Tom Wills

Anchor

Published On: Oct 19 2011 12:58:05 PM EDT   Updated On: Oct 24 2011 08:15:00 PM EDT

Tom Wills joined Channel 4 in 1975 and has co-anchored Jacksonville's highest rated evening newscasts for 40 years.

Before coming to Jacksonville, Tom was a reporter at WTOP radio and WTOP-TV in Washington.

While there, Tom covered events such as the Martin Luther King assassination riots, Bobby Kennedy's funeral, the Supreme Court hearing on the Pentagon Papers, the Watergate break-in and President Richard Nixon's departure from office. He also worked as a part-time instructor at American University, teaching news reporting.

Since moving to WJXT, Tom has had the pleasure of interviewing and/or meeting every president since Jimmy Carter.

“During the 11 years I lived and worked in the nation’s capital the closest I ever got to a president was the day I was assigned to stake out the White House theater during the Six Day War in 1967 in case LBJ decided to come there to make a statement. He didn’t," Tom said.

Tom says the favorite part of his job is that it offers a new experience every day. Tom's enthusiasm and hard work have earned him two Florida Emmys, and he shares two Columbia Dupont awards for documentary reporting.

Like many other broadcast journalists, Tom also has some moments he would rather not remember. One happened while he was anchoring the weekend news dressed head to toe in bright yellow.

"I didn't think it was embarrassing at the time, but looking back, it was," he said.

Tom has many outside interests. His favorite book is "Sermon on the Mount" by Emmett Fox and his favorite movie is the Oscar-winning "Dances With Wolves."

He is also an avid sports fan. He enjoys watching the Pittsburgh Pirates and Steelers, the Florida Gators football and all college basketball.

A Pittsburgh native, Tom has a journalism degree from American University. He and his wife, Gina, have three grown children and are now the proud grandparents of Adele and Jack.

"Grandchildren are the dessert of life!" Tom said.

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