Prior to joining NBC News in 1996, Stafford served as a consumer reporter and substitute anchor at WBBM-TV, Chicago. Before that, he anchored the morning newscast at WFTV-TV in Orlando and founded the station's award winning investigative unit. His two-year investigative series on hotel crime in Orlando exposed serious security problems and led to a grand jury investigation. Stafford also held various anchoring and reporting positions at WFRV-TV in Green Bay, Wis. and KBJR-TV in Duluth, Minn.
During his career, Stafford has been recognized by local chapters of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He was honored with four Emmy Awards in the Chicago and Florida markets and received six Emmy nominations as well. Stafford is also the recipient of four Associated Press awards, an Iris Award and an RTNDA Award. His Dateline report on hazing in the United States Marine Corps received a national news Emmy in 1997, and he was also nominated for Emmys in 1998 and 1999. In 2000, Stafford received an Edward R. Murrow Award for his Dateline investigation into racial profiling.
A native of New Hampshire, Stafford received a degree in political science and journalism from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn.