Courtis is a familiar face to Cincinnati television viewers who have watched him for more than two decades. The Broadcast Hall of Fame once selected him "Cincinnati's Favorite TV Personality," and it's easy to understand how he earned the title.
His broadcasting career has spanned more than 30 years. Most of that time has been spent as a news anchor in Cincinnati for the NBC affiliate WLWT-TV. He has received more than 300 awards for his excellence in journalism and his tireless community service. The Cincinnati YMCA presented Courtis with its Achiever Legend Award. He is also the recipient of the prestigious Martin Luther King Jr. Dreamkeeper Award. He's been recognized by the National Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, the Cincinnati Society of Professional Journalists, the Associated Press, United Press International, the Orlando Press Club and the Cleveland Press Club. Courtis is also one of the first journalists inducted into the Central Florida Association of Black Journalists and Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
Consistently, Courtis has shown his leadership and commitment. He issued a proposal to Cincinnati City Council that led to an inner city street being renamed in honor of high school honor student Derrick Turnbow, who was shot and killed. He led an effort to have the City of Cincinnati and the Cincinnati Reds honor the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's entrance into Major League Baseball. He also conceived and produced an eight-day Cincinnati jazz and heritage festival.
In 2001 Courtis stepped away from the familiar anchor desk to once again demonstrate his commitment to Cincinnati. He gained international attention as a political newcomer by winning the primary election in his bid to become the first directly elected mayor of Cincinnati in 75 years. He received a respectable 45 percent of the vote in the general election.
Courtis returned to WLWT-TV in July 2003 after hosting his own radio talk show. He is a much sought after speaker and host for dozens of events. An example of some of the events Courtis has hosted each year for the past two decades -- The MLK Jr. Coalition King Day, Cincinnati Scholarship Foundation, Council of Christian Communions, Senior Citizens Hall of Fame, NAACP Freedom Fund, Cincinnati Human Relations and Midwest Regional Black Family Reunion. In addition, Courtis has helped raise millions of dollars for organizations by volunteering his time.
He is currently an advisory board member for the Cincinnati Scholarship Foundation. He previously was a member of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Board, the Greater Cincinnati Tall Stacks Commission, the U.S. Department of Education's Back-to-School National Advisory Board, and The Executive Board of the National Association of Black Journalists.
Courtis is married to Marla Fuller. They have two daughters, Nicole and Faith. He is always looking for ways to serve his community, so to mark his 30th anniversary in broadcasting a scholarship was established in his name to help young aspiring journalists achieve their dream. For more information, you can contact the Cincinnati Scholarship Foundation at cincinnatischolarshipfoundation.org.
You can email him your news tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- WLWT News 5Anchor/Reporter