Craig Cannon was born in Moses Lake, a small town in the state of Washington. Craig spent most of his formative years in California and Arizona. However, he did live in Pretoria, South Africa, almost four years, where his father and mother were missionaries from age 12 - 15.
Some of my best childhood memories come from those years in South Africa," he says. "I truly believe that the best education anyone can get, besides school, is to travel. It's a life-changing experience to learn about different cultures and meet so many wonderful people from all over the world."
Cannon says that his life really took on new meaning when he crossed the Arkansas River and settled in Fort Smith. He said it was the beginning of the best years of his life. Craig is celebrating 30 years with KHBS/KHOG-TV in 2013. Cannon came to KHBS/KHOG-TV in October 1983, as the main anchor and reporter for the then fledgling dual-station news operation.
"My main duties were confined to reporting and anchoring the evening news," he says. From the start -- Cannon says he was convinced the ownership/management at 40/29 were very serious about assembling a team of journalists and staff to make this station number one! The leader in the market serving the needs of the viewers in Northwest Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma.
Soon after arriving at the station Craig was named news director, and later became Vice-President and Director of News with the Hernreich Broadcasting Company. Although
Craig admits meeting the responsibilities of both the management and on-air talent duties was at times
challenging, to say the least, he was rewarded beyond his expectations. 40/29 for the first time in its history became the leading station in the market in 1984.
"That's one thing I can say without hesitation," he says. "At least I am fortunate enough to be one of those people in life that loves their job. Life is too short to do something you don't love."
At the end of 1998, Cannon decided to retire from his duties as News Director to spend more time with his family.
"After 12 years of working in a dual role, I feel I can now dedicate myself to my priorities: my spiritual life, my family and my career behind the anchor desk," he said. As many viewers know, Cannon has had a long struggle with an affliction known as Bell's palsy. Craig says that "that's one big reason this locality is so special to me. I can never adequately thank the many, many viewers who have supported me with their kindness, their letters of encouragement, and especially their prayers over the years."
says since his daughters Rachel and Ashley have grown up and left the house, those
moments are pretty special when he sees them now. However, he still
has two dogs he rescued at the shelter by his side all the time. "It's like having kids who
never grow up, and no matter what my mood is when I walk in the door, they
are so excited to see me that it just puts a smile on my face." Oh one more pet to mention -- his youngest daughter Rachel brought home a little kitty saying, "Dad, we have a cat now!" Craig responded, "We?" "You're moving to Nashville!"
spends his spare time playing golf and reading books --
especially biographies and inspirational themes. Plus he loves to travel just as much now as when he was a young boy. In fact he says to celebrate his 30 years at 40/29 -- he'd love to go back to South Africa soon and maybe even help out for a few weeks with a Mission there. He's also got Europe on his 'must-do' planner. "At least I can dream!", he says with a big smile.
Cannon graduated from Oral Roberts University with a Bachelor of Science in Communications in 1981. He then took jobs at KJRH-TV in Tulsa, KOAM-TV in Joplin and KTUL-TV in Tulsa before moving to 40/29.
E-Mail Craig here.
- Oral Roberts UniversityBroadcast Communications, 1978 - 1981Besides the basics my focus was centered on Broadcast Journalism classes. Also anchored Sports and News for the weekly ORU Newscasts on the school's in-house cable system. Internship at the local NBC affiliate KJRH-TV provided invaluable preparatory experience. With the life changing event of almost losing my life from that motorcycle wreck -- I gained a little maturity and for the first time had to 'hit the books' to make the grade. NO shortcuts due to sports anymore. It was pass... or fail time in my life! Only with the help of a lot of prayers and hard work did I pass. In the process -- I grew up and for the first time in my young life 'gained the insight needed' to choose my profession I believed God had chosen for me. Now, more than 30 years later after successfully holding a job in the broadcast news arena -- that inspiration was obviously correct.
- Mesa Community CollegeFootball, 1975 - 1976Played for the National Champs of Jr. College for two years until a motorcycle accident broke my back and ended my football dreams. However, that unfortunate event due to a drunk driver running a red-light and hitting me brought me in 1978 to ORU where I found my true calling in life. Good ... coming from a horrible life-changing event! That's the way I look at it in retrospect.
- McClintock High SchoolGeneral Education, 1973 - 1974Played football and baseball and somehow managed to get through all the courses to earn a diploma. To be honest, the scholastic side of HS was not my focus at the time. And I paid for that when I had to finally 'make the grade' at ORU - or else! Thankfully I persevered and managed to focus in on my studies at that stage of my life in 1978.
- Pretoria Boys High SchoolSouth Africa Prepratory School, 1968 - 1971General courses and field of study. Very disciplined form of schooling as we had to wear uniforms and adhere to numerous strict rules. If you misbehaved -- the Headmaster's paddle was waiting for you! No kidding. Yes, I met that paddle a few times -- but my classmates sure laughed and the girls seemed impressed. All in all -- I loved this 'foreign' experience and I only have good memories of these early days of my life in South Africa.
- 40/29 News, Hearst TelevisionEvening Anchor/Reporter, 1983 - present
- KTUL-TVWkend Anchor/Reporter, 1982 - 1983
- KOAM-TVWkend Anchor/Reporter, 1981 - 1982