Judi Gatson

News Anchor
Judi Gatson

Judi Gatson is anchor of WIS News Live at 5 and WIS News at 6. Since joining WIS News in November of 1995, Judi has reported on and anchored live coverage from some of the biggest stories around the state.

Judi is an award-winning journalist on topics ranging from education to social justice. During 2020, Judi was on air for nearly 10 hours anchoring WIS’ live continuous coverage of protests that erupted after the murder of George Floyd.

Judi is also a trusted voice in covering critical issues confronting public education in South Carolina. She led WIS’ live coverage when nearly 10,000 teachers and supporters rallied at the South Carolina State House calling for higher pay and improved working conditions.

Judi is also known for her smart and insightful political coverage. She received international praise for her skillful performance as moderator of the U. S. Senate debate between incumbent Lindsey Graham and challenger Jaime Harrison. In addition to moderating a number of gubernatorial and mayoral debates, Jud has conducted numerous in-depth interviews with influential politicians and newsmakers.

Judi anchored and produced an award-winning documentary on the Confederate Flag exploring the controversy and eventual compromise reached to remove the flag from the South Carolin State House dome. She also covered the Inauguration of President Barack Obama live from the nation’s capital for WIS and affiliate stations around the country.

In the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic, Judi helped launch, produce and anchor WIS Today. The show replaced the Third Hour of Today after covid concerns forced that program to take a production hiatus. Judi and her team highlighted how the pandemic affected South Carolina, the impact on first responders and connected our viewers to critical resources that helped everyone navigate the challenges brought on by the pandemic. WIS Today also featured uplifting and inspirational stories that reminded viewers of our strength and resilience as a community.

Among her many honors and awards, Judi has been named Anchor of the Year by the South Carolina Broadcasters Association, Military Advocate of the Year by the Columbia Chamber of Commerce for her work with the station’s “Year of the Veteran” series and her support of South Carolina’s military community, Anchor of the Year by the KISS 103.1FM Columbia Neighborhood Awards, Reporter of the Year by the National Alliance on Mental Health, South Carolina (NAMI), Champion for Children by Healthy Learners and Outstanding Professional in Support of Philanthropy by the Association of Fundraising Professionals SC, Central Carolina Chapter. Judi has also received numerous Anchor of the Year Awards from the Free Times and Columbia Metropolitan Magazine.

As co-anchor of WIS News at 6 Judi has been recognized with numerous nominations for her anchoring and reporting and has won five Emmy awards for best newscast.

As an in-demand emcee, keynote and motivational speaker at schools, churches and conferences, Judi is known for inspiring others to find their purpose and personal power.

Judi is also known for her heart for service and devotes much of her community involvement to working with organizations that benefit youth and families. She is an active board member with Homeless No More. Over the years, she’s been honored to also serve on the boards of Healthy Learners, the Palmetto Health South Carolina Cancer Center, Palmetto Center for Women and United Way's Palmetto Society.

Judi is married to Dr. Dwayne Gatson, who served 22 years in the military and retired as a Lt. Colonel in the United States Army. Judi and Dwayne share the blessing of two sons, Aidan Kash and Nicholas Jax. They are active members of Brookland Baptist Church and live in Columbia with their black labs, Shiloh and Storm.