Kennie Bass is the Lead Investigative Reporter for Eyewitness News. He also covers high school football every fall on the WCHS-TV highlight show "Friday Night Football Extra."
Bass started in broadcasting on September 1, 1978, doing halftime and end-of-game reports for WKAZ-AM. At the conclusion of the season, he was given a weekly 15-minute public affairs program titled "Wildcat Corner," where he interviewed public figures and community leaders about issues and situations affecting the region and state.
Throughout high school he worked as a DJ at Charleston radio stations WXIT-AM and WJYP-FM. He started his college journey at West Virginia University in the fall of 1981. After his first semester in Morgantown, he transferred to Marshall University. During college years Bass worked as an afternoon news anchor on WGNT-AM/WAMX-FM in Huntington. He also appeared on the Marshall student station WMUL-FM as a News anchor/reporter and sports anchor/reporter. Bass also served as a play-by-play announcer and color analyst on Marshall University football, men's basketball and women's basketball broadcasts.
His television career began in 1984 on the Marshall School of Journalism student news show "MU Report," which aired on WV Public Television. In September, 1985, Bass was awarded a paid internship at WSAZ-TV. In July, 1986 he was hired by the station on a full-time basis to work as a Charleston nightside reporter. Following a two-year stint as a news reporter and occasional anchor, Bass was moved the sports department where he served as a weekend anchor/reporter. In 1990, following the retirement of long-time anchor Bob Bowen, Bass was promoted to Sports Director,
In July 1997, Bass resigned from his position as sports director and joined WCHS-TV/WVAH-TV as a news anchor/reporter. He has specialized in government, military, elections and investigations. In 2014, Bass was named Lead Investigative Reporter and started the "Waste Watch" series which focused on government spending. His investigations resulted in dramatic changes in the WV State Supreme Court, the WV RISE housing assistance program and prescription costs for residents of the state veterans nursing home in Clarksburg. Bass assisted law enforcement in finding the remains of a 35-year murder victim after her killer contacted Bass and said he would reveal only to him where he buried Leslie Marty in 1983. Bass' efforts led FBI investigators to a location on the banks of the Ohio River in Belpre, Ohio where Marty's remains were recovered. He also spearheaded an investigation into the WV State Police, resulting in a number of leadership position changes.
Bass is a member of the WV Broadcasting Hall of Fame, the Nitro High School Hall of Achievement and has received the WV Associated Press Lifetime Achievement Award.
He's been honored with a regional Emmy Award, three regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, seven WV Broadcasters Association Awards and 24 WV-VA Associated Press Awards. His work has been recognized by the National and WV Future Business Leaders of America, US Army Recruiting Command, US Postal Service, WV Future Farmers of America, WV Statewide Independent Living Council and WV Association for Justice.
Bass is a Kanawha Valley native, attending Arthur I. Boreman Elementary, Andrew Jackson Junior High and is a 1981 graduate of Nitro High.
In addition to his television career, Bass has also covered news and sports for radio stations in Charleston, Huntington, St. Albans, Williamson, Matewan and Oak Hill.
He lives in Dunbar and is engaged to Claire Butler. They have three dogs (Fiona, Dexter Gizmo) and a cat (Charlie). All are rescue animals. Remember to spay and neuter your pets and support your local animal shelter.
His hobbies include acting, movies, golf and reading. He is active in community theatre, appearing in more than 50 productions over the last 50 years. Bass has worked with the Charleston Light Opera Guild, Children's Theatre of Charleston, Kanawha Players, Alban Arts Center, Huntington Outdoor Theatre, ARTS Resources for the Tri-State, Alchemy Theatre, Tip Jar Theatre and Apples of Gold. Some of my favorite roles include Oscar Madison in "The Odd Couple", Bill Sikes in "Oliver!", John Utterson in "Jekyll & Hyde: The Musical", Sammy in "The Wedding Singer," Lt. Sam Weinberg in "A Few Good Men," Professor Callahan in "Legally Blonde: The Musical," Franklin Hart in "9 to 5: The Musical" and Jean Shepherd in "A Christmas Story: The Musical."
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Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.