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Terry Phillips is an independent candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in California's new 23rd Congressional District. He is a Central Valley native, born in Fresno. He grew up in the Bay Area, and he has made his home in Bakersfield since 2004.
Mr. Phillips is currently the sole proprietor of a media consultation company.
He began his broadcast career covering the high tech industry. He created and contributed to various local and national TV programs for the San Jose, California PBS affiliate, including "Tomorrow/Today" (1981) and "Silicon Valley Report" (1991). Other productions included documentaries, news reports, magazine shows and public affairs specials. He was in charge of the station's video services department. He produced, directed and presented corporate video information programs, newspaper and magazine articles for various Silicon Valley clients and independent media outlets.
As a network news correspondent, he reported major events throughout the world, from the collapse of the Soviet Union to armed conflicts in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Somalia, Haiti and Iraq. He was based in Moscow, Russia (1991-94), covering events throughout the now-former Soviet Union. Stories included the collapse of the USSR, civil wars in the Caucasus region, as well as myriad social and political changes during those turbulent years. He covered conflicts in Armenian, Georgia and Azerbaijan as well as the attempted violent overthrow of Boris Yeltsin. Other overseas assignments included conflicts in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Somalia and Haiti. He served as acting bureau chief in Sarajevo and Port-au-Prince.
Mr. Phillips reported domestic stories throughout the United States while based in Detroit, Michigan (1995-96) including Hurricane Fran, the Oklahoma City bombing and the trials of assisted suicide advocate, Dr. Jack Kevorkian. He was nominated for two Emmy awards.
From 2005 to 2011, Mr. Phillips hosted the award-winning "Quality of Life" current affairs program on Valley Public Radio, the NPR stations in Central California. He brought together representatives from diverse points of view, providing a fair and balanced opportunity to discuss issues of public importance. He managed a team of broadcast professionals to produce this live interview program. Guest panels regularly included regional, national and international experts from a wide range of fields. A compilation of his radio commentaries was published in Off the Air: Thoughts About Our Quality of Life (Hye Books, 2011).
In addition to being a veteran journalist, Mr. Phillips is a longtime entrepreneur. He was a senior executive in the wireless telecommunications industry. As a member of the President's Council, he headed the department dealing with company communications, media relations and public affairs. He supervised a multi-regional team of PR professionals who produced publications, handled press contacts and resolved high-level customer concerns. He was the President's speechwriter and occasional surrogate at public presentations. While on staff at Omnipoint, he also served as a consultant for the GSM Association, an international organization that represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. He edited corporate newsletters and white papers as well as quarterly and annual reports. He published the innovative book, Wireless Etiquette: A Guide to the Changing World of Instant Communication (Omnipoint Books, 1999) -- the world's first guide to the polite use of mobile devices. Along with author Peter Laufer, he also collaborated on the Omnipoint Business Minute, a unique broadcast product with promotional and journalistic content. In 1999, Omnipoint merged with VoiceStream Wireless (now part of T-Mobile).
He is the author of Murder at the Altar (Hye Books, 2008), a historical novel based on the 1933 assassination of Armenian Archbishop Ghevont Tourian. This groundbreaking book resulted from five years of research. It is the definitive work on this highly controversial subject. He continues to lecture on the history of this event, bringing together representatives from opposing groups to search for common ground and mutual understanding.
A 1975 graduate of Santa Clara University with a bachelor's degree in political science, Mr. Phillips also studied at McGeorge Law School in Sacramento as well as conflict management at Fresno Pacific University. He speaks French fluently and has a working knowledge of Russian, Spanish, Greek and Armenian.