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Posts Tagged ‘Sue Simmons’

And the Votes Are In for WCBS New Morning Anchor…

We asked you to take part in our poll to decide who should be named WCBS/Channel 2 new morning co-anchor.

This was becoming a landslide win for Chris Wragge. Readers were in agreement with this reporter’s assessment that the evening anchor should set his alarm clock for pre-dawn. At the time of this writing, Wragge secured 28 percent of the vote. However, that’s down from more than 40 percent.

Former WPIX anchor Jim Watkins has caught fire as a write-in, putting him second on viewers’ wish list. Watkins, now at RNN’s FiOS1, previously worked for PIX GM Betty Ellen Barlamino, who runs WCBS sister site WLNY.

Also getting some write-in support, the legendary WNBC anchor Sue Simmons, and current Channel 4 anchor David Ushery.

Alice Gainer, who made her WCBS anchoring debut yesterday, got someone’s write-in vote. Gainer did weekend anchoring at News 12 New Jersey. She joined Channel 2 as a reporter in January.

Don Dahler picked up 17 percent of the vote. Cindy Hsu settled for less than 9 percent of the vote.

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Don Pardo Reportedly Sidelined from SNL Announcing with Broken Hip

Don Pardo, the legendary NBC staff announcer, has been the Saturday Night Live voice for every season except one, since its debut in 1975.

So when Pardo, who turned 95 on February 22, is absent from the show, it’s news. He missed the February 16 broadcast, and the next live show, this past weekend.

TMZ reports that Pardo recently suffered a broken hip. The entertainment site says he’s recovering and “doing just fine.”

In an apparent attempt to keep Pardo’s injury hidden, his trademark opening credits were done by someone else in a poor version of a Pardo impression.

NBC has stayed quiet about Pardo’s condition and status with the show. FishbowlNY also attempted to reach Pardo directly.

Beginning two seasons ago, Pardo retired to Arizona, pre-recording the SNL work from his home studio.

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NBC May Be Poised to Finish Fifth, But WNBC is ‘Staying the Course’ with Prime Time Lead-In

The February sweeps period, which helps determine ad rates for local stations, ends next week. But reports already show a dubious distinction for NBC. For the first time in its history, Comcast’s newest property will be dead last. Actually to clarify, that’s not third place among the “Big Three” networks, or fourth with Fox. NBC dropped to fifth, behind Univision.

That means the key coveted demographic of 18 to 49 year olds, would rather watch those shows than English-language broadcasts on NBC.

That also means having such a weak lead-in has to be more than a slight distraction to affiliates.

While the official numbers won’t be released until Thursday, it doesn’t take an M.I.T. graduate to figure how this will really hurt all levels of 30 Rock. But the station is more hopeful.

“As you know, sweeps continue for another week,” a WNBC spokesperson tells FishbowlNY. “We are holding 100 percent of the prime time lead-in audience, which is what we did last year, so we are staying the course.”

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Most Popular FishbowlNY Stories for the Week

Here’s a look at what FishbowlNY stories made the most buzz this week.

  1. Sue Simmons Gives Rare, Candid Interview, February 4
  2. ESPN The Magazine‘s Music Issue Features Iconic Album Covers Recreated with Athletes, February 5
  3. WNYW Anchor Dari Alexander‘s  Unfortunate ‘Sitting Shiva’ Misspeak, February 5
  4. Media Reporters Finally Realizing No One Cares About Media Reporting, February 5
  5. Lisa Schwarzbaum Departs Entertainment Weekly After 21 Years, February 6
  6. Sally Preston, Others Dropped by Time Inc., January 31

Keep up-to-date with the latest FishbowlNY news. Click here to sign-up for the FishbowlNY daily newsletter, bringing you our articles each afternoon directly to your inbox.

McDonalds Holds Annual Black Media Legends Gala

As the calendar flipped to February, it became Black History Month. For the annual honor, the tri-state McDonalds restaurants select Black Media Legends and Trailblazers. Each year they are showcased on the place mats of customers’ trays.

This year, the lunchtime event moved from the Waldorf Astoria to the Plaza Hotel.

The 18 people are standouts in their fields (TV, radio, and newspapers). But this was all about the great WNBC anchor Sue Simmons, who stepped down last June.

Most of the presenters and award winners mentioned Simmons in their speeches, or ad libbed, due to her remarkable career and presence.

Ironically, John Noel, a reporter with WNBC since 1998, never mentioned Sue’s name in accepting his trophy. FishbowlNY did speak to Noel, a Brooklyn native, about sharing this year’s class with his former colleague.

“If you’re going to call anybody a legend in the media here in New York City, clearly she qualifies for the title,” Noel says. “She’s known and loved by millions of people in the metropolitan area. Much of what she’s done on the air remains legendary.”

The full list of winners after the jump

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Sue Simmons, Candid in Rare Interview, ‘Came Within Two Weeks of Being in a Wheelchair’

There are broadcasting legends, and there is Sue Simmons. FishbowlNY caught up with the iconic anchorwoman for a rare one-on-one interview, as she was being named a Black Media Legend at the Plaza Hotel Friday.

Simmons left WNBC in June after more than three decades at the anchor desk. Three months earlier, word broke on what many considered an unthinkable story—Simmons would not get a contract extension.

Related: FishbowlNY, Sue Simmons Ends Historic Run at WNBC

“I already knew my contract was up and I got threatened with suspension,” Simmons says. “I didn’t say a word until after I left.”

Once Simmons’ future status was published it caused her nothing but angst.

“The last several months from March to June was pretty much a nightmare for me,” Simmons admits. “Because after you’ve worked with your teams and your friends for that long it’s very difficult to come to terms with the fact that it’s not going to be anymore.”

Simmons adds that there was no bitterness as she began the “farewell tour” at WNBC.

“How would you complain about 32 years at one job, in television, in New York City, and being part of the longest running anchor team in New York’s history?”

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Memories of Longtime Media Favorite, Mayor Ed Koch

His style was brash and it was all New York! Edward Irving Koch is being laid to rest today. He died Friday at age 88 of congestive heart failure. Koch, a three-term mayor from 1978 to 1989, was a friend to the media, always good for a quote.

Rich Lamb covered Koch’s entire run as mayor for WCBS-AM. Although Koch was ill for the past several months, getting shuttled in and out of the hospital, Lamb was not fully prepared to learn of his passing.

“The phone went off at 6:15 [a.m.], and the first thing I heard was my own obit that I recorded yesterday because we decided we’d better have something ready to go,” Lamb tells FishbowlNY.

The situation appeared grave when Koch was transferred to the ICU at New York Presbyterian-Columbia Hospital.

Before Lamb could wipe the sleepy dust from his eyes, there was a live report awaiting him on WCBS at 6:20.

“As I began to speak on the air I choked up and it really surprised me,” Lamb admits.

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Sue Simmons is Part of Black Media Legends Class of 2013

For the 12th year, McDonalds is honoring Black History Month with its Black Media Legends and Trailblazers ceremony.

The standout among the 18 names is recently retired WNBC anchor Sue Simmons. The iconic anchor spent 32 years at Channel 4.

This year’s media list also includes WPIX reporter Jay DowErrol Louis, the host of NY1′s Inside City Hall, and John Noel of WNBC.

Some radio notables being praised are Deon Levingston of WBLS and WLIB, Fatiyn Muhammad of WBLS, and DJ Clue of Power 105/WWPR.

Robert F. Moore of the New York Daily News is also part of the 2013 class.

The gala luncheon will be held February 1 at the Plaza Hotel.

2012: The FishbowlNY Year in Review

It was a year that featured the FM band being rediscovered like the progressive music era of the late 1960s.

ESPN took the lead in April by moving (after simulcasting) WEPN/1050 to 98.7. The 1050 position has since become New York’s only 24-hour Spanish sports talk outlet.

It was a surprise to no one, that CBS Radio expedited its quest for an FM station, when Merlin’s ill-fated news operation, turned Alternative Rocker, became available in October. WFAN is now simulcast on 660 and 101.9.

As for Merlin, it yanked the 24-hour FM news attempt (WEMP) in July–less than a year after it started. Merlin returned to its previous format held by Emmis, and continuing the “Bobby Ewing shower scene” theme, management even resurrected the WRXP call letters.

Other radio doings during 2012, include Geraldo Rivera turning to the medium early in 2012 at WABC. By summertime, the veteran TV host was syndicated to Cumulus stations nationwide.

In August, Clear Channel acquired WOR. As the FCC signed off on the deal, two shows were canceled last week, Dr Joy Browne and Governor David Paterson. This remains a fluid story heading into 2013.

TV also had its share of shakeups. In certain instances you could say this was management’s version of “Out with old and in the new.”

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Most Popular FishbowlNY Stories for the Week

Here’s a look at what FishbowlNY stories made the most buzz this week.

  1. Mike Francesa and WBLS Are Marconi Award Winners, September 21
  2. Sue Simmons (left) in First Interview Since Leaving WNBC: ‘I Cried Every Day,‘ September 26
  3. Cover Battle: GQ or Complex, September 20
  4. Sandra Lee is Launching a Magazine, September 26
  5. Vogue Issues Fantastic Correction, September 25
  6. Michael Moynihan Joins Newsweek/The Daily Beast, September 26

 

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