News Staff

News Staff



Gary Daigneault
News Director

Gary Daigneault (News/Program Director) has been “The Voice of the Morongo Basin” since he showed up in the Morongo Basin in 1979 in a beat-up old Datsun and a brand-new new wife (He has a new car but still has the same wife, he likes her).

Gary Daigneault has co-hosted morning shows on local radio for the past 39 years, 27 years at Z107.7.

As a broadcast journalist, he is one of the most highly decorated reporters in the state, with numerous awards and citations from the Associated Press, National Association of Broadcasters, the Radio-Television News Association, and Radio Inc. magazine. A highlight of his career came in 2010 when he was inducted into the Associated Press Hall of Fame, a lifetime achievement recognized by the U.S. Congress.

Gary is also heavily involved in local theater. He has directed 17 musicals in the past 16 years at Theatre 29 in Twentynine Palms. He was named “Best Director-Musical” by the Desert Theater League for his 2013 production of “Gypsy.”

Daigneault taught ROP Broadcasting classes for 27 years, retiring from Morongo Unified School District in 2016.

Gary and Cindy, herself an accomplished actress, singer, and photographer, live in Twentynine Palms, they have 2 children and 3 grandchildren.

Active in Community service, Daigneault is a founding member and current President of the Theatre 29 Board, 4 term Past-President of Yucca Valley Rotary Clubs, Past-President of the Twentynine Palms and Joshua Tree Chambers of Commerce, and vice-president of the Yucca Valley Chamber. He spent 8 years as the Chairman of the Joshua Tree National Park Commission.

  • Gary Daigneault named “Cultural Contributor” by the Basin Wide Foundation June 2012
  • Hi-Desert performers rack up trophies at theater awards (Hi-Desert Star)
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    Tami Roleff
    Managing News Editor

    Tami is a transplanted Mid-Westerner who moved to California thanks to her husband Keith and the Marine Corps. They’ve lived and traveled all over the world. During Keith’s 20 years in the Marines they were stationed in Quantico, Virginia; North Carolina; Okinawa, Japan; and San Diego, before finally settling in Yucca Valley. Although Tami sometimes misses the green trees and 10,000 lakes of Minnesota, she doesn’t miss the winters, humidity, or the mosquitoes, and has grown to enjoy living in the desert.

    Tami’s degree in English has helped her with her work in the fields of journalism and book editing. During one of Keith’s deployments to Iraq, Tami took Gary’s ROP Broadcasting Occupations class and was hired as a reporter in 2007. She became managing editor in 2011, and won her first Golden Mic award that year by the Radio and Television News Association for her story on a man who was lost in the desert for nine days–and survived. Under Tami, Z107.7 was also an RTNA finalist in 2014 for Best Radio Newscast (Division B).

    Tami spends her “free” time with her golden retrievers and enjoys taking photos of anything and everything. Thanks to her vocation and avocation, she’s traveled to places she probably wouldn’t have, seen things she might not have noticed, and has met people who have enriched her life.

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    Mike Lipsitz

    Mike moved to Landers from midtown Manhattan in 2004 and joined the Z107.7 News crew in 2009. Having spent the prior ten years in the entertainment industry, his return to writing and reporting was at once a welcome change and a familiar position.

    As far back as high school in Memphis, Mike realized he could leverage writing and editing as a way to evade math classes. The plan worked and he carried it on into college graduating from the University of Missouri School of Journalism without ever taking a college level math course. During his four years in Missouri, Mike covered Town Hall and local politics for the Columbia Missourian, a city daily newspaper.

    After graduation, journalism degree in hand, Mike headed for the Big Apple and a six-year stint writing copy for some of Madison Avenue’s biggest players like Saatchi & Saatchi, Compton Worldwide, and Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide. He says writing collateral material for clients like IBM, Chrysler Motors Corp., and the NASDAQ Stock Exchange challenged him to translate complex ideas into marketing material their audiences would want to read.
    It was good experience, but lacked fun and frivolity! So peeking out from around his workstation, Mike found himself backstage at the New York Metropolitan Opera, “The Met,” and getting paid for it! One thing lead to another and the next decade was spent traveling the U.S. on tour doing major shows with major stars … Mike was in charge of costumes and says, “It was crazy fun!”

    After 9/11 New York wasn’t the same for Mike and he began thinking about where to relocate.  His mother suggested he go to Ft. Lauderdale to be with his “own people.”

    “I didn’t know if she meant gays or Jews, but it didn’t matter,” he says. “I followed my brother’s advice instead and headed for Joshua Tree … or Landers, actually. This is where everything came together. I write news, which I love; and I volunteer throughout the year on local stage productions!”

    Mike says he has fun doing all of it; something he recommends for everyone.

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    Rebecca Havely
    Weekend News Reporter

    Rebecca Havely joined the Z107.77 team in 2014 as an assignment reporter, focusing on entertainment news. She also does our weekend news reports.  She grew up in Michigan where she attended The Center for the Arts. In New York City she graduated from The American Musical & Dramatic Academy.  She moved to Twentynine Palms in 2006. She’s performed and directed at all the high desert community theaters and is the founder of the Yucca Valley community theatre troupe, The St. Joseph’s Players.

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    David Haldane

    David Haldane’s career in journalism has spanned more than four decades, beginning as an underground reporter for the Berkeley BARB and culminating in twenty-three years as a Los Angeles Times staff writer. Currently he lives with his wife and young son in Joshua Tree, California, where, in addition to doing news and features for Z1077, he writes magazine articles and books. His work has appeared in numerous publications worldwide including Los Angeles Times Magazine, Orange Coast, Islands, Penthouse and Salon. Haldane’s memoir, Nazis & Nudists, was published last year by Black Rose Writing.

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