Last Updated: 867 days ago
"If I can help someone, it has been a good day."Phil Konstantin's interest in helping people led him to becoming a California Highway Patrol Officer in 1985. His career started in Los Angeles, and quickly moved to San Diego as he patrolled the roads for almost five years. Seeking more stable hours to finish a postponed college degree (Twenty years after graduating from high school he finally got his BA from SDSU in 1991), he took a position as the Media Information Officer (MIO) for the CHP. It was while performing his duties as MIO that he first appeared on KGTV in 1997 providing us with the latest on traffic conditions and breaking news. Upon retiring from the CHP in 2005, he worked as a traffic reporter on KUSI. In June of 2010, Phil returned to KGTV as our helicopter-based reporter. While working for the CHP, and for local broadcasters, Phil has been involved in many of the biggest news stories in San Diego.Before the CHP, Phil had a a variety of jobs including running computers in NASA's Mission Control during the latter part of the Apollo lunar landings. He was also an radio interviewer and talk show host for many years in Houston, Texas.Phil is a voracious reader and has a personal library of thousands of books. As of this date, he has written, or contributed to, four books dealing with American Indian history and one book about wacky laws. Phil has written over 100 articles for newspapers and magazines.He also serves on the Education and Exhibits Committee for the Reuben Fleet Science Museum. Phil is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation and one of the founders of the San Diego Cherokee Community.Two of his three adult children (Heidi and Sarah) live here in San Diego, along with his granddaughter Jazlyn.Other notes: In 1999, his wife Robyn died in a car crash when she fell asleep while driving cross country. Phil worked to have April 6th declared Drowsy Driver Awareness Day in California.Phil's website americanindian.net has won many awards. Created in 1996, it is a storehouse of information on American Indian issues, science, law enforcement, space exploration, and a gallery of thousands of photos of his travels throughout North America. He writes a monthly newsletter with almost 1,000 subscribers. His material appears in Indian Country Today on a regular basis.In 1972, Phil sued the city of Pasadena, Texas for allowing access to the ballot only by paying filing fees. He felt petitions should also be allowed. The city law was declared unconstitutional in Federal court.Phil served on the Pasadena, Texas Library Board for many years in the 1970s. His name appears on the dedication plaque of Pasadena's main library.While with the CHP, Phil was awarded the 10851 Auto Theft Recovery Award seven times. He was honored by MADD for his efforts in apprehending DUI drivers. He was also shot at by a pair of kidnappers.