He subsequently landed broadcast jobs in Hartford and Boston, then freelanced in Los Angeles before the Atlanta gig came along.
"They allow me to be me," he said at the time. "There's no fakeness on the air. The banter is not fake."
His tattoos are frequently a topic of conversation, he said. And CBS Atlanta even made fun of them by having other "Better Mornings" anchors wear fake tattoos in a long-running billboard campaign.
He was near the World Trade Center during 9/11 and that inspired him to get his first tattoo. "It gave me a perspective on life," he said. "I don't live to work. I work to live. And I love my job. News is in my DNA."
Rudat is also a regular kickboxer and does graffiti artwork You can check out his work at www.graffitipainter.com. "I'm so happy outside my work," he said. "It allows me to get up at 2:30 in the morning and enjoy my job."