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Posts Tagged ‘WKMG’

Bill Berra Leaving Journal Broadcast Group

bill berraBill Berra is stepping down as vice president of news for Journal Broadcast Group and WTMJ in Milwaukee next month, TVSpy has learned. Berra will stay with the NBC affiliate through the Sochi Olympics, which begin Thursday on NBC.

A station spokesperson tells TVSpy Berra’s last day will be March 7 and the search is underway for his replacement.

No word yet on what’s next for Berra, who joined WTMJ in 2005 from WFTS, the ABC affiliate in Tampa. He has also worked as news director for WSYX in Columbus, WKMG in Orlando, KSAZ in Phoenix, KTVI in St. Louis and WREG in Memphis. He began his local news career reporting for WTMJ’s radio station, Newsradio 620.

Mark McEwen Returning to WKMG

mcewen_wkmgMark McEwen, the former WKMG anchor who survived a stroke while working at the Orlando CBS affiliate is set to return to the station.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, McEwen, who came to WKMG in 2004 after 16 years with the CBS This Morning, will contribute two reports a week.

“We’re here to show the positive light on things, telling stories you might not hear anywhere else … about heroes who may be across the street,” McEwen told the Sentinel. Read more

Gaard Swanson Signs Off From WKMG

gaard swansonWKMG evening anchor Gaard Swanson is signing off from the Orlando CBS affiliate, the Orlando Sentinel‘s Hal Boedeker reports. Swanson will anchor his final newscasts tonight.

Swanson, who came to Orlando from Seattle in 2011, said family reasons were behind the decision to leave. “Gaard’s family lives in Seattle. He’s been flying back and forth,” WKMG general manager Skip Valet told Boedeker. “His wife has a job she loves. His children are entrenched there. We don’t want to lose Gaard. He’s well liked in the newsroom.”

Matt Austin will shift from mornings to evenings at WKMG, replacing Swanson. He will anchor the 5, 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts alongside Lauren Rowe beginning Monday.

Eryka Washington Set to Join WKMG

Eryka Washington is joining Orlando CBS affiliate WKMG as a consumer reporter, the Orlando Sentinel’s Hal Boedeker reports.

It is a return to Orlando for Washington, who will also work as a fill-in anchor at the station. She is a former reporter and weekend anchor at NBC affiliate WESH. Since leaving Orlando in 2010, she has worked in public relations and as a freelance reporter at WCAU, the NBC owned station in Philadelphia.

According to Boedeker, Washington replaces Steven Cooper, who is moving to Atlanta.

Post-Newsweek Stations Not Part of Jeff Bezos’ Deal to Buy Washington Post

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is buying The Washington Post Company’s newspaper business, including The Washington Post, for $250 million.

The acquisition does not include the Post-Newsweek station group, Cable ONE, Slate magazine, TheRoot.com, Foreign Policy and Kaplan are also not included in the deal. The Washington Post Company will be changing its name.

The broadcasting division, which still carries the name of the magazine the company sold in 2010 (It was sold again over the weekend to IBT Media), is headquartered in Detroit at station WDIV. Post-Newsweek also owns WJXT in Jacksonville, KPRC in Houston and KSAT in San Antonio.

Two other Post-Newsweek Stations are named for members of the Graham family, which has controlled the company since 1933: the call letters for WPLG in Miami are for Philip Leslie Graham, and the call letters for WKMG in Orlando stand for his wife Katharine Meyer Graham. Their son, Donald Graham is now CEO of the company. In a news release announcing the sale of the namesake newspaper, Graham writes, “Jeff Bezos’ proven technology and business genius, his long-term approach and his personal decency make him a uniquely good new owner for the Post.”

Bezos is purchasing the newspapers through a personal investment entity that is separate from Amazon. The official announcement after the jump. Read more

‘It Melted Like Butter!’ WKMG’s Jessica Sanchez Has Good News in Her Cancer Battle

Jessica Sanchez, the traffic reporter for Orlando CBS affiliate WKMG who was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin Lymphoma in March, gave fans some good news in her battle against a tumor discovered in her right lung.

“I have so much happy news to report! First, the lymphoma tumor is gone!!!” Sanchez wrote on her Let’s Be Honest Blog. “It melted like butter! And second… I am finished with chemotherapy!! Can you believe it’s been only a little more than four months since I was diagnosed??”

“I’m anxious to return to work, but I want to do so when I have the strength to do it right,” she told the Orlando Sentinel. “One thing I can say is the outpouring of well-wishes, thoughts and prayers brighten up my heart and heal my soul. Family, friends and viewers have been wonderful in keeping me in positive spirits, and it has contributed greatly to my own positive outlook. It feels amazing to have so much support.”

‘Not Guilty’ Verdict in Zimmerman Trial: Orlando Stations Ready for Coverage

Orlando Stations were ready to go once word of a verdict in the George Zimmerman trial came. All four stations broke into regular Saturday night programming to bring viewers a live feed of the jury’s verdict.

CBS affiliate WKMG was first on-air at 9:48.36 with Lauren Rowe, Tony Pipitone and legal analyst Eric DuBois from outside the courthouse telling viewers a verdict had been reached. Next up was FOX owned station WOFL at 9:49.11 with word of activity in the courthouse.

ABC affiliate WFTV and NBC affiliate WESH were one second apart with ABC breaking into network show “666 Park Avenue” at 9:50.02 with legal analyst Bill Sheaffer and Greg Warmoth. The pair told viewers the Seminole County Justice Center had tweeted confirmation a verdict had been reached. Jim Payne from WESH broke in solo tossing, as all the stations did, to the live feed of the courtroom and the reading of the verdict by the jury.

WKMG Banned from Zimmerman Courtroom

WKMG viewers who were wondering where the CBS affiliate’s Tony Pipitone was during the George Zimmerman murder trial today, can wonder more. WKMG has been banned from the proceedings.

“The WKMG helicopter followed and possibly filmed jurors from the courthouse to their destination yesterday (Thursday),” Michelle Kennedy, court services administrator/PIO told The Orlando Sentinel. “Their courtroom credentials have been revoked while this matter is under review.”

Skip Valet, WKMG general manager told TVSpy, “Someone thought we were taking pictures of the jurors. We were not. We are working with the court to resolve this misunderstanding.”

On its facebook page and station website, WKMG is advertising a live text chat with Pipitone, who had been doing live phone updates inside the courtroom during on-air coverage. We asked Valet how the ban would affect the promotion, but have yet to hear back.  We’ll update when we do.

George Zimmerman Trial Ratings: WFTV, WOFL On Top in Orlando

Extensive coverage of the George Zimmerman trial has given Orlando stations — and their cable news counterparts — a ratings boost. Zimmerman is on trial in Sanford, Fla. for second-degree murder in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

For the seven days of trial coverage from June 24 to July 2, ABC affiliate WFTV led the way in Total Viewers and households, delivering a 1.8 rating / 8.4 share and a 3.5 rating / 9.5 share, respectively. Fox O&O WOFL topped the competition in the A25-54 demographic with a 1.6 rating / 9.4 share. WOFL also leads in the A18-34 and A18-49 demographics.

All four stations are seeing ratings rise as the trial goes on, especially among younger viewers. For the same seven-day period from June 24 to July 2, WOFL was up +64% in the A25-54 demographic. WFTV was up +25%, while NBC affiliate WESH was up +20% and CBS affiliate WKMG was up +17%.

Ratings are after the jump. Read more

Jessica Sanchez Shows Off Shaved Head During Visit to WKMG

Jessica Sanchez, the WKMG traffic reporter who was recently diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma briefly returned to the Orlando CBS affiliate’s morning show where she showed off her newly shaved head.

“I bawled my eyes out that night,” Sanchez said of the night she had her head shaved. “And I woke up the next morning with these swollen eyes and this bald head and I looked like Sloth from ‘The Goonies.’”

Before her live visit to the set, the station did a short package showing Sanchez getting her head shaved due to the effects of chemotherapy treatment she’s undergoing. She said on her blog she will undergo six chemo treatments in all. Read more

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