Faculty/Staff


 

 Melissa Gibbs

Manager, Broadcast News

 

Melissa Gibbs is an award-winning journalist who has worked for more than 17 years in television newsrooms across Utah. She is a graduate of Brigham Young University, where she earned a B.A. in broadcast journalism. She started her career at KBYU as a producer, anchor, and reporter for the student newscast.

She worked at ABC 4 as an assignment desk editor and associate producer then moved to FOX 13 News where she created, launched, and produced their mid-day newscast, Live at 11. Melissa then spent the rest of her television news career at KUTV 2News where she worked for 11 years. She produced the 10 p.m. and 5 p.m. newscasts and spent her last five years at the station as the executive producer of the morning show.

Melissa lives in Sandy with her husband, Trent who works as a communications technician for CenturyLink. They have two children. Their daughter, Lydia, plays soccer and their son, Brody, is a third degree black belt in Taekwondo. They also have a Maltese dog, Brutus. Melissa enjoys traveling, snowboarding, and has a love-hate relationship with running. She has completed two marathons and more than 50 half marathons.

 

 

 

Dale Cressmandale-cressman-150x210

Associate Professor

 

Born and raised in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, Dale Cressman came to the U.S. via a swimming scholarship from BYU. After his continued education, his love for the University brought him back to BYU. In the classroom, he provides engaging class discussion filled with animated detail and humor to teach BYU communications students. He served as Associate Chair of the Communications Department from 2010 until 2015; he was named Associate Director when the department became the School of Communications in 2015.

Dr. Cressman has worked as a television news producer in South Bend, Indiana; as an executive producer in Waco, Texas, and Salt Lake City; as a managing editor in Green Bay, Wisconsin; and as a line-up editor at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. In 1995, he produced the Emmy Award winning documentary “Russia: Hidden Memory.” He was a chief liaison for the Host Broadcaster during the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympic Games. In 2008, he produced BYU-TV’s worldwide coverage of President Hinckley’s funeral.

Dr. Cressman serves on editorial boards for three academic journals and has published articles in the Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, Journalism History, American Journalism, and the Journal of Children and Media. In 2009, his research on the history of Times Square was highlighted in the Columbia Journalism Review. He has also published book chapters, encyclopedia entries, and book reviews. Dr. Cressman served as program chair of the 2012 convention of the Broadcast Education Association. He is a past divisional chair for BEA and is currently the historian of the American Journalism Historians Association.

Before coming to BYU in 1993, he was an assistant professor and television news director at Lyndon State College in Vermont. He was an assistant teaching professor at BYU and news director of KBYU-TV and FM between 1993 and 1996. He earned a Ph.D. at the University of Utah in 2003. Before returning to BYU in 2000, he taught at Utah State University for three years.

He is married to Rebecca Cressman, a Salt Lake City broadcaster. They have three adult sons and a golden doodle.

 

 

 

Robert WalzWalz-Robert-01.jpg1-150x210

Associate Teaching Professor

 

Robert Walz is an associate teaching professor. He received a B.A. in broadcast journalism from BYU in 1982. Walz began teaching at BYU in 2002. He started his journalism career as the weekend anchor at KIVI television in Boise, Idaho. Walz moved back to Utah in 1984, working as a reporter and anchor at KSL-Television for 15 years. He has also worked for KTVX Channel 4.  Walz is currently a reporter for Utah’s ABC 4 News.

In 2004, Walz spent two days covering the destruction caused by hurricane Ivan in the Cayman Islands and the distribution of relief supplies sent by the LDS church. He did several live reports on irritable bowel syndrome and several more stories when he returned.  He also spent a week in Malawi, Africa collecting material for a project he is doing on the distribution of food to those starving due to drought in Africa. Later that year, Walz spent ten days in Peru during October following the distribution of wheelchairs by a Utah based humanitarian group. They also visited a remote village 75 miles down the Amazon River where the group built desks for a school. Part of the footage they shot aired on ABC 4 News.

 

 

 

John Searscomms_sears_john_2_compressed-150x187

Adjunct Instructor

 

John Sears graduated from BYU in 1974 with a degree in Broadcast and Film Production. He has spent over 30 years in broadcast journalism reporting, managing, consulting and mentoring journalists at local and network levels. He has been a television news director in Portland, Oregon and Orlando, Florida.  He has consulted television stations for Fox and Hearst-Argyle.

Before moving to Salt Lake, he was a Bureau Chief for CNN’s New Orleans bureau.  While there he directed network editorial coverage from the gulf coast region in the weeks and months after hurricane Katrina. He was executive producer of two projects that won a Peabody and other national awards. As a reporter and producer he won multiple state awards for documentaries, breaking news and best newscasts.

 

 

Alan NevesNeves-Alan-jpeg-150x210

Broadcast News Lab Operations Coordinator

 

Alan Neves is a Southern Utah University graduate in broadcast journalism. He also has a Master of Fine Arts from the University Of Utah, where he studied film and media arts, with an emphasis in documentary production.

He comes to BYU from KSL Television where he has worked for the past 23 years in a variety of assignments in storytelling, television news production, satellite truck operations, and others. Before that, he worked at KUTV News.

He is a 3 time Emmy winning photojournalist, and has covered news and documentary assignments in many places all over the world. He has had a role in 30+ documentaries over the years for KSL, and others as part of freelance efforts.

His favorite shooting location has been Jerusalem, with its unique religious influence and culture, past and present.