Tradition in Resilience: KTSM Operations Manager Ozzie Carrillo wins Emmy

El Paso News

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – A desire to bring happiness to the city he loves turned into a vision that was carried out through determination, coordination and an intense amount of hard work.

In the end KTSM’s Ozzie Carrillo was recognized with one of the most prestigious awards that can be given: the Emmy Award for Technical Excellence for his work to put together the 2020 virtual Thanksgiving Day Parade.

“It’s very exciting. The fact that you’re competing against the whole state of Texas with a lot of talented people in bigger markets, and little El Paso won the Emmy. I think it was a good deal and it says a lot about the city and the station.”

It was months away from November of 2020 when Carrillo and his team started thinking about the parade, especially because the entire city of El Paso was shut down due to Covid-19.

“It was early summer 2020 and by that time the whole city was shut down, [there were] a lot of restrictions. I walked into Raul’s office and both of our minds were on the parade. Raul, our production manager, says ‘is this gonna happen?’ and our thinking at the time was ‘its going to be in November everything should be over by then, yeah right.

The very next day we got a call from the Sun bowl Association and they had the same question, ‘is this going to happen are things going to be over with?’ And we said let’s meet and let’s plan for the worst case scenario, and the worst case scenario was there wasn’t going to be a parade”

Ozzie Carillo, Operations Manager

The shutdowns continued through November, But Carrillo, his KTSM 9 News team and the Sun Bowl Association were prepared, and since people couldn’t go to the parade, they decided to bring the parade to them.

“For two reasons, one of them it’s the tradition that El Paso is used to every year. The second reason is we were all in the middle of a lockdown and November 2020, that’s when El Paso really got hit with Covid cases. No-one could really leave their homes or do much of anything. So at the time we were like ‘let’s try to do something and put something together for the city of El Paso. Let the tradition continue.

We blocked the street, it was okayed by the city, we just taped it. We didn’t make any announcements. It was a similar flow the only difference was all the work, instead of doing the live event, it was all edited. So there was a lot of work that I did at home for it seemed like a long time. Hours and hours of editing.”

Ozzie Carillo, Operations Manager

Carrillo said he hopes the Emmy shows the city of El Paso, what the KTSM team is all about.

“This sends the message that KTSM has a team along with the Sun Bowl Association that we see no obstacles. The show must go on.”

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