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Posts Tagged ‘WGCL’

Larry Smith Named Sports Director at WGCL

Larry Smith is joining Atlanta CBS affiliate WGCL as sports director, Access Atlanta reports.

Smith worked at CNN from 1993 to 2009 before joining Turner Sports as a host. Most recently, he worked at WCPO in Cincinnati. The hire is part of WGCL’s decision to revive its sports department after four years of outsourcing sports coverage to a local radio station.

“We are taking a more nontraditional approach to sports moving forward,” WGCL news director Trey Fabacher wrote in an email to Access Atlanta. “Larry is not just a sports anchor, but a sports reporter and producer.  We envisioned this role to be very active in the field and Larry’s talents were as strong behind the camera as well as in front of the camera.”

Smith will handle “breaking stories and features” as well as anchoring a weekly Saturday night sports show starting next month.

WGCL’s ‘Better Mornings Atlanta’ to Start Thirty Minutes Earlier

WGCL will add a 4:30am newscast to its “Better Mornings Atlanta” show.

A spokesperson for the Atlanta CBS affiliate told TVSpy the show will debut August 12, to coincide with the start of the new school year.

The show will be anchored by the current team of Tracye Hutchins, Brandon Rudat and Jennifer Valdez.

WGCL Revives Sports Department

Atlanta CBS affiliate WGCL has cut ties with the hosts of its weekly sports show, “CBS Atlanta Sportsline,” according to Access Atlanta.

The “Sportsline” teamAtlanta radio hosts Steve “Steak” Shapiro, Chris Dimino and Nick Cellini — were also fired from 790/The Zone after they did a segment making fun of Steve Gleason, a former New Orleans Saints player who suffers from ALS, on their radio show.

WGCL general manager Trey Fabacher told Access Atlanta that without the “Sportline” hosts, the station plans to revive its sports department, which was dropped in 2009:

Fabacher, who arrived in Atlanta last fall, said given how big sports is in this town, he didn’t agree with this type of outsourcing. As a result, this unplanned firing at the Zone coincided with his decision to hire a new sports director in the next couple of weeks. He doesn’t have immediate plans to add more sports staff beyond the director for now.

He wasn’t ready to release details on what the sports director’s specific duties will be.

WGCL Apologizes For Cutting Away From Tonys Minutes Before Best Musical Award

WGCL is facing anger from viewers after cutting away from the last minutes of the Tony Awards to air its late newscast Sunday evening. The Atlanta CBS affiliate went to local news at 11:00 p.m., just two minutes before the night’s final award, Best Musical, was presented. >UPDATE: WGCL has apologized. Read the statement after the jump.

WGCL, which was flooded with angry tweets and Facebook messages immediately after cutting away, tried to make amends with a fast update on the winners at the very end of the newscast (video above).

“We just checked for you Tony fans, and here are the final winners of tonight’s Tony awards,” anchor Bernard Watson said. “Cicely Tyson won her first Tony for her revival of the Horton Foote’s ‘The Trip to Beautiful Pippin’  — Bountiful Pippin, I should say. And ‘Pippin’ won for the Best Revival of a Musical. And finally, ‘Kenny Boots’ won the music — Kenny won the musical — 2013 Tony for Best Musical. That’s a mouthful.”

For the record, Tyson won for Best Actress in a Play for “The Trip to Bountiful,” “Pippin” won for Best Revival of a Musical, and “Kinky Boots” won for Best Musical.

Angry viewers took to WGCL’s Facebook page to voice their anger.

“You owe Atlanta and those of us who appreciate the arts a sincere apology,” one viewer wrote. Read more

Atlanta’s WGCL Cuts Newsroom Staff

Trey Fabacher, vice president and general manager of Meredith’s Atlanta CBS affiliate WGCL, has confirmed with TVSpy, anchor JaQuitta Williams and meteorologist Cris Martinez are no longer with the station.

When asked about rumors of layoffs involving newsroom staff, Fabacher said, “This week, we reallocated a few positions that were more in line with new goals going forward. We have not reduced staff count.” But would not comment further.

Fabacher, who came to WGCL last September from WWJ in Detroit, brought on news director Lane Michaelsen from Cincinnati’s WCPO in March. Read more

Lane Michaelsen to Join WGCL as News Director

WGCL, Meredith’s Atlanta CBS affiliate, has announced the hiring of Lane Michaelsen as news director.

“Michaelsen has built a solid reputation of leading quality newscasts and storytelling,” WGCL general manager Trey Fabacher told staffers in an email. “Rating increases have been seen very quickly at almost every post he has held. He is also very skilled in listening and learning about newsrooms and culture and making the right adjustments to place them in the best situation to be successful.”

Michaelsen, who comes to WGCL from Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO, started his career as a photojournalist. Read more

Eric Ludgood Joins WAGA as Assistant ND

Two months after his departure from Atlanta’s WGCL, Eric Ludgood has been named assistant news director at rival WAGA.

During his time at WGCL, Ludgood served as news director and as executive producer. He is a former vice president of CNN International who has also worked at WNCN in Raleigh, WXIA in Atlanta and WTVM in Columbus, Ga.

Ludgood begins Tuesday at the Fox O&O.

WGCL’s Jeff Chirico Gets Punched in the Face While Investigating a Story

WGCL investigative reporter Jeff Chirico was punched in the chin and knocked to the ground while reporting a piece for the Atlanta CBS affiliate.

Chirico’s was investigating Richard Wilder, who reportedly began operating a business in Gainesville just weeks after he was charged with seven counts of theft by deception and once count of racketeering. While reporting the story, Donald Wilder, presumed to be Richard’s father, approached Chirico and threatened him, punching him in the face and knocking him to the ground.

WGCL says Chirico was not seriously injured. His full report airs tonight on WGCL’s 11 p.m. newscast.

Tornado Forms in Front of WSB’s Ross Cavitt

At least one person is dead after a tornado touched down in Adairsville, Ga., Wednesday afternoon. Footage of the tornado was captured by WSB reporter Ross Cavitt, who had just arrived on the scene and was reporting from about a quarter mile away (video above).

All four Atlanta stations — ABC affiliate WSB, CBS affiliate WGCL, NBC affiliate WXIA and Fox O&O WAGA — have been in continuing coverage of the severe weather for several hours. The area remains under a severe thunderstorm warning. [via CNN]

News Director Eric Ludgood Out at WGCL

Eric Ludgood is out as news director for WGCL, the Meredith owned CBS affiliate for Atlanta.

“Eric Ludgood is no longer with WGCL in Atlanta,” a Meredith spokesperson told TVSpy.  “We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Ludgood had been assistant news director at WGCL before leaving for three months in 2010 to work as news director for WNCN in Raleigh, NC.  He returned to WGCL as news director in February 2011 replacing Steve Schwaid.

WGCL vice president and general manager Trey Fabacher told TVSpy the station would begin its search for a news director, “very shortly.”

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