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Archives: February 2013

Sports Anchor Butch Alsandor Leaving KHOU

After 20 years at KHOU, sports anchor Butch Alsandor is leaving the Houston CBS affiliate “to try something new.”

“It’s my decision to leave the station. I’ve been thinking for quite a while that I’d like to try something new, and now, after 20 solid years, this seems like the time to go ahead with that,” Alsandor said. “I’ve had a great run over these past two decades, made lots of friends both at the station and across the community. And I look forward to many more interesting things to come.”

Alsandor joined KHOU in 1993 and was promoted to weekday sports anchor in 2009.

“Even after all these years, he’s still enthusiastic about the job and the people he covers. Whatever he does next, we know he’ll bring those special qualities with him,” executive news director Phil Bruce said in a statement. “Beyond being a true professional, he’s a very decent guy. And we’ll miss him.”

Family of KEYT Anchor Paula Lopez Declines to Say How She Went Missing

The family of Paula Lopez, the KEYT anchor who was reported missing Wednesday morning and found later in the evening, is declining to elaborate on the details of her return. Lopez is married to a Superior Court judge and is a “longtime fixture in the community,” according to the Los Angeles Times:

Her family alerted the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office that she was gone, triggering a response by deputies who used search dogs as they scoured the area. The rapid response raised questions about whether the family received favorable treatment. Often, law enforcement authorities wait 24 hours before declaring a person missing and launching search efforts.

News footage showed Lopez’s husband, Frank Ochoa, arriving at the home Wednesday night in his gray Lexus with what appeared to be a woman in the passenger’s seat. The family contacted the Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday about 5:30 p.m. to say that Lopez was safe at home, KEYT-TV said on its website.

“Paula has been located,” a spokesman for the family told reporters gathered outside the home Wednesday night. “We’re not giving out any details right now.”

The Santa Barbara County sheriff’s office also declined to comment “due to the fact it is a private family matter.”

KEYT Anchor Paula Lopez Missing; UPDATE: Anchor Found Safe

> Update, 9:50pmET: Lopez’s family alerted KEYT that Lopez had returned home around 6:30pmPT and is safe.

> Original story: Paula Lopez an anchor at KEYT the ABC affiliate in Santa Barbara, has gone missing.

A family member alerted the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Office of her disappearance around 10 this morning. Lopez was last seen near her home in the hills above Santa Barbara. Lopez’s disappearance made news on all the Santa Barbara stations as well as in Fresno, Palm Springs and on Los Angeles stations. Lopez worked in the LA market in the 1990s. Authorities do not suspect foul play.

Lopez, who is married to Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Frank J. Ochoa, began her career at KEYT in 1985, as an intern. She returned to the station in 1996. Currently she anchors the 6:30 and 11pm newscasts.

KEYT General Manager Mark Danielson released the following statement:

Read more

Carter Evans Named CBS News Correspondent

Carter Evans has been named a Los Angeles-based correspondent at CBS News, TVNewser reports.

Evans has been working as a freelance correspondent for the network and for KCBS, the CBS O&O in Los Angeles, in recent months. Earlier this month, he was caught in the crossfire of the Christopher Dorner shootout in Big Bear.

In a memo to staffers announcing the news, CBS News president David Rhodes cited Evans’ reporting on the Dorner story, noting “he always seems to be working when no one else is around.”

Evans is married to former KTTV entertainment reporter Courtney Friel.

Bryan McGruder Joins WZTV as News Director

Four months after his departure from WDAF, Bryan McGruder has been named news director at WZTV, the Fox affiliate in Nashville.

“We are excited to have someone of Brian’s stature and experience leading our news department at FOX17 and look forward to the impact he will have on the market. His experience running highly successful newsrooms will be a huge asset to our operations,” WZTV general manager Dominic Mancuso said in announcing the news.

McGruder was vice president of news at WDAF in Kansas City for the past decade. He has also served as news director at WJCL-WTGS in Savannah, Ga. He replaces Roberta Petterson at WZTV. [h/t Bottom Line Communications]

Kansas City Meteorologist Takes Storm Reporting to New Level

Bottom Line Communications profiled Gary Lezak, chief meteorologist for Kansas City NBC affiliate KSHB, during the recent snowstorm that blew through the Midwest.

Lezak told Bottom Line, “Weather is just fascinating.  The passion I have for winter weather forecasting gets me so focused and energized.”

Lezak’s passion was on display for Kansas City viewers during a 24-hour period running from Monday night until Tuesday evening.  His on-air odyssey began during the Monday 10:00 p.m. newscast with Lezak and his weather team giving regular updates on the storm and how it would affect the Kansas City area. Read more

‘It’s Snowing and It Sucks Here.’ Milwaukee Reporter Sums Up Live Shot

WITI reporter Angelica Duria let everyone in the FOX Milwaukee affiliate’s viewing audience know what she really thought about doing a live shot in the falling snow.

Speaking with the anchors of “Real Milwaukee” who were warm and dry in the studio, Duria started slipping into “uh-oh” land after responding to anchor Nicole Koglin talking about what Duria was eating. Read more

Tania Ortega Joins KTBC From KCEN

Tania Ortega is joining KTBC, the Fox O&O in Austin, as a general assignment reporter for the morning newscast.

Ortega was most recently a reporter and producer for KCEN in Waco. She has also worked as a reporter, anchor and sales representative at KXXV in Waco. Her television career began as an intern for KNSD in San Diego.

“Tania’s energy combined with her extensive knowledge of Texas is great for our expanding reporter team on ‘Good Day Austin,’” KTBC vice president and news director Pam Vaught said in a statement.

Britt Moreno Joins KCNC as Morning Anchor

Britt Moreno is the new morning co-anchor at KCNC, the CBS O&O in Denver. Moreno will anchor the 5 a.m., 6 a.m. and noon newscasts alongside Alan Gionet beginning in early April.

“We are very pleased to have Britt join CBS4,” news director Tim Wieland said in announcing the hire. “She is a great journalist who connects with viewers and will be a strong addition to our talented team.”

Moreno comes to KCNC from KSAZ, the Fox O&O in Phoenix, where she has been the weekend morning anchor since 2010. Prior to that, she worked at KRGV in Welasco, Texas, as a general assignment reporter.

Moreno replaces Brooke Wagner, who left KCNC in January.

Al Roker: My First Big Break

Before he was everyone’s favorite forecaster on NBC’s “Today” Show, Al Roker paid his dues on the local TV circuit. Now he has his own show “Wake Up with Al” on The Weather Channel, owns his own production company “Al Roker Entertainment,” has co-authored three mystery novels, written a couple of cookbooks, and a has penned a couple of New York Times Bestsellers.

So how did Roker go from being a flannel shirt and overall wearing student at SUNY Oswego to media kingpin? Al said his first big break came from being in the right place at the right time when someone said the wrong thing at the wrong time.

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