouldn’t have believed you.
“It’s not like I’m in this job for the awards, but I’d be lying if I said I’m not honored to get this award,” said Ackermann in a recent interview with TAP into Livingston.
The 2014 Elon University alumnus recently earned an Emmy Award from the Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, presented during a virtual ceremony on Oct. 4. This was Ackermann’s third Emmy nomination, and his first victory.
Ackermann currently serves as a news producer at WUSA 9 in Washington, D.C., but spent the previous two years with WCPO 9 in Cincinnati producing the station’s 11 p.m. newscast. Based on a broadcast reel of his 2019 segments, including local coverage of a mass shooting in Dayton, Ackermann was selected as the winner in the competition’s News Producer category.
While the broadcast journalism major has experience in front of the camera as a field producer, as well as in the newsroom as an anchor, Ackermann found his true calling in TV production.
“There’s a lot that goes into producing TV news, so you kind of have your hands dipped in a bunch of different things every day,” Ackermann told TAP into Livingston. “You come in with a blank slate, and then you have eight hours to work and build a newscast in time for show time and then hope everything goes well.”
Just a few months after he transitioned into his role in D.C., the coronavirus pandemic changed how many workplaces across the country functioned, and WUSA 9 was no exception. Ackermann said in addition to adapting to a new newsroom, the experience gave him a greater respect for local journalism.
“I’ve never felt like my job is more important than it is right now,” Ackermann told TAP into Livingston. “We’re at a time right now where facts matter and the truth matters, and people are really turning to local journalism to know what they need to know – especially during this pandemic.”