George Knapp (television journalist)
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Knapp at the 68th Annual Peabody Awards
|Alma mater||University of the Pacific (M.A.)|
University of West Georgia (B.A.)
|Occupation||Journalist and talk radio host|
|Known for||Coast to Coast AM|
George T. Knapp (born April 18, 1953) is an American television investigative journalist, news anchor, and talk radio host. Knapp has been recognized with Edward R. Murrow Awards, Peabody Awards, and dozens of Pacific Southwest Regional Emmy Awards.
A longtime fixture in Las Vegas media, he works at KLAS-TV and is also a frequent host of the Sunday night/Monday morning Coast To Coast AM syndicated radio show. He is known for his work investigating UFO reports which are a frequent topic of the Coast to Coast show. George Knapp hosts Coast to Coast AM on the 3rd and 4th Sundays of the month and sometimes the 5th.
Born in Woodbury, New Jersey, Knapp grew up in Northern California and graduated from Franklin High School in Stockton, where he was the senior class president. He earned a bachelor's degree in communication from the University of West Georgia and a master's degree in the same field from the University of the Pacific. He taught debate and forensics at both the University of the Pacific and University of California, Berkeley.
He moved to Las Vegas in the early 1980s, working first as a cab driver before being hired as an intern and then a news reporter at a PBS station. From there, Knapp was hired as a reporter and news anchor for KLAS.
Knapp became known nationally in the late 1980s by reporting the story of Bob Lazar, who claimed to have worked on extraterrestrial UFOs at the secretive Area 51. According to Knapp, his discovery of evidence corroborating some of Lazar's claims made his stories on Lazar be taken more seriously than typical UFO fare. In 1990, Knapp's stories on Lazar earned an "Individual Achievement by a Journalist" award from the United Press International. However, to Knapp's "eternal shame," he also during this era publicized the claims of conspiracy theorist Bill Cooper, whom Knapp came to regard as far less credible than Lazar.
In 1991, Knapp left KLAS to work for Altamira Communications, a public relations firm whose clients included advocates of the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository 90 miles (140 km) north of Las Vegas. Knapp was rehired by KLAS-TV in the mid 1990s when he left the public relations firm.
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Knapp worked with the now-defunct group National Institute of Discovery Science (NIDS). Founded by Las Vegas businessman Robert Bigelow, NIDS was charged with scientifically studying unusual phenomena with scientists and funding. Based on his work with NIDS and biochemist Colm Kelleher, Knapp publicized the so-called Skinwalker Ranch in northeast Utah, where strange events are alleged to have occurred.
In 2004, Knapp won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for a story about vote fraud in Clark County, Nevada. He has also won dozens of Pacific Southwest Regional Emmy Awards, and several writing awards from the Associated Press.
Knapp has been concerned with animal welfare since the beginning of his journalism career. Since hosting occasionally with Coast to Coast AM he hosts an annual animal welfare broadcast concerning issues, the development of law, animal cruelty, and remediation efforts. The 2016 broadcast covered various issues, including horses and trophy hunting noting the almost one year anniversary since the killing of Cecil the lion and the effect the incident was still causing at the date of the show.
- Ancestry.com. U.S. Public Records Index, 1950-1993, Volume 2 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
- "George Knapp" – 8NewsNow.com
- "EMMY® Awards - NATAS PSW - National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Pacific Southwest Chapter". nataspsw.org. Pacific Southwest Chapter of the National Television Academy. Retrieved 17 July 2020.
- George Knapp, I-Team Reporter
- "George Knapp". LasVegasNow.com. KLAS-TV LasVegasNow.com. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
- 2008 Interview with George Knapp.
- Scope Magazine Article on George Knapp, SCOPE Magazine Volume 4, Issue 11, February 1996 Pg. 6-8
- Kelleher, Colm & Knapp, George: Hunt for the Skinwalker: Science Confronts the Unexplained at a Remote Ranch in Utah (Paraview Pocket Books, 2005 ISBN 1-4165-0521-0)
- Path of the Skinwalker, George Knapp, 28 November 2002
- "Eyewitness News I-Team Wins Peabody Award". KLAS-TV. 2009-04-01. Retrieved 2 April 2009.
- Coast to Coast AM evening broadcast, 18 June 2016.