96.1 FM | 780 AM | “Yours for Western Alaska”

Gabe Colombo, Volunteer News Reporter

Gabe Colombo has been a lover of radio since at least age 1, when, living in Austin, Texas, his father drove him around at night with the local public radio station on in the background, in the hopes that little Gabe would fall asleep.

Two decades later, after countless hours logged listening to such greats as Steve Inskeep, Renee Montagne and David Green on the way to school, Gabe is finally fulfilling a dream to be on the radio — and serve others while at it.

Gabe grew up in Austin and is a recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin: He holds a B.A. in urban studies and Plan II Honors, an interdisciplinary liberal arts and sciences program. Though he hopes to pursue a master of architecture in the coming years, and then to work in urban design — shaping the physical form of cities — he’s thrilled to be spending a year in a rural place and working in radio. “Time away from something,” Gabe says, “is a great way to learn what’s really unique about it, and that this year is a unique opportunity to explore the larger web of human and natural life of which cities are but a component.”

As a practicing Catholic, the mission of KNOM — and especially its non-proselytizing, welcoming interpretation of the Catholic spirit — resonates greatly with Gabe. He’s excited that his job as a news reporter is challenging him to get to know Western Alaska and its people at a rapid pace, and to learn new things and skills with each interview, field visit, story or newscast.

Before coming to KNOM, Gabe held an internship in summer 2016 with the Congress for the New Urbanism, New England Chapter, an urban design advocacy nonprofit, in Boston; worked at UT’s IT Service Desk for three years; studied abroad in London at University College London; and worked on-campus as a copy editor at The Daily Texan. He continues to work as a counselor at Camp Shakespeare at Winedale, a residential summer camp focused on creative play with Shakespeare.

Gabe is an avid reader and plays the piano, ukulele and drums. He’s excited to take advantage of all Nome has to offer, whether that be running, hiking, walking on the beach, cross-country skiing, berry-picking, or volunteering at St. Joseph Catholic Church.

Gabe has never been to Alaska before, has never experienced as cold a winter as he’s sure to this year (“summer in Alaska is similar to winter in Texas!”, he notes) and hasn’t worked as a reporter. But his driving mentality for the year is: “Take risks, and say yes!”