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ABC Affiliates

Damon Lane Named Chief Meteorologist at KOCO

Damon Lane has been promoted to chief meteorologist at KOCO, the ABC affiliate in Oklahoma City.

“Working as Chief Meteorologist in an area where accurate forecasts can save lives is more than a calling — it’s my life’s dream,” Lane said in a statement. “It takes passion, energy and a commitment to staying at the forefront of the latest lifesaving weather technology.”

Lane has worked at KOCO as the station’s morning meteorologist since 2009. Prior to that, he was the chief meteorologist at KTXS in Abilene, Tex.

Lane’s wife, Melissa Newton, recently left her job at KTVT in Dallas to move to Oklahoma City.

KATC Moves Jim Hummel to Weeknights

Jim Hummel, weekend anchor for the Lafayette, LA ABC affiliate, KATC, will be joining the 10 pm. weeknight newscast, according to The Independent Weekly.

Hummel will replace Hoyt Harris, who will still anchor the 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. newscast.  Harris will continue to produce his 10 p.m. segment, “The Rant”.

KATC president and general manager, Andrew Shenkan told the Independent Weekly in a statement, “With Hoyt’s experience in tackling the controversial issues of the day, Marcy’s knowledge of this community and its needs, and Jim’s fearless, relentless approach to getting the story first — and getting it right — you won’t find a better local news anchor team anywhere in the country.”

Hummel was named weekend anchor for KATC two years ago, joining the station as a general assignment reporter in 2009.  He previously worked for NECN in Newton, MA.

Dallas Dentist Accused of Fraud Seeks Restraining Order Against WFAA

A Dallas dentist who has been accused of billing fraud is seeking a temporary restraining order against Dallas ABC affiliate WFAA and reporter Byron Harris, according to the station (video above).

The dentist, Dr. Richard Malouf, is accused of billing Texas taxpayers for unneeded children’s braces. In July, WFAA reported on the construction of a water park at Malouf’s home. The temporary restraining order alleges that Malouf and his family will suffer “imminent irreparable harm” if the station takes pictures of his backyard, according to WFAA. Read more

Seattle’s KOMO Hires Joel Connable as Weekend Anchor

Joel Connable, former anchor for WTVJ, will be joining Seattle ABC affiliate KOMO as weekend anchor and weekday reporter, according to sfltv.com.

Connable has been out of TV news since being let go by the Miami NBC owned station in  2009 for allegedly violating the company’s policy on free gifts.  Connable filed a lawsuit over the dismissal that is still ongoing.

The former Miami anchor comes to KOMO from Travel TV News, the company he formed after leaving WTVJ.

Last week TVSpy reported former WTVJ investigative reporter Jeff Burnside also landed a job at the Seattle ABC affiliate.

Weekend Anchor Kali Nicole Exits Lincoln’s KLKN

After three years at KLKN, Kali Nicole has anchored her last broadcast at the Lincoln ABC affiliate.

Nicole left the station when her contract expired at the end of September, according to the Lincoln Journal Star. She joined the station in 2009 and was promoted to weekend anchor in 2010. Nicole told the Journal Star that she will pursue another job in television or public relations.

“I went into this like every young reporter who lived for breaking news and politics,” Nicole said. “But I came out of it thinking I don’t want to do breaking news or politics ever again. I only want to do features. That’s where my heart is. Everybody has a story to tell. I enjoy finding those people.”

Brad Ramsey to Lead Belo’s WVEC

Brad Ramsey has been named president and general manager of Belo’s Hampton Roads ABC affiliate, WVEC.

He comes from WCAV-WVAW-WAHU in Charlottsville, VA where was was vice president and general manager.  He succeeds Tod Smith who was tapped by Belo to run its New Orleans duopoly, WWL-WUPL.

“Brad is an up-and-coming leader in the television industry who has delivered consistent revenue and ratings growth in his previous positions,” said Kathy Clements, Belo’s senior vice president of media operations in a statement posted to the company’s website. “His experience in the Virginia marketplace will be a significant asset to WVEC.”

Ramsey began his career as an anchor/reporter for WHSV before working his way up to vice president and general manager of the Winchester, VA ABC affiliate.

His first day will be November 5.

KMGH Anchor Goes Public With Alopecia Diagnosis

Anne Trujillo, who worked at Denver ABC affiliate KMGH for more than two decades, recently went public with news about her health: she suffers from alopecia, a condition that causes her to lose her hair. The Denver Post has details on the decision to tell her KMGH viewers about the diagnosis:

Doctors biopsied her scalp two weeks ago and put a name to what Trujillo was experiencing: alopecia areata, a condition that causes round patches of hair loss and can lead to total hair loss.

She confided in her bosses. KMGH general manager Byron Grandy “took the challenge,” she said. He suggested that Trujillo, a Colorado native and 28-year veteran of Channel 7, take time off. But the presidential debate in Denver was approaching, and Trujillo was determined to be part of the team coverage. Read more

KLKN Sues Former Reporter for Breach of Contract

KLKN, the Lincoln, NE ABC affiliate, filed suit Monday against former reporter Melina Matthes saying she broke her contract to take a job in Omaha, reports the Lincoln Journal Star.

Matthes left KLKN in September for Omaha’s FOX affiliate, KPTM.  The Journal Star reports Citadel Communications, which owns KLKN, is looking for $55,000 in damages.  According to the article, that sum works out to, “nearly twice the annual salary KLKN paid Matthes — plus attorneys’ costs.”

Matthes began working for KLKN as a news intern and worked her way up to weekend producer and reporter before leaving for the Omaha station.

Read more

Jeff Burnside Lands at Seattle’s KOMO

Jeff Burnside, the investigative reporter who was fired several months ago from NBC owned WTVJ, has landed a job with Seattle’s KOMO.

WTVJ fired Burnside for placing an edited version of George Zimmerman‘s 911 call in his story about the Trayvon Martin case.  Martin was the 17-year-old who was shot while walking through a gated community near Orlando.  George Zimmerman faces second-degree murder charges in the case.

Burnside is now the Seattle ABC affiliate’s senior investigative reporter.

Read more

Alabama ABC Station Pulls Sam Champion Marriage Story From Website

ABC 33/40 the ABC affiliate for Birmingham, Tuscaloosa and Anniston, AL, has pulled stories about ABC weatherman Sam Champion‘s engagement from its website and its facebook page, according to blogger Jim Romenesko.

Romenesko quotes a viewer who says,

“This is the link to the FB thread that was pulled. This is where the “Sam Champion Engaged!” story was on ABC 33/40’s website. On this Facebook thread, you can see the link to the “Sam Champion Engaged!” story worked at one point, and Facebook is still pulling the proper thumbnail for that story. But if you click the link, it goes to a ‘Page not found’ error page on the ABC 33/40 website.”

Champion announced his engagement to boyfriend Rubem Robierb last week and sat down with his Good Morning America co-anchors to talk about the engagement.  You can watch the video of the discussion after the jump.

Read more

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