KFBK News Director and Senior Editor Judy Farah has more than 25 years news experience in New York, Los Angeles and Sacramento. She's edited the KFBK Afternoon News with Kitty O'Neal the past 16 years while also directing the newsroom by assigning stories to reporters and scheduling guest interviews. Farah started out as a newspaper reporter on the East Coast, covering major stories as a reporter and editor for The Associated Press in Los Angeles, including the 1984 Olympics, the Oscars, Emmys, the presidency of Ronald Reagan and the criminals trials of the Night Stalker and the Hillside Stranglers.
Farah came to KFBK in 1996, and has helped direct coverage of five presidential elections, five governor's elections and the killing sprees of Yosemite Killer Cary Stayner and Scott Peterson. She reported live for two 13-hour days for KFBK from the 9-11 terrorist attacks. She was also the editor on KFBK's 2011 exclusive report that the Sacramento Kings were considering moving to Anaheim.
A graduate of William Paterson College in New Jersey, Farah has won three Edward R. Murrow awards, including one for Best Writing, while at KFBK. She's also earned three awards from the Northern California Radio Television News Directors Association for Best Series, Best Newscast and Best Sports Segment. She has also written for the Wall Street Journal, TV Guide, Los Angeles and Parents magazines. She was honored with a Jefferson Fellowship in 2009 and traveled to Japan, China and Hong Kong to study the Asian economy. In 2010, she was awarded a RTNDA RIAS Fellowship to travel to Germany, Belgium and Prague to study the European economy.
Farah currently is a national blogger for The Huffington Post and often speaks on news and social media. You can find her on Twitter @newsbabe1530
In her free time, Farah enjoys the outdoors by hiking along the American River bike trail and kayaking. A wine enthusiast, Farah's produced a monthly wine segment on KFBK the past five years and enjoys visiting our local foothill wineries.
From The Huffington Post: October 26, 2012
It didn't take long for someone to bring up his name as soon as Pablo Sandoval slammed his third home run for the San Francisco Giants in the first game of the World Series.
Reggie Jackson. And it didn't take long for it to trigger the biggest regret of my life.
The former New York Yankee also hit three home runs in a World Series. I was supposed to be at Yankee Stadium to see it, but gave up a ticket to Game 6 of the 1977 World Series between the Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers because I stupidly believed in my naive youth that there would be a Game 7. (I instead covered a zoning board hearing for The Bergen Record as I tried to break into journalism.) But there wasn't. I missed out on history.
MasterCard called Jackson's three home runs off the first pitch of three different Dodgers pitchers one of the top 20 greatest moments in baseball history. And after Sandoval's third bomb, I learned Sandoval joined the most elite of clubs. There's only been four MLB players to hit three homeruns in a World Series -- Sandoval, Jackson, Albert Pujols and... Babe Ruth.
My disappointment over not seeing Reggie's epic event was not just because I was a lifelong Yankees fan. It was because I spent a weekend at spring training with him and got to see a glimpse of the Reggie Jackson his fans and loathers did not.
Read the rest on The Huffington Post
Of all the historic number of tweets generated by Wednesday's presidential debate, something like 10.3 million in 90 minutes, one stood out to me. It was by CNN political analyst David Gergen. He wrote:
"I didn't think (the president) was rusty. I just don't think anyone has ever spoken to him like that," referring to the dress down by Mitt Romney.
Gergen implied Obama has had a lot of 'yes' men/women around him, coddling him, telling him he's always right, terrific and fabulous. Do you? As the boss of a newsroom, I admit I'm not always tactful. So I am grateful I have someone who calls me out when I misbehave or are unfair. "Don't be rude to the intern just because they don't get it yet." "You were too rough on that reporter."
It may sting, but I am grateful when I am called out. I see 'suck up' too much in the news biz. Everyone tells the high-profile anchors how wonderful and talented they are. But who really has their back? I do, but it's not always easy to be honest. Gergen implied Obama has a lot of handlers telling him how terrific he is, but no one daring to point out his weaknesses and flaws.
Growing up in the northeast, spring was the most anticipated season of all. After four months of being captive inside due to bitter winter cold, there was finally the promise of warmer, longer days ahead. For most, that meant the first signs of green plants and flowers emerging from the winter snow pack. For me, Spring meant being at my father's side as baseball season got underway.
You see, my late father was a factory worker who had a big heart for children. Dad started every youth sports program in my tiny New Jersey hometown. One of them was Little League. I remember packed registration night in the high school gymnasium. Countless games being the only female sitting in the dugout with Dad and his team. And Dad making sure I took batting and catching practice along with my older brother before Title 9 came along.
Those memories came rushing back this week during a screening of Clint Eastwood's latest movie "Trouble With the Curve." Clint's character Gus is a widower and longtime scout for the Atlanta Braves who also has his daughter at his side, teaching her the ropes. But in a common theme in Eastwood movies, he's estranged from his daughter.
Read the rest on The Huffington Post
From The Huffington Post: Sept. 7, 2012
Forget the political pundits. Karl Rove and Chris Mathews don't count. Don't even think about the Pew or Zogby polls. The real winner in both the Republican and Democratic conventions the past two weeks has been Twitter. The social media forum exploded in tweets during speeches the past two weeks from Tampa and Charlotte.
In a tweet posted late Thursday night (how else would you release the information?) Twitter Government -- the Twitter account monitoring politics -- reported the DNC won the day with nine million tweets during the Democratic National Convention compared with four million tweets during the Republican convention. Breaking it down further, President Barack Obama's speech got 52,757 tweets per minute than Romney's 14,289 during his acceptance speech.
"Twitter has become a lot more cutting edge for politics and for people who want to discuss political issues. It's real time," said David Mark, editor of Politix who attended the RNC.
From Clint Eastwood shocking the audience as the "mystery guest" at the RNC talking to President Obama in an empty chair to Michelle Obama stunning with her impassioned speech for her husband while wowing in a Tracy Reese designer dress, Twitter blew up during both conventions.
While the politicians were talking on stage, listeners were busy on their computers and smart phones, immediately reacting to what was going on. Fordham University Professor Paul Levinson said while TV viewership was down for the conventions, Twitter soared.
"In many ways it's the most exciting, authentic news stream we've ever had precisely because it's not done by professionals for the most part," Levinson said.
In comparison, Facebook is more personal and remains more about posting pictures of friends and family while Twitter has become the gathering spot for instant commentary and discussion, whether it be politics, sports, the Olympics, etc.
"Ten years ago, we'd have these discussions on phone or email. Now, we get to watch it. It's public. It's what's new," Long Beach State Professor Kevin Wallsten said of Twitter.
Levinson agrees. "Most of what you read on Twitter is what people are thinking and feeling. People love reading that and contributing their own thoughts."
Twitter was just a newborn baby during the last presidential election in 2008. Let the debates begin.
So there I was Tuesday night (8/14) honored to speak at the Sacramento Social Media Club panel discussion on social media and news. The TV reporter was saying she prefers Facebook over Twitter for news because "Everyone in the world is on Facebook!" I probably should have kept my mouth shut but said, "I'm not." There was an audible gasp of disbelief from the audience.
The panel moderator pressed me. I told her I had a very good reason I wasn't on Facebook. She didn't let it go. She wanted me to explain why, OMG! I wasn't on Facebook! I said in my position of head of a news station, (KFBK) I have to deal with 300-700 emails a day. There was another gasp from audience. Heck, that count is on a good day.
So hello! I guess it's about time. I have to admit I kind of liked my unique status of not being on Facebook. I was a conundrum. Someone who has been noted publicly for leading the charge in social media and news on Twitter in Sacramento but is not on Facebook.Years after its peak and weeks after its IPO took a huge plunge, I decide now I should finally join the party? Great timing, Judy.
I'll be honest. I really don't want to. I'm a private person for oh so many good reasons.
1 - Time. Running Sacramento's No. 1 radio newsroom is a 12-hour day for me. Let alone those 700+ emails that take up 2-3 hours of my time daily.
2 - Not into posting pics of family, friends, babies and pets. However, do like to post pics of what I eat and drink. :)
3 - Seriously, I took care of a family member for nearly three years. Not just a family member but a baby/toddler. Anyone who's a new parent knows the demand that takes. I knew I had to limit my schedule to keep my head above water. Run a newsroom and take care of a baby boy by myself? I had to sleep when he slept. Good luck new pregnant Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.
4 - Serious again. This may be the main reason. I've had at least two or more stalkers in my life who have monitored my moves. Why would I want to spoon feed them information about what I'm doing on Facebook?
But I realize there are so many wonderful people out there I am not connecting with. My family and lifelong friends I grew up with in New Jersey and the Northeast . My friends and work colleagues from ten years of living in Los Angeles. All the wonderful journalists I met on my two international journalism Fellowships to Asia and Europe. I have friends in Indonesia, India, Tokyo, Hong Kong, China, Australia, Berlin, etc.
I fear Facebook will turn out to be both a time suck and a stalker thing where people will look me up and demand even more of my time for their own personal reasons. I know my current co-workers are constantly being hit up by people to promote their causes; advertise their products; give them money for their charities. But what I fear the most is my lifelong girlfriends -- I am very blessed my two best friends are from kindergarten -- will post big hair, bikini shots from the 70s. (Please don't!!) That's why I prefer Twitter. I get to control my posts.
Facebook friends, prove my fears wrong. This will mostly be a page of what I'm doing professionally and some personal. I'm linking my blog page. I blog for both The Huffington Post and KFBK. I think you'll enjoy some of my posts -- from your business social style to whether you smooch or hug to whether you have a work husband/wife to whether it's okay to look at other men/women. On the serious side, there's a lot about politics -- including how Arnold Schwarzenegger gave me personal advice on my workouts and how I was supposed to be in the World Trade Center on 9/11. Really. Seriously. I missed it by minutes.
So welcome! Let's start to catch up!