One of Malta’s most-loved TV reporters has opened up about what led him to start his journalism career and what convinced him to leave.
Interviewed on Trudy Kerr’s podcast The Interviewer, Demicoli spoke about being a “C or D student” and failing his physics O’Level five times because he was more interested in football and his dreams of becoming a sports commentator.
“My friends thought I was really stupid,” he laughed.
His love for the media began when he was just 12-years-old and his mother encouraged him to write a letter in a newspaper to get a telephone booth installed near the Kalkara chapel where he served as an altar boy.
“Unbelievably, three weeks later, a telephone booth was installed,” he said, recalling how he understood the impact media could have.
Eventually he got a small job as a waterpolo reporter and that led him to getting offered a job at PN’s TV station which he took, despite the fact that he had just graduated from MCAST in IT and was about to sign a job paying twice as much.
“I followed my passion. And my advice is that if you get an opportunity, just take it, because it will lead to other opportunities.”
Demicoli, who describes himself as a reporter and a communicator, spent 14 years as a newscaster on the national broadcaster TVM. He recently announced that he was stepping down to pursue a career within the Malta Chamber of Commerce.
Asked why he took such a decision after becoming such a household name, he said the Covid pandemic gave him more time to reflect on what he wanted to achieve in life. There were also “some circumstances” at Public Broadcasting Services that led him to take the plunge.
“I joined TVM as a journalist and a video editor and I remained in that role since then. I never had the opportunity for personal growth. It wasn’t about achieving managerial status or becoming CEO. But it was about being valued. I’m moving on, not because something is wrong with me or the management, but even a small thank you makes a difference.”
He recalled winning four journalism awards in 2017 and only getting a word of congratulations from his news manager.
“I thought management would send me a formal email saying how proud they are of this achievement, but I got nothing whatsoever. And I said, something is wrong.”
He said it was important for him to feel valued.
“Sometimes in life we have to take the time and say, I’m determined to succeed, and take the next opportunity, he said, adding that it was important to get out of his comfort zone.
“Life is short,” he said.
What do you think of Keith Demicoli’s story?