Fox 5′s Randy Travis, Beth Galvin take buyouts amid cutbacks at station

Reporters Beth Galvin and Randy Travis have taken buyouts and are leaving Fox 5 (WAGA-TV). FOX 5

Credit: WAGA-TV

Credit: WAGA-TV

Reporters Beth Galvin and Randy Travis have taken buyouts and are leaving Fox 5 (WAGA-TV). FOX 5

Peabody Award-winning investigative reporter Randy Travis and veteran medical reporter Beth Galvin have taken buyout offers and are leaving Fox 5 (WAGA-TV).

WAGA-TV reduced staffing yesterday amid broad financial challenges to the TV news business as more viewers gravitate to streaming services.

Travis joined WAGA-TV when it was a CBS affiliate in 1990. Galvin came to the station when it had become a Fox affiliate in 1996. That’s a collective 62 years of experience.

Galvin, 58, was the last local on-air TV reporter whose beat was exclusively health, a beat she has kept since 2000.

“What a privilege it has been to get to tell your medical stories for the last 24 years,” Galvin wrote on her public Facebook page. “What I saw and soaked in every day was the incredible courage and grace of people facing challenges they did not choose. I am so proud of the stories we covered, and I hope you found them helpful and inspired as I was by the people who shared their stories. What a beautiful amazing ride it has been.”

Galvin, a graduate of Wesleyan College in Macon, worked at a Chattanooga TV station before coming to WAGA-TV. She is married and has been a resident in Decatur.

“You were always a joy to see and talk to in the office,” Travis wrote in a Facebook comment to Galvin. “The perfect combination of positive attitude and excellent, often inspirational reports.”

Fox 5 colleague Paul Milliken wrote “Thank you for your leadership and your dedication to accurate, meaningful stories. You led us through the pandemic and thank goodness we had you. Excited to see what’s next for you.”

Travis, a 62-year-old University of Georgia graduate in 1982, grew up in Athens and watched WAGA-TV as a child.

“If there’s one thing I’ve learned working 45 years in the news business — 42 in local TV news — it’s this: nothing good ever lasts. There’s always an end. And so it is with my career at Fox 5,” Travis wrote on his personal Facebook page Wednesday. (He gave The Atlanta Journal-Constitution permission to post his thoughts.)

He wrote that he “accepted a generous offer and retired from the station. I was there nearly 35 years. Each one of them wasn’t just good. They were great. Great colleagues. Great stories. Great care that our viewers got the best investigative work possible so they can live their best lives, too.”

Travis posted a photo of his first WAGA-TV ID.

Randy Travis' first ID at WAGA-TV in 1990.


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“In my mind I’m still that young guy in the picture with plenty more to do and say,” he wrote.

A Type 1 diabetic, Travis has run every AJC Peachtree Road Race since 1993 as well as 47 marathons. He is unsure what his next move will be. “I’ll take some time to figure that out,” he wrote. “Maybe run a few marathons and give it some long thought.”

He noted that the Fox 5 I-Team will go on without him. HIs departure follows that of Dale Russell, a longtime I-Team member who retired last year after 38 years.

Travis won his Peabody in 2018 for an investigation about police officers using a flawed $2 drug test in the field that led to a raft of false positives. The investigation prompted law enforcement agencies worldwide to review drug test kit policies, with some dropping the use of them entirely.

The Peabody Awards out of the University of Georgia is considered one of the most prestigious for both entertainment and news programs.

Travis first joined the I-Team in 1994, reporting a raft of stories that uncovered government waste and corruption with some sparking investigations that led to people going to prison.

Before TV, Travis worked as a sports writer at the Athens Banner-Herald. He was a also a TV reporter at stations in Memphis, Tennessee; Greenville, South Carolina; and Macon before coming to Atlanta.

“It’s a sad day for Fox 5,” said Russell. “They are two phenomenal on-air talents.”

Bill Schneider, senior vice president and general manager for WAGA, sent a note to staff specifically about Travis, noting that losing Travis is “bittersweet.” “Sweet because I know Randy will treat his retirement like he has treated his work here at WAGA. No half measures... Bitter, because we will miss him, his passion and all of the amazing work he has done for our community and the station.”

He added, “his work has left an indelible mark on WAGA, the news department, and the I-Team.”

Randall Rinehart, a 49-yearold editor at the station for 26 years, also took a buyout.