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About the I-Team

September 24, 2013 2:25:29 PM PDT
Important stories start here. ABC7's nationally-acclaimed investigative unit digs for news like nobody else in Chicago.

Our investigative reporter Chuck Goudie and producers Ann Pistone, Barb Markoff, Christine Tressel, and Ross Weidner along with video editor Annie Esp are a nationally-acclaimed combo with decades of experience uncovering Chicago news. They are backed up by a team of photographers and editors who are devoted to developing major stories that have impact in our community.

The I-Team tackles stories that reveal fraud, corruption, waste of taxpayer dollars and risks to public health and safety. We do not shy away from issues that may involve powerful people, big companies, celebrities or criminals.

We're experienced in preparing instant investigations of breaking news stories, that reveal important facts and insights while other news organizations may just be getting started.

Our commitment to investigative stories also means investing many months of work on long-form projects. Sometimes we work under dangerous conditions, and our investigations often entail travel to other cities and sometimes, other countries.

But when you stand for news, nothing can stand in your way.

I-Team Awards

Since 1980 Goudie, Pistone and the ABC7 I-Team have received numerous awards for their investigative reports.

  • A National Emmy Award for Investigative Reporting: for exposing how government agencies and chemical companies were unprotected against a deadly terrorist attack. While reporting "Worst Case Scenario," the ABC 7 I-Team found significant gaps in plant security, despite Illinois being home to more chemical facilities containing large amounts of hazardous chemicals than any other state.
  • Numerous Chicago Emmy Awards for Investigative Reporting, Spot News Reporting, Series and Documentary Reporting and Feature Reporting.
  • Several Peter Lisagor Awards for television reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Chicago Headline Club. Most recently, the I-team won a Lisagor for "From Ground Zero to the Battlefront" reported from the site of the World Trade Center terrorist attack, the Pentagon, US military bases overseas, an aircraft carrier in the Arabian Sea and from airspace near the Afghan battle zone.
  • Numerous Associated Press journalism awards including a national AP award for enterprise reporting, Illinois AP awards for investigative reporting and an AP award to Goudie as "Best Television Reporter" in Illinois.
  • One of broadcasting's most coveted honors, the national "Edward R. Murrow Award" from the Radio-Television News Director's Association, for continuing coverage a nationwide murder spree.
  • Several Herman Kogan Award for criminal justice reporting from the Chicago Bar Association.
  • I-Team Bios

    Reporter Chuck Goudie and producer Ann Pistone are a nationally-acclaimed combo with decades of experience uncovering Chicago news.

    Chuck Goudie


    Chief Investigative Reporter, ABC 7 News

    Chuck Goudie's reputation for being one of Chicago's toughest investigative reporters spans more than two decades. He has been the chief investigative reporter for ABC 7 News since 1990, often breaking major news stories before other media. He joined ABC 7 as a news reporter in 1980.

    Goudie's compelling and hard-hitting investigative reporting not only wins major awards but gets results. For example, in 1998 it was Goudie who first exposed the "Licenses-for-Bribes" investigation, revealing Illinois commercial drivers' licenses being sold to hundreds of unqualified truckers. His groundbreaking investigation prompted the FBI to go undercover, leading to dozens of federal corruption indictments all the way up to former Governor George Ryan. In 2004, his six-month investigation documenting misconduct, accidents and negligence by top members of the Illinois State Police unit that guards Governor Blagojevich, resulted in the governor ordering a thorough state police overhaul. His 1993 investigation of sexual abuse allegations against the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin resulted in the cardinal's accuser withdrawing charges. Other important investigations have shut down a business catering to illegal drug use and a shady, unregistered charity in Chicago.

    Previously, Goudie served at WSOC-TV, the ABC affiliate in Charlotte, N.C., where he was a main sports anchor (1978-80) and general assignment reporter (1977-78). He gained early television experience at the age of 12, when he won a regular role on two weekly children's shows on WXYZ-TV in Detroit, Mich. (1968-72).

    Goudie has won many of broadcasting's top honors, including a National Emmy Award in 2004 for exposing how government agencies and chemical companies were unprotected against a deadly terrorist attack.

    In 1998, Goudie was honored with the national Edward R. Murrow Award for Continuous Television News Reporting. He has also received numerous reporting awards from the Associated Press; Emmy awards from the Chicago Television Academy; Peter Lisagor Awards from the Society for Professional Journalists and Herman Kogan awards from the Chicago Bar Association.

    Goudie has investigated and reported news stories from four continents; from New York's "Ground Zero"; war zones in the Middle East, the Arabian Sea and the Balkans; and from behind the walls of the Vatican.

    A member of Investigative Reporters and Editors, Goudie is a regular speaker at their international conference. He won a Chicago/Midwest Father of the Year Award from the Father of the Year Council in 1992.

    In addition to his broadcast work, Goudie writes a weekly column for the Daily Herald, the third largest daily paper in metro Chicago.

    Born in suburban Detroit, Michigan, Goudie holds a B.A. degree in Telecommunications and Political Science from Michigan State University. He is married to Teri Goudie, a former ABC 7 news producer and now a media consultant and crisis trainer. They have five children.

    Ann Pistone

    Investigative Producer, I-Team

    In 1999, investigative producer Ann Pistone was teamed up with veteran investigative reporter Chuck Goudie and has produced a body of work that underscores why ABC 7's I-team continues it be at the forefront of breaking news in Chicago.

    Her investigations have exposed everything from governmental waste to national security issues, to corporate corruption and organized crime. She has covered stories in and around Chicago and has traveled the globe to localize important international stories.

    Pistone has received some of the top awards for investigative journalism including a 2004 National Emmy Award, a 2001 and 2003 Chicago Chicago/Midwest Emmy Award, and a 2002 Peter Lisagor Award from the Society of Professional Journalists.

    Prior to coming to ABC 7 Chicago, Pistone was the investigative producer for WFLD-TV (Fox) in Chicago from 1993-1999.

    During her career she also worked as a producer for the CNN and CNBC Midwest Bureaus and as a political commentary producer at WGN.

    Barb Markoff

    Investigative producer Barb Markoff joined ABC 7 Chicago in 1999. After a three year stint working for ABC News in New York, she returned to Chicago in 2008 to become a member of the I-Team.
    Markoff's investigation of former Governor Rod Blagojevich exposed negligence and mismanagement in his office. A regular at the federal courthouse, she covered both Blagojevich trials as well as a number of terrorism, organized crime and other political corruption cases. Her other investigations have uncovered unethical government employees and crime issues around Chicago.
    In 2003, Markoff covered the Iraq War with investigative reporter Chuck Goudie. She has also produced stories from a number of national political conventions.
    Before joining ABC 7 Chicago, Markoff was a special projects producer at KGO-TV, the ABC-owned station in San Francisco, California. She also worked as a producer for KTXL-TV (Fox) in Sacramento, California, and WCTV (CBS) in Tallahassee, Florida.
    Markoff holds a B.S. degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Illinois. She lives in Chicago with her family and crazy dog Cocoa.

    Christine Tressel

    Investigative producer Christine Tressel joined ABC 7 in 1992 as a news writer and assistant producer for 10pm newscast. For the past 18 years she has produced health and investigative medical reports, keeping ABC 7 on the cutting edge of that beat. She's been honored with various awards including numerous Emmy Awards, the Peter Lisagor Award, from the Chicago Headline Club for the exposure of an illegal on-line doctor's service operating in Illinois.
    Prior to joining ABC 7, Christine was a reporter and anchor for WCIA-TV in Springfield and Champaign Illinois.
    She holds a B.A. Degree from Eastern Illinois University in Speech Communications and a M.A. in Political Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois Springfield.

    Ross Weidner

    Investigative producer Ross Weidner joined the ABC7 Chicago News team in April 2009. As Special Projects Producer, he contributed investigations to the ABC7 I-Team, produced the station's coverage of the Sandy Hook Elementary school tragedy, and traveled to Rome to cover the last days of Pope Benedict XVI and the election of Pope Francis. Ross also field produced and led the station's coverage of major events and breaking news stories.
    Before coming to ABC7, Ross was the Investigative Producer and Researcher at ABC-owned WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. He produced hard hitting investigative pieces that led to changes in North Carolina law and uncovered wastes of public money.
    Ross grew up in suburban Philadelphia and is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Journalism. While at UNC, he interned for ABC's Brian Ross Investigative Unit. He lives in Lakeview with his wife and miniature schnauzer.

    Annie Esp

    Video editor Annie Esp joined ABC 7 in 2001 as a non-linear editor in the news department. She has been creating I-Team investigative segments for the past 9 years. Previously, Annie worked at WGN as a news editor and WTTW editing long format half hour shows.
    Annie has been awarded several Chicago Emmys for her work at ABC 7, including "9/11/02-The New Homeland," a ABC 7 special on the first anniversary of the Sept. 11th terror attacks. She contributed several stories for the hour long special. Annie is a graduate of Columbia College in Chicago.


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