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‘New Lease on Life’: WCVB Anchor Phil Lipof Leaves Hospital After 8 Days

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Phil Lipof, news anchor at Boston ABC station WCVB, has left Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center after an eight day stay. “I can’t thank BIDMC health enough,” Lipof said on Twitter. “The best doctors and nurses and staff… Thank you thank you thank you!”

Lipof’s Facebook page has been bombarded with well-wishes from viewers after the anchor explained his absence from the air:

I’ve been in the hospital for 8 days… And I wanted to tell you why. It all happened so fast. I was taking an antibiotic for an infection. My body had what has been described as a severe, rare and toxic reaction to that antibiotic. My fever spiked to 104 and could not be controlled. My blood pressure dropped dangerously low. After all of that was under control… There was minor damage to my kidneys. They my liver showed signs of injury. So we began to watch those levels and they would not come down… Just kept going up! It was very scary for about 48 hours. Sort of changes your perspective on EVERYTHING! I had a lot of time to think about what’s important in life.

Lipof joined WCVB last year from New York’s WABC.

WBZ Adds Two to Morning and Noon Newscasts

hauser WBZ nilesBoston CBS owned station WBZ is adding Kathryn Hauser (pictured left) and meteorologist Danielle Niles (right) to the station’s weekday morning and noon newscasts.

“Kathryn is an outstanding journalist with deep connections to the New England region, and will be a great addition to the ‘BZ News team,” Mark Lund, president and GM of WBZ said in a statement. “Danielle’s local roots, expertise as a meteorologist, and warm on-air presentation will be perfect for the morning newscast.”

Lund foreshadowed more changes to come by adding, “These changes will also give us the opportunity to make additional anchor reassignments that will allow us to bolster our enterprise and investigative reporting, content development, and commitment to the local community.”

Hauser come to WBZ from News 12 Connecticut where she had worked since 2009. She started her career at CBS owned WLNY in Long Island and has also worked at WXXA in Albany.

Niles moves over from the weekend mornings at WBZ. She came the station in 2013 from New England Cable News. Before that she was a forecaster at Weather Services international in Andover, MA.

Jack Williams Says He’s Stepping Away from WBZ Anchor Desk

jack williams headshotAfter 39 years with the Boston CBS owned station WBZ, anchor Jack Williams said he wants to spend more time with his family.

“After 39 wonderful years, I’ve decided to step away from the anchor desk, but I’m absolutely not leaving WBZ-TV News,” said Williams.  “Even though I won’t be a nightly anchor, I am thrilled that I’ll be able to continue my ‘Wednesday’s Child’ reports, substitute anchor when need be, and still be a part of WBZ-TV’s signature events and specials.”

The “Jack Williams’ Endowment for Wednesday’s Child” was started by Williams and his wife Marci to help special needs children find permanent homes.

He started working as a TV journalist in 1968 and began anchoring at WBZ in 1975. In 2012, he stopped working on the 11:00 p.m. news, focusing, instead, on the 6:00 p.m. show.

Williams won a Columbia duPont Award in 2014, and Peabody in 2013, as part of team coverage of the Boston Marathon Bombings. In 2012, he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association and he’s in the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

Bri Eggers to Join WHDH as Meteorologist

eggers whdh Bri Eggers is joining Boston NBC affiliate WHDH.

New England One reports, she will join the station as weekend evening meteorologist.

Eggers wrote on her facebook page, “I am moving to Boston at the beginning of October! I am so excited about this wonderful opportunity,”

>UPDATE: Eggers tells TVSpy, “I have finished the BMP program at Mississippi State and I am a meteorologist”

Currently, Eggers is the morning weather anchor at KIVI in Boise, ID.

WCVB Anchors, Reporters Soaked in ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’

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WCVB anchors Ed Harding and Heather Unruh got soaked Wednesday, as a Boston-born “ice bucket challenge” has swept the country in a decidedly chilly effort to raise awareness of ALS:

The challenge has made its way to celebrities; sports stars like former Boston College quarterback Doug Flutie, Boston Bruins star Brad Marchand, former Boston Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek and current New England Patriots wide-receiver Julian Edelman, all daring friends to do it too and keep it going.

Tuesday, Boston police accepted the challenge and asked the Boston Fire Department to keep it going.

NewsCenter 5′s Jorge Quiroga accepted the challenge Tuesday night, and challenged anchors Ed Harding and Heather Unruh to keep it going.

Read more

WBZ Names Gary LaPlante News Director

wbz logo copyGary LaPlante has been named news director of Boston CBS owned station WBZ.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to lead an excellent team of journalists right here at home in Boston,” LaPlante said in a statement. “I could not be more proud than to join WBZ-TV with its long and legendary commitment to the community, and I look forward to working with the talented news staff on advancing the news product and developing the best content in the market.”

LaPlante comes to WBZ from WFXT in Boston where he was assistant news director. He has also worked as news director at WXXA in Albany, NY, assistant news director at WTEN in Albany, and executive producer at WFSB in Hartford, CT. He’s also worked at WHDH in Boston, WPRI and WLNE in Providence, RI.

He replaces John Verrilli who left the station in March. LaPlante starts Monday.

Frank Holland Leaving Chicago for Boston

holland wgn croppedFrank Holland has left Chicago CW affiliate WGN for Boston’s WCVB.

Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports Holland “is expected” to be a weekend anchor for the ABC affiliate.

Holland started at WGN in 2011 as a morning anchor. Last August, he was moved to reporter and back up anchor.

He told viewers on facebook, “I loved waking up with Chicago in the beginning and I love bringing the news to you at night now. I will always remember all the great people I met here, the great experiences and special moments.”

Before coming to WGN in 2011, Holland worked at WDIV in Detroit. He’s also worked at News12 Westchester, WMGM in Atlantic City and KTVF-KUAC in Fairbanks, AK.

‘No One in the Newsroom is Happy’ as Boston Station Prepares for New Owners

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The deal’s not done, but nerves are on edge at Fox 25 in Boston. “No one in the newsroom is 
happy,” the Boston Herald quotes an unnamed source inside the station. “No one here knows what’s happening.”

Fox is set to swap WFXT to Cox Media Group in exchange for Cox’s San Francisco station–and current Fox affiliate–KTVU. The companies will keep their general managers, sending KTVU’s Tom Raponi to Boston, while WFXT’s Gregg Kelley heads to San Francisco. The Herald reports staffers in Boston fear they may also inherit KTVU’s news director:

Raponi’s current news director in San Francisco is Lee Rosenthal, and a Left Coast blog reported that he has put his Bay-area house on the market — possibly signaling a move east. But Raponi told us yesterday that it’s too early to speculate about personnel moves.

“We have not even closed on the deal,” Raponi said. “It would be premature to make any personnel decisions, but as soon as we have something, we will announce it.” Read more

After Producing in San Diego and Boston, Two Kids and Food Vouchers

In an op-ed published in the Washington Post, former Hartford producer Darlena Cunha describes a career that took her quickly to jobs in San Diego and Boston and a comfortable life with her husband, complete with a $240,000 home and a Mercedes. And then, it all started slipping away. Her husband lost his job, and the market crashed.

“In just two months, we’d gone from making a combined $120,000 a year to making just $25,000 and leeching out funds to a mortgage we couldn’t afford. Our savings dwindled, then disappeared.

So I did what I had to do. I signed up for Medicaid and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children.”

Cunha’s essay, “Picking Up Food Stamps in My Mercedes,” has brought her back to television, appearing Tuesday night on CNN’s CNN Tonight in an interview with Don Lemon. In the interview, Cunha pointed out that the Post headline to her story was incorrect, in that she was not actually receiving “food stamps,” but vouchers through the WIC program, which is a program far easier to qualify for, and which allowed her family to keep that Mercedes: Read more

Kimberly Bookman to Join WHDH

Kimberly Bookman has announced she is joining Boston NBC affiliate WHDH as a general assignment reporter.

According to New England One, Bookman comes to WHDH from WCVB in Boston where she was a freelance reporter. She has also worked at WMUR in Manchester, NH, WFXT and NECN in Boston, WMAR in Baltimore, WSPA in Spartanburg, SC and WETM in Elmira, NY.

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