Scallon was born in Des Plaines, Ill., and grew up in nearby Skokie before moving to Beloit, Wis. He graduated in 1991 from Beloit Memorial High School, where he worked for both his high school newspaper and the Beloit Daily News. He also worked for The Badger Herald student newspaper while earning his bachelor’s degree at UW-Madison.
Since college, Scallon’s career has taken him on a few stops across the northern half of the state. Most recently, he served for four years as a reporter at the Prescott Journal. He also spent about three years at the Shawano Leader and nearly 17 years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, serving as sports editor and a reporter.