Two of TJC’s alumni appear on KYTX CBS19 TV and in the Tyler Morning Telegraph on a regular basis.
Alumnus Doc Deason, the 5 p.m. meteorologist at CBS19, also has a spot on the Tyler paper’s weather page. Danny Mogle, one of the managing editors of the Tyler Morning Telegraph, works as the newspaper’s liaison with CBS19 news.
Deason transferred from TJC to Stephen F. Austin in the spring of ’93.
“TJC is obviously a spring board to other schools,” said Deason. “Transferring hours was not a problem. I felt well prepared by the time I got there [SFA].”
Deason said that it is important to have the opportunity to knock out the core classes first regardless of what school is chosen for a bachelor’s degree.
“Doc Deason was a fine student,” said James Wick, retired director of chemistry at TJC as well as Deason’s former chemistry instructor. Wick also taught Deason’s father back in the ’60s.
“I enjoy watching him [Deason] on TV. It brings back memories and it gives me the joy of seeing another of our TJC students succeed in his chosen profession.”
In the summer of 2002, Deason was the chief meteorologist at the NBC affiliate in Abilene.
“The weather is so much more dynamic out in West Texas compared to what we have here,” said Deason. “I probably worked more severe weather there in two years than I’ll see here in 20 years.”
Deason worked as the chief meteorologist at CBS19 in Tyler from 2004 to 2007. He works part-time at CBS19 now, doing the 5 p.m. newscast Monday through Friday. On Fridays, he also does the 6 p.m. and the 10 p.m. newscasts and fills in whenever he is needed. This schedule gives him time to work at his real estate office and to make it home for dinner.
Deason had background in radio prior to television. He said television is a great way to influence people, but there is a lot more to the imagination with radio.
Alumnus Mogle graduated from TJC in the spring of 1982 with an associate degree in journalism. He received his bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1984 and is presently working on a master’s degree in communication at the University of Texas at Tyler. He has worked at the Tyler Morning Telegraph for 26 years, and three years ago he became the paper’s liaison with CBS19.
Mogle said he takes a news story that the paper has covered but the station has not and writes a script for it in a question-and-answer format. He appears on the 6 p.m. news frequently.
In 2005, the paper won the award for the best breaking news coverage in the state. There was a shooting at the Tyler courthouse, and Mogle coordinated the coverage. The paper pulled every single person on staff to cover the story.
“It was kind of like our most crisis moment at the paper we’ve ever had to deal with, and we did very, very well,” said Mogle. “That’s the thing I’m really most proud of all of these years.”
Three years ago, Mogle also became an adjunct professor at TJC. He said he taps into his experience at the paper all the time.
“Getting up in front of the class and getting up in front of the camera and talking is not a whole lot different,” said Mogle.
Mogle said that the journalism program at TJC is structured almost exactly like it was when he attended. Professors Linda Ziegler and Blanche Prejean in the journalism department made an impact on Mogle. They had the students write for the newspaper and do all the stuff that he does now on the job — meet deadlines, run down sources, and pull the story together.
Mogle’s first students are now graduating from upper-division schools and have been successful at the next level.
“Professor Mogle inspired me by making me see that the workplace can be fun,” said Chantel Martin, one of Mogle’s previous students who is now a senior at UT Tyler as well as the web producer at CBS19. “He never discouraged his students, brought us down, or gave us anything he thought we couldn’t handle.”
Jarah Wright, another of Mogle’s former students, is a senior broadcast journalism major at the University of North Texas and was hired by the Frisco RoughRiders baseball team as their media-relations intern.
“Without all the writing experience and help from Professor Mogle, Professor Krantz, and Professor Jennische, I doubt I would be able to have had this opportunity,” said Wright. “I’m forever grateful to all three of them for helping me in this career path.”
Deason and Mogle are following the career path they began as students at TJC, and the Tyler area daily benefits from their ability to communicate and to inform.