His groundbreaking style of investigative reporting has earned broadcast journalism’s highest honor, the George Foster Peabody Award. Brendan’s work has also been honored with a total of 66 regional Emmys, three National Edward R. Murrow awards, the Gannett Foundation's Al Neuharth Award for Investigative Reporting, and the American Legion's Fourth Estate Award.
Brendan joined 11Alive in October 2014 after nearly a quarter century anchoring and reporting for network affiliates around the nation, including five years in Houston and another five in New York City. He was embedded with the US Army as a war correspondent during the Iraq war, completing multiple reporting tours in the Middle East.
Brendan's investigation of Georgia's 911 system revealed nationwide problems locating victims who call for help from cell phones, an ongoing investigation honored in 2016 with a Peabody award from the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications. His work uncovering a practice of hiring child protection workers with criminal backgrounds led Georgia DFCS to change its hiring policies. Brendan also investigated an organization of state legislators and corporate lobbyists that acts as a charity. The charity hired off duty police officers who kicked Brendan and senior producer Shawn Hoder out of a Savannah hotel where the lobbyists and legislators were creating legislation behind closed doors.
While serving as chief investigator for WCPO in Cincinnati, Brendan broke stories about untrained 911 operators, corrupt police agencies, charter schools that funneled tax money to family members, and a company that refused to pay its employees. After those investigations, two entire Ohio police departments were permanently shut down, the chief of another department was fired, a drug task force director was convicted on federal charges, a charter school and major company were forced to close their doors, and Cincinnati trained all its operators to help in medical emergencies.
Brendan leads the investigative unit, but he works primarily alone as photographer, researcher, producer, reporter and video editor. TEGNA Media tapped Brendan as the lead multi-skilled journalist training MSJs at the company’s 46 television stations across the nation. Brendan leads a team of 13 MSJ trainers. He is also a contributor to USA Today.