S&G

2004 Silver Circle Inductee Rick Diaz

“(Rick) Diaz is unquestionably a role model in an industry where he was one of the first Hispanics to play a leading role at a television station in a mid-to large sized market.”

Patty Sandoval Bazzani, McAllen Monitor

 

Rick Diaz’s distinguished career as a television newsman spans three decades and has undoubtedly earned him place in the Lone Star Silver Circle. Not only has he blazed trails for Hispanics in Television, he’s also invested countless hours giving back to the community of the Rio Grande Valley.
The son of migrant farm workers, Rick Diaz, or Mr. D as he was fondly referred to by co-workers, began his career at KRGV as a night time photographer back in 1967 while still pursuing a degree at the University of Texas Pan American. His natural talent, resourcefulness and ability to get people to open up earned him a promotion to reporter and weekend news photographer. A few years later Rick became Weekend News Anchor … then, eventually the 6 o’clock News Anchor.
In 1976, Rick Diaz blazed trails for minority journalists across the state by becoming the first Hispanic News Director. For almost two decades, under the leadership of Rick Diaz, KRGV-TV has been number one in news in the Rio Grande Valley.

In June of 1998, Rick retired after 31 years, 22 of which were spent as News Director and News Anchor. We quickly realized what an impact he had and what a true community “anchor” Rick Diaz really was. There was such an outcry from the viewers to bring him back, KRGV convinced him to come out of retirement to anchor the 6 p.m. news.

Rick has also served as a mentor to countless Broadcast Journalists throughout the years, many of whom are now shining stars in their own respective markets. He can always be found giving advice and encouragement to frazzled young reporters. It was his guidance that pushed me and many others to strive for journalistic excellence on a daily basis.

Rick Diaz has been honored with numerous awards throughout his career. During his tenure as News Director, Rick was invited to the White House in Washington on several occasions. Under Rick Diaz, KRGV took on a mission of helping improve the lives of the Rio Grande Valley Community.

The first time he was honored by former president Reagan was in 1984, for spearheading a program that helped find nearly 2,000 jobs for Valley residents. He later received a special invite to the White House as Reagan unveiled a commemorative postage stamp honoring Hispanics in America.

In 1988, Reagan and the NAB presented Rick Diaz with an award for his news department’s continuing community projects. Finally, he was invited by former president Bill Clinton to take part in a discussion about the federal budget. He’s also been honored by a host of community organizations throughout the years.