Grits with Glitz: Georgia Farmer, Hollywood Reporter Bring Family TV Show to Atlanta

Aug 31, 2015, 10:00 ET from Small Town Big Deal

ATLANTA, Aug. 31, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- It sounds like a quirky movie plot: A farmer from tiny Ocilla, Ga. teams up with a national TV news anchor from Entertainment Tonight to create a popular family television show traveling the country to showcase the best of America.

But this story line is no stretch. The television show "Small Town Big Deal" is branching from its cable TV roots to air across America in first-run, broadcast syndication. Starting this September, the Atlanta market will be among the first to see Jann and Rodney uncovering real-life stories about unique and remarkable people, places and traditions throughout the United States.

Debuting Sept. 6, Small Town Big Deal will appear weekly on Sunday afternoons at 3 p.m. on WSB-TV's Channel 2 in Atlanta, according to Art Rogers, the station's director of programming.

Small Town Big Deal is co-hosted by South Georgia farmer Rodney Miller, who created the show, and Jann Carl, a former Hollywood reporter who left the red carpet for the back roads of America.

"We are so excited to be airing our show in Atlanta," Carl said. "And it is such an honor to be picked up by WSB, one of the largest and most successful stations in the country. This is like my second home and it's also where our show's production company is based."  

Miller grew up on a farm in southern Illinois before moving to Duluth, Ga., to head up McCormick International, a global tractor manufacturer, as CEO. A natural talent in corporate videos, Miller left the company in 2010 to start up an independent television production company, following his passion for telling inspiring stories of "the little guy" who overcomes adversity. He also injects his sense of humor with show segments like the National Hollerin' Contest or the tug-of-war match across the Mississippi River.    

On the other coast, Jann Carl – after 14 years with Entertainment Tonight, the powerhouse Hollywood-news TV program – happened to view one of Miller's earliest shows and was captivated. "It was the show I had wanted to do my entire life," she said. After reaching out, she joined Miller in time for the show's second season.

Small Town Big Deal originally aired on cable station RFD-TV, where it grew into one of that station's most popularly rated programs. With its recent syndication in markets from New York and Atlanta to Los Angeles and Dallas, the show now reaches over three-fourths of the nation.

Among Small Town's biggest fans is Atlanta-based restaurant giant Chick-fil-A, who is partnering with the program in ways far beyond its commercial sponsorship. "We are so appreciative of our special relationship with Chick-fil-A," says Miller. "They believe in what we're doing to tell the great stories of America. And we share the same values in seeking to make a positive difference in communities everywhere."

While small-town life is often featured on the show, Small Town Big Deal has expanded its focus to cover a wide array of inspirational people stories from all corners. Its family-friendly content has even been recognized by the Parents Television Council with its national Seal of Approval.

Carl and Miller both claim country roots and say their Midwestern values continue to guide them. Their chemistry and connection with the fabric of American life has been credited as the driving success behind their show.

Small Town Big Deal is distributed by The Television Syndication Company, Inc. ( of Longwood, Florida, and is seen in nearly 80 percent of the country, including flagship network affiliate WABC-TV in New York.  

For more information about Small Town Big Deal, visit the show's website ( or personally follow co-hosts Rodney Miller and Jann Carl on Facebook ( 

Photo available on request.

Jeff Butler
Morton Vardeman & Carlson

SOURCE Small Town Big Deal