Born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota, Justin has always had an affinity for communities with a diverse population. The opportunity to be chosen as a captain and lead his collegiate football team at the University of Northern Iowa to a national championship game provided him with invaluable experience in leadership and teamwork, while having the chance to play in the NFL added an ability to perform under some of the most stressful and high pressure situations.

His enthusiasm for reporting began when he was a sports intern at WCCO in Minneapolis. During that time, he was able to witness a large metropolitan newsroom in action. Seeing important issues resolved within the community pushed him to switch from sports to news.

Justin joined WHO-TV in July of 2015. In 2016 his detailed coverage of uncontrolled intersections won an Eric Sevareid award for general reporting from the Midwest Broadcast Journalist Association.

Before joining WHO-TV, Justin was a weekend evening news anchor and reporter at WIBW-TV in Topeka, Kansas. During his four year stop in the Capital City he contributed live reports in three Heartland Emmy Award winning newscasts, including one where he provided live reports for 11 hours after two police officers were shot and killed. He has also won a Kansas Association of Broadcasters award for in-depth reporting.

Justin considers it an honor to work in a place with a reputation for delivering in-depth and award winning news in the Des Moines area. He is always looking for a good story idea. Email him or just say hi at Justin.Surrency@whotv.com

13 Facts about Justin
1. I was a co-captain on the 2005 National runner-up Northern Iowa Football team.
2. My favorite song is When doves cry by Prince, who I’ve seen twice in concert.
3. I have played professional football with the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings.
4. In Topeka, Kansas I received an honor from the Topeka Police Department for reporting.
5. In 2015 I was inducted into my high school athletic hall of fame. Go Concordia Academy Beacons!
6. My favorite food is Lasagna -I am the only one in my family who dislikes watermelon…Yuck.
7. I have a very cute Yorkie-Australian Shepherd mixed dog named Cooper.
8. Every Christmas I have to listen to “Santa Claus is coming to town “by the Jackson 5.
9. My mom is a strong survivor of breast cancer. Go mom!
10. When I worked in Topeka, Kansas I covered Game 7 of the 2014 World Series.
11. I won two bicycles growing up and both were stolen from me.
12. I grew up in St.Paul, Minnesota and love a good cheesy hot dish.
13. My guilty pleasure would have to be Haribo Gummy Bears.


Recent Articles
  • Private Iowa Lake Turns Into Brief Crime Scene

    AVON LAKE, Iowa  —  The day began as an opportunity for Sharon Hill and Larry Watkins to finally enjoy spring in their backyard overlooking private Avon Lake. “We live here because it’s quiet, no noise at all,” said Larry. But it quickly turned into a front row seat to a Polk County and Des Moines Police Department investigation. “Some of our divers went in with a boat and with our equipment we could find we had some sort of object […]

  • Local Veteran Owned Store Forced Out of Des Moines Mall

      DES MOINES, Iowa –When Allen Ung and Justin Baccam opened up their own shoe consignment store in Merle Hay Mall they were ecstatic.  “It felt great because I always dreamed of doing this since I was a little kid,” said Justin. Illest Around Sneaker Boutique opened in November and offered something most Iowans could never see, exclusive hard to find shoes.  Justin said, “Many customers come in looking for a certain shoe and they say they’ve been looking for […]

  • Iowan Recalls Life on the Road With Barbara Bush

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  A week before the nation first learned of Barbara Bush’s failing health, family and close friends already knew. “I read it and I cried,” said Iowa resident Becky Beach.  Not related by blood, the news hit Beach just as hard. “I lived in all three of their homes. In Houston, Washington D.C., and Maine. Literally, they are like a second family.” Beach served as personal assistant to Barbara Bush for four and a half years beginning […]

  • Iowa Plane Crash Victim Missing $5K After First Responders Rescued Him

        DES MOINES, Iowa — A maiden voyage that ended unceremoniously.  “On take off, I had the wind change direction on me,” said, 43 year old Lake View resident Jason Beckman had just purchased the Quicksilver GT400 from the original owner in Maxwell on April 5th.  That is when he crashed into the open field.”A very expensive and short flight,” joked Beckman. Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Maxwell Fire Department, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa Department of Transportation, Story County Medical […]

  • The Iowa Man Who Helped Shape Major League Baseball History

    IOWA  —  His name and number are synonymous with baseball, but as Major League Baseball celebrates the 71st anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier, Iowans should also stand proudly for one of their own. “James Leslie Wilkinson. One of the greatest baseball people the sport has ever seen. This little white man from Algona, Iowa.” Wilkinson’s love of baseball helped fuel his passion to start his own team in the early 1900s. “He was so innovative.” Bob Kendrick, president of […]

  • One Last Storm for Dallas County Emergency Management Coordinator

    ADEL, Iowa  —  While storms can often wreak havoc, Dallas County Emergency Management coordinator Barry Halling has seen them bring out the best in Iowans in his four decades of service. “It is a little more prevalent in the heartland, but you see it all over. People helping people and neighbor helping neighbor.” A retirement ceremony in Adel on Friday allowed community members to show their appreciation for a man who was dedicated to keeping Dallas County as safe as […]

  • Metro School Requiring Financial Literacy Class To Graduate

      JOHNSTON, Iowa — It is a problem finance professionals, like Serve Credit Union Marketing Manager Mike Farley, are running into a lot with members. “Paying yourself first, how to save, what does it mean when you take out a loan and things like that,” he said. Iowa is one thirty-three states that still does not require high school students to take a financial literacy class to graduate. It is leaving many without a clue about handling their money until […]

  • Iowan Living Across From Facebook Data Center Reacts to Privacy Controversy

    ALTOONA, Iowa  —  Congress may have grilled Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on the social media giant’s latest data scandal, but Terri Hamm of Altoona watched and walked away unfulfilled. “I’m not convinced by just hearing what I heard today that they’re going to get this back in the barn, so to speak,” she said. While many users may have the option to log off until they feel more comfortable with Facebook’s privacy settings, Terri has a constant reminder that only […]

  • Polar Plunge Threatened by Weather, But ISU Students Still Make Fundraising Splash

    AMES, Iowa  —  The weather may have cancelled many of early April’s outdoor events, but surely anyone scheduled for a Polar Plunge was ready with a smile. For the first time, though, the Iowa State University event was moved indoors. “I’m from Minnesota, so we jump in lakes when it is like this. It is a little disappointing, but it is fine. I totally understand,” said Justin Babcock. Saturday’s threat of bad weather moved the event from a small above […]

  • Law Enforcement Worried Controversial Bill Will Do More Harm Than Good

      PERRY, Iowa — As an immigration enforcement bill awaits Governor Kim Reynolds’ signature, many law enforcement officials are thinking one thing, “It really is going to have a big effect,” said Perry Police Chief Eric Vaughn. The bill will prohibit sanctuary cities in Iowa.  It also requires cooperation between state, local and federal organizations like Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  Vaughn said, “I try to explain to them that it is not local law enforcement’s job.  That is not the […]

  • Dr. King Assassination Hits Home For Iowan Who Was in Memphis That Night

    JEFFERSON, IOWA — The Jefferson, Iowa farmhouse may be a far cry from Memphis, Tennessee but fifty years after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr at the Lorraine Motel, pieces of that day live on vividly. “Dr. King’s blood on that landing. They got down and they scooped that blood into a jar and they took that with them,” recalled, former Des Moines Register columnist Chuck Offenburger who was just a college student at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.  Offenburger […]

  • Community Involvement Helps Officials Uncover Cockfighting Activity in Des Moines

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  With just one description from Josh Colvin, the Director of Animal Control Services at the Animal Rescue League, it is easy to see why Iowa law bans cockfighting. “You’ve got people that put knives on animals so they can see the brutality of cutting up other animals,” he said. Even in Iowa, some residents believe in participating in the activity that dates back several hundred years and remains legal in areas of Mexico and other countries. […]