After more than four decades in the news industry, Global Edmonton station manager Tim Spelliscy will be retiring at the end of August.
“It’s been a great run and it’s been a great career but there’s a point where you feel like you’ve hit all the high points, you’ve achieved what you want to achieve in the business, and a point where you think you really want to move on and let the new leadership in this building kind of move to the forefront,” Spelliscy said on Monday.
“The timing is absolutely perfect… I’m really excited for what’s ahead for me and I’m really excited about what’s ahead for Global Edmonton.”
Spelliscy began his career in 1975 in radio at CFGP Grande Prairie, later working at CJME Regina before a stint at CFRN-TV.
In 1979, he joined the ITV (now Global Edmonton) team as a news reporter. Moving through several roles, he became one of the most recognized faces in Edmonton during the 1980s when he served as the host of “Oilers on ITV” hockey telecasts.
“I did 12 years doing the intermission work for the Oilers on ITV,” Spelliscy recalled. “The most fun I ever had in the business. I shouldn’t have gotten paid for that; I should have had to pay someone back.”
Watch below: Tim Spelliscy covering Edmonton’s team on The Oilers on ITV from February 1986
After years of reporting and hosting, he moved into management, which he describes as “extremely rewarding.”
Spelliscy became news director, vice-president and general manager, and has faithfully led Global Edmonton under five different owners. He’s also helped several Global newscasts across the province achieve and maintain top spot in the ratings.
Spelliscy is a community advocate, supporting several organizations including the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation, Catholic Social Services and the ALS Society of Alberta. He received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for community service in 2013.
“In the media business, we have a duty, we have a responsibility to get out in the community, support what’s going on in the community. It’s not about the business; it’s about the debt we owe to the community,” Spelliscy said.
“We have a great power in the media to support so many projects and really help make a difference and we have to make sure we use that in the right way… I’d like to think that we’ve made a difference.”
Watch below: Global Edmonton’s station manager Tim Spelliscy is set to retire after more than four decades in the news industry, 38 of them spent at Global Edmonton (formerly ITV). Gord Steinke sat down with Spelliscy on Aug. 29, 2017 to talk about his career.
“When I was a teenager growing up north of Edmonton, I wanted to be a broadcaster. And the broadcaster I most wanted to be was Tim Spelliscy,” said Troy Reeb, senior vice-president, Global News, Corus Radio and Station Operations. “It seemed every time I turned on my TV, he was there, either reporting the biggest stories in the city or hosting telecasts of my beloved Oilers.
“Tim had an almost magic ability to be on air all the time, though it turns out that ability was actually a combination of intellect, talent and incredible hard work.”
Watch below: The man who has been at the heart and the helm of Global Edmonton and ITV is calling it a career. Fletcher Kent shows us the highlights of Tim Spelliscy’s journalism career.
Over the years, Spelliscy has seen the news business change in many ways.
“When I came here in 1979, we were shooting news on film, then moved to three-quarter-inch tape, and then other forms of tape, and then of course, went totally digital. When I first came here, I wanted a manual typewriter. They had electric typewriters and I said, ‘Are there any manuals?’
“When I learned, many, many years later, we were going to go to computers, I didn’t sleep for about a week because I was so nervous about working on a computer.”
When asked to pick three things that standout in his news career, Spelliscy chose covering the Oilers’ Stanley Cup runs, interviewing the prime minister when the Commonwealth Games were in Edmonton and reporting Peter Pocklington being taken hostage.
“Lots of great employees that we’ve worked with here over the years, lots of memories of working with the Oilers, lots of people that you got to interview over the years. I interviewed Pierre Trudeau and then I met Justin Trudeau when he came by, hockey players — Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier and everyone else — Michael J. Fox was another interview.”
Now, Spelliscy is looking forward to relaxing a little, travelling, reading and spending time with his family.
Watch below: In Sept. 2014, Global Edmonton marked its 40 year anniversary on Monday. Station Manager and Regional Director of the Prairies Tim Spelliscy talked about his nearly 40-year career at the station.