Born and raised in Detroit, Vaughn considers dispelling myths about his hometown a crucial part of his job. That goal is accomplished through producing stories and interviews on local government, community revitalization, business investment and the people of Detroit. At the heart of Vaughn’s mission is the ideal of telling the truth.
Vaughn’s interest in news reporting began when he was five years old, when his mom bought him a yellow Panasonic ball and chain radio. He constantly listened to news on it and took inspiration from great radio journalists such as Walter Cronkite, Charles Collingwood and Eric Sevareid. Vaughn is working to ignite that same passion in the next generation of journalists. Towards that end, he runs the WDET news department’s internship program. He has also served as a mentor for NPR’s Next Generation Radio Project.
Vaughn received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Creative Writing from the University of Michigan in 1987. After traveling Route 66 with a friend to California, he spent three years living in San Francisco, fundraising and performing media relations work for the San Francisco Education Fund. Vaughn returned to Detroit in 1991 and joined WDET in January 1992, while working on his graduate degree. Vaughn received his Master of Arts degree from Wayne State University in Radio, TV, Film in 1999. During his time at WDET, he has worked as an intern, producer, reporter, Assistant News Director, Executive Producer, News/Program Director and News Director. He has also worked as News Director at Michigan Radio in Ann Arbor.
Vaughn has received numerous honors including the Helen Thomas Spirit of Diversity Award, as well as first place awards for individual reporting, spot news, hard news, feature reporting, newscasts, sports features, and investigative/enterprise reporting from the Michigan Associated Press, Michigan Association of Broadcasters and Society of Professional Journalists – Detroit Chapter. Vaughn was also selected for NPR’s Diversity Initiative and Mid-Career Fellowships. He has served as the Vice President, Broadcasting on the National Association of Black Journalists – Detroit Chapter and on the board of the Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
In his spare time, Vaughn enjoys spending time with his wife and eight children, coaching his kids’ soccer teams, reading history, and gardening.