Reed Cowan

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Reed Cowan
Born Darrin Reed Cowan
(1972-07-24) July 24, 1972 (age 42)
Roosevelt, Utah, U.S.
Residence Summerlin South, Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.
Nationality American
Other names Reed Abplanalp-Cowan
Ethnicity White
Alma mater Utah State University
Occupation Journalist
Years active 1995–present
Television KSTU (1995–1996)
WWTV (1996–1997)
KBAK-TV (1997–1999)
KSL-TV (1999–2000)
KTVX (2000–2007)
WSVN (2007–2011)
KSNV (2012–present)

Stephanie Swain Martinsen (divorced).[1]

Gregory Abplanalp (m. 2013)[2]
Children 3 living, 1 who died at age 4[3]
Official website

Darrin Reed Cowan, also known as Reed Abplanalp-Cowan[4] (born July 24, 1972) is an American journalist, documentary filmmaker, screenwriter, and philanthropist. Cowan co-directed the 2010 documentary 8: The Mormon Proposition with Steven Greenstreet. The film won a GLAAD Media Award for outstanding documentary film.


Cowan started his journalism career working as a radio disc-jockey for KNEU Radio in Roosevelt, Utah. In 1995, Cowan worked as a part-time on-air reporter for Fox's KSTU in Salt Lake City, Utah while a student at Utah State University. From there he assumed full-time positions as an anchor for KBAK-TV in Bakersfield, California and as an anchor for WWTV in Cadillac, Michigan. Cowan next worked as a reporter and weekend morning anchor for KSL-TV in Salt Lake City.

After KSL-TV, Cowan moved to KTVX, also in Salt Lake City. While there, he anchored Good Morning Utah[5] and covered the terrorist attacks of 9-11, the kidnapping of Elizabeth Smart, the murder of Lori Hacking, the death of former President Ronald Reagan and the fugitive stories of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs. For his work, Cowan was nominated and for and won Emmy awards for reporting.[6][7][8][9]

Personal life and philanthropy[edit]

Cowan was born on July 24, 1972 in Roosevelt, Utah, and was raised in the Mormon religion.[3] During his teenage years Cowan had a relationship with Gregory Abplanalp, who attended the same high school as Cowan. Cowan ended the relationship at the request of a church leader, and went through years of various forms of conversion therapy, then married a woman at the urging of another church leader.[2][3] During this marriage Cowan had his first child, Wesley, who died in 2006 after falling from a horizontal set of monkey bars.[2] The marriage ended after three years and Cowan re-united with Abplanalp, who he married in 2013. Cowan is also a triathlete.[10]

Wesley's death prompted Cowan to found the Wesley Smiles Coalition,[11] which works with Free the Children to raise funds to build schools in Africa.[12] Cowan also made the 2007 documentary The Other Side of the Lens, which covers his emotions over his son's death and his experiences with the media attention Wesley's death attracted.[13]

Cowan is also on the advisory board for Free The Children, a child advocacy organization, and serves as a producer for the youth organization Power In You.[12] He is also an active supporter of anti-bullying legislation and has worked as a public speaker on the subject of bullying in school.[14]


Awards and nominations[edit]


  1. ^ "Obituary: Wesley Swain Cowan". Deseret News. April 27, 2006. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  2. ^ a b c Clay, Joanna (Sep 18, 2013). "Love story survives time and tragedy". OC Register. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c Lindsey, Steve. "Indecent ‘Proposition’". Dallas Voice. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  4. ^ Abplanalp-Cowan, Reed. "Utah's Gay Marriage Ban. Worth it?". Huffington Post. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  5. ^ "Reed Cowan bio". WSVN. Retrieved 2009-11-01. [dead link]
  6. ^ a b "Rocky Mountain Emmy Award Winners". Phoenix Woman. Nov–Dec 2008. Archived from the original on 2011-08-31. Retrieved 2009-11-01. [dead link]
  7. ^ a b "2008 Suncoast Regional Emmy Awards Broadcast/Cablecast Program Nominees". National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (web archive). Archived from the original on 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  8. ^ a b "2009 Suncoast Regional Emmy Awards Broadcast/Cablecast Program Nominees". National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (web archive). Archived from the original on 2011-07-28. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  9. ^ a b "2007 Rocky Mountain Emmy Nominees" (PDF). National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (web archive). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  10. ^ "Reed Cowan profile". MyNews3. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  11. ^ "7 News Features: In Wesley's Honor". WSVN. Retrieved 4 March 2014. [dead link]
  12. ^ a b Reavy, Pat (April 21, 2007). "Dad dedicating schools built in honor of his son". Deseret News. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  13. ^ Ververs, Vaughn (July 6, 2006). "On The Other End Of The Lens". CBS News. Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  14. ^ "MINUTES OF THE SENATE EDUCATION STANDING COMMITTEE" (PDF). Utah State. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  15. ^ Plant, Tim. "Unsaintly Actions". Metro Weekly. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  16. ^ Kaufman, Amy. "The roots of '8: The Mormon Proposition'". LA Times. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  17. ^ Haws, J.B. (2013). The Mormon Image in the American Mind: Fifty Years of Public Perception. Oxford University Press. p. 241. ISBN 0199897646. 
  18. ^ "2011 Media Awards - San Francisco". GLAAD. Retrieved 4 March 2014. 
  19. ^
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External links[edit]