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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.

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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

Arkansas Anchor Arrested on Suspicion of DWI

reed_kfsmKFSM, the Ft. Smith, AR, CBS affiliate, is reporting weekend anchor Austin Reed has been arrested on suspicion of DWI.

The station is quoting the Washington County Sheriff’s website that says Reed faces charges of DWI, careless driving and violating the implied consent law.

He is scheduled to appear in Fayetteville District Court later today.

Shawn Oswald Named GM of KHBS-KHOG

khbs-khogShawn Oswald has been named president and general manager of KHBS-KHOG, Hearst’s ABC affiliates serving Fort Smith-Fayetteville, Ark.

Oswald comes from KWCH in Wichita, where he is the general sales manager. Previously, he has worked as national sales manager at Hearst’s WISN in Milwaukee and VP-GM of KSNW in Wichita.

“Shawn has distinguished himself as a multi-faceted broadcast executive throughout his career,” Hearst Television president Jordan Wertlieb said in a statement. “He is the right person to lead the KHBS/KHOG team and he brings great energy and enthusiasm for the opportunity to return to the community where he and his family have so many personal ties.”

Oswald replaces Brian Sather, who recently joined KCCI in Des Moines as general manager.

More in the release after the jump. Read more

Yve Jones Joins KHBS-KHOG as Assistant ND

khbs logoYve Jones has been named assistant news director at KHBS-KHOG, Hearst’s duopoly in Fayetteville-Fort Smith, Ark.

It is a move within Hearst for Jones, who has been the news operations manager at WISN in Milwaukee for the past five years. In her new role, she will be reunited with news director Greg Shepperd, who she worked with at WDSU in New Orleans.

“Yve has an extraordinary ability to organize, communicate, and collaborate,” Shepperd said in a statement. “She’s worked the assignment desk, produced, anchored and reported during her career.”

Jones’ last day at WISN will be January 16. She will begin at KHBS-KHOG on January 21.

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