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Posts Tagged ‘Bill McFarland’

WFTS Ousts News Director and Assistant News Director

WFTS-304Both the news director and assistant news director Tampa ABC affiliate WFTS have been let go.

The Tampa Bay Business Journal reports, GM Nick Nicholson told staff in an email that news director Bill McFarland and assistant news director Michele Murray “were no longer with the television station. We wish them the best in their future endeavors.”

Sources tell TVSpy the firings come in the aftermath of last month’s story about WFTS reporter Cameron Polom finding a child who had been reported missing.

The day after ten-year-old Paul Fagan was reported missing by his parents, Polom was walking through the boy’s neighborhood and saw him standing near a fence. Polom promptly turned him over to deputies.

Sources tell TVSpy that McFarland and Murray were not happy with how Polom handled the child’s return and thought he should have milked it for more exposure for the Scripps-owned station. An internal review of the situation was launched leading to today’s dismissals. We’ve reached out to WFTS GM Nicholson and Polom for comment but have not heard back. We will update when we do.

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Bill McFarland Named News Director at WFTS

Bill McFarland is stepping into the role of news director at WFTS, the ABC affiliate in Tampa Bay.

McFarland comes from WABC, the ABC O&O in New York City, where he is the assistant news director. He replaces Doug Culver, who left WFTS for WJLA in June.

“Bill brings over 20-years of successful news management experience in large market television newsrooms,” WFTS general manager Rich Pegram said in a statement.  “I am confident that his commitment to quality journalism and his leadership abilities will help ABC Action News continue our remarkable ratings momentum of the past year.”

McFarland said he is “looking forward to joining the news team at one of the best stations in America.” Read more