Patience leads Doherty to ESPN Ithaca

(August 26, 2019) Dan Doherty thought the sportscasting job market would unfold quickly. He stayed patient when it didn’t. His reward is a play-by-play/sports journalist position in the city where he attended college. An STAA member, Doherty is joining ESPN Ithaca in New York.

Doherty is a December 2017 graduate of Ithaca. At ESPN he replaces fellow STAA member Mark Shelley, who left for a hockey job.

“It is my first full-time job in the sports industry after a season and a half of working as an intern and part-time employee in independent baseball. What makes it even better is it is located where I went to school, which is an area I absolutely love,” Doherty says excitedly.

A former ESPN Ithaca employee helped Doherty’s application get noticed.

“I saw the job through an STAA email and immediately got in touch with a contact by the name of Jeremy Menard who works at my alma mater of Ithaca College and was a previous employee of ESPN Ithaca,” Doherty recalls. “He contacted the station and notified them of my incoming application and gave a personal recommendation.

“Displaying a variety of skills on my resume made a difference as well, as that showed I can go beyond my job description, which is always a plus in radio.”

While at Ithaca College, Doherty broadcast sports updates and called play-by-play of Bombers football, basketball, softball, soccer and lacrosse on the campus radio station. He spent the past two summers with the Long Island Ducks, first as a media relations and broadcasting assistant, and this summer as public address announcer.

It’s common to not always get replies when applying for sportscasting jobs. However, Doherty says it’s tough when you’re not landing anything whatsoever. “After grinding through a year of independent baseball, I felt ready for anything. I quickly realized I was not, which was a tough pill to swallow. I attended the Winter Meetings in Vegas (where I luckily have family) and did not get a single interview after throwing my resume in many baskets.”

Doherty suggests that patience is key in the sportscasting job market. “There are always jobs coming through STAA and one will eventually be the right fit for you,” he says, “I kept working as a public address announcer and continued writing, knowing my time will come.”

Doherty joined STAA in 2018 upon the recommendation of fellow STAA member and fellow Ithaca alum Seth Cantor. “Seth considered STAA an ‘investment in my future’ because the price point can scare college students off, but it’s worth every penny.

“I joined STAA towards the end of my first post-graduate position because I wanted every resource possible to make that next step into full-time work and didn’t want an opportunity to slip by. It took time, but it absolutely paid off. “

Doherty recommends that anyone new to STAA utilize all the resources the membership offers. “There is a wealth of broadcasting knowledge on the site that makes it much more than just a job board. It’s a must-have for sportscasters.”

Now, less than one year after joining STAA, Doherty has earned a full-time sports broadcasting job in the city where he attended college.

“It’s amazing,” he says. “I never wanted location to be a reason I turned down a job. I was applying to many different states without getting much to stick. To return to my second home is an unbelievable feeling and I’m just waiting to get pinched. I’m just four and a half hours away from my home on Long Island too, which is easier on my family.”

(Visit Dan’s STAA Talent Page).