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Al Whitaker joined the WHNT News 19 news team in September, 2012, following a decade as the Media Relations Director at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center.

"The Space Center kept me close to journalism, getting to work with producers, photographers and reporters from all over the world, but I missed the work and jumped at the opportunity to become a part of the 19 news team," Al says.

Aside from the stint at the Space Center, Al has spent his entire career in broadcasting, starting with an AM radio transmitter he built from a kit at age 7 (learning rather quickly that a wire stretched across the roof of his parent's home greatly enhanced the range of the little rig), to those first paying jobs in radio at WANA and WDNG in Anniston while still at Anniston High School.

After college, he worked as News Director at WEYY in Talladega before moving "home" to North Alabama to become News Director at WQLT and then at WVNA.

It was during that time Al made the jump to television journalism and over the years has gained experience as a reporter, photographer, and even News Director, winning a number of awards along the way for both his photography and his reporting.

Al covers Limestone, Morgan and Lawrence Counties exclusively. He and his wife, Kim, live in Elkmont. Together they have 5 children and 5 grandchildren with another grandchild due in September!

Recent Articles
  • Old Log Cabin Store on Hwy. 72 in Limestone County damaged by April 28th tornado has been torn down. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    FEMA Disaster Assistance Deadline Extended

    ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – At the request of Gov. Robert Bentley, FEMA has agreed to extend the deadline to apply for disaster assistance related to the April 28th tornados. It means storm victims who have not yet registered have an extra two weeks in which to do so. Many of the scars from the April 28th tornado in Limestone County remain clearly visible, so are the signs of r while ecovery and rebuilding. This house is going up on Log […]

  • Decatur School Board President Karen Duke (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    School Board President Talks Of Building Two New Decatur High Schools

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – The Decatur School Board plans to replace both of its aging high schools. Next month, the board will decide on an architech for both facilities. “And it’s going to be a difficult decision,” says Decatur City School Board President Karen Duke. She says they have a daunting task before them. Next month, the board will set the stage for the construction of two new high schools. “It’s very important to me to make sure the academic […]

  • ALDOT Hears Opinions Regarding Proposed Decatur Toll Road And Bridge

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – The Alabama Department of Transportation sponsored two public meetings in Decatur Thursday to hear input regarding plans to build a toll road and bridge over the Tennessee River. A lot of people don’t want to pay to cross the river, especially those who live in Morgan or Lawrence Counties and commute to Madison County to work each day. There are others who recognize the growing need for another river crossing, but they’re not happy with where […]

  • 14-year-old Somerville girl performs CPR, saves neighbor

    SOMERVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – 59-year old Robert Ryder collapsed in the living room of his Somerville home Monday afternoon. He was having a reaction to some medicine he had taken and his heart had quit beating. He wasn’t breathing. Robert’s wife, not knowing what else to do, ran to the front door and started yelling for help. The only person close enough to hear her cries was a 14-year-old girl who, of course, had no medical training whatsoever. What happened […]

  • Morgan County Commission Studies County-Wide EMS System

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – The Morgan County Commission is now getting involved in the effort to secure a reliable ambulance service for Falkville and Hartselle. Commission Chairman Ray Long says portions of the county could benefit from having a county-wide EMS system. The first company to go under was County EMS not long after funding issues cost it the contracts to serve both Hartselle and Falkville. Crossroads Ambulance won those agreements but a year later went out of business citing […]

  • Danville teen struck by car, killed walking to football practice

    DANVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Tragedy struck a Morgan County school this week, and a family is devastated. A 15-year-old boy, walking to school Tuesday morning, was killed when a vehicle struck him. 15-year-old Austin Cook was walking south on County Road 41, Danville Road, to Danville High School. He was to have been an incoming freshman at Danville High and had gone out for football.  Austin was taking part in the school’s voluntary weight training class for the football players. […]

  • Meet Tony Grande, Decatur’s New Fire Chief

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – After approximately nine months, the City of Decatur has a new fire chief. In fact, Tuesday is Tony Grande’s second day on the job. He’s a former Battalion Chief with the Knoxville Fire Department. WHNT News 19 sat down to get acquainted with the new man in charge. Fire Chief Tony Grande comes to Decatur with 29 years of experience as a firefighter. Decatur firefighters we spoke with say they’re glad to finally have someone in […]

  • Jeremy Smallwood listens as we confront the thieves who have scammed him out of thousands of dollars. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    Hartselle couple scammed out of thousands in telephone hoax

    HARTSELLE, Ala. (WHNT) – A Hartselle couple tells us they’ve been scammed out of thousands of dollars, and the thieves keep calling back trying to get even more. WHNT News 19′s Al Whitaker is taking action to try to get them some relief and show you how to keep from becoming their next victim. Jeremy and Bobbie Smallwood had been playing and entering various contests for years. So when they got a call last November saying they’d won millions in […]

  • Jeremy Smallwood listens as we confront the thieves who have scammed him out of thousands of dollars. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    “The Hoax” – Many Telephone Con Artists Are Untouchable

    HARTSELLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Sheriffs investigators in Morgan County tell us they’re seeing a huge increase in the number of telephone scams perpetrated on people. The scams range from callers saying you’ve won a big prize to someone posing as a law enforcement officer asking for bail money for one of your children or grandchildren. Most people don’t fall for the hoax, but the ones who do make it a profitable enterprise for these telephone thieves. WHNT News 19′s Al Whitaker […]

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    Samaritan Ambulance Takes Over In Hartselle & Falkville, For Now

    HARTSELLE, Ala. (WHNT) – When you dial 9-1-1, you expect help to be there. But in parts of Morgan County, that’s not always the case. More ambulance problems tonight in Hartselle and Falkville. The City of Hartselle still operating under a state of emergency. City officials in Hartselle thought they had resolved their ambulance issues a couple of weeks ago. Decatur-based First Response Ambulance agreed to provide service to the area after Crossroads Ambulance went out of business. But now, […]

  • Darrius Sherrod is moved from the Morgan County Courthouse. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    Darrius Sherrod Guilty Of Capital Murder

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – 22-year old Darrius Sherrod was convicted of capital murder Monday afternoon for the September 15, 2010 shooting death of 19-year old Matthew “Homer” Marquez Jackson. He was immediately sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Sherrod said nothing as he was led away from the Morgan County Courthouse for the short ride back to the county jail. Defense attorney Brian White expressed his disappointment with the verdict saying he hoped the jury would […]

  • Darrius Sherrod is moved from the Morgan County Courthouse. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    Morgan County Jury: Darrius Sherrod guilty of capital murder

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – A Morgan County jury has found 22-year-old Darrius Sherrod guilty of capital  murder.  He was on trial last week for the September 2010 drive-by shooting death of 19-year-old Matthew Jackson. The jury returned the verdict just after 3:30 p.m. Monday.  They had been deliberating since 9 a.m., taking a break for lunch. The trial Darrius Sherrod took the stand in his own defense Friday morning.  He told the court that a long-running “beef” with a man […]