Tom Skilling is a heterosexual shooter – a “what you see is what you get” kind of guy. From his early days through his career years, the print media meteorologist charted an almost predictable trajectory. He always knew what he wanted to do and he did it. Tom says he is fascinated by the weather because it plays a role in all facets of our lives. From how we feel, to our travels, to our work, to our clothes. and even our place of residence.

Looking back, we can say that things worked out for the meteorologist. Today, Skilling is definitely a name to look for if the goal is to succeed in its niche. He currently works as a columnist and chief meteorologist at WGN-TV.

Tom Skilling – Bio

Tom was born Thomas Ethelbert Skilling III on February 20, 1952 to Thomas and Betty Skilling. His birth took place in the town of Aurora, Chicago, Illinois, where he was also raised.

For a man who makes his living sharing information with evidence, Tom has proven himself to be good at keeping the details of his life close to his heart. Tom Skilling attended high school at West Aurora High School. After graduating, he enrolled at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Here he studied meteorology and journalism.

His career achievements

It looks like Skilling is looking forward to getting to work. His broadcasting career began when he was 14 years old. His first employers, WKKD-AM & FM, brought him on board while he was still high school. The station served Aurora’s Kane, Kendall, and DuPage counties. He fulfilled his job description with the radio station for the rest of his high school years. The station will finally air its last show on November 29, 2008.

Unwilling to leave his hometown, the budding meteorologist then joined WLXT-TV (Ch. 60) in August 1970. It’s unclear exactly how long he worked for the TV station before leaving. WLXT-TV was his debut in television broadcasting where he presented the daily weather forecast for the station, beginning in his freshman year of high school. His younger brother, Jeffrey Skilling – who would later become chairman and CEO of the ill-fated Enron Corporation – was also employed part-time.

After admission to the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Tom Skilling was hired by the ABC affiliate television station. WKOW-TV and local radio station WTSO AM , both licensed to Madison, Wisconsin. Beginning in 1975, Skilling was also on the books of Fox-affiliated broadcaster WITI in Milwaukee, where he served as a meteorologist until 1978.

After leaving WITI the broadcaster returned to its hometown of Chicago with WGN-TV Channel 9 . He made his return to the Chicago area on August 13, 1978. Since then, the ITV newspaper has proven itself and has slowly risen through the ranks to the station’s chief meteorologist. He is responsible for the weather forecast for the weekday newscasts of 5 p.m., 6 p.m., 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. He is also a columnist and is responsible for writing the Chicago Tribune ‘s daily weather column 

In his work, he is probably no better than Tom Skilling. He is rumored to be the highest paid local TV weatherman in the country.

Many also agree that he deserves this spot because he has the skills and genius to back it up. Skilling’s weather shows are renowned for featuring some of the best technology in computer animation and imagery. Also, the accuracy of its weather reports is a legend in the news industry. One of his career highlights that underscores this claim is his surprisingly correct prediction of the Groundhog Snowstorm. The historic winter storm occurred from January 31 to February 2, bringing virtually the entire Chicago area to a standstill. The skill predicted the event almost two weeks before it happened.

His talent was praised by his contemporaries in the industry, including his late friend and colleague. WGN’s Bob Collins , who memorably named it “Skillful,” a play by his surname, Skilling. Due to his widespread reputation, the meteorologist was consulted during the making of Gore Verbinski’s 2005 comedy-drama. The Weatherman film was shot entirely in Chicago and even used a fictionalized version of WGN-TV as the workplace of the main character played by Nicolas Cage 

Besides his screen work, Tom is also a member of the American Meteorological Society and the National Weather Association. He conducts annual seminars at the Fermi National Accelerator Lab in Batavia, Illinois. Here, he puts his expertise at the service of raising awareness and knowledge of tornadoes and other extreme weather conditions. He has also received several awards and accolades, including an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities from Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois.

What is his salary?

Tom Skilling’s work does not pay as much as what is received by major news organizations which are the faces of many television networks. It is even less for meteorologists working in local stations. Skills aren’t in that mold as he pockets a pretty penny from his job as WGN’s Chief Meteorologist.

Tom Skilling is considered the highest paid weather forecaster on a local television station in the entire country. As of 2019, his net worth is valued at $14 million.

Is he married or gay?

Rumors about Skilling’s sexual orientation have been circulating for a long time. This was helped by the fact that the top meteorologist was never engaged or married to anyone.

Regarding the rumors about his possible homosexuality, he did not speak out to confirm or deny it.