WSFA 12 News anchor Bob Howell retiring

Bob Howell
Bob Howell
Top: Bob with Dan Atkinson and Phil Snow, middle: Bob with Kim Hendrix and Baron James, bottom, Bob today
Top: Bob with Dan Atkinson and Phil Snow, middle: Bob with Kim Hendrix and Baron James, bottom, Bob today

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Long time news anchor Bob Howell is retiring from television, ending more than 32 years working at WSFA 12 News.  Bob's presence in the river region has represented a standard of excellence anchoring news on WSFA and has been a fixture on television sets in central Alabama for more than five decades. He has had the job of delivering the day's news to thousands of viewers with a calm, trusted, steady and caring approach through difficult, challenging and happy times.

"Since first arriving in Montgomery in 1976 I've been honored to have anchored our news coverage of just about every major event in Alabama." Howell said." "I'm resigned to the fact that I'll miss the excitement of working at WSFA and in television news, but I plan to enjoy other opportunities and challenges following my retirement from television news. I feel I still have a lot to offer."

After starting in radio during high school in his home town of Geneva - and five years in TV news in Dothan, Bob Howell's career at WSFA began in August 1976 anchoring the 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts.  He spent the next 22 years anchoring more than 10,000 live newscasts and serving as the News Department's Managing Editor.  He also reported news from major cities around the country and had several foreign assignments covering stories in England, France, Germany, and Kuwait. During that time Howell also produced award-winning documentaries, hosted WSFA's "Newsmakers", "Alabama Illustrated", "Inside Alabama's Legislature" and co-hosted the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon and the Children's Miracle Network fund raisers.

"I have had the pleasure of working with Bob for nearly six years. I know I will truly miss his friendship, his wealth of knowledge and perspective as well as watching him anchor on our air," said WSFA's News Director Scott Duff. "I would like to personally thank Bob for his dedication, hard work and commitment to excellence over his 30-plus years at WSFA 12 News and wish him nothing but the very, very best in his retirement."

Howell left the station in 1998, but returned in June 2004 to again anchor the news at 6 and 10 p.m. He also hosted a weekly feature called "Exploring Alabama with Bob Howell" which took him around the state reporting on interesting people, unique places and pertinent issues.  Howell's wealth of knowledge of the significant issues, personalities and news events in the communities served by WSFA 12 News was a welcome addition.

"Since the '70s Bob Howell has been a mainstay in this region and an important member of the WSFA 12 News team," said WSFA 12 News' Vice President and General Manager Collin R. Gaston.  "His wisdom, demeanor and desire to be the best have kept this station on top during all the years he has been associated with it.  We wish him continued success and happiness in the future and look forward to having him back as often as we can," said Gaston.

Howell had this final thought, "When all is said and done - I'll be able to look back on the wonderful relationships I've enjoyed - especially with our viewers who have been so loyal and supportive of my efforts at WSFA 12 News."

Bob will continue anchoring through the month of May and will officially retire May 23rd.