A retired telecommunications professor from Ball State University has received the 2017 Indiana Broadcasters Association Lifetime Achievement Award. Steve Bell, a former ABC News reporter and anchor, accepted the award Friday in Carmel as part of the Indiana Broadcasters Conference.

He spent more than 30 years on network and local news and covered many historic events including anti-war protests in Washington and the assassination and funeral of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Bell was also on the scene when Senator Robert Kennedy was shot in 1968.  

When “Good Morning America” launched in 1975, he made history as the show’s first news anchor. His stint with ABC News spanned nearly two decades, where he covered a number of presidential conventions and campaigns and overseas trips with presidents Nixon, Ford and Carter. After leaving ABC News in 1986, Bell spent the final five years of his television career as an anchor for local affiliate KYW-TV in Philadelphia.

The Iowa-native, who initially went to college to become a teacher, finally got that opportunity when Ball State asked Bell to become its first Ball Endowed Chair in Telecommunications. Bell spent 15 years teaching broadcast news at the university before retiring in 2007, taking on the title of emeritus.

During his illustrious broadcasting career, Bell received several honors including a number of Emmy awards, an Overseas Press Club distinction, and a Headliner’s award. He was inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame in 2004.

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