She’s reported from inside a burning building, from the flight deck of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, and aboard a submarine in the Persian Gulf, was the first reporter in FBI history to participate in New Agent classes at the FBI Academy, and received astronaut training at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. And along the way, KYW’s Michelle Durham took her listeners with her.
For one special assignment for KYW Newsradio, Michelle underwent firefighter training at the Philadelphia Fire Academy. Michelle was the first woman the fire department ever assigned to ride Engine 50 in North Philadelphia, where she helped put out fires.
Her series, “A Firefighter’s Journey,” won eight awards — including two Edward R. Murrow awards. In the years since graduation, Michelle has continued her training, branching into Special Operations with FEMA’s Pennsylvania Task Force One.
Then, in 2007, Durham’s series “Delaware Valley on the Front Lines” took her to the Persian Gulf, where she interviewed service personnel from our area aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, in the desert, on an oil drilling platform off the Iran-Iraq coast, and aboard a submarine. “Delaware Valley on the Front Lines” won four awards including an Edward R. Murrow and the Pennsylvania Associated Press’ coveted “Sandy Starobin” Award.
In 2008, following some FBI special agent training, Michelle was embedded with Philadelphia’s bank robbery squad for “Michelle Durham’s FBI Diary.”
While at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in 2009, Michelle learned how to lift off and land the Space Shuttle, as well as how to dock it to the International Space Station, for “Inside NASA — The Delaware Valley Takes Flight.” Her NASA series won several awards including an Edward R. Murrow.
Ask Michelle what she loves most about her job and she’ll tell you it is the ability to share knowledge while spreading a little joy along the way! During her Persian Gulf coverage she brought in 5,000 cheesesteaks (fresh from South Philly) and 5,000 Tastykakes for her USS Enterprise shipmates to enjoy. It was the first time the US Navy ever allowed an outsider to feed an entire ship.
Michelle lives in Lower Gwynedd, Pa. with her son Christian and daughter Caitlin.
Connect with Michelle Durham on Twitter: @MDurham_kyw
Have you ever imagined living in the office park where you work?
The nonprofit New Avenue Foundation helps folks with disabilities find employment, which often remains a stumbling block.
A local girl scout troop has decided to hold a special cookie drive.
The Delaware Valley has been surrounded by a sea of green in recent days, but, on Saturday at one South Jersey Goodwill location, it will be awash in white.
A 2013 graduate of Archbishop Ryan High School, Devin James Kuhn was a newlywed and just 24 years old at the time of his death.
Select members of the Burlington Township Police Department are wearing body cameras.
Drew Bergman had everything to live for, but while a junior at St. Joe’s Prep, he continued his years long struggle with depression and he attempted suicide. He describes that crisis moment as looking at his life through a straw.
There is a fundraiser scheduled for Friday night.
According to a AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson, statistics show there are over 25,000 debris related crashes a year and improperly secured trees are a contributing factor.
Goodwill PR Manager Juli Lundberg says they’ve worked all year soliciting donations from bridal stores and manufacturers for this bridal sale now in its 7th year.
Long gone are those eight hour stretches, and one local mom is determined to help others avoid the common pitfalls that prevent parents and babies from getting the necessary rest.
On this Labor Day, one North Philadelphia community is holding a unique event until 8 p.m. tonight, a block party that includes a book bag giveaway and free HIV testing.
With the last few days of summer vacation, children in the Delaware Valley will soon be back in the classroom. And two local experts have some practical wisdom for parents of children headed back to school.
School begins again in just about two weeks and one local expert says now is the time to start getting your children out of summer mode and refocus them for school.
Keeper and Associate Curator of the Physical Anthropology section of the Penn Museum Janet Monge says they have always known he was here in the museum, just not his precise location.
The Food and Drug Administration has issued new guidelines for food manufacturers. Foods that are labeled “gluten-free” can no longer contain more than 20 parts per million of gluten.
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the companies that federally insure the majority of the nation’s mortgages, are relaxing their FICO score requirements, sometimes as low as 620.
Students at the Overbrook School for the blind are working on some apps to help them read.
A group committed to helping members of the homeless community transition to housing is hosting a unique fundraiser, and if you want to participate, make sure to bring your running shoes!
H.R. and Leadership Consultant and owner of Development First in Warrington Walter Hoff says it’s about time the EEOC tightened these regulations.
As Congress decides whether to add money to the nation’s highway trust fund, President Obama will visit Delaware later today to see a damaged bridge.
Planning to fly soon? You better book those flights this week because tickets purchased next Monday will cost you more.
Owners are not permitted to change the exterior in any way but can remodel inside to their hearts content.
Philadelphia hotels have taken a hit recently as room occupancy is down. Officials know exactly why this happened and they’re confident this is temporary.
Given the recent collapse of several row homes in the City’s Cobbs Creek neighborhood, local experts want to make sure homeowners know what to look for before a collapse happens.
The City of Philadelphia receives so many 911 medical calls, that dispatchers run out of medic units to cover them.
The annual tradition involving one of the most enduring symbols of this country’s freedom took place Friday.
Chairman Department of Pediatrics at Abington Memorial Hospital Dr. Steven Shapiro says the statistics are staggering.
Teens from all over the city gathered at Temple University Wednesday for a unique conference. It was designed to keep them focused on the future.
A local organization committed to providing HIV care, social services and other outreach efforts to Philadelphia’s culturally diverse community sponsored a seminar focusing on the plight of immigrants and what can sometimes be their complicated access to health care.