Special Assignment

KATV has consistently provided viewers with interesting Arkansas-based stories even if it means extensive and difficult travel. Here are a few examples of special assignment reports over the years that required complicated logistics and sometimes encountering dangerous situations.

  • Arkansas to Aviano May-98 - 18:33

    The Balkan War extended into the late 1990s with an air was over Kosovo. NATO forces were staged at Aviano Air Force Base in northern Italy under the command of Arkansas native General Wesley Clark. Some of the troops stationed there were from Little Rock Air Force Base. KATV’s Karen Fuller, photographer Tim Hamilton and producer Randy Dixon filed reports from the air base and from NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. The result was a letter writing campaign to airmen at Aviano AFB from elementary school students in Arkansas.

  • Bosnia-A Mission of Hope September-93 - 13:30

    War raged in the Balkan region of the world during the 1990s. A group of female counselors, led by an Arkansan, bravely traveled through Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina to tend to the thousands traumatized by the atrocities of war. KATV reporter/anchor Gina Kurre, photographer Larry Potter and producer Randy Dixon accompanied members of NOVA, the National Organization for Victims’ Assistance, to tell their story. The result was this Emmy Award winning series which aired in March of 1993.

  • Butterfly Hill February-99 - 6:08

    Julia “Butterfly” Hill , an Arkansas native, is an environmental activist is best known for having lived in a 200-foot-tall, approximately 1000-year-old California Redwood tree for 738 days between December 10, 1997 and December 18, 1999. Hill lived in the tree she named Luna to prevent loggers from cutting it down. KATV reporter Justin Acri, photographer Scott Munsell and producer Randy Dixon traveled to Eureka, California, climbed a mountain and scaled the tree by a single rope to meet the nature advocate. This Emmy Award winning report aired in February of 1999

  • Chance of a Lifetime May-98 - 8:32

    Like many institutes of higher education around the country, Harding University in Searcy hosts students on campuses abroad. Established in 1980, Harding University in Florence (HUF) was the first of the University’s international programs. HUF students live in a 15th century villa southwest of Florence. In 1998, KATV’s anchor/reporter Karen Fuller, photographer Tim Hamilton and producer Randy Dixon traveled to Italy to file reports on the European campus.

  • Nepal February-01 - 14:44

    Winrock, International is an Arkansas-based non-profit organization that works worldwide with impoverished countries bringing aid to those in need. Many of the programs are agricultural in nature and volunteers are enlisted to lend their talents. That was the case with Mountain View native Ed Levi who traveled to Nepal to teach his unique skill: beekeeping. This series of reports was prepared by reporter Steve Powell, photographer Tim Hamilton and producer Randy Dixon.

  • Romanian Orphans November-95 - 16:45

    The Romanian Revolution started in the late 1980s and ended with the execution of longtime Romanian Communist dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu after 42 years of Communist rule. Freedom from Communist rule presented its own set of economic and social hardships. One result was the closure of state-run orphanages across the country. Thousands of children were left homeless to fend for themselves. A church-based organization came to the aid of some children by providing a safe place to live. KATV reporter/anchor Chris May, photographer Scott Munsell and producer Randy Dixon followed a retired Arkansas couple to Eastern Europe to tell their story of hope for the youth of Romania.

  • Thailand Coffee February-01 - 7:53

    Raboo Rodgers is an unique individual. The Arkadelphia native is an author of several young adult novels who, with his wife Becky, packed up and moved to Bangkok, Thailand. He continued to write and she taught English at the American University. When he grew tired of writing, Rodgers decided to open a business and produce gourmet coffee. That is quite a gamble considering they are in a country that prefers to drink tea. Reporter Steve Powell, photographer Tim Hamilton and producer Randy Dixon tell his story.

  • Tornado Chasers April-92 - 8:18

    Norman, Oklahoma is home to the University of Oklahoma, Norman where the National Weather Center (NWC) experts study the Earth’s atmosphere and train future meteorologists. KATV’s Chief Meteorologists Ned Perme collaborated with NWC staff to determine the best weekend for possible tornadic activity. Easter weekend of 1992, Ned Perme, photographer Sandy King and producer Randy Dixon teamed up with professional “tornado chasers” to study and document severe weather.

  • Winrock's War on Drugs October-99 - 16:17

    Winrock International, an Arkansas-based non-profit organization, provides solutions to some of the world’s most complex social, agricultural and environmental challenges. In the 1990s, Peruvian farmers in the interior jungles of Peru were cultivating Coca plants to provide local drug lords with a product to make cocaine. The mission of Winrock staff members was to teach Peruvians to grow crop alternatives like coffee or pineapples. Reporter Steve Powell, photographer Tim Hamilton and producer Randy Dixon told this Emmy Award winning story in November of 1999.

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