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Fort Smith-Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers

Arkansas Station Adds Yuna Lee as AM Anchor

lee khbsYuna Lee is joining KHBS-KHOG, the ABC affiliates for Fort Smith-Fayetteville, Ark. as morning co-anchor and reporter.

Starting October 30, Lee will join Ben Wagner and meteorologist Laura Huckabee for 40/29 Sunrise weekdays and also work as a reporter for the station.

“Yuna’s anchoring and field reporting experience is a perfect fit for our team”KHBS-KHOG news director Greg Shepperd said in a statement. “Her versatility will enhance 40/29 News’ commitment to thoroughly cover the entire market.”

Lee comes to the station from WHIO in Dayton, Ohio where she was an anchor and reporter for over 3 years. Before that, she worked at WHSV in Harrisonburg, Va. and WPBF in West Palm Beach, Fla.

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Fred McClure Retires from KFSM After 45 years

Fred McClure is retiring today after 45 years at Fort Smith, Ark. CBS affiliate KFSM.

TVSpy knows every station has a Fred McClure who deserves a “thank you” for doing what they do best, working hard, making others look good.

News director Rick Bagley told TVSpy, McClure has worked as an editor, a photographer, a newscast producer, a special projects producer, assignment manager and news director.

“Fred is the kind of employee every manager wants in their shop,” Bagley told staffers. “There is nothing he can’t or won’t do.”

Bagley added, “Fred also quietly does the dirty dishes in the break room, takes out the election night pizza boxes and kills the occasional newsroom mouse. Fred’s retirement is our loss. Congratulations Fred. Best wishes on a new chapter of life and a well-deserved vacation.”

KNWA Announces Neile Jones Leaving Station

jones knwaKNWA has announced evening anchor Neile Jones is leaving the Fayetteville, Ark. NBC affiliate.

“I’m headed home to be near my immediate family,” Jones said in a statement. “I want to watch my nieces grow up, spend time with my sister and brother-in-law and, of course, be with my mom and dad.”

“We have an amazing ‘work family’ environment at this station that resonates with our staff. When Neile came to us with her decision, we knew it was what she truly wanted and it was what was best for her. We celebrate her commitment and leadership at our station and in our community for the past 17 years. We know she will be an excellent asset in her future endeavors,” says Kelsey. Read more

J.R. Davis Leaves KNWA to Work for Asa Hutchinson’s Campaign for Governor

Davis Goodbye KNWAJ.R. Davis said goodbye to Fayetteville, AR, NBC affiliate KNWA this morning.

Davis  told TVSpy, “I am going to work for Asa Hutchinson for Governor campaign as his communications director.”

For his on-set goodbye this morning, Davis had his wife on to publicly thank her for all the years of getting up early.

This is the second time Davis has left KNWA for politics. In 2010, he left after two years at the station, to work as communications director for Arkansas Congressman Steve Womack.

Josh Taylor Leaving KHBS-KHOG

JOSH-TAYLOR-DIAGRID-WEB-jpgSports anchor Josh Taylor is leaving Hearst’s Fort Smith-Fayetteville, AR, ABC affiliates KHBS-KHOG.

“I’ve decided to move back home to Pittsburgh to be closer to my family,” Taylor wrote on his facebook page.

Taylor, who joined KHBS-KHOG from Hearst’s WTAE in Pittsburgh, PA, told TVSpy he doesn’t have anything lined up yet back home.

[Arkansas TV News]

Daniel Armbruster Set to Join KHBS-KHOG

daniel armbrusterDaniel Armbruster is joining KHBS-KHOG, Hearst’s ABC and CW affiliates in Fort Smith, Ark., on August 4. Armbruster comes from KTBC, the Fox-owned station in Austin, where he has been an anchor and reporter for two years.

Armbruster will co-anchor the 5 p.m. newscast on KHBS and the 9 p.m. newscast on KHOG. He will co-anchor at 5 p.m. with Angela Taylor and Craig Cannon and at 9 p.m. with Taylor. He will also report on the KHBS 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts.

“Daniel’s addition to the team allows us to continue our commitment to thoroughly cover the entire market,” KHBS-KHOG news director Greg Shepperd said in a statement. “Whether it’s delivering late breaking news updates from the anchor desk or reporting live from the scene, I’m confident our viewers will embrace Daniel’s story telling.”

Ben Wagner Upped to Morning Anchor at KHBS-KHOG

ben wagnerBen Wagner has been named morning anchor at KHBS-KHOG, Hearst’s duopoly in Fort Smith, Ark. Effective immediately, Wagner will co-anchor the newscast alongside Kelly Johnson and meteorologist Laura Huckabee.

“Ben’s energy and personality will be a great addition to the morning anchor desk,” KHBS-KHOG news director Greg Shepperd said in a statement. “Ben’s willingness to go the extra mile stands out, and I’m confident he’ll bring that same commitment to Sunrise whether he’s behind the anchor desk or reporting from the field hundreds of miles away.”

Wagner joined the stations in 2012 as a multimedia journalist. The morning newscast’s previous anchor, Derek Burleson, signed off in December.

Brad Reed Signing Off From KFTA

brad reedBrad Reed has announced his departure from KFTA, the Fox affiliate in Fort Smith, Ark. Reed, who says he plans to pursue a medical degree will officially sign off May 14.

Reed has anchored and produced the evening newscast since 2009. In a statement, he said his role at KFTA “allowed me to meet and interview some of the most interesting people in Northwest Arkansas, and serve dozens of non-profit organizations in the community that are near and dear to my heart.”

“I’ve worked with some of the most talented people in TV news, and will cherish the relationships I have been able to develop through this job,” Reed said. “Thank you for inviting me into your homes each night, and for trusting me to do the job I have loved so much.”

Mitch Roberts Named Sports Director at KHBS-KHOG

khbs logoMitch Roberts is joining KHBS-KHOG, Hearst’s duopoly in Fort Smith-Fayetteville, as sports director. He will begin in his new role on May 5.

Roberts most recently worked as a news anchor and reporter for rival KFSM, the CBS affiliate in Fort Smith-Fayetteveille. He has previously worked as a sportscaster for stations in St. Louis, Nashville, and Las Vegas. He was born in Tulsa and grew up in Dallas.

“Mitch brings a terrific combination of experience and Arkansas-Oklahoma sports knowledge to our newsroom,” KHBS-KHOG news director Greg Shepperd said in a statement. “I know Mitch will provide excellent leadership when it comes to covering the Razorbacks and our diverse sports market.”

Arkansas Business Editor Raises Questions About Disclosures in KFSM Story

kfsm logoThe editor of Arkansas Business has penned an open letter to Rick Bagley, the news director at KFSM, the CBS affiliate in Fort Smith, Ark. At issue: a lengthy piece on the station’s website raising questions about the qualifications of the recently-appointed director of the University of Arkansas’ Center for Ethics in Journalism.

The editor, Gwen Moritz, says the article should have included a disclosure: it was written by KFSM managing editor Larry Henry, whose mother-in-law is a professor at the school who supported a different candidate for the job. Moritz exchanged several emails with Henry about the piece; in the open letter, she said Henry “insulted me personally and professionally and even offered some choice words for my husband for good measure.”

Moritz also reveals Henry has applied for jobs in the university’s journalism department twice, once as recently as last year. A Jim Romenesko reader points out when comments on the KFSM website started questioning some of the story’s problems, “the comments were mysteriously turned off.”

“If I were their news director, I would consider whether they are qualified to practice journalism at all,” Moritz writes in her letter to Bagley: Read more

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