By Kevin Kelley
Rocky River native Martin Savidge was one of seven journalists and media professionals inducted into the Press Club of Cleveland’s Journalism Hall of Fame Oct. 27.
A dinner and induction ceremony was held for the honorees Oct. 27 at Cuyahoga Community College’s Corporate College East in Warrensville Heights.
A 1976 graduate of Rocky River High School, Savidge reported for WJW-TV for many years before moving on to CNN, NBC News and the public television world news broadcast “World Focus.” He’s currently working as a freelance reporter for CNN.
During his remarks, Savidge thanked a high school communications teacher for piquing his interest in media.
“That just started it for me,” Savidge said. “That was what made me realize there’s a job out there and I might be able to do this job.”
Savidge also thanked his fellow Cleveland area journalists for their influence.
“I grew up with a lot of you,” Savidge told the dinner audience. I either read the things you wrote or I listed to the things you reported on radio or watched you on television. Some of you photographed me as I went about my 11 years (in Cleveland.)
“The words that you either printed or spoke or delivered on camera made me realize that there was so much I could do with the job I have.”
He also thanked those in the audience, without whom, he acknowledged, he wouldn’t have a job.
Savidge also thanked his wife of 21 years, Blis, for enduring the times he has had to go away on dangerous assignments in war zones.
In an introductory video, longtime Cleveland broadcast journalist Virgil Dominic called Savidge a great writer.
“I’ve never never seen anyone who has a greater command of the English language than Martin Savidge,” Dominic said.
Former Cleveland anchorman Tim Taylor said Savidge is the best live, breaking news reporter in the last quarter century, especially when reporting from war zones.
Joining Savidge in the Journalism Hall of Fame this year were Plain Dealer reporter Joanna Connors, Crain’s Cleveland Business Editor Mark Dodosh, former TV and radio reporter Eileen Korey, antique expert Terry Kovel and her late husband, Ralph Kovel, and 50-year Industry Week Magazine veteran John Teresko. The late Jack Graney, who broadcast Cleveland Indians games on the radio in the 1930s, ’40s and ’50s, received the Hall of Fame’s Pioneer Award.
The Press Club of Cleveland is an organization for print and broadcast journalists and editors, public relations and advertising professionals, and those who work with them. The club serves its members by providing social and educational opportunities, promoting excellence in journalism, and preserving the history of journalism in Northeast Ohio.
(To view Savidge’s remarks at the Journalism Hall of Fame induction dinner and the introductory video, go to westlifenews.com.)