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Posts Tagged ‘David Johnson’

Nearing 25 Years Together, WPXI Co-Anchors ‘Defy the Odds’

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WPXI anchor David Johnson knows the business well. Anchors, like news directors, can’t count on anything. “You can be good, and they’ll get rid of you. You can be bad, and they’ll get rid of you,” he told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

And yet, for nearly 25 years, Johnson has been a fixture on the desk at the Pittsburgh NBC affiliate, alongside Peggy Finnegan:

But despite the odds, Johnson and Finnegan — who are closing in on 25 years together in January — are already the longest-running local news-anchor team in Pittsburgh television history and one of the longest in the nation.

Twenty-five years for a single anchor is extraordinary, says Robert Thompson, professor of media and culture at Syracuse University.

“For a team to stay together for 25 years is almost unheard of,” Thompson says. “You’re talking about two different people who have to be incredibly stable in a field that is unstable. Those in TV news tend to move around all over the place, to bigger markets or for personal reasons, or new management shakes things up and they’re fired.”

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WATCH: WPXI Crew Member Makes Cameo Appearance During News

WPXI evening anchor David Johnson had an unexpected visitor on set during the 11:00 p.m. newscast Friday night.

Coming out of the break, while the anchor for the Pittsburgh, PA, NBC affiliate was reading a story about a man who used a taxi as a getaway car for a bank robbing spree, a crew member, identified on Johnson’s facebook page as George, wandered on set behind the anchor. Johnson noticed and smiled, but continued reading while George made his way off set.

Johnson’s comment on facebook seemed to sum up the crew member’s brush with fame, “Hey, it’s live TV.”

CNN Correspondent Lisa Sylvester Joins WPXI

After nine years at CNN, Lisa Sylvester is joining WPXI, Cox Media’s NBC affiliate in Pittsburgh.

Sylvester officially joins the station in October. She will co-anchor the 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts, as well as the 10 p.m. newscast on Pittsburgh Fox affiliate WPGH, alongside David Johnson. She replaces Darieth Chisolm, who is leaving the station to spend more time with her family.

“We’re lucky to find such a perfect fit for our newsroom,” WPXI news director Mike Oliveira said. “Lisa is not only a great journalist, but a great person. I know she’s ready to work hard and invest in this station and this city. I know our viewers will recognize and appreciate that.”

At CNN, Sylvester was the cut-in anchor and correspondent for “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer.” Before that, she worked at ABC News. More from WPXI after the jump. Read more