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Posts Tagged ‘Sam Champion’

Sam Champion Debuts on ‘America’s Morning Headquarters’

031714 AMHQ Sam Champion_05Sam Champion debuted as host of “America’s Morning Headquarters” this morning on The Weather Channel, opening the show with a report on Winter Storm Wiley.

Champion gave the latest information on the storm to his his viewers, which had already dropped eight inches of snow on Washington D.C. at the beginning of “AMHQ.”

“Welcome to the airwaves my friend, it’s about time you got on the air,” meteorologist Jim Cantore said to Champion from his live shot in snowy D.C. “We’re looking forward to weeks and months and years of having you on TWC.”

Champion also brought social media into the show, showing weather photos social users sent in on-air.

And the new Managing Editor of The Weather Channel will also be on “The Dr. Oz Show” today. The show’s preview teases a “bombshell” health scare Champion “didn’t see coming.”

“I generally would think of myself as a pretty healthy guy, and so that’s why this kind of thing surprised me,” Champion tells Dr. Oz.

The Ticker: Rivera, Champion, Kuhn

  • Sam Champion‘s Weather Channel show isn’t being called “Your Morning Champion,” because, as Champion puts it, “the cheese factor would be so intensly high that I wouldn’t want to do it.” “AMHQ,” as it’s called, launches Monday at 7am.

  • Eric Kuhn, the former head of social media for CNN and UTA is part of the team for start-up “Layer3 TV.” Lost Remote reports the as-yet launched network has received $21 million in funding and has assembled a management team of tech and cable veterans.

Sam Champion: ‘It All Starts With the Weather’

samChampionNew Managing Editor of The Weather Channel Sam Champion assured advertisers yesterday that the additions of news, sports, and documentary programming to the network won’t take away from what viewers want to see most.

“It all starts with the weather,” Champion said yesterday at The Weather Channel’s advertising upfront. Champion also told The New York Times he is excited that his new show, “America’s Morning Headquarters”— which debuts March 17 from 7amET to 10amET—will be live in all time zones as opposed to being tape delayed.

“That’s a big deal for me and, I think, a big deal for the Weather Channel,” Mr. Champion said, adding that when discussions at “Good Morning America” turned to viewership being “soft on the West Coast,” he would reply, “‘Oh, oh, I know why: It’s a three-hour-old show by the time they see it.’”

Champion spoke with Metro New York about shaking up traditional morning TV:

Morning are different in my house than they were in my parents’ house. Your first connection to the world is not your television. Your first connection to the world is multiplatform from the moment your phone goes off. You check your messages, Twitter and Facebook and you have an understanding of the running headlines but you might have some questions. I don’t want to see the stuff in the morning that I saw in my evening newscast because I already saw them online.

And appearing on “Morning Joe” this morning, Champion promised one thing:

“We’re not going to do politics…we’re not going to get heavy into that,” suggesting to Mika Brzezinski that viewers can surf between “Morning Joe” and “AMHQ” for their politics and weather fix.

Champion on “Morning Joe” after the jump. Read more

Weather Channel President: ‘I Intend to Win’

weather channel winter storm leonAs the feud between The Weather Channel and DIRECTV enters its third week, TWC president David Clark says his network’s coverage of the winter storm in the Deep South gives him confidence that they will ultimately win the battle.

In a note sent Thursday night, Clark thanked staffers for their work covering the severe weather in Atlanta and elsewhere, noting that many Weather Channel employees reporting on the storm were also affected by the storm.

I know people are tired. We are asking a lot of ourselves right now in general, even before we get to storm coverage. I don’t need to tell you what a critical time this is for this team and our network, and how many Americans are counting on us to pull through. The way we win and protect our future is by putting out great TV every day. And like all of you, I intend to win. It is easy to be confident when you work with this team.

In other Weather Channel news, Sam Champion‘s new show, which will debut in March, gets a name: “AMHQ,” short for “America’s Morning Headquarters.” Champion announced the news on Twitter this morning.

Clark’s full note is after the jump. Read more

Sam Champion on DirecTV Spat: ‘You Should Give People the TV they Want’

ChampionWeatherAfter years of moving at the speed of “a giant cruise ship,” Sam Champion has become a sprinter.

“This is the most fun in the world, but I’ve never run so fast,” he says. “Information changes moment to moment. This organization is like a sprinter – it can change, bob and weave, and respond immediately.”

“This organization” is The Weather Channel, which Champion joined last month as managing editor and anchor. The “giant cruise ship” is ABC, where he was ‘Good Morning America’s’ popular weatherguy for seven years.

Labeled as “our No. 1 draft pick” by TWC chief David Clark, Champion will host a 7-to-10 a.m.  morning show, beginning in March. His on-air debut occurred far sooner, however, thanks to Winter Storm Janus last week.

“I knew there would be storms to cover,” Champion, 52, says. “While we’re building this [new] show, I would do work in the field. When this storm turned into more than a foot of snow during commuter rush times, it became a public emergency. We went around the clock.”

Had he been back at ABC, or at any major network, for that matter, Champion says he would have had to fight for airtime.

“I’d go to the News division and say, ‘I need to talk about this storm. I need resources.’ There’s a lot of other news that needs resources, too. That’s not a criticism, it’s just the way it works. … Then the story would be put in a lineup of other news, and I’d have to wait for the show [‘World News.’]”

At Atlanta-based TWC, “I’ve got 220 meteorologists and scientists watching that storm. We had crews covering it right away.”

Read more

Sam Champion to Make Weather Channel Debut

sam championAs a winter storm bears down on the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic, Sam Champion will make his debut on The Weather Channel today. Champion joined The Weather Channel in December and will debut his morning show in March.

Champion will be on from 4-8pmET from The Weather Channel’s Atlanta studios. He will be joined for coverage of “Winter Storm Janus” by Jim Cantore and Kait Parker from Washington, D.C., Mike Seidel from Plymouth, Mass. and Stephanie Abrams from New York City. The network, which says it will devote round-the-clock coverage to the storm through Wednesday night, will also have a special edition of “Wake Up With Al” tomorrow at 5 a.m. Al Roker will report from Boston.

The ramped-up storm coverage comes as the standoff between The Weather Channel and DIRECTV enters its second week.

Sam Champion on the ‘Today’ Show

Sam Champion dropped in on former rival the “Today” show this morning. Last month, the longtime “Good Morning America” meteorologist signed on with The Weather Channel, which is part-owned by NBCUniversal. Using his new NBC id, Champion was welcomed into the studio, got hugs all around, and pulled up a chair at the desk and chatted about his new Weather Channel gig.

“Having Al and Sam at the same table, I would call this a weather forecaster vortex,” joked Savannah Guthrie.

‘There Will Be a Time When Coming Out is Not a Big Story’

RobertsChampionWolfe

By any measure, 2013 was the Year of the Queer, especially for network anchors.

In addition to the death of DOMA, the increasing acceptance of same-sex marriage, and the Boy Scouts of America’s pledge of allegiance to sexual diversity, ABC’s Robin Roberts and Sam Champion and NBC’s Jenna Wolfe joined the growing pantheon of openly-gay anchors.

All three of their revelations were greeted with virtually unanimous support, which leads me to wonder: Have we reached a societal tipping point for acceptance of homosexual news personalities? Or does the culture of celebrity require that such disclosures launch blazing headlines?

Yes and yes.

“As long as we keep progressing, there will be a time when coming out is not a big story,” says CNN’s Don Lemon, 47, who disclosed his sexuality in his 2011 memoir. “… Maybe not in the near future; maybe over the course of a decade. I’m not an authority on when that will be. I’m not Nostradamus. I can’t predict things.”

To MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts, we’re already at that point. Out since 2006, his September 2012 wedding to Patrick Abner was featured in the Sunday New York Times ’‘Vows” section.

“Times have changed,” Roberts, 41, says. “We have a President who believes in marriage equality, and a Supreme Court that believes in marriage equality, and more and more states that are enacting laws to recognize marriage equality. I think it’s fantastic.”

The momentum from this cultural sea change has enabled “great, wonderful people” such as Robin Roberts et. al “to step up and claim their rightful spots,” Roberts adds. “They’re showing that a successful personal life and a successful professional life can live within the same sphere.”

Roberts and Lemon point out that such exposure is crucial in the face of raging homophobes like ‘Duck Dynasty’ star Phil Robertson. Robertson is “free to cast aspersions,” Roberts says. “He throws gay people on the fire and uses the Bible as an excuse.”

Amen. Got a match?

Robin Roberts’ and Sam Champion’s approaches to acknowledging their sexuality publicly represent another cultural tipping point. Eschewing methods of the past — declarations on national magazine covers, for example — both chose a subtle, understated approach.

Read more

2013 TVNewser Challege: The Results

At the beginning of the year, we asked you to predict what would happen in the television news industry in 2013, and thousands of you responded with your thoughts on the year ahead. We’ll have a new set of questions in the 2014 TVNewser Challenge tomorrow, but in the meantime, here’s how you did.

Will the three evening newscasts increase or decrease in viewership in 2013?

82% of you thought the evening newscasts would decrease in viewership, compared to just 18% of you who thought viewership would go up. As it turns out, you were all right: year-to-date, the three-network annual total is up +2% in total viewers and down -4% in the A25-54 demographic compared to 2012. “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” remained on top this year. “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” was second and “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” was third.

By this time next year, which CNN daypart will see the biggest change under Jeff Zucker?

The majority of you (57%) believed CNN’s primetime programming would see the biggest changes under Jeff Zucker‘s leadership. There have been a few changes in primetime, but the major programming overhaul was in the mornings, which 30% of voters predicted. “New Day” debuted in June.

Which broadcast morning show is likely to see an anchor change in 2013?

Only 12% of responders saw an anchor change in the cards for “Good Morning America,” which had weather anchor Sam Champion depart for The Weather Channel this month. 61% of you thought the anchor change would be at “Today” and 27% thought it would be at “CBS This Morning.”

Will Megyn Kelly still be with Fox News at this time next year?

44% of you correctly predicted Megyn Kelly‘s move to primetime, which took place after she returned from maternity leave in October. Read more

In Year-End Message of Gratitude, Robin Roberts Thanks Longtime Girlfriend

robin roberts amber laignRobin Roberts surprised her Facebook followers this afternoon in an end-of-year post. She came out publicly for the first time, mentioning her longtime girlfriend Amber LaignRoberts has been out to her family, friends and co-workers for years, but this is the first time she’s publicly acknowledged her sexuality.

I am grateful for my entire family, my long time girlfriend, Amber, and friends as we prepare to celebrate a glorious new year together.

Roberts and Laign have been together for 10 years. Laign, a massage therapist who works with patients recovering from injuries, is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area.

A year ago today, Roberts reached the 100 day mark following her bone marrow transplant. Her posting today is a message of thanks for all who helped her along the way.

Roberts joins a short list of TV news anchors who have come out publicly. In July, 2012 CNN’s Anderson Cooper  came out during a Q&A with Andrew Sullivan. In Oct., 2012, former “GMA” weatherman Sam Champion was at the wedding of MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts to Patrick Abner when he let it slip that he was going to marry his boyfriend, Rubem Robierb.

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