Dave Ward biography
Getting the facts right, consistently—that’s what defines Dave Ward. A true Texas original, Dave has made his mark as one of the nation’s most respected news anchors for more than five decades on abc13 KTRK.
In his trademark down-to- earth style, he began every newscast with “Good evening, friends,” and did so for 50 years. It is the candor and dedication to getting every side of the story that’s helped him become the most trusted newsman in Houston, “The Dean of Houston News.”
His name is David Henry Ward, but to thousands of Eyewitness News viewers who wouldn’t miss Channel 13’s nightly 6 and 10 pm newscasts, he is known simply as “Dave”.
Dave has been a radio and television broadcaster for nearly 60 years. Born in Dallas, he grew up in Huntsville and began his radio career with KGKB Radio in Tyler while attending college. Three years later, he joined the staff of WACO Radio as a staff announcer and quickly climbed to Program Director the following year.
Dave moved to Houston in 1962 where he worked for KNUZ Radio as a News Reporter and News Director for 4 years. Dave made the move to Channel 13 in 1966 as the station’s only on-the- street news reporter and photographer.
Coming “inside” in early 1967 to anchor Channel 13’s weekday 7 am newscast, Dave vividly remembers being unaware that there even was a 7 am newscast! Later that year, he became the first host of the wildly popular “Dialing for Dollars” program, which later evolved into “Good Morning Houston.” Houston viewers flocked to see him and hear him and by January 1968, Dave became the anchor of Eyewitness News at 6 and 10, leading the broadcast to the number one rating in Houston.
Dave remains Houston’s most-watched and most-beloved news anchor, “the most trusted voice in Houston.”
Dave’s tireless work continued with his extensive coverage of national political conventions and with a commanding presence reporting on the space program from the Florida launch site for Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, and all shuttle flights. From fires, explosions, earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes throughout Texas and the southern states, Dave has covered it all.
During his career, he has interviewed people from all walks of life, from Presidents to drug dealers. His interviews with five US Presidents and US Vice President Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller have achieved much acclaim.
He has traveled to Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Nicaragua, and Colombia to report on numerous stories with a Houston connection. Dave accompanied a Houston delegation to the Paris Peace Talks once and spent a week in Germany examining mass transit solutions that could potentially benefit Houston.
Trying to encapsulate Dave’s community service is almost impossible. He has lent his expertise at the microphone, with his commanding voice and his stately presence, to serve as Master of Ceremonies for charitable and civic events too numerous to mention. Dave’s prestige, talent, and professionalism continue to add immeasurably to the overall success of any fundraising event. There are few nonprofit organizations in the city that have not benefited from Dave’s generosity of spirit and his willingness to serve his community.
Dave is past president of Houston Easter Seals Society and has hosted several Easter Seals telethons. He is a past member of the Public Affairs Advisory Board of the Houston Business Council, Public Information Committee of the American Cancer Society, the Board of Directors of the Leukemia Society and the Press Club of Houston. He is a Lifetime Member of Crime Stoppers and the 100 Club of Houston, Endowed Lifetime Member of the Partnership for Baylor College of Medicine, and a Lifetime Member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo – he broadcast the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo Parade for 49 years. Dave proudly serves on the board of the Houston Police Foundation and on the Advisory Board of Houston Children’s Charity.
Dave has done so much for many organizations but his work with Crime Stoppers of Houston has been and continues to be historic and unparalleled. At the time of the program’s inception in 1981, it was Dave who was instrumental in establishing Crime Stoppers in Houston and throughout the world. His creation of crime reenactments has become the model of excellence for similar programs across the country and throughout the world.
He became Crime Stoppers’ first on-air reporter and his unwavering passion and commitment to mitigate crimes in our city remains steadfast to this day. Opening in late 2016, it is only fitting and appropriate that the first Crime Stoppers headquarters in the nation will be named The Dave Ward Building: Crime Stoppers of Houston. A mission-driven monument to crime prevention, this building will also be a highly efficient, secure hub for centralized operations, staff, volunteers, victims, law enforcement and the media. Also honoring Dave Ward will be detailed collections, archives and a retrospective gallery land marking his award winning career and contributions.
In 1973, Dave received the City of Houston Public Service Award for his work on the Managua earthquake and fondly remembers that Mayor Louis Welch presented him with the plaque.
In 2002, Dave received the prestigious Leon Goldstein Award for Outstanding Service in Fighting Crime from Houston Crime Stoppers. In 2007, he proudly accepted a regional Emmy for Art/Entertainment Special Programs for his interviews with his dear friend, singer-songwriter, Steve Tyrell.
In 2011, the Lone Star Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences inducted Dave into their Silver Circle for his years of contributions to the Television Broadcast Community.
In 2016, Dave was honored by the Mexican American Bar Association of Texas and also inducted into the esteemed Texas Radio Hall of Fame. Also, in 2017, Dave will be inducted into the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association Hall of Fame. In 2018, Dave was selected to serve as the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo “Parade Grand Marshall”.
Dave has earned an esteemed reputation as one of Houston’s most dedicated public servants and his viewers fondly refer to “Dave” as the “Face of Channel 13” and the “Voice of Houston.”
He has distinguished himself not only as the longest running television anchor in the City of Houston, but he holds that same distinction worldwide; no other news anchor has been on the same newscast program, on the same station in a major market, as long as Dave Ward. Dave now holds the Certificate from Guinness World Records for “The longest career as a television news broadcaster is 49 years and 218 days, achieved by Dave Ward (USA), who began working on 9 November 1966 and continues anchoring at KTRK-TV, in Houston, Texas, USA, as verified on 2 June 2016.” “OFFICIALLY AMAZING!”