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Posts Tagged ‘Janene Drafs’

Dan Lewis Leaving KOMO After 27 Years


Longtime KOMO anchor Dan Lewis has announced he is leaving the Seattle ABC affiliate.

“Coming to Seattle 27 years ago was the best move I ever made,” Lewis told newsroom staffers Wednesday. “KOMO has been a wonderful place to work and this community is just amazing. It’s a difficult decision that has been two years in the making.”

Lewis started working at KOMO in 1987. One year after arriving, he was paired with Kathi Goertzen. The two worked together for nearly 25 years until Goertzen’s death from brain tumors.

During his four decades in TV news, Lewis covered some of the biggest stories of our time. From the Pang Warehouse fire to the Nisqually earthquake and recently the crash of the KOMO 4 helicopter. Viewers across Washington have come to rely on Lewis for their news.

“Television news,” he told the staff Wednesday, “has been my passion for four decades. To this day I love my job but I just feel like I need a break from the news.” Read more

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KOMO News Director and GM Issue Statement on Helicopter Crash

140318_helicopter_memorial_660Holly Gauntt, news director for Seattle ABC affiliate KOMO, and station GM Janene Drafs jointly issued a statement about Tuesday’s helicopter crash.

The two remembered Bill Strothman and Gary Pfitzner, the men who were killed in the crash. “Our hearts are heavy today. We miss them. We cry for our loss and their families.  We thank everyone who has reached out to us and offered to help in any way they can.” The statement added, “The flowers, the cards, the emails… they help more than you’ll ever know. How lucky we are to be surrounded and supported by such compassionate viewers and listeners. You’ve helped us in hard times before. Thank you for doing it again.”

You can read the entire text of the statement after the jump. Read more

Layoffs at Sinclair Stations in Seattle, Portland

sinclair logoSinclair Broadcast Group has handed down a round of layoffs at its newly-acquired stations in Seattle and Portland, TVSpy has learned.

A source at Seattle ABC affiliate KOMO tells TVSpy that there were 10 layoffs in the station’s newsroom and close to 20 across all Sinclair’s properties in Seattle. They include satellite truck operators, editors, producers and radio reporters and editors.

The source describes the mood at KOMO as “a combination of sadness and nervousness,” noting that the newsroom is a “very tight-knit group” that has been through a lot, including the death of Kathi Goertzen, over the past two years. Staffers are said to be banding together to help laid-off employees find new jobs.

KOMO news director Holly Gauntt declined to comment. General manager Janene Drafs did not respond to an email from TVSpy.

In Portland, The Oregonian reports nine people were laid off at ABC affiliate KATU, including “three editors, a writer, a producer, two truck operators and two folks who work with KATU’s web operation, including an executive producer.”

More details? Email us: tvspy@mediabistro.com.

Janene Drafs to Take Over as KOMO General Manager After Jim Clayton’s Retirement

Fisher Communications has announced that Jim Clayton, the senior vice president and general manager of Seattle ABC-affiliate KOMO, will retire at the end of the month. He will be succeeded by Janene Drafs.

Drafs is a 25-year employee of Fisher Communications who began her career at KOMO as a sales assistant. She has also held the positions of account executive, local sales manager and general sales manager. Most recently, she has been the station’s vice president and station manager, a role she assumed in May.

“Janene is an accomplished leader who brings the full range of newsroom and sales experience, along with deep community knowledge, to this position,” Fisher president and CEO Colleen Brown said in a statement. Read more

Janene Drafs Promoted to VP-Station Manager at KOMO-KUNS

Janene Drafs has been promoted to vice president and station manager at KOMO-KUNS, the Fisher Broadcasting duopoly in Seattle. Her appointment is effective immediately.

Drafs is a 25-year employee of Fisher Broadcasting who most recently was vice president and general sales manager at KOMO-KUNS. In her new role, she will continue to be responsible for sales activity at the duopoly.

“Janene has the expertise and track record to be an excellent station manager in this market,” Jim Clayton, the SVP-GM of Fisher Seattle Broadcasting, said in a statement. “She knows the landscape very well. And I am pleased to announce her new responsibility.”