Kent Chapline lives for the rush.
“There’s no rush like breaking news,” said Chapline, executive director of digital media at CBS in Fort Worth and Dallas.
On paper, Chapline’s job history confirms his self-given title of adrenaline junkie. Chapline has been a producer of broadcast news for five different stations.
Now, he holds the new title of pioneer.
In 2005, Chapline saw what no one else did—an opportunity. With the unavoidable boom in technology, people weren’t going to wait long for the news to reach them, he said.
Chapline redefined the website for CBS news. Six years later, he has not only taken on the role of executive director of all digital media for CBS DFW, KRLD, TXA 21 and The Dallas Fan, but he also created the title.
Chapline took the original news site, which he called “primitive,” and turned it into a thriving news site. He also controls all content for the corresponding social media sites.
The former Horned Frog wasted no time getting down to business after graduating. While still in school, he gained enough experience to know that he did not want to pursue his major in radio, television and film.
“I just got really lucky,” Chapline said of his success in news. “Not because I was great, but because I was persistent.”
Consider every significant news event in the South-Central United States in the past 10 years. Chances are, Chapline was there. Have a memorable newscast in mind? More than likely, Chapline produced the live coverage.
From the Timothy McVeigh trial in Oklahoma City to Hurricane Katrina, it’s hard to tell whether Chaplain follows the news, or the news follows Chapline.
“I’m a news junkie,” he said. “I like to know lots of things.”
Ever the adventurer, Chapline wasn’t finished with TCU when he graduated in 1992. After more than 10 years producing news, Chapline went back to TCU to study it.
“To be successful, you must be curious,” he said. “You need to have as many skills and as much knowledge [as possible].”
In 2003, Chapline became a self-serving example when he returned to TCU to earn a master’s in journalism. During that time, Chapline added another life experience to his long list by serving as adjunct professor, developing and teaching upper level computer-assisted journalism courses.
Chapline offered advice to students who seek success comparable to his.
“Internships are a little cliché, but very valuable,” he said. “I have a producer on staff who impressed me as an intern and immediately got a job. Embrace the small markets, get experience and work up…you don’t start out in a market like Dallas.”
Well, most people don’t start out in a market like Dallas, but Kent Chapline serves as the exception in a lot of ways.
This fast paced, award-winning news professional is just a Texas guy at heart, who loves his family and recently, vegetable farming.
Definitely the exception.