Thomas J. Colbert, founder of Industry R&D LLC, is a senior executive with decades of management and editorial experience in the national news, TV entertainment, publishing and motion picture fields.
Since 1990, hundreds of true tales broken nationally by Mr. Colbert have been put into development. His current high-profile project, the twenty-first for the big and small screen, is a trifecta – including a documentary, companion book and coming scripted limited series.
He began his professional career in 1980 with a journalism internship at the CBS flagship news station in Los Angeles, KCBS. Hired during his last year of college, he worked his way up to Senior Researcher. Dozens of breaking exclusives garnished his news team regional Emmys and Golden Mike awards, especially during major emergency coverage. In 1989, Mr. Colbert was recruited by Paramount Television to become a two-year Story Editor for a syndicated news magazine program.
In 1992 Mr. Colbert created Industry R&D, Inc., the first national middleman service for local reporters. Each day, his researchers would summarize journalists’ top small-town tales for consideration by the national news media, publishers and Hollywood producers – with a cut of any action going back to the journalist-tipster.
In between his news and entertainment projects, Mr. Colbert has provided crisis-management training and media-liaison services to first-responders and neighborhood organizations. In 1983, he began 18 years as a monthly rotating instructor at the renowned California Specialized Training Institute at Camp San Luis.
In 2009 he launched CommStatim, a firm that assists public servants – including whistle-blowers and citizen heroes – translate their emergency incidents, criminal cases and historic challenges into news and entertainment stories that emphasize integrity, lessons learned and the public good. And at no cost to the agencies and individuals involved. Most of Mr. Colbert’s recent big/small screen projects and books have relied on such consultants.
Colbert is a 1980 graduate of the award-winning Journalism Department at California State University, Northridge.