DENVER (CBS4) – Justin McHeffey boasts some serious skiing skills. Alan Gionet excels at the ice hockey rink. Britt Moreno lives for the outdoors. Jim Benemann bleeds the green and gold of his alma mater. And Karen Leigh is raising her family and building a life here.
Those Colorado connections highlight CBS4’s anchors’ and reporters’ genuine affection for the state where they live and work. That homegrown loyalty is part of CBS4’s new promotional spots.
“It’s important for us to let people know we are Coloradans, too. Our anchors live here. They play here. They love Colorado for all the same reasons our viewers do. And that’s a big part of what makes us Colorado’s News Channel,” Ed Cushing, CBS4’s director of creative services, said.
In Benemann’s spot, he’s visiting Colorado State University’s campus and recounting how it sparked his journalism career.
“This is where I developed that passion for reporting the news,” the evening news anchor says. “This was my first stop in Colorado, and that experience convinced me this is where wanted to be and where I wanted to raise my family.”
Gionet, meanwhile, dons his hockey gear and hits the ice. He grew up playing the sport on rinks and frozen ponds.
“I call Colorado home because there are so many things that I love to do here,” the morning news anchor says.
McHeffey’s spot shows the CBS4 meteorologist shredding the slopes. He learned to ski at age 2 and tackled the freestyle mogul program at Winter Park by 10.
“Colorado offers everything,” he says. “It’s got every different type of terrain. It’s got the best snow. It’s light, it’s flurry, it’s forgiving, and when you hit a good powder day, there’s nothing else like it in the country.”
The series’ producer, Jillian Oppegard, explains the approach: “Colorado is such a proud state. When our viewers see how our anchors, personalities and talent relate to the state, they’ll get a more personal connection.”
Britt Moreno, a morning anchor on CBS4, says she fell in love with Colorado immediately after moving here. She’s shown running the steps and trails at Red Rocks Amphitheater in her promo.
“This state fosters outdoor living,” Moreno says. “There are so many unique qualities to the city and then just 20 minutes outside of it, you’re in a whole other world. How can you not feel connected here?”
Karen Leigh knows that connection.
“I don’t think I had any idea what my life was missing until coming to Colorado,” the evening news anchor says. She met her husband in Colorado, where they’re raising their 4-year-old daughter.
“We built a family here. We built a home here,” Leigh says. “Colorado is home.”