Angela Kennecke

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Angela Kennecke is an American News presenter, investigative journalist, philanthropist and author. Kennecke is best known as co-anchor on KELOLAND News for KELO-TV in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and KCLO-TV in Rapid City, South Dakota since 1989..[1] Kennecke is also known for creating a non-profit organization called Emily's Hope,[2] named after her daughter who died of an accidental opioid overdose. In 2019, Kennecke was named to the Upper Midwest Emmy Award.[3]

Angela Kennecke
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CitizenshipUnited States
  • BA
  • Journalism
  • MA
Alma materUniversity of Iowa
OccupationJournalist, Philanthropist
Years active1989-Present
EmployerNexstar Media Group
OrganizationEmily's Hope
TelevisionKELO-TV, KCLO-TV
AwardsUpper Midwest Emmy® Silver Circle Honoree 2019, Six Upper Midwest Emmys®


Early life and education

Kennecke graduated from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa with a Bachelor's degree in Journalism. She received her master's degree in Communications Management from Webster University in St. Louis.


Kennecke spent a brief time at KGAN in Cedar Rapids, Iowa before becoming the Rapid City bureau reporter at KCLO-TV in October 1989. She quickly moved to the television station's main newsroom in Sioux Falls, and became one of the first female main co-anchors in South Dakota on KELO-LAND News at 10. Kennecke stayed on the late evening anchor job for KELOLAND News at 5, 6 and 10 p.m. until 2012. During that time she anchored many political debates.[4] In 2012, as the Great Recession was in full swing, Kennecke became the business editor and started the Your Money Matters section of KELOLAND focused on consumer reporting. She also anchored KELOLAND News at 5 and Midday in KELOLAND. In recent years her investigative reporting into an embezzlement of Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs and murder-suicide of a family in Platte, South Dakota let to national attention and legislative changes.[5]

Kennecke took a leave of absence for several months in 2018 after the unexpected death of her 21-year-old daughter, Emily Groth.[6] Kennecke has dedicated much of her reporting in the years since on the opioid crisis. In late 2018, Kennecke, along with producers Anna Peters, Michael Geheren and photojournalist Kevin Kjergaard, presented an hour-long special looking at the opioid epidemic in the Great Plains. The broadcast won several Upper Midwest Emmy Award, including for Community Service and Public/Current/Community Affairs – Program.[7]

Kennecke wrote a book called The Day His Heart Stopped Crying, about a small-town business owner and second chances. She is also a member of Celebrity Mental Health Speakers and served as an adjunct instructor for South Dakota State University in the journalism department for graduate and undergraduate courses.

She helped raise millions of dollars for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals as a telethon host and storyteller.

Emily's Hope

On May 16, 2018, Kennecke's 21-year-old daughter, Emily, died of an overdose. That same day Angela was working on an investigation into South Dakota's Good Samaritan Laws and overdose deaths. Emily's official cause of death was fentanyl poisoning.[3] After returning to work after a several month leave of absence, Kennecke told her story to KELOLAND viewers. Later that week, she appeared on CBS This Morning and several other national outlets to share her story.

The same week, Kennecke and her husband Jeff started a non-profit organization called “Emily’s Hope.”

"My number one reason for talking about it is to erase the stigma that is surrounding addiction, especially the use of heroin or any kind of opioid,” Kennecke said.[8]

The non-profit has helped raise thousands for the Avera Health Addiction Care Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and Emily's Hope House, a sober living house as part of the Oxford Sober Living Network.

Kennecke also began a podcast called "Grieving Out Loud."


Kennecke lives with her husband Jeff, a real estate agent, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. She has three surviving children.


  1. "Resume". Angela Kennecke. Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  2. September 7, Jessica Kegu CBS News; 2018; Am, 7:21. "For a TV anchor who covered the opioid crisis for years, the story becomes personal". Retrieved 2020-07-22.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  3. 3.0 3.1 "2019 Gold & Silver Circle Honorees". Midwest Emmys. 2019-10-03. Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  4. "Angela Kennecke |". Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  5. "Angela Kennecke – South Dakota Broadcasting Hall of Fame". Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  6. "Emily's Hope: A Personal Story". 2019-06-18. Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  7. "2019 Upper Midwest Emmy® Recipients". Midwest Emmys. 2019-10-06. Retrieved 2020-07-22.
  8. "Emily's Hope". Emily's Hope. Retrieved 2020-07-22.

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