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Class of 1969


Rolfe Tessem

Seven time Emmy Award Winner

Co-Creator of Nickelodeon’s Nick News

Winner of the George Foster Peabody Broadcasting Award and the Alfred I. Dupont Columbia University Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism

Inductee, Royal Oak High School Hall of Fame, 1997

Rolfe Tessem was an honor student and a member of the National Honor Society while attending Dondero High School. He was an active member of the amateur radio club and is undoubtedly one of the most successful students of Mr. Voegtler. One reason he may have done so well at Dondero was because both his parents and his aunt were Dondero teachers at one time. Rolfe graduated with the class of 1969.

Rolfe Tessem received an appointment to the Air Force Academy, but after one year out west he elected to enroll at the University of Michigan where he edited the Michigan Daily newspaper.

Mr. Tessem was employed by ABC News and worked out of Washington D.C. He produced several 20/20 shows for ABC and received an Emmy award in 1981 for the Anniversary of the Berlin Wall. He is currently the co-owner of Lucky Duck Productions, a TV production company based in New York City. He is probably most visible with his productions of Nick News, a television news magazine for kids which earned him another Emmy Award in 1995.

Rolfe has also co-produced many cable television shows including one for MTV involving relationships with AIDS and over 40 shows for the Lifetime Network depicting Intimate Portraits. His productions have also appeared on A&E and HBO. As of 2011 his Emmy count was seven.

Rolfe Tessem was inducted into the Royal Oak High School Hall of Fame in 1997.

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