Stewart Ledbetter, our Senior Reporter, is a veteran of regional media, with most of that here at NewsChannel 5.
Stewart edited his high school paper, volunteered at WRUV-FM while a student majoring in economics at the University of Vermont, and wound up as station news director. He next joined WJOY-AM and WQCR-FM (now WOKO) in South Burlington, Vermont's leading radio stations, and anchored 15 daily morning drive newscasts daily.
Stewart joined WPTZ-TV as city hall reporter, later covering the state capital. He was promoted to Burlington Bureau Chief in 1987, was in 1989 became co-anchor of the 6 p.m. news. Throughout the 1990s he served at WPTZ's News Director, a decade in which he launched the region's morning and Sunday newscasts and one of the nation's very first TV newscasts streamed live on the Internet.
As the millennium approached, Stewart wanted to return to "the street" telling stories. He's covered the major political developments of the last two decades, from the civil union struggle to the battle over nuclear power, the NH presidential primaries and the remarkable Jeffords US Senate defection. He traveled the country during the 2003-04 election cycle reporting on Howard Dean's campaign for President and from the Democratic National Convention.
Stewart is also longtime contributor to Vermont Public Television, producing documentaries and appearing on its signature program, "Vermont This Week." In January 2007, he took over as moderator for that program.
Through the years, Stewart has been honored with 20 first-place awards from the Vermont and New York Associated Press, and the NY Broadcasters Association. He created "Champlain 2000," an environmental series honored with a regional EMMY, and is past-president of the New York AP Broadcast Association. Stewart has also received the Distinguished Service Award from the Associated Press.