Gene Patterson

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Anchor, 5:00, 6:00 & 11:00 Weeknights

Date of Joining WATE: January 2001

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Birthplace/Hometown: Born in Tokyo, Japan. Raised in Madisonville, Tenn.


  • BS in Broadcast Management from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.
  • Also attended Hiwassee College in Madisonville.

Previous Media Experience:

  • WBIR-TV, Knoxville, TN 1979-98

Personal Information:

  • Married to Phyllis
  • Two stepdaughters, Candy and Jenny
  • Three grandchildren, Reagan, CJ and Abby
  • A dog named Fred and a cat named Missy.

Outside Interests/Hobbies:

Golf, tennis, and guitar.

What You Enjoy About Local News:

I visited the Newseum in Washington, D.C. once and there was a film to watch before the tour. It told the story of the history of journalism, how it has changed over the centuries. Though our method of delivering the news has changed considerably, from the printing press to today’s satellite technology, at the heart of journalism are the reporters. The film documented how journalism has shaped our past and continues to mold the world we live in today. Without journalists there never would have been an America because democracy could not exist. The film showed journalism, the gathering of news, as what it should be. It should be something noble, and when we do our jobs right, it is a noble thing. That’s what I like best about news.

Media Awards and Honors:

  • AP Awards for spot news, non-spot news, feature and investigative reporting.
  • Society of Professional Journalists awards for spot news and non-spot news reporting.
  • 1995 Tennessee Bar Association Gavel Award for excellence in legal reporting.
  • 2006 Gold Press Card for documentary/public affairs programming for U.S. Senate Debate
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