Behind The Scenes

‘Oprah Wish’ winner’s time to shine

Ron Brown (above, in suit and tie) experienced wish fulfillment Sunday when he made his debut on the 6 p.m. SportsCenter.

Cleveland native Brown, a Walgreen’s assistant manager, landed a reporting gig on the show because a friend wrote to The Oprah Winfrey Show‘s “Harpo Hook-Up” segment. The contest encouraged viewers to write in reasons why Oprah should help them or their friends fulfill a big dream.

Brown’s dream was to be on SportsCenter. He learned his dream would come true while watching the April 17, 6 p.m. SportsCenter at the Winking Lizard in Cleveland.

Brown’s assignment was to interview Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose April 23, in Indianapolis for the Bulls-Pacers’ playoff game. He would wrap up his report the next night on SportsCenter.

Sunday, he prepped for his on-air moment during a newsroom meeting with producer Bryan Bishop, with the Oprah camera crew in tow documenting every moment.

Once Brown was on the SportsCenter set, anchor Dari Nowkhah offered tips, such as ignoring all the cameras and people in the studio. He suggested Brown focus on just one point.

After his Rose interview ran, Brown was scheduled for an on-air Q&A with NBA analyst Jon Barry. When Brown did the interview in just one take, the studio was filled with clapping and cheers.

“Ron did a terrific job, asked some good questions, and looked comfortable in the chair,” said Senior Coordinating Producer Craig Bengtson. “It was a pleasure to have him on the show.”

The behind-the-scenes footage of Brown’s interview with Rose and SportsCenter appearance will run in the “Hook-Up” segment on the May 5 episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show (check local listings for time and channel).

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