LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Since 1994, reporter Randy Paige has been a member of the CBS2 and KCAL9 families.
Over the years he has covered war from an aircraft carrier, environmental contamination from the streets of Vernon to the campuses of Southern California public schools. He’s also covered fake schools for foster children and helped clear the names of people wrongly convicted of terrible crimes.
Randy started off in broadcast journalism as a reporter in San Luis Obispo in 1984. Ten years later, he joined the KCAL9/CBS2 families working on investigations.
“I’m kind of a child of the Watergate era,” Randy said. “I believed very much in investigative reporting to try to create a positive change.”
In 2002, he was awarded the prestigious Dupont Award for his reporting on dangerous levels of lead in L.A. public schools.
The impact on the families he met could be tough to take.
“I think one of the most difficult things about this job is coming face to face with those people who are dealt a really difficult hand, children who have lost portions of their IQ because of lead contamination, “said Randy.
Lead contamination was also an issue Randy confronted in his series of stores on the thousands of homes poisoned by the Exide battery recycling plant.
The story of Long Beach High School football star Brian Bank is one Randy follows to this day.
After the then-teen was wrongly convicted of rape in 2002, Randy worked with the Innocence Project to help spotlight the holes in the evidence against him.
The reporting made a difference: Randy was there to see Banks’ conviction overturned.
He also covered the fight to overturn the conviction of Kimberly Long, a nurse convicted of killing her boyfriend.
“The people I will remember are the people who make amazing things of their lives after being dealt a really difficult hand,” he said. “It’s been a privilege to witness the heroic moments that happen every day.”
Over the course of his career, Randy has covered the famous, the infamous, politics, and the military.
“I was able to land and take off from an aircraft carrier, get to know the people in our military who are doing really amazing things every day, go into communities that I never would have understood,” he said.