While their paths didn’t always cross during their days at Wittenberg, Vinny Del Giudice and Peter Newcomb shared a common thread on campus that led them to stellar careers in news media.
Currently employed by Bloomberg News, best known for its financial market terminals, Del Giudice earned his degree in sociology from Wittenberg in 1980 followed by a master’s degree in journalism from The Ohio State University. Newcomb graduated in 1982 from Wittenberg with degrees in English and philosophy. Both found solace at Wittenberg’s radio station, WUSO, 89.1 FM, during their time at Witt.
“Peter lived across from me in North Hall around 1978-1979 and was a good neighbor. He was laid back and almost always smiling,” Del Giudice recalled. “Almost a half-century later we are veterans of the financial news and data juggernaut Bloomberg. While working at Bloomberg, I read he was at Forbes Magazine, then he jumped to Bloomberg, so we said hello again.”
“Vinny had a coveted single room at Wittenberg, and we were friends my freshman year,” Newcomb said. “I got to know him again at Bloomberg all these years later. Vinny’s one of the company’s earliest employees and a staple on the radio. His reports are routinely piped into the PA system at work and I make a point of listening; he is very funny. He’s become a mini celebrity at Bloomberg with his national radio reports, and I couldn’t wait to send him an email when I got here.”
Today, the seasoned pros have built successful careers at Bloomberg, which also publishes Bloomberg Businessweek magazine, Bloomberg.com, airs Bloomberg Television, and broadcasts on satellite radio as well as stations in New York, London, Boston, Washington, and San Francisco. Bloomberg LP, the parent company, was started in 1982 by Michael Bloomberg, former New York City mayor, as a bond market data provider.
Del Giudice, born in Paterson, New Jersey and raised in Haledon, New Jersey, is one of the original flock of print reporters who joined when Bloomberg News debuted in 1990. He has been a regular voice on Bloomberg Radio for more than 30 years now. He spent most of his time with Bloomberg in Washington, D.C. and is currently posted in Bloomberg's Denver bureau. A licensed amateur radio operator since the 1970s, Del Giudice began his career in journalism in 1977 as a stringer for United Press International in Ohio before earning a full-time position at UPI in Washington, D.C. in 1982. He covered the U.S. Treasury beat for the Bloomberg News wire and radio network from 1990 to 2012 as well.
“I've been thinking about my time at Witt,” Del Giudice said. “The most valuable lesson I learned was to keep on keeping on in the face of adversity and that opportunity often presents itself when least expected.
“I grew up in an immigrant family,” he continued. “My grandparents immigrated through Ellis Island from Italy. There was a lot of pressure to achieve. Medicine, the law, and banking – these, in my family's views, were the only paths. Well, freshman year and the early part of my sophomore year were academic disasters, based on the family's wishes. Then I stumbled into WUSO-FM, the college radio station, and the sociology department; thank goodness. Both opened new worlds for me, and my time at WUSO led to a job as a stringer (part-time reporter) for United Press International, covering Springfield and Clark County – police, fire, labor unions, local government. I found my talent. My aptitude. I was on my way!”
Newcomb, born in Cincinnati, spent much of his career working for Forbes Magazine with a little time in at Vanity Fair before joining Bloomberg in 2011. Now among senior management, he serves as an executive editor based in New York.
“Bloomberg wanted to get into the wealth business, and they wanted me to help start it,” he said. “I helped launched the initiative to do a morning globe mobile news product. We wanted to offer something slick and digestible. I went from editing long stories to writing and editing just a few sentences. I wasn’t really a breaking news hound, and I was amazed at how quickly people could report and write news and put it out on the wire; it all comes down to seconds. So, working at Bloomberg has been a different experience for me.”
Newcomb was sort of the outlier in his family choosing Wittenberg over Kenyon, where most of his family members went.
“I stumbled on Wittenberg after meeting the Roth family of Vermilion, Ohio. They had four kids and all of them went to Wittenberg. I loved Witt; in fact, my best friends are the guys I met at Witt. I was very active in WUSO, and thought that when I graduated that perhaps I could get a job in radio,” said Newcomb, whose son, Silas, is a 2015 Wittenberg grad. “WUSO, that was my real love. I spent time as the station secretary and deejay. I spent half my time at the station and had a few shows, including a midnight to 3 a.m. shift some nights. I loved it there.”
However, while radio wet his pallet for the media, it was in the magazine world that his heart found a home early in his career.
“I was introduced to someone at Forbes who offered me a job. It only paid $5 dollars an hour, but I thought I would break into it,” Newcomb said. “I spent time as a copy boy, then as a reporter in 1983. My first assignment was working on the Forbes 400 issue, where I ranked the country’s richest people and became a mini expert on the nation’s wealthiest people. In 1993, I left for Sony to work in the music industry, but I came scampering back to Forbes two years later to oversee production of the Forbes 400 again. I also worked an editor for about five years at Vanity Fair before joining Bloomberg.”
Both Newcomb and Del Giudice still cross paths in their current careers and take the chance to reminiscence about their days at Wittenberg.
Photos courtesy of Del Giudice, Newcomb, and Bloomberg News.