#MediaMonday – Colton Shone
Today’s #MediaMonday comes to us from the Duke City, Albuquerque, N.M., where award-winning journalist Colton Shone has been the morning news anchor at KOB 4 (NBC) since 2015 – but he got his start in Arizona.
Colton, time to share:
I knew I wanted to be a journalist ever since I was a kid. My mission in life was to become a news anchor and correspondent. I was the kid who always watched the network morning television shows before school. I’d also watch the local evening news flipping back and forth between my favorite anchors. I would get so excited in elementary school when a new edition of TIME For Kids was placed on our desks. I’d read it cover to cover! There was something about reading and seeing stories that moved me.
I was born and raised in Phoenix. During high school, I got a job at a coffee shop that was a very popular spot for local anchors and reporters. I’d tell them that I wanted to do what they did, but I had no idea how. Most were very kind and helpful. Some local legends, such as Linda Williams (shout out!), went a step further by giving me a card and inviting me down to the station for a tour. I got to hear some valuable advice on how to get into the field.
I graduated with a Master’s degree in Mass Communication from ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. My B.A. is in journalism and I also hold a minor in French.
My career started in Phoenix at KTAR-FM. I was an intern and was then hired part-time as an on-air reporter in 2008. During my time at 92.3 KTAR-FM, I won an Edward R. Murrow Award and three Associated Press awards for feature pieces, with many of my reports being heard across the country on ABC National Radio News.
I made the switch to television news at CBS 5 (KPHO) as a freelance field producer and was eventually hired full-time as an MMJ/assignment desk editor. I took the skills I learned in one of the nation’s top markets and made my way down to Tucson for my first anchor job at the CBS/FOX duopoly of KOLD/KMSB.
I’ve made a commitment to tell the stories of Indian Country. A member of the Navajo Nation, I have reported extensively on tribal communities throughout Arizona and New Mexico. My award-winning coverage includes Covid-19’s impact on the Navajo Nation, the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples Crisis, as well as abandoned uranium waste sites in Native communities. I’m so proud to have worked in newsrooms that allow me to pursue these kinds of stories. This is why it’s so important to have underrepresented minorities in newsrooms because these stories may go untold.
In college, I did a documentary that focused on Native Americans in TV news. I focused on two pioneering Arizona journalists: Mary Kim Titla (San Carlos Apache) and Andy Harvey (Navajo). They shared with me their stories of challenges and successes when it comes to being a Native in television news.
I am proud of my Navajo heritage and have started the podcast Native America with Colton Shone. In the podcast, I speak with other indigenous people to highlight some of the important issues facing Indian Country. I also love to give back to Native tribes through speaking engagement and to promote journalism as a career for Native high school and college students, serving as a mentor.
When I’m not busy working, I enjoy spending time exploring the Land of Enchantment with my wife and son.
Some other fun things to know about me? I love music. I wish I could play an instrument well, or sing, but I’m down for some good tunes. Ask me what’s on my playlist and it’s all over. My current favorite is STRFKR but I think my all-time favorite band is The Killers.
Also, New Mexico has a big filming scene. So I’ve played a reporter and anchor on several television shows and movies! From FOX’s Deputy and NBC’s The Night Shift to an upcoming big name movie. It’s really neat and cool to have your own trailer on set!