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
  • Volunteers Gathering For Food Insecure Iowans

        STORY COUNTY, Iowa — Iowa may be known for farming but one organization says it’s not enough to keep their own from going hungry.  Laura Barnett, the National Development Coordinator the Outreach Program said, “Currently about 1 in 6 children are food insecure and twelve percent of our seniors are food insecure as well.” The Outreach Program along with the Ames Evening Lions Club and the Ames Fire Department are joining forces to combat food insecurity in Story […]

  • Bomb Threat Causes Long Shut Down at Warren County Gas Station

      HARTFORD, Iowa — A bomb threat shut down a central Iowa gas station for several hours.  Warren County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a Git N Go gas station in Hartford around 7:30 am Sunday after someone in the area told them a possible suicidal man had explosive contents in a cooler in his white pickup truck.  Upon arrival, authorities found green propane tanks with batteries attached by black electrical tape.  The Iowa’s bomb squad task force was called in […]

  • Texas Man Charged With OWI After Wrong Way Crash in Des Moines

    DES MOINES, Iowa — A Texas man has been arrested in a wrong way crash that sent several victims to the hospital. Des Moines police say at 1:13 a.m. Saturday they received a call of a severe accident along East 14th Street and just north of Maury Street. According to police, three vehicles were involved. Police say 36-year-old Christopher Slaughter of Stephenville, Texas, was traveling in his pickup truck southbound in the northbound lanes when the crash occurred. Four people […]

  • Emergency Crews Pull Dead Body From Des Moines River

    DES MOINES, Iowa — An investigation is underway after a body was pulled from the Des Moines River. Polk County Deputies were called to the area around 8:20 a.m. Saturday near the Vandalia boat ramp after witnesses saw a body floating in the water. Investigators say the body was recovered by emergency workers at the Yellow Banks boat ramp and appears to be a middle-aged white male. Polk County Detectives and the Polk County Medical Examiner are investigating this incident. […]

  • Controversy Hits Southeast Polk School District After Beloved Teacher’s Firing

    PLEASANT HILL, Iowa — Past and present Southeast Polk students and teachers are not ashamed to show “Ram Pride.”  Former teacher Connie Dawson is one of them.  “It`s a wonderful district. I’m very proud to have been a part of Southeast Polk it`s my pride,” she said. Dawson says Lois Johnson, a teacher within the district for over forty years shows it the most.  She said, “If you come to a basketball game you can always see her leading the […]

  • Des Moines Woman Using Domestic Abuse Survival to Inspire Others

    DES MOINES, Iowa — Worse than a nightmare, it was reality for Donna Williams.  “A life and death situation.  I looked at my hand and my hand was full of blood,” she said. In a Des Moines apartment complex on East 22nd Street in the early morning hours of May 17, 2018, Donna looked up from her computer screen to her boyfriend at the time, Cortez West, stabbing her. “He stabbed me four times in my neck, once in my […]

  • Trailer Thief Leaves Des Moines Dance Studio’s Biggest Performance in Jeopardy

    DES MOINES, Iowa — A group of dancers have been counting on the big stage. “It’s huge.  It is the biggest one we have to celebrate a big anniversary,” said Tanya Ogden, owner of Dance FX in Des Moines. The studio has put dancers through a 36-week class prepping them for Dance FX`s 20th anniversary recital at Indianola High School in June, but the spotlight may be going dim. Ogden said, “Other parents came rushing saying somebody just took off with […]

  • PETA Declares Iowa Veggie Burger Among Nation’s Best

    DES MOINES, Iowa — Going green is a lifestyle for Kerri Rush. “I’m kind of known as the wheatgrass girl. I have been for a long time,” Rush said. It became her livelihood when she forged her business, Fresh Café & Market, out of adversity when her mother was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in the liver, colon and lymph nodes.  Rush said, “It kind of changed our lives as far as what we did to maintain being healthy and […]

  • Historic Brooklyn Opera House Will Help Honor Life of Mollie Tibbetts

      BROOKLYN, IOWA — Behind the shuttered doors of the Brooklyn Opera House is a rich history.  “It is amazing how many people have gotten their first kiss and more people spent time throwing stuff off the balcony at their friends below but it really has been a center for the community,” said Brian Manatt, President of Brooklyn Community Development. Friends and family of Mollie Tibbetts say she also spent her time spreading love and laughter and it is one […]

  • ISU Students React to Potential Stun Gun Law on Campus

    AMES, Iowa — It could be another wave in the line of self defense on campus. “A police officer may not be in the vicinity of you at that given moment and it is just the number of officers every town or school has.  It is impossible to have someone in every area at all times,” said Iowa State University student Lydia Dingeman. Others may see it as a liability.  “There is an opportunity for misuse.  An item like that […]

  • Mother Seeking Help in Des Moines Man’s Disappearance

    DES MOINES, Iowa — The last two weeks have been frightening for Ingrid Fleming. Her 24-year-old son Collin Fleming is bipolar and has been missing since April 18. “It’s hard, I don’t wish this pain on anyone. Not knowing, it is awful,” said Ingrid. “When I leave for the day and I’m in my car and I have a flyer on my window, that’s when it hits me.  I don’t think he’s coming back because two and a half weeks […]

  • Roosevelt Students Provide Diversity Face Lift at Justice Center

    DES MOINES, Iowa — Teenagers are typically not thrilled to spend time at the Polk County Juvenile Court offices in Des Moines. But for the last three weeks, over two dozen Roosevelt High School art students have made the second floor of the justice center their canvas, all thanks to a grant contest from the Polk County Board of Supervisors.  “Just for entering, the school gets $1,000,” said Nicole James who teaches art at Roosevelt. “First of all, I thought […]

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