Howie Zalesis an Emmy Award winning Camera Operator who turned his passion for television broadcasting into several entrepreneurial endeavors.
Howie created HJZ Productions, Inc in 2000 to address the need for professional level sports crewing/staffing in the New York market. Under his leadership, HJZ Productions grew to a multi-million dollar nationwide provider of top talent in the broadcasting field. In 2019, Howie and his team founded Viridity Entertainment Services, Inc. (VES) which initially focused on staffing in non-union markets.
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, they quickly pivoted to offering best in class, broadcast quality livestreams of professional sports shows and interviews, corporate interviews and meetings, and religious services. In addition, Howie took his love of the television production business and created The TV Sports Course, a hands-on training boot camp for the next generation of television crew professionals.
Howie is a graduate of the State University of New York at Plattsburgh’s Mass Communication program.
#production #sports #creativemind #creativity #entrepreneurship #newepisodealert #FYP
Guess what chop nation? It's another week as always. I miss you guys week over week I am excited to drop this week's episode a new fresh episode new week with an awesome guest That I am excited to introduce in moments. So let's chop it up Welcome to your top rated global podcast that is your one stop shop for everything entrepreneurship, self development and smart investment decisions. This podcast is hosted by owner, doctor and creator Dustin Steffi. We're blessed to have accolades that include a 2022 nomination by the People's Podcast Awards in the category of business money donated to two amazing causes Sysp fibrosis and the Boys and Girls Club. Lastly, global recognition of gaining top 50 podcasts in four countries. Without further ado, let's chop it up. Today is a special, fun and entertaining day. Not only do I have a guest on that I've never had before, but it'll be fun because it'll be on something that we haven't even discussed in the couple of years that we have been a podcast. It is my great pleasure to introduce how he Zales, how he is the founder of HJZ productions. And he also founded another company pre pandemic called Veridity Entertainment. He's within the production industry. He focuses on broadcasting sports and entertainment production. So I am proud and honored to have Howie on Howie. How are you? That's an, how are you? Good to see you. It's good to see you. I'm glad to have someone that's a better at production and broadcast than me on. So let's do this. No worries. No worries. So obviously the million dollar question is, is who is Howie? What are the, what does Howie do? How did he come to be this person he is today? So let's, let's dive into that and let's have some fun with that first before we continue any further. Yeah. You know, uh, I'm from New York. Uh, I grew up going to Rangers, Knicks and Mets and Yankees games. And I always, you know, took notice of the camera operators and, um, you know, it looked like a fun job and, and I love sports. I wanted to play professional baseball, but I knew I needed a backup. And I took an elective in high school because I needed this one last class. And the description was a trip to NBC Studios and a tour of 30 Rock and to watch a TV show being taped. Like, well, how bad can that be? Right. And I fell in love with TV production during that year. And I knew what I wanted to do. I was going to combine my love of sports and my new passion of TV into a career. So I only targeted colleges that had those sorts of programs. And I went to a school, I was fortunate enough to go to a SUNY State University in New York College that had a TV production department that you were allowed to touch the equipment day one. So we were shooting, you know, hockey, basketball games, producing TV shows, and learning from the older, you know, the juniors and seniors and it was an awesome experience and I knew exactly what I was going to do was going to be sports broadcasting. So with your passion of sports how far did you make it in the sports echelon before you couldn't play anymore and you just did production only? Like I played in college on a club team. I didn't make it like to play for college but just as a club team. But you know, that's what I did on the weekends. I went to, uh, you know, I went to a hitting clinic every Friday. I went to bucket dense baseball school. Like it was my, this is what I was going to do. And the first time I made it to Yankee stadium to be a camera operator, you know, I took grass and dirt and I was like, man, I wish I was here to play, but it was better, better to be there at all than never. So yeah. you're in a percentage of people in my opinion that like envy you in a sense, because while you're not playing and I get it, cause I have that little itch to want to play all the time, because once an athlete, always an athlete, right. You still are around it, which is the end game for most athletes in my opinion, cause some people get hurt, right. And they try to figure out how do I stay around it? And you kind of figured out how to be around it as a career, which is awesome. - Yeah, you know, my wife and I, I go to parties and things like that, and doctors, lawyers, and no one cares. They just want to know what the inside of a clubhouse looks like and who, you know, what stories do I have from interactions with players and things like that? - And let's not discredit club sports. At least you still played in college. You may not have played for the college, but you still played. So there you go. Thank you. Uh, good, good, good segue into a couple of things. So you're within the production and entertainment industry, which that's a whole industry in itself. I, I feel a lot of people don't understand what goes into production, what goes into entertainment, how, how people get the news and how people get all this information. I mean, even this podcast, for example, I mean, you and I talking is just one facet before I edit the episode, I release it. I, I do post-production, you know what I mean? There's just so much that goes into it and I'd love to kind of just talk about the production side of it and what really goes into it because, I feel some people think right now, all right, cool. So you hold a camera, you record things and there it is. And there's just so much more to it. - Well, yeah, let's take a baseball game, for example. The crew just doesn't show up a half hour before game time. If it's the first game of the series, usually people start getting there at seven, eight o'clock in the morning, because everything needs to be set up. There could be 10 to 12, depending on the size of the show cameras. If it's a Fox or ESPN game of the week, there's a set up day the day before. So the crew gets there nice and early, starts setting up the cameras. Each department sets up their aspect of the show. And then once everything is deemed set up, we have what we call a fax, where we go through each individual area and make sure every single thing works. And there's nothing left to chance, every button, every zoom on a camera, every focus, every tape machine or replay machine, we make sure everything works. And then we check the transmission path from the TV truck to wherever it's being transmitted to, to make sure that that path is working. And then there'll be like a lunch break. And then usually a crew meeting where assignments are given out. And each sport has a formula to how it's covered, how it's shot. So if you're doing low first in baseball and there's a right-handed batter up, you have a different assignment. If there's a runner on first or second, versus if there's a left-handed batter up, what your assignment will be. So all that has gone over. And that's just an example of what a day in the life of a television production person could be. And it all starts weeks and weeks ahead when the client calls and says, "Are you available on this day?" - So you have pre-planning to do even before getting there for setting up and all that stuff, cause you have to pre-plan and then like you mentioned, you set up usually depending on the sport a day before go over all the facts, make sure everything's working as far as equipment. And then it doesn't just stop with the record button, which is the same with me, right? This doesn't stop after you and I are done recording. You also have to go through and look at the footage you got and make sure you're providing your best foot forward in a sense, right? - Yeah, well, it doesn't stop because if everything needs to get, depending on what department you're in, of the TV show, if you're a camera operator, after the show, you might need to break your camera down 'cause the cameras come, they're pretty big cameras, they come in different pieces, they need to be broken down, put in their correct boxes, brought back to the TV truck, everything that was brought out needs to be brought back. So, you know, the day definitely has different parts to it from the setup to the production, to the tear down. And, you know, it also starts before you even get there by researching what team, you know, who's on what team. So you know who the stars of the teams that you're covering of the sport you're covering. So, you know, the storylines. - That's awesome. I, listen, I have the most respect for what you do because I'm similar to you, right? Because for a podcast, you have somewhat of the same thing, except I don't have a crew, my crews, myself. I wish I had a crew. That'd be awesome. Uh, but I mean, I have to make sure the camera works. I have to make sure that I understand who I'm interviewing, get a feel for where we're going to head. And then I'm the producer of my own podcast, right? So the direction that we had is based off of where I'm kind of leading it, Right. Which right, right. Same, same is true for you with the, with the exception that like for baseball, we'll just use baseball as an example. You're not, you're not hitting the ball. So you don't know what's going to happen there. You're not telling the players what to do. They just kind of, you know, perform. Right. But it's, it's awesome. Nonetheless, I, I think it's important for people to understand what goes in to - We do. - Yeah, especially sports production, each sport has its own formula. Football, if you're doing one of the cameras up top and the ball's going left to right, depending where the ball is on the field is what your assignment is. And it completely flips when it's going right to left. And you have to know instinctually what your assignment is and who you're covering, whether you have a slot receiver or you have the, you know, the line of scrimmage or are you, you know, shooting, isolating the quarterback or the running back? It all depends on what's going on. - Yeah, football's my world. So on a given day, if I remember the field right, I counted maybe about seven, eight, nine cameras, 'cause you have one camera overlooking the field. So you have the field point of view. you have cameras on opposite ends so that way you can see both ends zones. You have the cameras that are following where the ball is from the line of scrimmage moving. I mean, it is so much that goes into it. And furthermore, those cameras are expensive. I mean, mine, mine's expensive, right? But mine isn't what you have. You are truly, truly, truly like professionally in it more than like mine right now. So we will be right back after a quick break Hello chop nation, I hope all of you are enjoying the guests and content we share weekly Now I need a favor from all of you There's a ton that goes into making a successful podcast and most of this can't be done without your support So, please head on over to your favorite social media platform and please follow us This is important so we can communicate important updates to all of you Also, we love hearing from all of you. So please drop us a comment and let us know how we are doing Lastly if you haven't left us a five-star review yet Please head on over to your favorite platform that you listen to your podcasts on and drop us a review We really do appreciate all of you and the continued support as we look forward to dropping more fun and relevant content Hello, this is Dustin Steffie here. I have an exciting announcement for my two well riders. I know I enjoy riding my motorcycle, but what I don't enjoy is shopping for products for my motorcycle. I just found the company that works best for us that will provide us with bags and other accessories to be able to dress up our motorcycles and give us the time, space, and needs to be able to go on a comfortable ride. Check out VikingBags, that is VikingBags. If you go to vikingbags.com, you can search your two wheel vehicle on that website and find what you are looking for. I know that it's excellent quality product there and if you go in and put in promo code CHOPINWITHFIRE, you'll enjoy a special discount. Again, there's no better time than now to purchase from Viking bags. Hey, at least, at least for you, you've been able to not only be a part of like high school, college, but you've been in the professionals as well too, which is really nice, really good stuff. So we're gonna, we're gonna, we're gonna move a little bit, uh, into something different because I'm sure my, my listeners are wondering. So you have someone that's within production, uh, on how does that tie to entrepreneurship? And you've already kind of brushed it a little bit. So, so with the fact of you doing something that you're passionate about, you ended up going after a career within it, right? But what you didn't know was that career that you went after, you were actually kind of diving into the entrepreneurship world. And I won't let the secret out. I'll let you let it out. But, um, you were diving into the entrepreneurship world. let's talk about your entrepreneurial journey because yes, a job's one thing, but entrepreneurship's another. - So in the, just the TV business for, you know, freelance, everyone's a freelancer or an independent contractor. So in the sense you're an entrepreneur 'cause you're going after your own business and if you don't sell yourself, you're not gonna get another job. So it's very, everyone's an independent contractor. There's no staff jobs. But I knew the possibility of getting hurt was out there. I knew I couldn't lug her, 'cause I did a handheld camera. I knew I couldn't lug around a 25 pound camera for 20 years or for the rest of my life. I always knew I needed a backup. So a friend called who I'd known forever and he worked at MSNBC at the time. And I don't know if you remember I miss in the morning, the radio show, but once in a while they would take I miss his radio show on the road. So they were doing it in Connecticut at the Mohegan Sun Casino. And my friend Brian called and said, "Hey, are you available to do camera for us on this I miss show?" And I said, "Yeah, sure." And he said, "You know, do you have any friends? I need two more camera people. I need some audio people." And he listed all the entire crew he needed. And I said, "Yeah, I can find those people, no problem." And he said, "Can you do me a favor? can you send me one invoice and pay everyone for us? And I said, sure. And then I got to thinking, well, that's gotta be, there's gotta be a business behind this somewhere. I'm getting called by clients that are doing the same thing. Why can't I do this? And long story short, I got a few more shows for my friend Brian. Then I got some sports shows and it snowballed. And in 2007, the local union came into effect and I got a contract with the union and then it just kind of took off from there. And in 2023, we have contracts all over the country. Our primary focus is the New York, New Jersey, Connecticut area, but we hire for sports and entertainment crews nationwide. - So question for you, 'cause you're a creative mind like me, where does the creativity for you, within your realm, where does it start and where does it stop? I understand that like you're barred to kind of whatever sport you're, you're, uh, producing, but there's a sense of creativity in it and you bring your own spin into it. I would imagine. Right. Yeah. The creativity is like, how are we going to get new clients? Right. 'Cause it's very, it's kind of cut and dry. The clients will call and say, this is what we need. Can you go and find it for us? So I need to one, find the best people that I know that'll suit that job and give the client exactly what they need. There's lots of different personalities out there. So I need to know who the people I'm sending on those jobs, how they'll be. And I need to be creative in the sense that I need to scale my business. How can I creatively do that without doing it the best way possible? - Let's take it back a little bit, about a half a decade plus. So we're talking pre COVID-19. How was production in business pre COVID-19? And then we'll go post, right? because things have changed a lot. And so it's really important to map this journey and see where evolution is. - Yeah, everything was great pre pandemic. Our business was generating a good amount of income, the highest it had ever done. TV production was, everything was being produced out of TV trucks and there was a ton of people working and everything was going good. And then, you know, the pandemic happened. And as you can imagine, like many other industries, the TV, especially the sports industry, came to a crashing halt 'cause there was no sports. And what came out of that is the cloud-based production where, and this was maybe five years down the road, down the road, right? Maybe five to 10 years down the road, but it got sped up. And what I mean by that is we can now produce a sporting event where just the camera operators and maybe an audio person or two are on site and the rest of the people are remote. Without getting into the weeds of the technology, That's basically, you know, what transpired out of the pandemic. So there's, could be less people working 'cause they're required, less people are now required. But on the other hand, more events are being produced because now there's more streaming avenues. So actually more people are now working if that makes any sense whatsoever. It's crazy, if you don't line up TV crews well in advance, it's hard to find people that are available. - So right there, you just map the journey of evolution. So everything was great for a lot of people in a lot of industries pre-pandemic. Post-pandemic, it created a shift for all of us. And that shift was how do we operate our businesses, all of us, not just you, not just me, but everyone in the world. How do we operate in a manner where we're setting our businesses up for the changes that happened, which everybody evolved over that time. Post pandemic, a lot of things have happened, right? So for, for all of us, right, we have podcasts, we have broadcasts and we have all this stuff. How have podcasts changed how you guys do business? what is the difference in your mind between a podcast and producing like you are? Because there's a lot of sports podcasts. There's a lot of like quick hit, like podcasts in the sports realm that give you the cliff notes instead of watching the event. You know what I mean? - Yeah, so right before the pandemic, my wife and I, my business partner and I, we decided to open up a second company, Veridity and Entertainment Services. And it was gonna work in conjunction with HJZ or other business and dealing with non-union crews that get traveled into our area for our clients. And then fast forward, the pandemic happened and no income, right? Like so many other people. And I knew that the need for clients to get their message out there still existed. How are we gonna do that? How can I pivot? How can I transition? like, you know, the rest of the world. And we got into live streaming and not just doing like a podcast, but like actual full-on broadcast quality shows for our clients. So let me give you an example of that. T-Mobile, one of our clients, wanted to interview nine baseball players in nine weeks during the pandemic, during 2020, during the baseball season but the interviewer had to be completely remote from her house. And it was like getting into their, like the story of their season, their life story. We brought in childhood pictures of the people and this is how we did it. We came up with these remote capture kits. They're high-end computers with laptops, with professional cameras, ring lights, USB microphones. And we sent these cases of equipment to the interviewer's house where that stayed for like three months. And every week that we produced one of these shows, we'd send it to either a stadium clubhouse, or the players hotel, or their house, depending where they are. And we do these hour long shows that aired for T-Mobile. And it got their message out there. It was a sponsorship that still got out there for them. And we did similar things with Capital One for March Madness and the Final Four for the Super Bowl. We worked with Tiger Woods, Charles Barkley, Magic Johnson, just to name a few for all these different clients, uh, doing these similar type productions, delivering high end broadcast quality productions with a lot of these athletes. 25 years of experience, my friend and you, you have so many things to be proud of and so many people that you've gotten to be a part of their life. It's awesome. I mean, you just mentioned three athletes that I wish I could even see, right? Tiger Woods, Magic Johnson, Charles Barkley. I mean, Look at you, you've been, you've been in it, right? And it's awesome. With that being said, 25 years, what's the best part of your career so far? What has been the hardest part? And then what's the future look like? - I've gotten to see the world. I've gotten to see some of the most exciting sporting events that people would give their right arm to be a part of. I was with I was a camera operator that took Michael Phelps when no one knew him when he won his first gold medal in Greece out of the pool for the first time. I was with the US women's gymnastics team when they won gold medals in Beijing and in London. I was with figure skaters when they won their gold medals. And I've gotten 20 something Kentucky derbies with horses that won the Triple Crown. So I've been on some of the best sports productions that exist. So to me, that's been like the highlight of my professional career. But ultimately, my family is the most important thing. And where do I see myself going? Just scaling my two businesses to the point where we can employ more people and, and that's it. It's awesome. Like you said, you've been on stages that people give their right arm. I'd get my right, left and all my legs to go to it, to be honest with you, any of them, but you've, you've gotten to really make an impact, which is awesome. So when I look at entrepreneurship and why I do it, it's because I want to make a difference. It's cause I want to make an impact. Cause I want to teach other people. So the industry doesn't die. So for me podcasting, right, it's still relatively new ish, right? It's, it's, it's not been around as long as like actual broadcast and so per or for a podcast, I I'd love to just show people how it works because it is part of the future. A small sliver, right? Broadcasting's not going anywhere, but podcasting is convenient. People can listen to it in the car. People can view it on YouTube on their own leisure without it being like on the DVR or whatever. It's always going to be there for people to see, which is amazing in my mind. - Yeah, one of the things we do for people with podcasts is we help, because of our broadcast experience, we help elevate their look, right? Because I have the professional experience on how to do it. And if people, 'cause a lot of people's, is this just audio only? I'm talking for like video, you know, if they incorporate video. That's one of the things our Veridia entertainment services offers clients is how to elevate the quality of their video production. Which is amazing because you're right. I started off, uh, over a year ago, right? And it was just audio only. It was this year that I decided, you know what I need to have video as well too, because I want to make sure that my audience is broad. I cover globally, right? So I have four big countries that listen to my podcasts. Awesome. And that I didn't think that was going to happen when I started. It was, Hey, this is going to be a fun hobby. This is going to be something fun to do. Will I eventually be able to monetize it and be able to create a business out of it? Sure. But everything happened so fast. So it came to a point where you're learning really quickly or else you're failing. Right. So I agree with you. looks or everything marketing is the biggest part of a podcast, getting your reach to expand even more. And there's a lot that goes into it such, such as your business as well too with broadcasting. I think it's great that you opened up a second company under the umbrella of HJZ, right? And, and I think that it's just huge. You provide something for people that is an intangible that is important in my opinion. - Yeah, we're now, we're kind of going with the times now that events, corporate events have kind of come back. Verity Entertainment provides in-person, hybrid, or fully remote production of these events. And we provide the in-house experience and the virtual live stream experience simultaneously. So that's what we do now is like corporate type meetings, corporate events, uh, and we stream them globally, uh, for, for our clients, with, uh, with the professional broadcast quality look to it. And that's what we, you know, pride ourselves on that this is not gonna, you know, look like it's airing on zoom. This could air on TV. That's the quality of it. And folks, for those of you that just missed it, Howie just dropped the big knowledge bomb of the hour here, which is he evolved with the times and we see it. I know you see it too, Howie. In business, the people that don't evolve and they're stuck and they don't like change, they tend to fail. And it's sad to say, and there were a lot of businesses we lost when the pandemic hit because they were unwilling to change. And so key knowledge bomb that you just dropped is evolution, evolution, evolution. And what I mean by that is you evolve with the times, you figure out how to structure your business model in a way where you're still surviving and you're doing better than ever right now. - Yeah, I learned, you know, a business coach taught me that a few years ago, that was like the best, some of the best money ever spent. I hired a business coach and it basically taught me to think outside the box. Not to be so involved in the business, but always thinking three to six months down the road. 'Cause if you're too involved now, three months down the road, you're not gonna have anything. So you gotta constantly be planning what's next, what project is coming up. Yes, I'm working on this now, but what can I be doing for three to six months down the road? So that's always in the back of my mind. - Yeah, in the business world, we call that tunnel vision, right? As soon as you get tunnel vision, 'cause you're so encompassed by your business, it's hard to get out of that. And sometimes you don't see the writing on the wall of how to evolve. And so, yeah, I agree with you. That is the best money spent. And for my listeners here, uh, you're welcome. So we just dropped some free knowledge for you guys to kind of help out with your businesses to help out. If you're an entrepreneur right now, what can you do and how should you look forward for those of you that aren't entrepreneurs yet, how we outlined how he chased his dream. And he didn't even know he was within entrepreneurship until one day it clicked. Right. So. I said, if I'm going to be an entrepreneur, I need to know how to spell it. At least. Oh my goodness. That, that word. Sometimes when I'm typing it, I'm like, wait, is it E before you, you before E. So no, it's, it's great. There's, there's some great stuff here. I think it's important. If we look at it, taking the industries out and just using the word entrepreneurship, there are so many avenues and so many things that go into it. And for you, it's more than just being behind the camera. It's more than just producing something. You are doing everything, right? You're doing the planning part. You're involved in the monies that are included in it. How about the people and the training? I mean, there's so much that goes into it. Yeah. Um, right now we're, HJZ productions is involved in, uh, uh, a big soccer contract, and we're finding that we need to, our biggest problem is we're running out of people to call. So the next avenue is how do we train new people? So that's the next, you know, do we open up a, I already have a course that was developed, but how do we take that to the next level to try to get new people into our industry? - Listen, I'll go to the World Cup with you. Let's do this. Awesome. So Howie, you've already dropped a million knowledge bombs this episode, which I think is awesome. But if you were to just scale it back to one very important key concept, what would you like to leave with the listeners? Like, what's the most important thing in your mind? Yeah, the most important thing in my mind is, you know, as an entrepreneur, As an entrepreneur, I treat my clients how I would wanna be treated. I make sure that I respond quickly, but not too quick. And what I mean by that is I don't send any email out before rereading it five times to make sure there's no spelling mistakes and make sure there's no grammatic mistakes. And if I have a question, I'm not afraid to ask for help because I wanna represent our business in the best possible way and not embarrass us. So it's just like putting our best foot forward 100% of the time, all the time. So in that short response, I wrote down three things that were important. One, tactical responses, right? Being tactical and surgical with how you respond and making sure that your image is 100% what you want it to be portrayed as and then strategy, of course, being able to strategize how communication is, what you're trying to communicate, what your, what message you're trying to send out. So those are all amazing things. And just so everybody knows, this isn't going to be the last time that you guys hear how we, this is like to wet your appetite. Him and I in pre-production, we talked about something fun that I think him and I putting together it's perfect. So, or to come in the very, very near future with Howie. Awesome. Looking forward to it. Is there anything else you want to leave with our listeners for this episode? Anything you want them to kind of look at, uh, research maybe, or kind of see on your end? Yeah. If anyone, you know, needs help with, uh, events event planning, feel for, or, you know, podcast, uh, They want to help elevate their production needs. You know, feel free to contact me, uh, how we sales.com, uh, or I'm on LinkedIn at Howard Zales and, uh, hopefully we'll hear from someone soon. Is LinkedIn the best is LinkedIn the best median for people to get ahold of you social media wise, or do you have a lot of social media? Yeah, we have a lot. Uh, each company has its own, its own Instagram page, its own Twitter page, its own LinkedIn page, but @howardzales is probably the easiest on LinkedIn or @howeyzales, my website. - You sound like me. I have like six or seven different social aspects, the website, everything. - I can't even keep up with it. - Me neither. And every day I'm spending like two or three hours making sure the social media avenue is like perfect. - Yeah. Well, Holly, I appreciate you coming on. I know. I know it seems like we brushed through a lot, but there was a lot of knowledge that was given in this and on a topic that I'm passionate about and obviously you're in it. We could talk for days on this, but like I said, I already dropped the secret. We're gonna, we're going to have you back for sure. Awesome. Dustin looking forward to it. Thank you so much. Thank you, Holly. You have a wonderful day. And this is another episode of chopping with fire. [Music] [ Silence ]
Howie Zales is an Emmy Award winning Camera Operator who turned his passion for television broadcasting into several entrepreneurial endeavors. Howie created HJZ Productions, Inc in 2000 to address the need for professional level sports crewing/staffing in the New York market. Under his leadership, HJZ Productions grew to a multi-million nationwide provider of top talent in the broadcasting field. In 2019, Howie and his team founded Viridity Entertainment Services, Inc. (VES) which initially focused on staffing in non-union markets. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, they quickly pivoted to offering best in class, broadcast quality livestreams of professional sports shows and interviews, corporate interviews and meetings, and religious services. In addition, Howie took his love of the television production business and created The TV Sports Course, a hands-on training boot camp for the next generation of television crew professionals. Howie is a graduate of the State University of New York at Plattsburgh’s Mass Communication program.