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Milwaukee

Anchor Makes His Own Promo, Proves Value of Promo Departments

WTMJ morning anchor Vince Vitrano and his anchor friends made their own station promo. Their branding is that the morning news is “Now a little taller.”

In his defense, Vitrano told TVSpy, “Really more than anything, it was fun for us. We had a good laugh, and our viewers on twitter and facebook enjoyed it. That’s what it’s all about.”

Mister Vitrano, on behalf of both current and former promo producers across this great creative nation of ours, I beg you to run, not walk, directly over to your Creative Services Department and give each and every creative there a hug. Why? Because they aren’t shooting newscasts on iPhones and posting them to YouTube.

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‘Public Schools Suck!’ Says Reporter Who Won Emmy for Public School Report

WITI reporter Meghan Dwyer recently took home an Emmy for “Scared at School,” her report about Milwaukee public schools not taking bullying seriously.

Dwyer started her acceptance speech by saying, “This is for all the kids that are bullied. Seriously, public schools suck. They’re horrible. They need to be held accountable.”

John LaPorte, VP of news for the Milwaukee FOX affiliate, told TVSpy, “We are proud of the work Meghan has done at FOX 6. Her comments during an acceptance speech for one of two Emmy awards she won were unfortunate and misplaced.”

LaPorte went on to say, “We have spoken with Meghan at length and she has made it very clear that she misspoke as she was caught up in the excitement of the evening.”​

Before awkwardly walking off stage after the crowd began turning against her, she softened her stance a bit by saying, “I love public schools my kids will go there, but they need work.”

Joyce Garbaciak Named Evening Anchor at WISN

Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 9.08.51 AMWISN, the ABC affiliate in Milwaukee, has promoted Sunday night anchor Joyce Garbaciak to the position of weekday 5 p.m. co-anchor, alongside Toya Washington. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports Garbaciak replaces Craig McKee, who will continue as anchor at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Garbaciak, familiar to Milwaukee television audiences for the 17 years she spent at WITI-TV (Channel 6), starts Monday.

She joined WISN in 2006 as a contributing correspondent and has been anchoring the 10 p.m. Sunday night newscast since September of 2013.

“We look at Joyce as a wonderful addition to a great group of journalists,” said WISN president and general manager Jan Wade.

Scripps’ Acquisition of WTMJ Presents Challenge to Milwaukee Newspaper

TMJThe pending acquisition of Milwaukee NBC affiliate WTMJ presents a challenge to the newspaper that gave the station its call letters, The Milwaukee Journal, now the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

As the Milwaukee Business Journal reports, Scripps has made digital a high priority, and that means targeting the Journal‘s lucrative online property, JSOnline:

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s JSOnline attracts the most visitors of the local-news websites in town, but JSOnline may get a major new competitor in Milwaukee as a result of WTMJ-TV’s pending move to E.W. Scripps Co., which is starting to build digital news sites for its television stations.

“We can’t just watch newspapers build a revenue stream,” Scripps CEO Rich Boehne told the Business Journal. “We are eager to roll out and leverage our digital products and investments across the attractive Journal markets.”

WITI Investigation Helps Prove False Arrest, Sparks Federal Lawsuit

Milwaukee FOX affiliate WITI is being credited for helping a woman prove she had been falsely accused of drunk driving by a Milwaukee County Sheriff’s deputy.

WITI reports, Tanya Weyker recently filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke and four of his deputies. Weyker’s lawyer said WITI discovered a key piece of evidence proving police were in the wrong.

The lawsuit comes two months after a FOX6 investigation showed Sheriff’s Deputy Joseph Quiles T-boned Weyker’s Toyota Camry and then lied about who caused the crash.

Weyker admitted to having a few sips of a friend’s drink that night — and nothing more.

Her injuries were too severe to perform field sobriety tests.

Sheriff’s Deputy Scott Griffin arrested Weyker anyway — and cited her for driving drunk, even though blood tests would later prove Weyker had no alcohol or drugs in her system. Read more

E.W. Scripps and Journal Broadcasting to Merge TV Stations, Spin Off Newspapers

JournalScrippsAnother big TV consolidation deal is in the works.

Tonight, Cincinnati-based E.W. Scripps, and Journal Communications of Milwaukee, announced they will merge their broadcasting operations, while spinning off their newspaper businesses into a new entity. As a result of the deal, which is expected to close in 2015, Scripps will be the 5th largest TV station ownership group operating 34 television stations in 24 cities, reaching 18 percent of the U.S. It will also own 35 radio stations. Five markets will include TV/radio combos. Interestingly, unlike other recent TV acquisitions, none of the TV stations will overlap in the same markets.

Scripps Stations:

WCPO (ABC) Cincinnati
WEWS (ABC) Cleveland
WXYZ (ABC) Detroit
WMYD (MyNet) Detroit
KMGH (ABC) Denver
KZCO (Azteca) Denver
KNXV (ABC) Phoenix
WFTS (ABC) Tampa
WMAR (ABC) Baltimore
WRTV (ABC) Indianapolis
WKBW (ABC) Buffalo
KGTV (ABC) San Diego
KZSD (Azteca) San Diego
KJRH (NBC) Tulsa
KSHB (NBC) Kansas City
KMCI (Ind.) Lawrence/Kansas City
WPTV (NBC) West Palm Beach
WFLX (FOX) West Palm Beach
KERO (ABC) Bakersfield
KZKC (Azteca) Bakersfield

Journal Stations:

WTMJ (NBC) Milwaukee
WGBA (CW) Green Bay
WACY (NBC) Green Bay
WTVF (CBS) Nashville
KTNV (ABC) Las Vegas
WFTX (FOX) Fort Myers
KGUN (ABC) Tucson
KWBA (CW) Tucson
KNIN (FOX) Boise
KIVI (ABC) Boise
KMTV (CBS) Omaha
WSYM (FOX) Lansing

The combined broadcasting company will be headquartered in Cincinnati while the new publishing company will be headquartered in Milwaukee. The flagship newspaper will be the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, but most of the publishing properties will come from the Scripps portfolio stretching from Redding, CA to Naples, FL. Edward Scripps founded the company in 1878.

In 2011, E.W. Scripps acquired the McGraw-Hill TV stations group of 9 stations for $212 million.

As WCPO, a Scripps station, reports the deal is a “tax-free transaction that makes shareholders of both companies owners of the surviving entity. Scripps shareholders will own 59 percent of the newspaper company following the transaction and 69 percent of the post-merger broadcast company.”

Stephanie Grady Set to Join WITI in Milwaukee

stephanie gradyStephanie Grady is joining Milwaukee Fox affiliate WITI, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel‘s Duane Dudek reports.

WITI news director John LaPorte told Dudek Grady starts in September. She comes from WXXA-WTEN in Albany, where she has worked since 2011. She currently anchors the morning show from 5 to 9 a.m.

Before WXXA-WTEN, Grady worked at WSAZ in Huntington, W.V. and WSEE in Erie, Penn.

Weather and Crime: It’s What They’re Watching in Milwaukee

tv_304Milwaukee Journal Sentinel TV critic Duane Dudek watched the first 10 minutes of his local stations’ newscasts then broke each down into five categories of what they reported: violent crime, other crime, weather and accidents.

All stations aired variations of the same stories Monday night, but in different order and with different running times. All stations’ lead story involved the night’s frisky storm front and footage of a Nebraska tornado. Other stories included discovery of human remains at N. 13th St. and W. Juneau Ave.; increased police presence after a shooting at a convenience store, and interviews with the young girl injured in the shooting; and several traffic accidents.

The stations came out heavily weighted towards violent crime. According to Dudek, FOX affiliate WITI won the night and also led the other stations in violent crime reporting with 50.5 percent of its first ten minutes devoted to the subject. Connection? Who knows. Interesting? You bet.

WDJT-TV (Channel 58)

Violent crime: 45.6%

Other crime: 11.8%

Weather: 11.1%

Accidents: 6.8%

Other: 23.8%

Followed by: 2-minute, 44-second weather segment

Story no one else had: School drug-testing policy

Lead story after weather: Human remains found

See the other stations after the jump. Read more

Anne State Leaving Milwaukee FOX Affiliate

state witiAnne State is leaving Milwaukee FOX affiliate WITI.

According to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel media writer Duane Dudek, news director John LaPorte told WITI staffers State’s last day will be July 30. She’s reportedly headed to the West Coast.

State started at WITI in September 2010. She previously worked at WBBM in Chicago and KNSD in San Diego.

KCTV Meteorologist Leaving for Milwaukee

tom wachsKCTV meteorologist Tom Wachs is leaving the Kansas City CBS affiliate to work for WITI in Milwaukee.

According to The Kansas City Star, Wachs said the chance to work with WITI chief meteorologist Vince Condella was “a dream come true for me.” He wrote on his facebook page, “I have the amazing opportunity to work with my mentor growing up, and the guy who I imitated when I was 6 years old.”

KCTV news director Larry Perret told The Kansas City Star he’s already looking for Wach’s replacement even though the station has four meteorologists on staff.

Wachs started at KCTV in June 2008. He has also worked in Johnson City, TN, and at KNOP in North Platte, NE.

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