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Posts Tagged ‘Mark Cornetta’

KUSA Denies Conflict of Interest in Kristin Hopkins Coverage

Brian Willie KUSADenver NBC affiliate KUSA is denying a conflict of interest in its coverage of Kristin Hopkins, a woman who was trapped for six days in her car after an accident.

The Denver Post reports KUSA’s production manager, Brian Willie, is a close friend of the Hopkins family. At their request, Willie acted as a spokesman, reading an on-camera statement (pictured) to the media at St. Anthony Central Hospital Monday. Willie was not covering the story for KUSA, the NBC affiliate says.

KUSA’s rivals have complained that the family gave first access to photos from the scene to KUSA, according to the Post.

In reporting the story, the station disclosed Willie’s employment at the station: “The person that you saw reading the family statement is 9NEWS production manager Brian Willie, a close friend of the family who was asked to speak today on their behalf. He is not covering this story in his capacity on 9NEWS.”

Willie will no longer be reading statements to the media on the case. “There is no conflict of interest,” KUSA general manager Mark Cornetta told the Post. “There is no loss of objectivity. The hospital will provide any other release of information.”

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Sports Anchor Turned News Anchor then Retired Anchor Hired to do Sports at KUSA

Fox31 anchor Ron Zappolo is retiring.Ron Zappolo, the former sports anchor who retired last year as a news anchor is coming back to Denver airwaves.

The Denver Post TV critic Joanne Ostrow reports Zappolo will be the “weekend sports conversationalist” for Denver NBC affiliate KUSA.

He’ll be paired with Sam Adams, Denver comedian and sportswriter (for the Rocky Mountain News), to talk sports as a segment within the newscast. The first taping is Friday, to air this weekend.

“We’ll see what develops,” Zappolo said late Tuesday. “Anything’s on the table.”

KUSA President and General Manager Mark Cornetta calls the move an “experiment,” as a way to inject talk about sports, sometimes in a debate style, in the weekend newscast. “As with anything, if it is good, there is the possibility it could expand,” Cornetta said. Read more

Gannett Stations Debut New Graphics Package

Gannett is in the process of rolling out new graphics at stations across the country. The new package debuted this week at KUSA, the NBC affiliate in Denver (video above).

“Our intention was to clean up the screen and only put things at the bottom of the screen that were of the highest importance to the viewers,” KUSA president and general manager Mark Cornetta said in a statement.

The graphics package looks very similar to the new graphics at Gannett-owned USA Today, which was redesigned last year.

NewscastStudio describes Gannett’s new look as “graphics and music that stand out in a crowded market.” Read more