LOUISVILLE, Ky. (April 15, 2016) — Melissa Swan, one of Kentuckiana’s most trusted journalists and beloved television personalities, is announcing her retirement from WHAS11.
Swan has been a quintessential member of the WHAS11 family since coming aboard in 1985 as a general assignment reporter. Most recently, she’s been co-anchoring WHAS11News at 5 p.m. and WHAS11News at 6 p.m. while also reporting on stories that reflect WHAS11’s “On Your Side” mission.
“My career at WHAS11 has been an extraordinary gift,” said Swan. “It has opened doors and given me opportunities that, as a girl growing up in a tiny southern Indiana town, I never dreamed would be possible. WHAS11 has been a second home for my children and where I have forged friendships that will last a lifetime. I will miss my co-workers and our viewers immensely but at the same time I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life and other ways I can contribute to this incredible community we live in.”
Colleagues know Swan as an outstanding, hardworking journalist who has also given much of her time to charitable endeavors, WHAS11 community projects, and the WHAS Crusade for Children.
“Over the last 31 years, Melissa Swan has been the heart of WHAS11News. Her contributions to WHAS11 and to our community are beyond measure,” said Linda Danna, President and General Manager, WHAS11. “We have all benefitted from working with Melissa and we are grateful for the experience. Swan proves that one person can truly make a difference and she will be missed.”
“In a career which often means moving from city to city, it’s truly remarkable that Melissa chose to stay at WHAS11 for more than three decades,” said David Seals, Executive News Director at WHAS11. “It speaks to Melissa’s love and commitment to our community. From her work with WHAS Crusade for Children to Maryhurst, Melissa has touched so many lives in so many positive ways.”
Swan, an Indiana University graduate, started her career at WLEX in Lexington, Ky., before joining WHAS11.
Through the years, residents of Kentucky and Southern Indiana have relied on Swan for her knowledge, fairness, and down-to-earth approach to the news. However, Swan’s news coverage experience does not end at the Kentuckiana borders.
She has traveled the world to bring Kentuckiana viewers the stories unfolding in other states and other countries that affect their lives.
Swan’s reports from the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew brought home the stories of Kentuckiana residents volunteering in deplorable conditions to help the victims. Her reports from Korea told the stories of Kentuckiana men and women on the front lines when fears of nuclear activity were heightened. She has brought home the stories of Kentucky resident volunteers giving aid and comfort to orphans in several foreign countries. She reported from two Presidential inaugurations and covered the aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks in New York City, putting families in touch with loved ones in Kentuckiana.
Swan has won numerous Society of Professional Journalism Awards for her reporting. She has been awarded Regional Emmys and has also received international recognition for distinguished journalism from the International Association of Fire Fighters for a fascinating series that illustrates how to escape from a burning home and how to protect your family before the fire begins.
Swan is also tireless in her work for worthy causes. For many years, Swan has proudly served as the co-host of the WHAS Crusade for Children. Throughout the years, Swan has brought her audience the touching, compelling, and lifesaving stories of special needs children helped by the WHAS Crusade for Children. Swan also spends time making personal appearances and talking to groups that raise money for the Crusade.
She also volunteers her time and professional talents to several local non-profit organizations including Maryhurst, The Hopeful Hearts Foundation (assisting orphans in several foreign countries), and many other agencies that all consider Melissa an invaluable resource and friend.
Swan’s last day on WHAS11 will be Thursday, April 21. WHAS11 will celebrate Swan’s career with a series of special reports starting at 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 21.
WHAS11 is the ABC affiliate serving the Louisville, Kentucky television market. Owned by TEGNA Inc., WHAS11 has been broadcasting in Kentucky and Southern Indiana since 1950. WHAS11 is recognized for a rich history of journalistic excellence, award winning local programing, and a commitment to improve the communities it serves.