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Melvin Kampmann

  • Birthplace: Santa Monica, California
Date of passing: 
July 12, 2016

Melvin Kampmann was a television news pioneer who coined the term “Action News.” The format relies on short stories heavy on visuals, feature younger on-air talent and focus on a city's surrounding suburbs. It is also marked by a tighter format than "Eyewitness News."

Kampmann created "Action News" in 1970 in Philadelphia, as an alternative to the “Eyewitness News” format in use at a rival station. His innovation raised WPVI-TV, his station at the time, from third place to first in the ratings. The format has gone on to become the standard in both local and national broadcast news.

Prior to his work in news, Kampmann served in the Korean War. He began his entertainment career in Los Angeles, landing at WPVI in 1969. He left the station in 1974 to become a general manager in Fargo, North Dakota, ultimately settling in Washington to work as a consultant.

Melvin Kampmann was a television news pioneer who coined the term “Action News.” The format relies on short stories heavy on visuals, feature younger on-air talent and focus on a city's surrounding suburbs. It is also marked by a tighter format than "Eyewitness News."

Kampmann created "Action News" in 1970 in Philadelphia, as an alternative to the “Eyewitness News” format in use at a rival station. His innovation raised WPVI-TV, his station at the time, from third place to first in the ratings. The format has gone on to become the standard in both local and national broadcast news.

Prior to his work in news, Kampmann served in the Korean War. He began his entertainment career in Los Angeles, landing at WPVI in 1969. He left the station in 1974 to become a general manager in Fargo, North Dakota, ultimately settling in Washington to work as a consultant.

Kampmann died July 12, 2016. He was 85.

 

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