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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.

You can reach Al on Facebook or email al.whitaker@whnt.com and on Twitter @noozguy.


Recent Articles
  • Debtor's Prison

    TAKING ACTION: Probation companies profiting from person’s inability to pay court fines

    HOLLYWOOD, Ala. (WHNT) – The notion of a debtor’s prison, or going to jail because of your inability to pay a debt, was outlawed in the United States back in the 1800s. But some say it’s making a comeback, right here in Alabama. WHNT News 19 has been investigating the problem and is Taking Action to expose it. In Alabama, it seems we’ve found a way to make it a crime to be poor. A lot of Alabamians live paycheck […]

  • Photo by Al Whitaker

    Morgan County crews investigating deadly wreck after vehicle crashed in Flint Creek

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – One person is dead following a crash on Highway 31 just south of Decatur. The victim’s car wound up completely submerged in Flint Creek. Divers had to free the driver. Investigators say they’re still trying to determine exactly what might have caused the accident. “Bystanders had said that it appeared the vehicle was traveling at a high rate of speed,” Decatur Fire & Rescue Battalion Chief Jason Jones told reporters at the scene. Witnesses say the […]

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    Limestone County community says goodbye to Coach Jimmy Drake

    LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) –   Jimmy Drake will be fondly remembered as a husband, father, grandfather and as a coach. On Wednesday, Coach Jimmy Drake returned to his beloved alma mater one last time. Hundreds of people were on hand to say goodbye. Drake graduated from East Limestone in 1959, and then returned to coach at the school for 21 years before becoming the principal. For him, the title of coach represented a lifelong commitment to each and every […]

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    Update on Highway 72 bridge replacement in Lauderdale County

    ROGERSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – A viewer wrote asking us to check on the progress of a road project on Highway 72 in Lauderdale County. He says the project has been ongoing for more than a year and there’s seldom any workers at the site. So WHNT News 19 is Taking Action to find out what’s going on in this week’s Driving You Crazy report. The bridge on the east bound side of Highway 72 between Rogersville and Killen had to […]

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    Update on Highway 20 project in Decatur

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – With most of our Driving You Crazy stories, we point out problem areas. We then try to get something done to make them safer. This week is a bit different. It’s an update on a project that will solve some problems, but it’s causing a lot of headaches for a lot of motorists. Most weekday afternoons during rush hour, Highway 20 leading into Decatur looks more like a parking lot. Traffic has been known to back […]

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    New overpass construction on Memorial Parkway topic of Tuesday public meeting

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – You know, it hasn’t been that long since the state finished its last project on North Memorial Parkway. Well, get ready for those orange cones to come back out again. The state is planning to build a new overpass, this one over Mastin Lake Road and the state plans a public hearing on the project for Tuesday night. It’s really too early yet to tell you when the project will get underway, or how long it […]

  • Overturned tractor off Slaughter Road Friday night. (Photo: Al Whitaker, WHNT News 19)

    Madison firefighters save man trapped under tractor in water-filled ditch

    MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) – A passerby is credited with saving the life of a man who was trapped under a tractor late Friday afternoon. It happened on Slaughter Road, just south of Highway 72. The man was cutting grass on the side of the road when the tractor slid down an embankment and overturned in a water-filled ditch. The operator was pinned underneath. At times, his head was under water. Rescuers say the man had apparently been pinned there for some […]

  • Limestone County prosecutors fight to keep Moyers’ jury from being forced to testify in hearing for new trial

    ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – Joel Moyers was back in court Wednesday afternoon. The Limestone County man asking for a new trial claiming misconduct on the part of the jury that convicted him of capital murder earlier this year. Defense attorneys have issued subpoenas to each member of Moyer’s jury, hopeful of putting them on the stand to ask if they did anything wrong. “We had learned that Mr. Moyers’ investigator was going to the houses of the jurors, at night, […]

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    Lawrence County community members hold town hall to focus on building new animal shelter

    MOULTON, Ala. (WHNT) – Community leaders held a town hall Monday to help develop plans for a new Lawrence County animal shelter. Lawrence County Commissioner Bobby Burch and residents from throughout the county gathered at Moulton Methodist Church at 6 p.m. to organize the ad hoc committee, create sub-committees, identify goals and get the project underway. Burch said sub-committees will be assigned among the volunteers to determine how the shelter will be operated; whether or not it will be a […]

  • WHNT News 19's Al Whitaker with Gary Wilson. (WHNT News 19 photo)

    TAKING ACTION: WHNT News 19 helps man recover overpaid hospital charges

    MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) – A Madison County man writes us saying his son’s recent hospital bill was actually overpaid by several thousand dollars, but yet the hospital wanted more.  Gary Wilson says he had no choice but to pay up in order to protect his son’s credit. That’s when he called us. Here’s how it breaks down. When Gary Wilson’s son, Mac, was admitted to Madison Hospital earlier this year, the bill came to $27,333.22.  His Blue Cross and Blue […]

  • Taking Action to repair Hwy. 20 railroad crossing in Decatur

    DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – There’s a railroad crossing on Highway 20 in Decatur that motorists say is not only driving them crazy but tearing up their cars! To be honest, we’ve lost track of how many viewers have complained about it. It’s one of the areas we get the most complaints about. This is Highway 20 in Morgan County. Down that way is Hillsboro and Lawrence County. Right here at this next traffic light, that’s Highway 67 or the Beltline […]

  • New Alabama law to make it more difficult for some to purchase firearms

    ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT) – Alabama takes steps to keep firearms out of the hands of the mentally ill. A new law goes into effect in September that will stop the sales of firearms to those who have been involuntarily committed. The original law, we’re told, came about roughly a decade ago following the ambush slaying of two Athens police officers. A man with a long history of mental issues assassinated Sgt. Larry Russell and Officer Tony Mims as they answered […]

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