Influential TV Program Reaches Milestone Pressing State Issues
North Carolina ’s only independently produced statewide television talk show will reach a milestone that few programs have attained when it airs the 400th edition on Sunday, June 11th, 2006.
NC SPIN’s longevity is attributed to several unique elements, according to Executive Producer and Moderator, Tom Campbell. “First, we are current. Topics are selected and even revised just before taping each week,” Campbell said. “In addition we present only issues about North Carolina, topics that often don’t make the newspapers or television news.”
Many state leaders agree that NC SPIN is filling a niche otherwise unavailable on television. “NC SPIN deals with real policy issues that the citizens need to be thinking about,” Congresswoman Virginia Foxx said. Community College President Martin Lancaster concurs, saying, “NC Spin provides North Carolinians a valuable weekly opportunity to eavesdrop on the conversation of intelligent and diverse individuals discussing important issues affecting North Carolina.”
The President of the North Carolina Bankers Association says the program also offers state residents a unique opportunity. “The format is straight forward and to the point.” Thad Woodard said. “It’s a no holds barred program. Tom Campbell and his guests are all over matters of importance. They know the issues, the players, and the consequences.”
Executive Producer Tom Campbell feels that if North Carolinians receive good information on important topics they will make their own decisions about the right and wrong of an issue. “That’s why we present a full and balanced debate, striving to present both sides of an issue. And because we’re independent no corporation or government entity tells us what issues to select, how they should be presented, or whom we can use as panelists. I think the audience recognizes there are no sacred cows on NC SPIN and they respect that fact.”
|About NC SPIN Executive Producer & Moderator Tom Campbell
Tom Campbell ’s own background is rich in public involvement in North Carolina. His family founded Campbell University as well as WNCT-TV, the first television station in eastern North Carolina. Campbell, the former Assistant Treasurer for the State of North Carolina and licensee of WRAZ-TV “Fox 50” in the Raleigh-Durham market, was able to combine two of his passions in creating NC SPIN: passion and politics. Campbell’s MYSPIN editorials appear in newspapers statewide. Campbell is also a poplar radio talk show guest and public speaker.
NC SPIN first aired September 27, 1998 on station FOX 50 in Raleigh. Now in its seventh year of production the show is aired 28 times each week on sixteen television stations and cable systems all across North Carolina. Thirteen radio stations air a version of the show weekly, reaching a total estimated audience of 250,000.
Each week the half-hour program features four hot-button issues relevant to North Carolina, discussed by four expert panelists. NC SPIN is recorded using a “live on tape” format, meaning once the recording begins it is not interrupted, ensuring that the program is completely unrehearsed. Topics range from state and local government issues to education, transportation, health, and taxes. “We even venture into politics and race,” Campbell said.
Thanks to WRAL-TV’s Clarence Williams for this capcom story.