In Memory of Theodore ``Ted’’ Talbert and His Lifelong Commitment to Journalism in the Greater Detroit Regionby Senator Gary Peters
Posted on 2013-03-07
in the house of representatives
Thursday, March 7, 2013
Mr. PETERS of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor the life
and work of Theodore Talbert, a renowned journalist, historian and
proud Detroiter. Known to the Greater Detroit community simply as Ted,
his documentaries brought history to life and inspired future
journalists and leaders alike.
Born and raised in Detroit, Ted displayed early signs of excellence, graduating from Northern High School in 1961 as his class valedictorian. Ted attended Mount San Antonio College in California and it was early in the 1970s when he began to fully explore his passion for journalism, creating the first of his documentaries.
Over the proceeding decades of his journalism career, Ted worked for several of the local television stations in Southeast Michigan, although most of his time was with local NBC affiliate WDIV. Throughout the course of his career, Ted produced more than twenty documentaries that highlighted every aspect of the community that he loved so dearly. In his films, he showcased the unique heritage of Detroit, from his documentaries on Joe Louis and the Tuskegee Airmen to his story on the African American officers of the Detroit Police Department in the 1800s. Many in the Southeast Michigan community credit Ted with providing a unique perspective on the social, economic and political issues that have shaped our region, offering insights that inspired the community into action.
In addition to his work as a journalist, Ted dedicated his time to guiding, shaping and molding the next generation of young journalists. Ted lectured at a number of colleges including the University of Missouri, as well as Wayne State University and Wayne County [[Page E256]] Community College, both of which are in Detroit. Through his lectures, he shared his passion and his experiences, in the hope of inspiring future generations to explore their history and to better understand the world in which they live.
In recognition of his outstanding journalistic work, Ted was presented with a number of awards over his life. These awards include four Emmys for his documentaries and a Meritorious Achievement Award from the Tuskegee Airmen. Additionally, Ted was presented an Achievement of Merit Award from the Ohio State University. And in acknowledgement of the depth of his impact on the community, Ted was inducted into the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame in 2000. However, no award is greater than the testimonials provided by countless leaders, community members and organizations across Greater Detroit, who agree that our region is stronger because of Ted's work.
Mr. Speaker, I ask my colleagues to join me today in celebrating the life of Ted Talbert, who had an undeniable impact on all of us in Southeast Michigan. Through his documentaries, we have been able to better understand the history of our community and how we can work together to build a bright and prosperous future for our region. His straightforward, yet complex, perspective and passion for his community, which he never hesitated to share, will be missed by all of us who grew up watching his films and news stories. I know Ted's life will be an inspiration to young journalists for many years to come and I hope his sister, Edna Bell, and his daughter, Jamile Skinner, know that all of us in the Greater Detroit region share in their loss.