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James Gaddis

In September of 2013, I embarked on a road trip across the continent to fulfill a dream of living in Alaska and a career goal of becoming a morning news anchor. I have a sincere desire to inform, educate, entertain and inspire viewers here.

Stories by James Gaddis

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Lindsay Wackowski

    by James Gaddis on Dec 05, 10:47

    When she was just 7 years old, Lindsay Wackowski decided she wanted to be an educator. At the time, it had nothing to do with teaching. “I think it first started because school is really challenging for me and the teacher had the answer book in the front of the room and I was like, […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Erica Arnold

    by James Gaddis on Nov 21, 11:35

    At just 9 years old, Erica Arnold was inspired by her fourth-grade teacher, Ken McCormick, to become a teacher herself. “I just remember learning about aerodynamics and those were our spelling words and we dropped eggs from the ceiling of the school and we went out ice skating and learned about energy,” explained Arnold. “I […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Li Retus

    by James Gaddis on Nov 07, 13:38

    With a kind heart and a no-nonsense style, Rabbit Creek Elementary School kindergarten teacher Li Retus says she encourages her students to be sensible kids that care about their classmates. KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week has been teaching in Alaska for more than 30 years. Her career began in the 1980s in King Cove. Whether […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Emily Becker

    by James Gaddis on Oct 24, 7:38

    Airport Heights Elementary School teacher Emily Becker brings her love of the nature into her sixth-grade classroom. “I get to teach them about things like photosynthesis and this idea that, ‘You know plants breathe out oxygen that we breathe in.’ It’s really like a revelation to them and that’s really fun for me,” explained Becker. […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Lee Butterfield

    by James Gaddis on Oct 10, 14:37

    Students at South Anchorage High School get to learn real-world tech skills in Lee Butterfield’s drone class. “Democratization of media equipment is insane,” said Butterfield. “It’s cheaper to get good equipment in people’s hands and with the software they have, to be able to edit on their own and work on their own means that […]

  • DayBreak

    Teacher of the Week: Agnes Bowers

    by James Gaddis on May 09, 11:09

    Redington Junior/Senior High School English teacher Agnes Bowers got a jump-start on her teaching career when she was only in second grade. “I would actually come home and have a classroom of stuffed animals and I would teach whatever I learned that day,” said Bowers. KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week now teaches living, breathing […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Rachael Scott

    by James Gaddis on Apr 25, 11:50

    ANCHORAGE – A kindergarten teacher at Ocean View Elementary School says her goal is to develop little minds into “awesome citizens of society.” “My passion is to see those minds grow and develop and watch those little light bulbs go on,” said KTVA 11 Teacher of the Week Rachael Scott. Scott has been teaching elementary […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Ann Cherrier

    by James Gaddis on Apr 11, 11:43

    Wendler Middle School math teacher Ann Cherrier admits she wasn’t always a fan of math. “I needed to see the pictures of mathematics,” said Cherrier. “I couldn’t just be told that, this is the rule you need to follow, do a couple of problems and understand it.” KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week won’t let history […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Scott Shumway

    by James Gaddis on Mar 28, 14:44

    Anchorage — Real-world experience can lead to a successful teaching career in the classroom. KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week is proof of that. Central Middle School of Science teacher Scott Shumway is a former microbiologist on the slope and a fisheries biologist for Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game. He is also an avid […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Malene Johnson

    by James Gaddis on Mar 14, 10:06

    A support system for kids who need a little extra help, study skills teachers play an important role at East High School. “A person looking out for them,” said KTVA’s Teacher of the Week Malene Johnson. “More of like a cheerleader and a mentor. And, you know, if I have to, not be hard on […]

  • DayBreak

    Eagle River couple wins Super Bowl contest, will spend night inside arena

    by James Gaddis on Feb 04, 12:32

      EAGLE RIVER — Cory and Kristen Williams will be the first fans to ever spend the night inside a Super Bowl venue, the night prior to the big game. Late last year, Kristen entered an online contest being held by Courtyard Marriott. The video she submitted won the grand prize; four tickets to the Super […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Jackie Morris

    by James Gaddis on Feb 01, 11:02

    A mix of in-class learning and rec-room activities has been a successful combination for KTVA Teacher of the Week Jackie Morris. “They get up and they get down and they get up, so they’re not sitting in their seat all day. I couldn’t sit in my seat all day,” explained Morris. A dice game that […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    10-year-old boy who fell out of vehicle dies in Anchorage hospital

    by James Gaddis on Jan 21, 16:40

    A 10-year-old who fell out of a moving vehicle last weekend has died as a result of his injuries. Emily Tyrrell, a close family friend, said Haji Ulufanua-Mahe passed away at Providence Medical Center Tuesday surrounded by friends and family. Ulufanua-Mahe was a 5th grader at the Alaska Native Cultural Charter School. On Sunday, January […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Elizabeth McAllister

    by James Gaddis on Jan 18, 17:42

    Ursa Minor Elementary School’s kindergarten teacher has been wowing young students on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson since 2008, with her knack for making learning fun. “I think being silly, having fun with them, and not taking it too serious, because they’re five and six,” explained McAllister. KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week carefully weaves work and […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Day: A Day of Service

    by James Gaddis on Jan 18, 15:45

    Alaskans honored the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by giving back to their communities. Over the years, the national holiday has transformed into a “Day of Service.” In Mountain View, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Youth Council and Alaska Sierra Club joined forces to shovel neighborhood sidewalks and driveways […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Vicki Campbell

    by James Gaddis on Dec 21, 13:18

    Having grown up in a military town, and raised “military kids” herself helps KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week better relate to her students on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Vicki Campbell has taught first grade at Orion Elementary School for 16 years. “I enjoy being with children. I like that they can share with me, I love […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Christie McLean

    by James Gaddis on Dec 08, 11:32

    A special education teacher at Alpenglow Elementary School is retiring at the end of the school year — but not without first winning KTVA’s Teacher of the Week. Christie McLean has been an educator for 35 years. She started her teaching career in Alaska at Fairview Elementary School in Anchorage before moving to Alpenglow. McLean […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Brad Mondeel

    by James Gaddis on Nov 23, 10:16

    Well-rounded lessons lead to well-rounded students in Brad Mondeel’s fourth-grade classroom. “These kids walking through your door, every year, every one of them is unique and different and special in their own way and they all learn differently,” Mondeel said. “If I’m just going to teach with one method, I’m not going to reach all […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Rachel Roux

    by James Gaddis on Nov 09, 11:33

    Students at Kincaid Elementary School in Anchorage have a serious soft spot for sixth-grade teacher Rachel Roux. “Sweet, caring, kind. She’s always been like that,” said sixth-grader Natalie Isacs. KTVA 11’s Teacher of the Week has taught in the Anchorage School District for 17 years. Working in an elementary school has afforded her the opportunity […]

  • Teacher of the Week

    Teacher of the Week: Elena Kostenko-Farkas

    by James Gaddis on Oct 26, 11:18

    ANCHORAGE – The Anchorage School District’s Russian immersion program will graduate its first class this year, thanks in large part to Elena Kostenko-Farkas. KTVA’s Teacher of the Week helped create the program in 2004. Students start in kindergarten and continue through high school with the same teacher. Aside from learning the Russian language and culture, […]