Liz Brunner

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Liz Brunner
Born 1959 (age 57–58)
Hartford, Connecticut
Alma mater Lawrence University (The Lawrence Conservatory of Music)
Occupation journalist
Known for TV news anchor
Spouse(s) Craig Stockmal (2010-)
Parent(s) Galen E. Russell, Jr.
Mary Chacko Russell

Liz Brunner is an American journalist, an award-winning television news anchor and reporter, and the CEO of Brunner Communications. With more than 25 years of media experience, Brunner’s career path took her from WCIA-TV Champaign-Urbana, IL, to WTVT-TV Tampa, FL, to WCVB-TV, Boston, MA where she served as a main news anchor and reporter. In 2013, she founded Brunner Communications, a firm that specializes in media training, coaching, and consulting for high-profile individuals and organizations.

Early years[edit]

Brunner was born in Hartford, Connecticut, to Mary Chacko Russell, a retired medical social worker and Reverend Galen E. Russell Jr., a Pastor of the United Church of Christ. Chacko, born and raised in India, met Russell in Japan where Russell's parents served as missionaries.

She was raised along with her three younger brothers in Hawaii and Pekin, Illinois. Brunner graduated from Pekin High School and in 1979, competed in the Miss America Pageant as Miss Illinois.

Brunner attended and earned a Bachelor of Music Degree from Lawrence University's Conservatory of Music in Appleton, Wisconsin. Upon graduation, Brunner became a music teacher in Richton Park, Illinois. Additionally, she sang semi-professionally with the Park Forest Singers and performed for Pope John Paul II at the Vatican. After leaving music, Brunner worked for Caren Charles and was among the company's top sales associates.

Her family's ancestry has been traced back to William Morse and William Brewster.[citation needed]


In 1985, Brunner took her first job in television at the CBS affiliate WCIA-TV in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. During her three years as community relations coordinator, Brunner served as the liaison between the television station and the community. Brunner wrote and produced public service announcements, hosted a talk show covering organization's serving the Champaign community, coordinated the station's speaker's bureau, and served on a three women weather team.

Upon leaving Illinois, she joined WTVT-TV, Tampa Bay's CBS affiliate (now a Fox station) as the director of community relations. Within a year, Brunner was named co-anchor of the early morning news. In 1991, Brunner was awarded the "Up and Comers Award" from the American Women in Radio and Television, now called, the Alliance for Women in Media. Additionally, Brunner hosted "Tampa Bay's Talking," and numerous prime time specials.

After five years in Tampa, Brunner was hired by WCVB-TV, Channel 5, the ABC affiliate in Boston, as correspondent and fill-in anchor for the award-winning, nighly news magazine show, Chronicle. Within a year, Brunner also became co-anchor of the EyeOpener newscast and a health reporter at Channel 5.

Quickly, she moved into a full-time role in Channel 5's news department becoming the 5:30 and 11pm anchor. Later, Brunner was selected to fill the space vacated by long-time Boston news anchor, Natalie Jacobson, as the 6pm NewsCenter 5 Anchor.

Brunner serves as the Executive Vice President of American Women in Radio and Television, Boston chapter.[1]

In October 2013, Brunner departed from her 20-year post as a main anchor for NewsCenter 5, WCVB-TV. She has since launched Brunner Communications, a firm that specializes in media training and consulting for high-profile individuals and organizations. The firm's services include media training, executive coaching, women’s leadership training, community relations training, social media management & training, and talent development.


Over the course of her tenure at WCVB, she has won several journalism awards; Two New England Emmies, Two Gracies from the Alliance for Women in Media, the Edward R. Murrow Award, and an Associated Press Award.

Community Work[edit]

Brunner is widely regarded across Boston as a leader in the philanthropic community.[citation needed] She works with numerous charities including: the American Heart Association, the American Red Cross, the Berkshire Hills Music Academy, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Home for Little Wanderers, the March of Dimes, and many others.

Personal life[edit]

In August, 2010, Ms. Brunner married Boston businessman Craig Stockmal in New York.[2]



Further reading[edit]

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