Cheril Lee

Reporter/Anchor

My broadcasting career began in the most unlikely of places…Okinawa, Japan.  I was interviewed one afternoon while I was in college and, on a lark, I asked if the TV station needed any volunteers.  They said they could use a weather person who would stick around for at least six months.  Two auditions and one meeting later, I was in front of the cameras Monday through Friday night, giving the weather forecast for the island. 

Did I mention that FEN was the ONLY American TV station on the island?  Well, let’s just say that I got to know what being a celebrity was like, really quickly.  Since I was the only civilian on an all-military newscast, I stood out just a little bit.  It was one of the best times of my life and I worked with eight different news anchors.  This taught me that every broadcaster has a different way of approaching the craft. 

After Japan, I made my way back across the ocean, by way of plane, to the great state of Mississippi.  While there, I anchored daily newscasts at a local station, Northland Cable News.  The station was located in Starkville, the home of Mississippi State University.  While there, I got to attend football games in the press box, which was quite cool until the day they tapped me on the shoulder and informed me that cheering was not allowed in the press box.  Oops.  Again, I learned a little something about retaining one’s professionalism in every situation. 

While in Mississippi, I also made appearances on other TV stations’ breakfast and lunch time shows, usually talking to the hosts about various plays I was appearing in onstage.

My next broadcasting gig was right here in Omaha at KVNO, Classical 90.7 where I became the News Director in 2000.  I remember that my first day was right in the middle of a fund drive.  The Program Director asked me if I wanted to jump in and pitch and I thought, “What the heck is pitching?”  I deferred, telling him I’d participate in the next one.  And participate I did.  While I was there, I did more than 20 fund drives.  Additionally, I anchored several daily newscasts, wrote, produced and delivered the Arts at 8:30 and at the end, hosted a two-hour on-air shift in addition to my other duties.  I learned a lot about classical composers, including the correct pronunciation of Dvorak.

After a decade at KVNO, I decided to pursue my Master’s Degree at UNO, so I left the station to take classes.  But it wasn’t long before the siren song of public radio lured me back.  I started working for KIOS in January of 2010 as a news anchor, reporter and on-air host.  The Saturday morning programs are among my favorites and I love talking with listeners who are as passionate about public radio as I am.

When I’m not talking on the airwaves, I love to act in community theatre productions, rock out to concerts and write.  Traveling has always been a passion of mine.  I’ve been to several countries, including Italy, Japan, Albania, Slovenia, England and my personal favorite, Ireland.  Up next, are the Dominican Republic, France and Scotland. 

Ever the optimist, you will usually hear a smile in my voice when I’m hosting.  It is my goal to be good company as you move through your day.  

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General News
2:19 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

Innovative Aging Series Continues in August

Dollars & Sense is the focus of the VNA’s next segment on Innovative Aging.

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Other Content
5:06 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Iowa DOT 511 Mobile App Now Available

The Iowa Department of Transportation recently released a 511 traveler information app for both the iPhone and the Android. 

Sinclair Stolle, 511 Traveler Information Engineer, says the Iowa 511 app reports information on interstates, U.S. Routes and state highways. 

She says right now motorists can view traffic speeds from the DOT in the metro areas around the state, look at electronic roadway signs, and see still images from the DOT’s traffic cameras.  Stolle says currently traffic images are only available from six metro areas but will soon be statewide.

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Business
5:06 am
Fri July 27, 2012

The SBA says this is a good time to start your own business

Michael Foutch is the Economic Development Specialist for the Nebraska District Office of the US Small Business Administration. 

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Government
5:06 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Healthcare the Focus of July's Press Club

July’s Press Club Noon Forum focused on the Healthcare Reform resulting from the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare.

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Government
5:06 am
Wed July 25, 2012

City Adds Shared Bike Lane on Leavenworth

The City of Omaha is working to reconfigure lanes along Leavenworth Street, from 31st to 13th Street.

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Arts
5:06 am
Tue July 24, 2012

Restoring the Benson Theatre to its Former Glory

The Benson Theatre was built in 1926 as a vaudeville theatre.  It was converted to a movie theatre in the 1940’s, and became retail space in 1953. 

In 2010, the space was purchased by Lund Ross Contractors for the purpose of restoring the theatre to its original purpose. 

Monty Eich, Marketing Manager for the Benson Theatre Project, says the organization wants the theatre to become a community hub.  He says the plan is to offer live musical, theatrical, and comedy events, as well as select films. 

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Education
5:06 am
Mon July 23, 2012

MCC and AmeriCorps VISTA Brought Hip-Hop to Nathan Hale Magnet

A unique program at Omaha's Nathan Hale Magnet Middle School earlier this year taught students the five pillars of hip-hop.

Metropolitan Community College partnered with the AmeriCorps VISTA program to implement a hip-hop curriculum.  Jason Rodriguez of the VISTA program taught the hip-hop curriculum. 

He says the classes gave students something to relate to while stressing the importance of education.  Rodriguez says the curriculum covered the five pillars of hip hop, including dj'ing and emceeing, one of the students’ favorites.

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General News
5:06 am
Fri July 20, 2012

Bellevue Selected to Compete in National Green Contest

The City of Bellevue has been selected to represent Nebraska in the SC Johnson Green Choices Challenge.

The city with the biggest percentage of sustainable participation during the 6-month contest period, will win a $100,000 environmental grant.  The competition began July 2nd and runs through December. 

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General News
5:06 am
Thu July 19, 2012

Completely KIDS is Offering an Open Forum on Gang Violence Prevention

An open forum called “Gang Violence and Prevention Awareness” takes place this evening at the South Omaha Public Library.

L.D. Richardson, Senior, Teen Specialist with Completely KIDS, says the teens in his program helped put the forum together.  Richardson says tonight’s forum will bring the community together and offer them information to improve the safety of South Omaha. 

The evening includes a presentation by the South Omaha precinct gang unit, former gang members and a victim of gang violence.  Richardson says prevention starts in the home.

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General News
5:06 am
Wed July 18, 2012

Ravel/UnRavel Starts its Citywide Tour this Weekend

Ravel/UnRavel on tour

Project Interfaith is taking its Ravel/UnRavel initiative to the streets starting this Sunday. Volunteers will be parking a classic Bel Air Wagon around the city, drawing attention to the project. 

The idea for Ravel/UnRavel unfolded in the spring of 2010 during the first week of a student project. 

For six weeks, kids took flip cameras and a list of questions concerning service, spiritual identity and beliefs, into the community. These interviews were then uploaded to a video blog on Project Interfaith’s website. 

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