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Posts Tagged ‘David Friend’

John Sykes, Tommy Hilfiger and a Real-Life Warrior Princess

1003_mockup.gifAs the faithful readers of this column already know, lunch at Michael’s is never really just about lunch, but it is (usually) a lot of fun. And today was no exception. I was invited to join a ‘girl’s lunch’ for author Mindy Budgor hosted by Jolie Hunt, AOL’s former chief marketing officer. Jolie, who knows practically everyone in New York, told me she decided to get a group of women together for Mindy, who recently moved here from Chicago, and “pop her Michael’s cherry.” Alrighty then. When Mindy asked if she knew “any interesting women in New York,” Jolie sprung into action and gathered The Wall Street Journal‘s media editor Keach HageyKyle Gibson, executive producer of Newsweek The Daily Beast‘s Women in the World; Deborah Needleman, editor of The New Yorks Times T magazine; recently departed Lucky EIC Brandon HolleySara Nelson, Amazon editorial director of books and Kindle, Wenda Harris Millard and yours truly to dine and dish at Table One. Mindy brought along former Today show senior producer-turned-media trainer Amy Rosenblum and Andrea Lustig, author and contributing editor for Glamour.

I chatted (OTR, sorry) with newlywed Sara Nelson (Congrats!) and Brandon Holley before we sat down for lunch. Uber chic Brandon, who I first met during her days at Yahoo! Shine, told me she’s planning to spend the summer with her family in Montauk. I can’t say I blame her. When the rest of the gang arrived we sat in rapt attention as guest of honor Mindy told the story behind her new book, Warrior Princess, My Quest to Become the First Female Maasai Warrior (Allen & Unwin). I hadn’t known what to expect when Jolie told me she was hosting this gathering for her friend who was — really — the first ever female Maasai warrior. I certainly didn’t expect her to be the sweet 30-year-old woman sporting a Bulgari pendant I mistook for some tribal gem who regaled the group of tales of slaughtering goats and cows and drinking their blood (so much for my appetite.)

Jolie Hunt, Mindy Budgor and Diane Clehane

It turns out a woman’s magazine has an exclusive on Mindy’s story — the details are very hush-hush — so I’m not allowed to share the jaw-dropping tale she told us over lunch. Before I was advised of the embargo, I asked why this self-described “nice, Jewish girl” decided to quit her job in Chicago and go off to Kenya, and she told me, “I felt my values were out of whack.”

I’m sworn to secrecy on the rest of her story (a first at Michael’s, I know), but I can share what’s on Mindy’s own website. The Santa Barbara native bought a ticket to Kenya and set off to volunteer building schools and hospitals in the Maasai Mara. While she was there, she asked the chief why there were no female warriors. After being told that women “are not strong enough or brave enough,” Mindy and her fellow volunteer, Becca, knew what they had to do. Her journey from bored MBA student to fearless female warrior is definitely inspiring. No doubt there’s plenty of lessons in the book (and some interesting photos from her time in Kenya) for those of us trying to survive in the concrete jungle. I’m starting Warrior Princess tonight.  Read more

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Longtime WCBS/Channel 2 Reporter Pablo Guzman Sidelined With Blood Clots in Foot

Astute WCBS-TV news viewers have noticed Pablo Guzman is missing. The popular reporter, who joined Channel 2 in 1995, remains on the station’s Web site.

After reaching out to WCBS for a comment, FishbowlNY was pleasantly surprised when Guzman called to explain his M.I.A status.

He’s been suffering from blood clots in the leg, keeping him off the air since June.

“I can’t chase after people in the street,” Guzman tells FishbowlNY exclusively. “I can’t run up and down six flights of stairs. A lot of what we do in the street, I can’t do.”

Guzman’s left foot is double the size of his right foot.  So Guzman is convalescing at home, which is no easy feat for him.

“I have not been out of work since I was 13,” Guzman says.

A two-time New York Emmy Award winner, Guzman misses his colleagues and the ability to communicate a story to viewers. However, that would not have applied to covering one particular tragedy.

“I could not have done that Newtown [story],” Guzman says. “I would have broken up.”

Guzman, 62, says WCBS management is hoping to keep the street-savvy reporter in their future plans.

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Chris Wragge ‘Flattered’ To Be Part of CBS Sports’ U.S. Open Tennis Coverage

It’s a double “homecoming” for Chris Wragge. The veteran WCBS news anchor is returning to sports, at least for two weeks. Wragge is getting a spot with CBS Sports at the U.S. Open Tennis Championships beginning Monday, August 27 at Flushing Meadow.

Wragge says it was “totally unexpected” when he was asked last month by Harold Bryant (VP/Production/CBS Sports). Groundwork had been laid by CBS Sports president Sean McManus, who was integral in hiring Wragge for The Early Show in late 2010.

“Sean has been great to me over the years,” Wragge says. “This was a welcome home call.

With the blessing of WCBS executives David Friend and Peter Dunn, Wragge makes his first network appearance since the morning overhaul at the start of the year, and his premiere on CBS Sports.

Wragge is called on primarily as a weekend studio host. The move was necessitated, thanks to the ascension of Bill Macatee to lead play-by-play voice at the Open.

“What it boils down to is, you’ll see more of me if there are rain delays,” Wragge laughs.

But Wragge isn’t joking when it comes to the CBS Sports brand.

“Obviously, it’s just such an amazing franchise, top to bottom,” Wragge says. “To be associated, and to be asked to be a part of any of their properties, I was overwhelmed and flattered to be honest with you.”

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WLNY Morning Team Revealed for Live from the Couch

Caroline Bermudez, John Elliott, and Lisa Kerney have been named hosts of Live from the Couch. The WLNY 10/55 morning program airs from 7 to 9 beginning in early July.

The WCBS-produced show features a mix of news, talk, entertainment, and lifestyle segments.

Bermudez joins WLNY following her successful seven-year stint as co-host of Elvis Duran and The Morning Show, which originates at Z100/WHTZ and is heard on 55 stations nationwide.

“We are very excited to be bringing a distinctive new morning show to the tri-state area featuring Carolina, John and Lisa – three extremely bright and entertaining broadcasters,” said Betty Ellen Berlamino, vice president and station manager, WLNY. “With the launch of Live From the Couch in the morning and our new one-hour primetime newscast, WLNY News At 9 p.m., next month we look forward to significantly raising the profile of WLNY.”

In addition to their new responsibilities on Live from the Couch, Elliott and Kerney will continue to appear on CBS 2 News This Morning, weekdays from 4:30–7:00 on WCBS/Channel 2. Elliott has served as weekday morning weathercaster since January 2007. He will remain on the WCBS noon newscast, and still provide daytime reports for sister station WCBS 880.

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Long Island’s Fair Media Council Says WCBS/WLNY Deal Is ‘Wonderful Thing’

The Fair Media Council was created as a media watchdog on Long Island. Its main event for the year is the Folio Awards, held each April.  Beyond that, one piece of news captivated the Council.

Viewers are yet to see the full effects of WCBS/Channel 2′s acquisition of WLNY/Channel 10, 55.

Fair Media Council executive director Jaci Clement says this is important on so many levels.

“It’s a wonderful thing when you look at the total media landscape of the island,” Clement tells FishbowlNY. “Because what you have here is one major news source [Cablevision] that dominates the news of Long Island.”

Cablevision created News 12 Long Island in 1986. Then the Bethpage-based company bought Newsday in 2008, giving Long Islanders no recourse for finding news and information via TV and newspaper.

“Since they merged, you see more and more of them working closely together and actually producing less local news,” Clement says. “…We actually have less news now than we had in the past.”

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WCBS Unveils Plans for WLNY with New Morning and Primetime Newscasts

With the CBS takeover of WLNY history, Channel 2 is ready to unveil its news plans for that station.

Viewers will see WCBS double its resources with an expanded news presence on WLNY. The old version of 10/55 only aired a 30-minute 11 p.m. newscast.

With a target date of late June or early July, WLNY will add a two-hour morning block from 7 to 9.

“It’s going to be a unique blend,” David Friend, WCBS news director, says. “I think viewers are going to be pleasantly surprised as to what this show is going to be like. It’s going to be different than what already is on television news at that time locally.”

Therefore, WLNY’s main morning competition is WNYW and WPIX.

WCBS general manager Peter Dunn says the ‘LNY morning show will be “totally different” from the WCBS’ 2 1/2 hour early hours broadcast. Anchors and contributors have yet to be announced.

“We have some great assets with the people here, so we’re going to ulitize some of them on ‘LNY,” Dunn says. “We’re going to hire some people from the outside as well.”

However, WCBS management has named its lineup for a new ‘LNY prime time newscast from 9 to 10 p.m. Chris Wragge and Dana Tyler, along with WLNY holdover Richard Rose based on Long Island. Weathercaster Lonnie Quinn and sports anchor Otis Livingston round out the team.

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WCBS/Channel 2 Ready to Lift Curtain on New Studio

It has been several months in the making. On Thursday, WCBS/Channel 2 debuts its brand new studio, beginning with the noon newscast with Rob Morrison and Mary Calvi. Plans began in January, with the WCBS anchors broadcasting from a temporary, smaller studio since last month.  

But that was then, and this is now.

“It’s a magnificent, state-of-the-art new studio that allows us to present the newscasts in a dynamic, interesting, and innovative way,” WCBS news director David Friend tells FishbowlNY.

The new West 57th Street studio means, of course,  sharper, vibrant shades, which Friend says will heighten the viewers experience.

“The design and the color palette of the studio were picked to enhance our anchors [and] to help us better report our stories,” Friend says. “The audience will be surprised at the way we’ll be able to utilize the studio to dramatically enhance our storytelling and our newscast presentation.”

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WCBS/Channel 2 Hires Veteran Executive Dan Forman as Managing Editor

Dan Forman has been named managing editor at WCBS/Channel 2.  

Forman is a veteran media executive and producer with nearly 30 years of experience in the New York market. He will work closely with news director David Friend and assistant news director Valerie Feder on the day-to-day management of the station’s news department.

“Dan is one of the most seasoned and respected news executives in New York and we are thrilled to add him to the strong team we have in place at CBS 2,” Friend said.  “This is another great ‘get’ for us and we look forward to counting on Dan to play a significant role in contributing to the ongoing success of our news department.”

Forman previously was news director at WABC/Channel 7.  In addition, Forman spent a combined 13 years at WNBC/Channel 4, and during the second stint from 2002 to 2008, he was station manager and senior vice president of news.

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An Addition to the WCBS/Channel 2 Weather Team

It’s a homecoming for Long Island native Vanessa Murdock. She is joining WCBS/Channel 2 as weekend morning meteorologist and weekday reporter.

Murdock begins on October 10.

A Certified Broadcast Meteorologist and member of the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Association, Murdock has been staff meteorologist and reporter for WTKR-TV, the CBS affiliate in Norfolk, Virginia since November 2006.  Murdock also served as an adjunct instructor of meteorology at Virginia Wesleyan College since July 2007.

“We are pleased to welcome Vanessa back to New York,” WCBS news director David Friend says.  “Vanessa is an outstanding meteorologist, both on air and as a college instructor and we look forward to having her join Don Dahler and Cindy Hsu on our weekend morning news team.”

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Effectively Immediately, WCBS Shuffles Don Dahler to Weekend Anchor

Updating a story we first reported on Wednesday, Don Dahler slides into the weekend anchor role for WCBS/Channel 2. He’ll be joined with Cindy Hsu for the morning broadcasts, but will anchor solo in the evening.

“We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with Don that will keep him at CBS 2,” Peter Dunn, WCBS President and GM, said.  “Don’s work during our coverage of Hurricane Irene is the most recent example of his outstanding ability to report live, breaking news events in a calm and professional way that our viewers really appreciate.  We look forward to having him continue to play an important role for us.”

Dahler, with WCBS since 2007, will also be seen three nights a week as a station reporter.

His schedule was shifted after Chris Wragge returned to Channel 2 as 6 p.m. co-anchor this week.

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