Betsy Blaney is the newest member of the KTTZ radio family. Here's a quick Q&A with our new "Inside Texas Tech" producer.
What brought you to KTTZ?
I’ve been an avid public radio and TV fan for as long as I can remember – decades, if I want to date myself. My outpost with The Associated Press was closed in December and I was laid off. As part of job searching, I spoke with Paul Hunton, general manager of Texas Tech Public Media, in early January 2017 because I loved KTTZ public radio and wondered if there might be a spot for a seasoned journalist. He told me I would be a good fit for the producer position if he could get funding for the position. He called me in April to tell me he’d gotten the funding.
How did you get into journalism?
When I was 10 years old, I had two dreams: to play tennis professionally and to compete at Wimbledon, and to work as a journalist for The Associated Press. I devoured newspapers and magazines beginning at 10 and played competitively throughout my childhood and into my late 20s. I always wanted to know what was going on in the world and to inform others of what I learned. Once I finished my competitive tennis career I began to pursue journalism. Beginning in 1991, I worked as a reporter and editor at a community newspaper, and a cops and courts reporter a big-city paper (in Fort Worth) before getting hired by the AP in 2000.
Reporter, mentor or person from whom you've drawn inspiration:
All my news and sports colleagues at the AP, really. But mostly the females. I was fortunate to have been picked to go cover the Olympics in London in 2012 and worked alongside so many great women (and men) sports writers there from whom I gained so much. I have always looked up to Christine Brennan as a sports columnist. Maggie Haberman is my new hero. In tennis, hands down I looked up to and modeled my game after Billie Jean King.
*Fun fact: Betsy served as a line judge in the historic "Battle of the Sexes" tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs held in 1973. Later, she recalled her experience in an article written for the AP.
Favorite part of radio and why?
I love how radio invites listeners to create their own images surrounding stories from sound. It engages listeners in a “hot” medium (reference to Marshal McLuhan definitions) and yet requires more focus from the listener than TV.