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BEST TV NEWSCASTER Minneapolis 2000 - Amelia Santaniello

Readers' Choice: Paul Magers

Accuracy? That's up to the editors. Empathy? Leave it to Oprah. These days, an evening news anchor should be just that: A functional fixture that tethers our collective consciousness to the ground while the usual slew of scandals, crises, and meteorological misfortunes tug our frail Midwestern mortality to and fro. That's an especially tall order when you've got the eternally self-destructive Governor Ventura in office and the painfully self-aware Don Shelby sitting at the desk next to you. Amelia Santaniello of WCCO is no robot, mind you, skilled as she is at squeezing the requisite measure of pathos into her otherwise polished presentation. But she's no ham, either, unlike so many of the thespian rovers and overtenured desk jockeys up the dial. Back in 1998, Pi Press readers voted Amelia the worst female anchor in town. Two years later, she's the ascendant underdog with more game than any of her tired colleagues on Channel 4's "Hometown Team." Now that she's shacked up with KARE-11's Frank Vascellaro and is discovering momhood, let's just hope she doesn't go all Pat Miles on us.

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