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WPLG Anchor Tweets His Last Show is the One He’s Anchoring

WPLG anchor Jason Martinez sent out a tweet and posted on facebook that the show he was anchoring this morning would be his last at the Miami ABC affiliate.

UPDATE: “I’m moving back to Los Angeles,” Martinez told Gossip Extra’s Jose Lambiet. “I’ve been going back and forth twice a month, and it’s expensive and time-consuming and tiring. I arrive in L.A. at 2 p.m., if the flights are on time, and I have to get back on the plane Sunday by noon.” Martinez added, “I choose my sons over this job.”

Martinez came to WPLG from KTLA in Los Angeles in November 2010.

[Gossip Extra]

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway to Acquire WPLG From Graham Holdings

WPLG_Local_10_ABCWarren Buffett is adding a television station to Berkshire Hathaway’s media portfolio: the company will acquire WPLG, the ABC affiliate in Miami, from Graham Holdings Co.’s Post-Newsweek station group.

In addition to WPLG, the deal includes Berkshire shares currently held by Graham Holdings Co. and cash. The amounts of both will be determined on the closing date, Berkshire Hathaway says.

“Warren Buffett’s 40-year association with our company has been extremely good for our shareholders. Naturally, the deal that we have put together is one that will be good for both companies,” said Donald E. Graham, chairman and CEO of Graham Holdings. “We thank our longtime  colleagues at WPLG for their enormous contributions and congratulate them on the opportunity to join one of the greatest companies in America.”

WPLG is one of the Post-Newsweek Stations named for the Graham family, which has controlled the company since 1933: the call letters for WPLG in Miami are for Philip Leslie Graham, Donald Graham’s father and the former publisher and and co-owner of The Washington Post.

In 2008, Post-Newsweek reached a deal to acquire WTVJ in Miami from NBCUniversal. The deal was later called off due to a “delay in receiving the necessary regulatory approval.”

Daisy Ballmajó Named Telemundo Miami Evening Anchor

ballmajo_wscvDaisy Ballmajó has been named co-anchor of the WSCV Telemundo Miami evening newscasts.

According to Media Moves, Ballmajó has been filling in as the weeknight anchor since Maria Montoya left the station in October.

Ballmajó started at WSCV in October 2010 as host of the station’s morning show “Buenos Dias Miami.”

WFOR Promotes Meteorologist Craig Setzer

CRAIG_SETZERCraig Setzer has been promoted to chief meteorologist for Miami CBS owned station WFOR.

Setzer has been with WFOR for 14 years. He will continue working on the 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m. newscasts.

“Craig’s experience in the number one hurricane market in the country serves our news team and our viewers extremely well when it comes to tracking tropical systems,” WFOR VP and GM Adam Levy said in a statement.

Before starting at WFOR in January 2000, Setzer worked at KRDO in Colorado Springs, WFLA in Tampa and KSDK in St. Louis. He has appeared on “CBS This Morning” and “The CBS Evening News.”

WTVJ Expands Morning Newscast

wtvj logoAfter a successful run with a 4:30 a.m. newscast during the Sochi Olympics, NBC owned WTVJ has made it a permanent part of its programming lineup.

“We had an overwhelming viewer response to the 4:30 AM newscast we launched during the Olympics and are excited to make it a permanent addition to our lineup,” WTVJ vice president of news Migdalia Figueroa said in a statement. “We are committed to providing our viewers relevant local news and information when they need it and are pleased they want to start their day with us.”

The newscast will continue to be anchored by Pam Giganti and Jawan Strader, with meteorologist Ryan Phillips and traffic reporter Kelly Blanco.

Miami Creative Services Director Announces Retirement

Paul.KaniewskiOct2011Paul Kaniewski has announced his retirement from Miami ABC affiliate WPLG.

In an email obtained by TVSpy, WPLG GM Bert Medina told staffers, “After a tenure that spans 26 ½ years of service, Paul Kaniewski has informed me of his decision to retire as WPLG’s Creative Services Director, effective March 1, 2014.  As we know in our industry it is rare for a broadcaster to serve the community for this length of time with one company.  It truly speaks volumes for Paul’s dedication and commitment to our industry and South Florida.”

Kaniewski has worked at WPLG since 1988. He also worked at WTVJ from 1980-1987 and WCIX from 1976-1980.

Irika Sargent to Join WFOR as Anchor in May

Irika Sargent PhotoMiami CBS owned station WFOR has announced Irika Sargent will be joining Rick Folbaum as co-anchor of the evening newscasts.

“We are excited to welcome Irika Sargent to CBS4,” Adam Levy, VP and GM of WFOR-WBFS said in a statement. “Irika will be another key addition to the talented and experienced news team we have here and we look forward to having her partner with Rick, starting in May.”

Sargent comes from KPRC in Houston where she is a weekend anchor and nightside reporter. She has also worked in Mobile, AL, Columbia, MO, and London, England.

She is currently a member of the New York Bar Association.

Levy also spoke about Cynthia Demos who currently anchors the 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m. news with Folbaum and had been filling in after Shannon Hori left the station last year. “Cynthia has given us an experienced and steady hand at the anchor desk during our evening newscasts the past several months and we look forward to having her continue to be a key contributor to our success.”

Tony Pipitone Leaving Orlando for Miami

Tony-Pipitone-jpgThe Orlando Sentinel reports Tony Pipitone is leaving WKMG to work as an investigative reporter at Miami NBC owned station WTVJ.

“I’ve worked with many fine journalists, but Tony Pipitone is at the head of that class,” WKMG GM Skip Valet told the Sentinel. “As an investigative reporter, he is as good as they come.”

Pipitone has worked at the Orlando CBS affiliate for 26 years. He’s never worked at another station.

He was drawn to WTVJ because NBC is making a big push for investigative reporting at its owned stations. “They’re going to have a serious commitment to investigative reporting, and lucky for me, they want me to be part of it,” he said.

Capitol News Service, WTVJ Apologize For ‘Reprehensive Party of Florida’ Graphic

wtvj rephrensive party of floridaTwo Capitol News Service staffers have been fired after the wire service supplied WTVJ, the NBC owned station in Miami, with a political story that included a graphic that read “Reprehensive Party of Florida” instead of “Republican Party of Florida.”

The segment aired on the 6 p.m. newscast Thursday. In response to a letter from the chairman of the Republican Party of Florida, who accused the station of “complete abdication of your station’s professional duty at best and slander at worst,” both Capitol News Service and WTVJ apologized for the incident. (Jim Romenesko has the full letter from the Florida GOP here.)

The Capitol News Service statement says the wire service “takes full responsibility” for the incident:

In a report in which we played a web ad by the Republican Party of Florida, our employees indicated it should have the on screen chyron “Reprehensive Party of Florida.”  We deeply regret this incident.  The people who made the error and reviewed it without catching it are no longer in our employ.

In a statement to Romenesko, WTVJ said they “sincerely regret the incident.” Read more

Larry Olevitch Named President, GM of WTVJ

Larry OlevitchNBCUniversal has named Larry Olevitch president and general manager of WTVJ in South Florida. His appointment is effective immediately.

Olevitch has worked in local television for 30 years, the last 10 of which have been at NBCUniversal. He has been the senior vice president of sales at WTVJ since 2012.

“Larry has been an integral part of the management team driving the transformation at NBC 6 over the last two years. He knows South Florida and he knows the station’s winning strategy,” Valari Staab, president of the NBC Owned Stations, said in a statement. “I am confident he is the right person to maintain NBC 6’s momentum as it emerges as the leading station in the market for local news and information.”

Olevitch succeeds Manuel Martinez, who was recently named president of the Telemundo Stations. More from NBC after the jump. Read more

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